Cool Mom Poll: Husbands That Bug

Even the best, best husbands can set your teeth on edge sometimes – just like a roommate, but harder to evict. Most women will roll their eyes about their man once in a while. It’s always weird to me when a woman NEVER rags on her husband. Instead of thinking they have a perfect union, I think, “What is she hiding?”

It’s just human nature: our kids, our best friends, that fat guy who banged his car door into mine at Target – everyone bugs everyone at some point.

So, what is your chief beef with your partner (man or woman)? What is the one thing that bothers you a tad more than all the other annoyances?

Here are your choices… remember, you have until 5:00 pm, Thursday, October 16, 2008:

To view last week’s poll results, click here!

Those G– D— Party Favors!

Vivien’s third birthday was Sunday. Naturally, what started as a small gathering in our backyard grew larger and similar in price to the Fed bailout. Invite a few kids, with parents and my relatives, and it was about 30-plus folks. That’s okay: I handled the food (ordered from my husband’s restaurant, naturally), got balloons, rented a couple of tables for outside, had a kid-entertainer who took Viv’s sour morning mood and made her harmonica-playing happy – literally. And I ordered a yummy cake (sidebar: from the most inept bakery, with the worst customer service – Sweet Lady Jane on Melrose in LA). But here’s what got my panties in a bundle: The party favors!

Daphne and Viv at School

I delayed getting them until the afternoon before the party, so I was overwhelmed at the task. And I found one site that said I should “make the favors memorable.” Oh, for the love of Pete!

It used to be that favors were the same junk you found in piñatas: A little plastic whistle, some candy. Now they are real toys. At a party a few months ago, one mom gave each kid three toys in a bag – I’m talking good Melissa & Doug toys. I think the biggest reason to have favors is to help parents get the screaming kid out the door. “I know you don’t want to leave, but here is a present for you, if you do!”

I called my mom and asked her what to do. She said, “I can’t help you. When you were a kid we didn’t have to give favors.” True, the favor at my kiddie parties was a small paper cup of jellybeans that the kids munched on before cake. In a couple of years, it won’t just be favors. Soon, at kiddie parties they will have gifting suites.

And another thing: At the party, three separate kids came up to me and asked, “Where is the piñata?” I sai, honestly, “No piñata: I don’t like them.” Little kids waving around a big stick and finally some dad has to step in to whack it? The whole thing stresses me out.

My Weekend With The Edell’s

Sometimes you feel like family with people who are not relatives, actually often. I have a brother who is not my “real” brother. For any of you who knew me in my radio days you’d know Dr. Dean Edell is a very important person in my life. I produced his radio show and he gave me a chance to become not only his on-air foil, but to co host a TV show of his.  Professionally I owe a great deal to him. In Addition, his influence on my life as a mentor is so immense I have called him my “second dad”, sometimes I have even suggested that he “re-raised me.” Some people need to grow up again, I was one of those people. As if that were not enough, he and his wife Sharon have been warm friends to me.

I reluctantly stepped away from the show, because I felt I had to grow professionally and creatively. If you’ve ever had to separate from a mentor you know how hard it can be. I gave him 10 months notice.

That was in mid 1999. We have kept in touch and I have even filled in for Heather sometimes, my friend who took over my producing job. But, I have missed talking to Dean and getting his counsel. This past weekend Vivien and I went to Northern California and spent the weekend with he and his wife Sharon in their home at the intersection of nowhere, and where the hell am I? It is really, really remote. I loved catching up with them, but most of all to see them with Vivien filled my heart.

You know how you feel when your parents and your kid are digging each other? That’s how being with Dean and Sharon felt for me. Dean kept trying to connect with Vivien and make her laugh, sometimes she was shy, and sometimes it worked. He is a pro, he and Sharon have 8 grown children between them and about 7 grand kids.

We were walking back from the river one day and Vivien, who was walking with Sharon and I suddenly said, “I want to run and catch up with him.” She dashed to catch up with Dean (her floaty on his head), and took his hand. They walked hand and hand back home.

Another family portrait.