life on the funny farm

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Mother of the Year?

I was all headed to being a shoe-in for the Mom of the Year Award.

I loaded my girls into the car and headed for the Pocono mountains for a two night, three day Mother/Daughters trip.

I had all kinds of bonding and good times envisioned for us.

I had dreams of forcing them to sit through cheesy scenarios like sitting in a circle under the moonlight, holding hands and taking turns telling what traits we admire about the others.

Team-building, imparting of maternal wisdom, spirituality, growth, guiding them down the path towards womanhood with an expert hand on their shoulders and a whisper in their ears.

Was it really too much to ask?

Well, we headed down that path a couple feet maybe, but got detoured by the the distractions of malls, spas, junk food, sibling rivalry, and parent-child power struggles.

Our very first activity for our very first afternoon was a plan to go to Bushkill Falls and hike through nature and feel the power and beauty of the waterfalls. To feel the blood coursing through our veins as the water rushes through the rivers, to feel our connection with nature, our connection with each other.

Instead, we saw the Lehigh Valley Mall out our window and made the first alteration to our itinerary. Julie got an off-the-shoulder floozy crop shirt that says "Boy Crazy" in pink neon letters. Nice. Hiking the trails and marveling at nature became swiping the plastic and signing my name. But they were happy.

Do I get points for letting their retail endorphins flow?

That detour cost us some time, so we got to our hotel later than planned. Later as in the hotel restaurant was closed. Later as in the hotel's room service was closed (we're talking 9pm, but this wasn't exactly a metropolitan area). We learned there was a Friendly's only a few miles away, but I couldn't get it on Mapquest or Google Maps, nor could the Friendly's representative I got on the phone give me directions. Should I chance driving on unfamiliar mountain roads in the dark to try to find it from what I could piece together?
Banjo music sounded briefly in my head while I thought that one out.


Minutes later we were in the hotel's cubicle of a sundry shop, loading our arms up with muffins, Fritos, Snickers, iced teas and Doritos. We charged it all to the room and enjoyed our $20 worth of trans fats and corn syrup in the privacy and comfort of our room.

Where the #&%@* is Friendly's?

Next day we spent nearly the whole day at the water park and a good time (and sunburn) was had by all. They traipsed around in their swimsuits and had fun on all the rides. We took the ski lift to the top of the mountain to unwind a bit, and on the way up we passed a couple cars full of boys that flirted with my girls. That was the cause of some bickering as they fought over who the boys were eyeballing.
Note to self: do they sell chastity belts in the water park gift shop? In the hotel sundry shop?

After the park we finally found our way to Friendly's for dinner and found an awesome spa for mani-pedis.

Last day of our journey we enjoyed the hotel's fitness center and pool, and we munched on popcorn while watching Harry Potter 7.

We stopped for dinner at a diner on the way home and the girls got silly leaving texts and messages on each other's cell phones. We laughed at handwritten signs in the country offering for sale Quilts, Crafts and Pigeons (all on the same sign), and discused the possibility of moving to Krumtown just for the fun of it.

And before I knew it, we were home. Back with the boys.


Maybe I let them shop instead of taking in the beauty of nature.
Perhaps I fed them junk food instead of dinner.
And OK, I missed a few opportunities to educate them on confidence, independence, strength, and the bonds of mothers and daughters and sisters.

But on the drive home, when we rolled down the windows and screamed out the lyrics to the song on the radio, I guess I'd have to say Katy Perry taught them all I had intended to as we all sang together....

Do you know that there's still a chance for you
Cause there's a spark in you

You just gotta ignite the light
And let it shine
Just own the night
Like the Fourth of July

Cause baby you're a firework
Come on show 'em what you're worth
Make 'em go "Oh, oh, oh!"
As you shoot across the sky-y-y

You don't have to feel like a waste of space
You're original, cannot be replaced
If you only knew what the future holds
After a hurricane comes a rainbow

Maybe you're reason why all the doors are closed
So you could open one that leads you to the perfect road

Like a lightning bolt, your heart will blow
And when it's time, you'll know

You just gotta ignite the light
And let it shine
Just own the night
Like the Fourth of July

Cause baby you're a firework
Come on show 'em what you're worth
Make 'em go "Oh, oh, oh!"
As you shoot across the sky-y-y

Baby you're a firework
Come on let your colors burst
Make 'em go "Oh, oh, oh!"
You're gonna leave 'em all in awe-awe-awe"

Boom, boom, boom
Even brighter than the moon, moon, moon
It's always been inside of you, you, you
And now it's time to let it through

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