My boys are driving me nuts. They’re not doing anything wrong, per se, they are just doing their ‘thing’. But I’m trying to get us all to leave the house and they think they are moving in that general direction, but I know better: we will all die here.

I do not understand why it takes us roughly 8374692813 hours to leave the house. My boys are not babies. I do not need to pack diapers, or sippy cups, or baby sunscreen or blankets or 60 changes of clothing. I do not need to pack snacks. I do not need to pack water. I do not need to wrestle them into car seats and lug them into my car, or bump a stroller down several flights of stairs, or strap them to my chest via a complicated wrap technique learned on YouTube. I have already done these things. We have graduated from that school, summited that mountain, waved goodbye graciously from that float in that particular hometown parade.

The crown passes to you, new Mamas!

Getting out of the house with a baby and a toddler is a special sort of hell. Everyone knows this. But it can be done because there is a list, and, at some point, that list has an end. It might be a long list (and god knows mine was), but if you pack all the things and change all the diapers and click them into whatever you click them into….at some point (even hours later) you get to leave.

We, however, are still in this house. 

I had tried to effectively communicate. I was all “eyes on me” and touched their shoulders while staring into their eyes as I told them — very seriously — that it was time to get dressed.  And then Raines was in the bedroom making vague (but ineffective) dressing motions, and Pax was getting water which, OK, is a pre-cursor at best…..yet the second both boys are in the same room together, they lose all sense of purpose.

Instead of doing anything remotely helpful, Pax starts “friendly punching” his brother who retaliates by wrestling him to the ground. There they both are, rolling around on top of the clothes they are supposed to be wearing. I stare down at both of them, dumbfounded. “FOCUS!!!!” I roar, and they both leap up, clothes flying everywhere. “OK Mom!” Pax yells, launching himself sideways onto the bed. He rebounds off the bed, twisting his body into some sort of airborne pose, then hits the floor, rolling. As he rolls, he scoops up his sweatshirt, and whips it at his brother. Raines dives to the floor, peeling off the ONE SOCK he has managed to put on and fires the sock-bomb back at Pax. Pax drops it down his pants with a grin, and now there they are, rolling around on the floor. Again.

I scoop up random bits of clothes and throw them into the bathroom, dragging one boy with me. I do not know which boy (does it matter?) and I stuff him into the bathroom with the pile of clothes. Door closed. There were threats. 

I return to The Room We Will Never Leave and point at the other remaining blond boy. He correctly guesses my mood and immediately starts making more vague (yet ineffective) dressing motions. Must be Raines.

“Don’t worry! We’re almost ready, Mom!!” one of them calls.

But I know better. We’re in this house until we die.

Easy midi. I’ve had my eye on this simple v-neck midi dress for a couple of weeks…and now it’s 40% off.  I couldn’t decide between the black and the stripe, but, knowing me, I’ll probably do black.  

Me, circa 1990.  There’s something about these Everlane link-stitch sweaters that bring me back. They have that texture and slouchy fit….almost like what J.Crew used to do? In any case, the ‘bone’ one feels perfect for right now, and the other two colors would be gorgeous for Fall.

Travelin’ jeans.  I have a pair of high-rise Lolë jeans that I LOVE for travel. They fit perfectly, and are even comfy on a long flight. Well. They just came out with a new wash in gray, and it’s good. The color is exactly how I like my gray jeans — not uniform, more of a faded black. And while you’re there, you might want to pick up some of my very fav pieces on crazy sale: this black dress, this cropped long sleeve (I layer it over the dress), this stay-put bikini (that’s been REALLY well-tested).

No shame in the denim underwear game.  I’ve been jokingly referring to my beloved super-short, cut-offs as “denim underwear” for years. It started after a reader tried to shame me by coining the term (little did she know: I LOVED IT). But as Cam (who is back! Yay!) recently pointed out….there are now pairs of denim underwear that make mine look like a prairie skirt. ps. Cosmo tried them on. You are welcome.

Laura’s nail polish.  If anyone else swooned over the surprisingly sophisticated purple pedi Laura rocked in her recent post on Chacos(!!)…I’ve got the goods. It’s “Angora Cardi” by Essie, and is the most perfect purple-meets-wine color.  

I cannot be silent….but frankly, I don’t know what to say. Gun violence in this country has reached levels that are beyond horrifying. There have been 255 mass shootings in 2019 alone, resulting in 273 fatalities, and 1,067 injured. Can you imagine if, say, we had had 255 terrorist attacks this year? How different our response would be? (And let’s not ignore the fact that these are, in fact, terrorist attacks…but will never be called such because they’ve been carried out by white American men.) And yet…there’s no meaningful change. I want to scream. The ineffective hand waving, the bullshit ‘thoughts and prayers’ and the inevitable trolls that come out of the woodwork to yell about the 2nd amendment and list random statistics intended to distract and divide. I am done with you. Instead, I am going to start funding organizations like Brady United, one of the oldest gun control advocacy agencies (and the organization that seems to be the most recommended). It’s time to speak with our dollars, because the NRA has no qualms about throwing millions around to try and defeat even the most common-sense gun laws (you can get an idea of how much the NRA sends individual members of Congress, here.) Personally, I’m done talking about this. I’ll be funding it instead.

Immigration is complicated. This is not. After a raid in Mississippi that resulted in the arrest of 680 undocumented immigrants…their children were left, abandoned. The children, American citizens, walked home from school to find their houses empty. Toddlers at daycare simply had no one come and pick them up. Immigration can be a tricky subject, but this much is clear: our immigration policies should never tear children from their parents. Period. I know some parents have already been released (with orders to show up at deportation hearings), but I’ll be following along with @together.rising to see what next steps must be taken.

xo,

S

13 COMMENTS

  1. Thank you so much for speaking out about the need for gun control and treating immigrant families with compassion. I love your fashion, but even more, I love your style.

  2. Every town for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action for Gun sense are also excellent advocacy groups for meaningful gun law reform. They have letter writing campaigns to elected officials, volunteer visits to congressional offices, and monitor each states gun laws for opportunities to lobby for bills that support gun safety.

  3. We have four boys and your scene describes our near daily routine. All four could be listless on the floor drooling, but as soon as I tell them to get up and start doing whatever ( chores, practice instruments, get really for swim team practice, etc…), they run upstairs and engage in endless horseplay or start intense card games. I have gotten to where I invent heinous chores just so they engage themselves together in whatever it is that brothers do upstairs.

  4. Amen sister! To all of it.
    Your boys are a few years older than mine so I’m discouraged to know they won’t be growing out of it for a long time. But it’s good to know the reality.

  5. Regarding the boys – set the kitchen timer. The train leaves the station when the timer goes off. You may need to leave someone behind – but probably only once. They are old enough to stay by themselves for a while.

    Regarding gun violence and immigration, thanks for using your forum to speak out. Your points are well made. All of them.

  6. This was so funny and on point. I love your description of trying to get out of the house with kids. And thank you for starting on a lighter note but closing with with important links and info gun reform and immigration. I’m so heartbroken over the abuse of migrants in this country, especially of children.

  7. This post is why I love you so much, Shana. Your fashion sense is on point and you make me spend way too much money, but it’s your descriptions of „real life with children“ and your willingness to speak out on the tough issues that really keep me coming back.

    As for never leaving the house…I thought ours was just because both my boys have ADHD. So good to know it’s just because they’re boys.

  8. Shana, thank you for using this platform to speak out about the real horror we’re going through — Moms Demand Action and Everytown are my go-tos for common-sense gun legislation/activism; Immigrant Families Together is doing excellent work, too. (And the struggle to get out the door is real. I only have one son, but the second he’s tasked with putting his shoes on, that’s when he simply MUST read a chapter or finish a show or build a Lego set. WHY.)

  9. Shana, I see you, I hear you, I feel you. My daughters act just like your sons. On one hand I am looking forward to the last few weeks of summer. On the other hand…. And the world is breaking my heart right now. Funding, funding, funding.

  10. Amen!! Agree 110%!
    Is anyone else SO disappointed to learn that Mr Leslie Wexner, the billionaire founder of The Limited stores, was Jeff Epstein’s only publicly known financial client!! ?
    Until I learn otherwise, I will NOT SHOP AT LIMITED, EXPRESS, BATH & BODY.

  11. Omg, FOCUS is at the top of my mom vocab list right now…from getting out the door, to homework time, to eating!! Guess we are just at that stage of our lives. While aggravating at times, I dread the days (which are coming up too fast) when I won’t have anyone to get on to get some hustle in their bustle. On a random side note, the part where you list your “I do not” items, I had a flashback to when my youngest was in his Green Eggs and Ham phase and I read it about 174865382 times. Ha ha. #thesearethedays

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