PSA: Do not hire these children. At least not as party-planners.

Fun fact: I turn forty on Saturday. I am ridiculously excited about it.

Really, it’s kind of silly for me to be excited at all, given that I’ve been telling people that I’m forty for the last eight years. I figured, at thirty-two, with three kids and a dog and a minivan and a house and a community garden plot, that it didn’t matter what age I told people I was. They’d hear forty no matter what I said. So I thought I’d just beat them to the punch. So one would think, given that situation, that my upcoming foray into forty would seem somewhat anticlimactic. But one would think wrong.

I am crazy-thrilled to be forty. I want to give forty a big, wet kiss. I want to take it places and buy it pretty baubles and romance its panties off. I want to take forty home and introduce her to Mother. I want to eat forty chocolates and drink forty sips of wine and run forty miles and catch forty winks and dream forty dreams.

And yet, I’ve made no plans. Because I stink at making plans. So I put it to my kids. This was our conversation:

ME: So. It’s my birthday on Saturday.

THE KIDS: It is? But we’re not ready!

ME: There’s nothing to be ready about. We’re just going to hang out.

CORDELIA: Mom. What do you want for your birthday? And don’t say socks.

ME: Socks.


(All I ever want is socks. Wool stripey socks. And I never get them.)

ME: But we should do something fun. What should we do?

LEO: I know! Skyzone!

(Do you guys know Skyzone? It’s a huge concrete bunker filled with trampolines, and Leo wants to live there. Here’s a picture:

ME: We are not going to Skyzone.

LEO: Is that because you hate fun?

ELLA: We have to do something that mom likes to do.

CORDELIA: What does mom like to do?

LEO: Grocery shop?


ME: We are not going grocery shopping.

ELLA: Are you going to make us clean?

CORDELIA: I hate cleaning.

ELLA: It’s decided. No cleaning on birthdays.

LEO: Mom. I got it. The water park. It’s perfect.

ME: Nah.


ME: Too much man-sweat and back-tats.

LEO: I don’t even know what that means. You’re not making sense.

ELLA: You guys are terrible at this game.


LEO: That’s not as fun as a trampoline.

ELLA: Everything is more fun than a trampoline.

CORDELIA: Let’s go to the Mall of America! And shop!


ELLA: And probably America. Mom is a communist.

ME: I prefer “pinko”.

LEO: Mom. Just tell us.

And so I considered.

ME: I know. Let’s go to the book store. And then the sock store. How’s that?

My children shook their heads slowly, long-suffering expressions marring their beautiful faces.

ELLA: Oh, mom.

CORDELIA: Poor, poor mom.

LEO: You really stink at having a birthday.

But they are wrong. I am rocking this thing already.

6 thoughts on “PSA: Do not hire these children. At least not as party-planners.

  1. First off, you’re posts always crack me up. Is it like a sit com around your house all the time?

    Second off, I felt the same way when I turned 40! My friends thought I was crazy, but I was sooooo excited I was giddy for weeks.

    Third off, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

  2. I’m oddly happy about my 40th in three months as well. 🙂 And I don’t want a party. Not because I’m anti-social, or I hate my birthday, but I don’t see it as a big blow out type of deal, for me. You have great kids. Wonderful kids, from the sounds of it. I hope you get your books and striped socks!

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