How to be a bad parent

It has come to my attention that thanks to this post and this one, I’ve sort of been passing myself off as this super parent; this know-it-all, done-it-all, have-all-the-answers-to-the-hard-questions parent.

I’m not.

Although I could write several posts on things that I do that will require my children spend their university tuition on therapy instead, I will give you an example of how finer parenting skills, which I currently don’t possess, could prevent this.

This is me in the morning…

image from here

…no, it’s not really me, I’m far scarier looking than her, and I wear an old ratty nightie on which all the buttons have gone missing.

But that’s how I feel in the morning.

I can’t wake up.
I don’t want to talk.
And thinking is not on the agenda until a couple of hours have passed.

Unfortunately, I have four kids I have to get off to school in the morning.
So thinking, or at the very least, speech are somewhat necessary to the progression of events.

The morning usually starts off innocently enough.

For example, this morning I was in the bathroom brushing my teeth.
I’m the first one up. I haven’t roused anyone yet because I like to be able to at least get this one task out of the way before being engulfed by conversation.

No such luck though.
Terran, the 7 year old, comes in to pee.
While he’s peeing, he says this, “Mom, would you rather freeze to death or burn to death?”
My reply: “Don’t forget to flush the toilet.”

Zoe comes in, and asks, “Which would be worse? Freezing to death or burning to death?”
I reply, “Get out.”

Zoe plugs in the hair straightener and hands it to me, adding, “Open your eyes Mom. I don’t want you to burn my ear again.”
I open one eye.

We go down to the kitchen for breakfast.
Terran asks for a bagel with cream cheese.
I pour him Fruit Loops.
He says, “Mom, I wanted a bagel.”
I respond, “Where’s your backpack?”
He says again, “Mom, I wanted a bagel. You gave me cereal.”
I say, “And make sure you don’t forget your snowpants. It’s cold out there.”

I give Zoe a bagel with cream cheese.
She says, “Mom, I hate bagels. I wanted Fruit Loops.”
I reply, “Make sure your geometry homework is in your school bag.”

They swap breakfasts.

Terran is talking about his teacher, something about a village out of boxes that they’re making in art class.
I’m not certain as I’m half-laying on the counter top, half standing up, hoping for 2-3 more minutes of sleep.
He says, “So will you come and see it when it’s finished?”
I reply from my comfortable position on the counter, “I think Santa is coming to the mall this weekend.”

Jackson comes up for breakfast.
He sits down at the table.
Breakfast conversation ensues although I don’t take part because I am unable to formulate full thoughts just yet.

Jackson says, “Last year in sex-ed, my teacher told us to write one question down on a piece of paper, leave it anonymous, and he would answer it. One of the questions was: what does sperm taste like? He said it tasted like protein. Do you think it tastes like protein, Mom?”

Normally, like when I’m actually awake, I would have been all over that question. Not that I know what sperm tastes like MY MOTHER READS THIS BLOG I would have been explaining the physiological process involved in the production of sperm.

This morning, however, I say, “Syrup.”
Jackson replies, “Syrup? Sperm tastes like syrup?”
I say, “Do you want syrup on your waffles?”
Jackson shakes his head, “I never asked for waffles. I wanted a bagel.”
“Here,” I respond, clunking the plate in front of him, “Eat your waffles.”

But as I’m walking back upstairs to put some clothes on, through the fog that is my brain, I do have one clear thought: “Protein!…ya, right…everyone knows it’s salty.”

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106 Responses to How to be a bad parent
  1. Big Fat Gini
    December 1, 2010 | 4:30 pm

    I'm snorting and snickering so hard trying to keep my napping twins from waking up. "My mom reads this blog!" Ha!

  2. MissEmy
    December 1, 2010 | 4:31 pm

    LOL – too funny! Usually I don't really wake up until I've had a nice big cup of coffee. Then I'm zinging and everyone is telling me to stop and shut up. ;) :D

  3. jojo
    December 1, 2010 | 4:33 pm

    Your mom must be so proud, I personally think it depends on thean and how much salt he eats. LOL. Syrup, I love it

  4. Oilfield Trash
    December 1, 2010 | 4:34 pm

    It takes me roughly 1 gallon of coffee and a hot shower to wake me up. Which means that you should not speak to me until after 11am on weekdays.

  5. bonnie 'Marilyn' parker
    December 1, 2010 | 4:37 pm

    syrup? ha! i wish. i'd be a fat happy girl ;)

  6. CkretsGalore
    December 1, 2010 | 4:40 pm

    My alarm is set for 520am..I get up at 540am. I shower in the dark at camp. Well I turn on this tiny lamp in the living area of the camp room and leave the bathroom door open so there's a crack of light.

    I call it my denial shower.

  7. Yankee Girl
    December 1, 2010 | 4:40 pm

    What a question to be asking first thing in the morning!

    Yeah, it's salty…and sometimes bitter, but I suppose "protein" is a good answer for school age kids.

    I still love your parenting skills, even if you do operate hot items around your child's head with your eyes closed!

  8. Matty
    December 1, 2010 | 4:41 pm

    Where is the video recorder? This is hilarious in writing. I would love to see this as it happened. And just how old are these kids in health class? LMAO

  9. Holly Ruggiero
    December 1, 2010 | 4:42 pm

    Great story, it had me laughing outloud.

  10. Name: female, I shit you not!
    December 1, 2010 | 4:48 pm

    Hysterical……kinda glad those days are over for me, then again!

    The man up above messed up on the taste. Jus saying…. :0)

  11. Colleen
    December 1, 2010 | 4:48 pm

    I cried from laughing so hard at your last comment. Frickin' hysterical!

  12. Another Day of Crazy
    December 1, 2010 | 4:49 pm

    How did I know jackson was going to ask you a porn, I mean SEX question, lol? Too funny! And here you go giving the men ideas.

    "maybe if I dip it in syrup…"

  13. Blasé
    December 1, 2010 | 4:51 pm

    but..but..but Sandra!

    you are supposed to 'reason' with your children and explain to them why they must obey you.

  14. Bird Shit and Baby Caca
    December 1, 2010 | 4:55 pm

    a girl actually asked our sex ed teacher why sperm tasted so bad…she never lived it down. I really want a bagel now…not sure what that has to do w/ sperm? LOL

  15. A Redhead Named Sam
    December 1, 2010 | 4:57 pm

    Oh that's just fantastic. I love sharing your stories with my boyfriend…we just have the best laugh!

  16. Rochelle@AFamilyofLooneys
    December 1, 2010 | 4:58 pm

    LOL!!!! You mean it does not taste like syrup :-D (I wish)

  17. Lightning Bug's Butt
    December 1, 2010 | 4:59 pm

    For real though, which would you rather do: burn to death or freeze to death?

    Good question!

  18. Travel Nurse Extraordinaire
    December 1, 2010 | 5:03 pm

    I love your label, "if it tasted like syrup more men would be smiling"! I hope your mom enjoys your blog cause it's very funny!!

  19. TinaM
    December 1, 2010 | 5:16 pm

    Haha So FUNNY :)
    And your commenters are funny too, this is a great blog :)

    I would say the man up stairs didn't mess up, maybe it just wasn't meant for tasting??? lol

    Also, I wouldn't say "Syrup- I wish!" I would say "Syrup- HE WISHES!!!"

    I don't think you come off as a know it all parent, you are honest! people can take from that what they will ;)

  20. Heather
    December 1, 2010 | 5:18 pm

    If you delegate morning duty and stay in bed it isn't poor parenting…it is teaching responsibility.
    Really+. Tjat os wjat +O te;; ,use;f/
    Sorry. Baby wanted to comment too.

  21. Lin
    December 1, 2010 | 5:20 pm

    lmao…syrup! Everything minus the sperm conversation reminds me of my childhood. And I have to agree with Bonnie, I think we'd all be fatties if it tasted like syrup.

  22. Lin
    December 1, 2010 | 5:21 pm


    Everything minus the sperm conversation reminds me of my childhood. And I have to agree with Bonnie, I think we'd all be major fatties if it tasted like syrup.

  23. Steph
    December 1, 2010 | 5:29 pm

    Haha… syrup. Nice one.

    I'm not sure I could handle, scratch that, I know I couldn't handle four kids in the morning.

  24. ChiTown Girl
    December 1, 2010 | 5:36 pm

    I think that when your mom DOES read this, she should let us know what SHE thinks it tastes like. I'm thinking she's the one that told YOU it tastes like syrup! ;-)

  25. Monkey Man
    December 1, 2010 | 5:39 pm

    Tell Jackson he needs to spend more time playing video games and less time on the porn sites.

    Frozen. Not that anyone really cares.

  26. Diane
    December 1, 2010 | 5:39 pm

    Your kids come up with some random off the wall questions in the morning. Hilarious! I am the exact same way in the mornings and so is my youngest so mornings are never enjoyable at my house either!

  27. karensomethingorother
    December 1, 2010 | 5:51 pm

    if it tasted like syrup, that still wouldn't make a difference. Sleep, sleep is the new sex.

  28. Ro
    December 1, 2010 | 5:53 pm

    I wish I would have read this EARLY this morning- I neeeeeded this. WOMAN you crack me.

    and yes- your right

    EVERYBODY knows this.


    love it!

  29. Kristina P.
    December 1, 2010 | 6:10 pm

    Thanks for keeping it family friendly. Would hate for your mom to get the wrong idea about you!

  30. A girl needs 2 Talk
    December 1, 2010 | 6:12 pm

    I hate if anyone walks in on me while I'm brushing my teeth! Those 5 minutes of privacy are sacred!

  31. Lisha @ DeLovely Life
    December 1, 2010 | 6:19 pm

    Bwahahaha! Salty, indeed. Sperm and syrup…Two things that probably shouldn't meet. Chocolate is another story. ;) Goodness we're perverse. I need to go pray or something.

  32. XLMIC
    December 1, 2010 | 6:23 pm

    OMG… literally busting up! Hilarious!

  33. Kimberly
    December 1, 2010 | 6:47 pm

    I'm sure that your son could forward that question to the makers of Jackass. They once downed a cup full of horse sperm. Why? Cause their nuts but I'm sure that they could give him the answer because us proper women wouldn't know a answer like that right? RIGHT?! Hi Mom!

  34. Linda Medrano
    December 1, 2010 | 7:09 pm

    It kind of tastes like Clorox smells. (I mean, that's what I've heard.)

  35. Mary Vaughn
    December 1, 2010 | 7:16 pm

    I was at the birth of my daughter so I know she's not your twin but she could be.

    Your writing is so humorous — I love it!

  36. Saimi
    December 1, 2010 | 7:28 pm

    Freeze to death, definitely freeze to death!

  37. Bibliomama
    December 1, 2010 | 7:38 pm

    I suck at mornings too. And considering how much my daughter loves pancakes there's no way in HELL I would ever tell her it tastes like syrup.

  38. MacDougal Street Baby
    December 1, 2010 | 7:56 pm

    I love that your son asked you what sperm tastes like. That's some serious open communication. If any of my kids ever have the chutzpah to ask me that question I will go straight to the neighborhood bar, get shockingly drunk, and lap dance the ugliest patron there.

  39. The Adorkable Ditz
    December 1, 2010 | 8:19 pm

    LOL I wish I could observe more of this conversation. This would serious make my day.

    "Everybody knows it's salty!"

    That they do!

  40. Shell
    December 1, 2010 | 8:20 pm

    Protein? What the heck?

    I'm not a morning person. My boys have to drag me out of bed. Or make such a horrific noise in the kitchen that I have to get up b/c there is a disaster.

  41. Bridget
    December 1, 2010 | 8:23 pm

    I think that we're alot alike in the mornings!! Love your answers to all their questions.

  42. Julianna
    December 1, 2010 | 8:25 pm

    Salty…sour…what ever you do don't eat asparagus before… wait is that too much information for you? Or your mother? :) -J

  43. Krebster
    December 1, 2010 | 8:32 pm

    This is in a lot of ways totally un-post related, but I like the way you gave photo credit. This is something I've always struggled with and have thus avoided with my current blog. I just may have to steal that idea. Thanks chica.

  44. Stephanie in Suburbia
    December 1, 2010 | 8:51 pm

    Hilarious! You have convinced me to enroll Wee 'Burb in boarding school the second she mentions sex.

  45. Mamma has spoken
    December 1, 2010 | 8:55 pm

    Protein hun? For some reason, I'm not buying it. I'd rather have a big slab of beef than a teaspoon of sperm….

  46. becca
    December 1, 2010 | 9:00 pm

    no one should be expected to be human before at least 2 cups of coffee

  47. Rita
    December 1, 2010 | 9:27 pm


  48. JPO
    December 1, 2010 | 9:30 pm

    I cannot believe the Sex-Ex teacher said sperm tasted like Protein. I wonder if he answered that right away?!

  49. jess
    December 1, 2010 | 9:38 pm

    okay, so probably everyone's spooge tastes a little different, but can we all agree that it has a weird smell?

  50. Fay's Too
    December 1, 2010 | 10:06 pm

    My advice is to give your man pineapple for breakfast and your kids poptarts.
    Thanks for the laugh!

  51. The Watchman
    December 1, 2010 | 10:15 pm

    You could be worse! My mom had an alarm set for me to get up. I was the oldest, so I had to be up at 5:30am to make her coffee and bring it to her, while she was still in bed, and it had to be just the way she liked it or it was sent back. Then I had to get my little brother ready for school(dressed, teeth brushed, school stuff together, etc…) Make all of us breakfast and clean up afterwards. Get her car started so it would be warm when she got in it(while I am freezing to death). All this when I was 8 to 17 years old. She claims she had kids so that she didn't have to hire servants! Yippee me! Later she really did hire someone to do all of this!

  52. Dad
    December 1, 2010 | 10:25 pm

    Hmmmm….so if I drank like 3 gallons of syrup, cut back on the salt…and then hung out at an IHOP…maybe I'd get lucky ;-)

  53. Jennie @ Modern Mamaz
    December 1, 2010 | 10:35 pm

    Sounds like a pretty typical morning around here… Except I'm never met with that final "clear" thought – Not until at least lunch time, anyway.

  54. robertga99
    December 1, 2010 | 10:42 pm

    A mix of salt and clorox. Hehe

    If it tasted like syrup, there would be no lesbians. LOL

  55. TheBabyMammaChronicles
    December 1, 2010 | 11:39 pm

    Ah, my daily dose of funny, thank you :)

  56. Cheeseboy
    December 1, 2010 | 11:49 pm

    I suddenly never want waffles again. Ever.

  57. Unknown Mami
    December 1, 2010 | 11:52 pm

    Wouldn't it be nice if it tasted like syrup?

  58. SSW
    December 1, 2010 | 11:59 pm

    I found myself saying the same thing's an awful salty mess…I was laughing with you my friend,only because I'm am not at all a morning person and I am always up in a zombie zone getting my son off to school and I'm still not sure how I do it all in my sleep! lol

  59. Nicole
    December 2, 2010 | 1:11 am

    Today I felt like maybe I was ready for a nanny. Any chance you're available?

  60. anSeL
    December 2, 2010 | 1:19 am

    this completes my day!


  61. Joanna Jenkins
    December 2, 2010 | 1:57 am

    I yiyi, that is some breakfast conversation!

    Cheers, jj

  62. Jill
    December 2, 2010 | 2:12 am

    HA HA! Love it. I'm exactly the same way in the mornings (minus all the kids). Still, you got them all fed and out the door. That's good parenting if you ask me!

  63. Poppy
    December 2, 2010 | 2:26 am

    Did you ever see the sperm pancake Craig made me? It was pretty disgusting. Anyhow, I'm the same way in the morning. Don't fucking talk to me until at least 8:30.

  64. MamaOnDaGo
    December 2, 2010 | 2:37 am

    Protein with a dash of salt?!?!? LOL!

    I'm sorry, but where exactly do you chug down a cup of coffee in the morning?

  65. Tweeks Coffee
    December 2, 2010 | 2:54 am

    Great post! You should take a look at my newest post, its about a good AdSense alternative.

  66. Jessica
    December 2, 2010 | 9:43 am

    Women, you are so freakin' funny. You need your own show!! Who will you have play you in your lifetime movie?

  67. Barbaloot
    December 2, 2010 | 11:03 am

    And here I was thinking you were a model parent. Now who can I look to? :)

  68. Carla E. Knight
    December 2, 2010 | 11:31 am

    Exactly, what the Hell does protein taste like? Definitely freeze.

  69. Jille
    December 2, 2010 | 11:57 am

    I love your style of parenting! Jille x

  70. DCHY
    December 2, 2010 | 12:02 pm

    Nothing like hearing non-sequitors or "I'm here but I am not here" statements from people who need more time. ;)

  71. TheUnSoccerMom
    December 2, 2010 | 12:53 pm

    I SO needed this laugh this morning!!!! Oh my… syrup… hilarious!

  72. FeliciaE
    December 2, 2010 | 2:00 pm

    Oh My God. I am literally crying from laughing so much.


    You sound like me in the mornings. I don't function at all until at least 3 hours after I am forced out of bed. God help me when Miss Monk reaches school age.

  73. Pamela
    December 2, 2010 | 2:10 pm

    You kill me! But I'm totally like that in the morning too – so foggy for the first few hours. I usually don't come-to 'til around 11:30a.m. but the sperm question would have totally jolted me awake!

    December 2, 2010 | 2:29 pm

    Oh wow! That just gave me a huge laugh! Great post!

  75. Roma
    December 2, 2010 | 3:15 pm

    This is brilliant! Loving the breakfast swap and one eye for straightening ideas. Mornings are soul destroying, and there's no way round it. Amen to that.

    Basically , just wanted to pop by and say i adore your blog. It's so honest and refreshing and your writing style is wonderful!
    I look forward to your next blog post!

    p.s. I'm pretty new to this whole blogging thing and was wondering if you possibly had a spare minute to look at my blog? Love or detest it- any comment from a blogging pro like you would be really appreciated! Thank you.

  76. Kelley
    December 2, 2010 | 4:06 pm

    You make me LOL every time. Salty, salty, salty. I love questions your kids ask!!

  77. JP
    December 2, 2010 | 4:23 pm

    Wow your kids sound exactly like mine…

    I had something else clever and witty to say here but I think I need more coffee because I can't remem… oh wait…

    Sometimes in the morning I'm so tired and so in need of my morning coffee that I actually forget to make the morning coffee. Catch 22 there.

    Hmmm… that wasn't as clever and/or witty as I thought. Damn.

  78. Myya
    December 2, 2010 | 5:52 pm

    I think I can offically say that you are one of the most hilarious people Evvah!

  79. The Nice One
    December 2, 2010 | 6:29 pm

    Bursting with laughter over here…
    it's like drinking pool water, kid.

  80. Missy
    December 2, 2010 | 6:49 pm

    This dumb teacher!! Did he not even preface the response with a, "I have heard, Research says…"
    Awesome Post!

  81. AmyLK
    December 2, 2010 | 8:47 pm

    O.m.g. I can't believe that question didn't wake you up!!! But then i am a morning person. Funny!!!

  82. Kim
    December 2, 2010 | 10:37 pm

    Why didn't the teacher just say chicken? "Tastes just like chicken." C'mon, what the heck kind of answer is protein?!??!

  83. gayle
    December 2, 2010 | 11:07 pm

    Omg you sound so much like me in the mornings!

  84. Masala Chica
    December 3, 2010 | 12:28 am

    You are me in the morning. My kids haven't yet asked me what sperm tastes like, but I think my response will be something like "find out when your thirty and let me know."

    Thanks for stopping by today. You have a new follower. Love your style.

  85. David Davidson
    December 3, 2010 | 1:58 am

    Oh god this is hilarious because I can see myself treating my future children in the exact same way.

    Your children sound adorable though, sounds like they have an awesome Mom.

  86. The Katzbox
    December 3, 2010 | 2:55 am

    I had all four of my kids in five years…your description of breakfast sounds oh-so-familiar.

    And that "would-you-rather" game?…yea…I have an "adult" kid (I started giving birth at age 5, I was a miracle mother) and he STILL plays that game. I get the weirdest questions now over FB that involve the "would you rather" game…

    Bravo on your post…perfection.


  87. Kat
    December 3, 2010 | 10:01 am

    Lol! I can totally relate to this post! I have four kids too and that is very similar to our mornings. :)

  88. Two Normal Moms
    December 3, 2010 | 10:48 am

    I pretty much just almost snorted my mouth full of cereal all over my computer! I love non-morning people, I can so relate.

  89. HulaBuns
    December 3, 2010 | 11:37 am

    LMAO!!!! My first thought was "Syrup? Um no". Hilarious. Thank you for the laugh, I really, really needed it today.

  90. nitebyrd
    December 3, 2010 | 2:21 pm

    I just have to totally adore anyone who is as unfocused, addle-brained and scary as me in the morning. It is possible to train them not to talk in the AM. I did it.

  91. Chels
    December 3, 2010 | 4:01 pm

    So I'm just about positive there isn't anything I could say that hasn't already been said. But this was hilarious – I remember being told it tasted like warm, salt asparagus. Definitely lived up to its expectations. Gag.

  92. The Vegetable Assassin
    December 3, 2010 | 4:14 pm

    I'm not sure how people deal with multi-kids. I have problems dealing with myself in the morning and putting my shoes on the right feet. I'm horrified that people can actually do that AND juggle other small fidgetty people at the same time! :)

  93. Ginger
    December 3, 2010 | 5:18 pm

    lmao. Howz that for random questions??!! You've got great kids.

  94. StephanieC @ Seriously?? Really? Seriously?
    December 3, 2010 | 5:23 pm

    I don't know if you read comments this far out.

    I know my syrup… and girl, I WISH. ;-)

    More like the grossest salt EVER.

  95. Copyboy
    December 3, 2010 | 5:25 pm

    I think you nailed your first holiday book about crazy honest kid questions. You can title it either "what does sperm taste like? or Don't forget to flush the toilet. BTW…I'd like a 5% of finder's fee. :)

  96. Teisha
    December 3, 2010 | 5:53 pm

    This is why my morning duty is a joint effort between Hubs and I. If I didn't have help I would dress the dog and drop her off at the babysitter's.

    Also, I scheduled my vagina checkup appointment for way too early in the morning the other day. I had to physically stop myself from punching the 'I'm so happy I shit rainbows' nurse.

  97. Stephanie Faris
    December 3, 2010 | 6:10 pm

    Oooooooooh I love your blog. I'm a follower!!!

    Sperm? Really? They start learning about stuff young, don't they? WOW!!! I didn't even think about things like that until I was much older. Like, 30. :-)

  98. Lemmiwinks
    December 3, 2010 | 6:55 pm


  99. ..
    December 3, 2010 | 7:24 pm

    I tried teaching my 8 year old that ladies have vagina's….didn't pan out the way I hope she was more interested in boobs. I know.

  100. Rebecca
    December 5, 2010 | 5:13 pm

    When I was in high school one of my friends who was known to give lots of head……said it tasted like syrup that someone had put salt into. So you are right…….I guess. I've never………

  101. Semi-Slacker Mom
    December 5, 2010 | 10:16 pm

    I wish it tasted like syrup, then maybe I would get into it. Naaa. Probably not.

  102. Cindy
    December 6, 2010 | 11:46 am

    Okay, I'm still here reading some of your recent posts.

    and now I am crying and lauging and snorting I am laughing so hard.

    You are my hero!

    and I love the names of your kids (unless they are made up, in which case I love your made up names)


    oh my

  103. Helena
    December 9, 2010 | 2:41 am

    Yuck. It it tastes like syrup, I might be willing to do that more often.

  104. Kimber Leszczuk.
    December 9, 2010 | 4:59 pm

    Ha ha ha ha LMAO

    We had a sorta similar conversation – not in front of the kids though. My kids argue sometimes b/c L. thinks God is a woman and D. thinks it is a man. I was joking with my husband out of their earshot that God definitely is NOT a woman or the one week out of a month when we had a periods she would have mens sperm turn into chocolate. HA HA HA

  105. Snake
    January 7, 2011 | 12:44 pm

    Syrup? Oh yeah . . . If only!

  106. KG
    August 25, 2011 | 1:36 pm

    Hilarious! I, myself, refuse to speak any words until at least 45 minutes after waking up. That’s why I like commuting, it gives my brain just enough time to prepare to actually formulate ideas and sentences.

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