05 October 2007

photobooth friday

a couple of days ago, ava asked me why people have to work. why does daddy have to go to work? we've already had this conversation but that did not stop me from launching into a loooong explanation about the basics of life and how these basics cost money and how, in most cases, you have to work to earn money. things like houses, food, electricity, heat, health care, clothing-- these things are not free. almost everybody has to work to make money. and then we talked about about how sometimes just the dad works, sometimes just the mom works, sometimes both the mom and dad work. sometimes there is just a mom and she has to work. sometimes there is just a dad and he has to work. and then I was knee deep in a whole thing about how even though I stay at home and don't bring in an actual paycheck, I still work too. many, many words later and I was still explaining what it is I actually do. I even threw in something about how I occasionally teach to make a little extra money.

then she asks about the paycheck and how does that actually work? do you get real live dollars or what? this should have been a short, sweet little answer comparing the similarities between a weekly allowance (which we've just starting giving her) and a paycheck but then, I don't know, somehow I managed to turn even that into a big long overblown blahbiddyblah about how checks and debit cards work and how the bank works and what happens when people bounce checks and how important it is to keep track of how much money you have and how important it is to save money, to set aside some for a rainy day. even though I am certainly in no position to be telling anybody anything about the act of saving money.

so I was sort of proud of how thoroughly I'd broken it all down for her and I wanted to tell her that conversations like this, they're a big part of my job too. but of course, I didn't say that. I just asked her if she had any more questions about work or money. or anything else. she told me no, not really. because it's too much, it takes too long. well, some questions have longer answers than others, I said. sometimes there's a lot to tell you about something and it's my job to make sure that I answer your questions in the best way I know how. sometimes it takes a little longer to explain things. which is when she told me that actually, it's a lot of times, mom. A LOT OF TIMES.

okay, well. I am going to try very hard not take that personally. and probably I am going to keep my mouth shut next time a big question like that pops up because I am no fool. brevity is key. though apparently, I stink at that.


jennifer clare
story of my life


  1. goodness. great story! thank you for breaking it down for me... sometimes i feel like i'm 6 in the $ understanding dept! you, my friend, have the skills to pay the bills;)

  2. oh, I can't wait to get home from my place of work to do the things I really want to be donig to pay the bills... things like take pictures and create, oh and post photos from Portland photobooth extraviganza.

    happy friday my friend!

  3. dude. andrea i totally did this to eliot one day in the car driving home from school. he didnt want to buckle his seatbelt. not even try. there was whinning. i lost it and when into this big sermon about life and how you will never succeed in life if you dont try blah blah blah. after about a minute of silence he said, "mom. life, is a cereal." i hung my head in defeat.

  4. You know, my daughter is 17 and she STILL has a lot of "oh jeez mom, I don't want to know anything at ALL about anything because it is just too, too bothersome to listen to you for more than 30 seconds at a time," but what I *really* try not to take personally is when she comes home all juiced about something I've tried to get her interested in a thousand times just because someone ELSE inspired her. Most recently her new government teacher, why haven't I ever told her how interesting politics are like her dreamy new teacher, even though I've been trying to engage her in that since forever. Kids, pfft.

  5. give her 20 years and she'll be happily remembering the day you broke it all down fr her.

  6. i am sure that my husband would being willing to put money on a bet that my child will have a similar comment to me someday. i love details and i love sharing them. i am glad you do too. she'll appreciate it in the long run.

  7. ha! i can just hear you two! very funny, and i can see that happening here in the not so distant future...

  8. you are so fabulous - remember our foibles are GOOD things :)
    happy weekend, friend!

  9. all i can say is always know its the fact that you are there in your child's life, you are there to just talk for hours and to me, the beauty is that you are there, always for your little girl. i wish i had more conversations with my mom. i know, i know, i was NO saint but i do know that i would have been more prepared for the outside world if there had been MORE of 'those' conversations that you speak of. my thing is you can never love to much. and you have to give it unconditionally hoping that one day, some day -- your child goes up to you (like i did to my mother, at the age of 27) and said, mom -- you are the best person in the world, the best mom and you are my best friend. i'm sure my MOM was in shock and since then, i'm sure she felt rewarded. later gator, natty.

    so with that said, keep talking and keep being the neat witty creative mom that you are.

  10. oh i love it! what can you say about parenting...

  11. Well, what you may think you lack in brevity, you make up for in colorfulness.