Snarkety Snarkness

Two Women at Target Fight Over Last Storage Container After Watching Marie Kondo’s Netflix Show

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A frenzy broke out at the local Target store on Friday close to the store’s closing time. According to onlookers, two women were caught fighting over the last 3 drawer storage organizer left in the store. Reportedly, 35 year-old Cameron Reeves had chased 32 year-old Liz Case through the home goods department and down towards the cash registers in pursuit of the 3 drawer organizer. The chase climaxed in front of one of the self checkouts at the front of the store as Liz tried to scan the bin and insert her credit card. Apparently, that’s when Cameron put at twenty dollar bill into the machine in an attempt to pay for the item herself.

Store manager, Harvey Yelle, told us that it first appeared that the two women may have been playing some sort of game or that they were familiar with one another in some way. However, upon further inspection, Mr. Yelle and some of his other employees were able to deduce that the women were fighting over the organizer.

“They were yelling at each other. Both of them were claiming to have put their hands on the organizer before the other one did,” stated one employee.

Once the staff realized what was happening, Mr. Yelle called in mall security since the Target was is anchor store of the Pinecrest Shopping Mall. When security arrived the women were still trying to pay the remainder of the cost of the 3 drawer organizer. Although Cameron had inserted a twenty dollar bill, there was still $5.00 remaining on the balance with taxes and the additional cost. To which, Liz was trying to pay with her credit card.

Mall security intercepted the fighting and asked both women to please come with him to the mall office for questioning.

When we were finally able to reach each of the women a few days after the ordeal they both had a different story to tell. Cameron Reeves told us that she was, “just going in to Target for a few things before the snowstorm hit the Northeast.” Mrs. Reeves said that as she rounded the home good section of the store she laid her eyes upon the multi-colored storage container and decided to purchase it.

Cameron said, “I had just finished watching Marie Kondo’s show on Netflix the night before and thought I could spend the snowstorm organizing my master bedroom since we’d likely be trapped in the house for a day or so. The show gave me the push I needed to organize, you know?”

She then went on to say that was when Liz Case came barreling around the corner and grabbed the organizer in one swift move. Also, that’s when Cameron decided to leave her cart of other goods and chase after Ms. Case.

“I wanted that organizer and I was like 3 feet away from it, getting ready to grab it and she just swiped it out of my hands basically! Who does that?” stated Cameron.

From the other perspective, Liz Case told us that she had casually walked towards the organizer and was slowly strolling towards the check out when she noticed Cameron was chasing her.

Liz stated, “I don’t know what happened. I had the 3 drawer organizer in my hands. I had went to Target specifically for that because I wanted to get my bathroom fixed up with tips from that Netflix show where the pretty asian woman organizes stuff. You know the one? Anyways, then I was going to try and pay for it but this crazy lady started chasing me through the store. What do you do when you are being chased? Well…you run of course!”

At last report, neither Liz or Cameron were being charged with anything by mall security or local police. Both women were released on their own recognizance but were not allowed to reenter that Target store that evening. When we spoke to the store manager he admitted that with the impending snowstorm and the release of “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo” on Netflix the store had not been able to keep milk, bread, eggs or home storage and organizing containers in stock for more than a few hours. He hopes to get a truck in with all of these things after the storm passes.

* This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, locales, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental and Pinecrest mall is not a real place 😉

These Boys of Mine blog

Welcome to Motherhood, Where Friendships Go to Die

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When you become a parent so much of your life changes. Anyone that has children understands what a monumental impact becoming a parent has on your everyday life. It is all consuming from the very first time you hold your new baby. It’s hard to explain it to people that don’t have children or any concept of what it is like to have a tiny, living, breathing soul that is totally reliant on you to keep it alive. Like driving a car for the first time or losing your virginity, it’s one of those strange things in life that you just can’t grasp until you are in the thick of it.

Although motherhood changed me in so many ways, some amazing and some not, I think that the biggest impact it has had is on the friendships I had prior to becoming a mother.

I wasn’t prepared for the total isolation that can accompany the early days as a new parent. After everyone has seen the baby, they don’t stop by as much as they used to before his arrival. It turns out people don’t really love babies as much as the world tells us they do. There’s no offers to help, calls to check in, or free food left on your front porch while you are finally sleeping with your newborn in the recliner in the early morning hours.

Motherhood isn’t like the movies.

As it turns out most of your friends will forget about you. They will come visit you at the hospital to get their token new picture holding your baby and call themselves the child’s aunt or uncle on social media, but that’ll be the last time they’ll make any real effort to get to know your kid. The friends you had before you had your baby, the ones without kids, they will leave you in the dust.

Now, I don’t want to discredit the friends that have already walked the path of parenthood or the select few that actually care enough to stick it out with you through the early years of raising children. Those that have been there will certainly become your new best friends, as you now have the biggest thing in common that two adults can share a bond over. You may even get lucky and meet some new friends after you have your baby.

Everyone who has children has walked this path. There are countless articles that express the loneliness and loss of self that parenthood brings, but also ones that articulate the common theme of people that used to love us before we became parents only to forget that after we are.

Friendships are built on similar interests, fun times and a belief that two people can rely on each other through all of life’s hard stuff. Friendship is meeting another human in the most random of places whether it’s in the school yard, in the college dorm or at your new job, looking at them and saying, “I want that one!” It’s really quite funny how we meet a stranger and within a short amount of time they become like family to us. How crazy is that?

The funny thing about friendship though, is that unlike marriage, if one of you decides not to put the time in then it will die. Marriage doesn’t allow you the courtesy of walking away without some sort of repercussions. While, friendship doesn’t have any legally or spiritually binding obligations. If one friend wants out, they can just dip out the backdoor whenever they feel like it.

Of course the real recourse in doing this is a friendship that is like a house after a hurricane has come through. It’s an empty shell. There are walls still standing, pictures floating around in 3 feet of water and memories of a time that has come and gone. It happens slowly sometimes and fast other times. They end because of distance, differences in stages in life and disagreements over silly things.

The hardest pill to swallow is that parenthood is often to blame for the death of many friendships in people of childbearing age. It is probably the top reason why people lose touch, don’t make time and have their priorities shifted so dramatically and instantly to the point that personal relationships take a backseat because between caring for your kids, your spouse and yourself you just don’t have the time to meet up for coffee every week.

After the hurricane of early parenthood has passed and the flood waters have receded, you are left with something that needs to be torn down or rebuilt piece by piece. You really need to decide if it’s even worth rebuilding or if it’s time to just build something new where the old one once stood.

These Boys of Mine blog

Please Don’t Let Me Forget the Wispiness

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I’ve never been a baby person.
Not when my adorable little brother came home when I was eight-years-old. Not when my sweet baby niece was born when I was 19—and not even either time I became a mama to the world’s two most precious boys.
I think babies are a lot of work and I know with certainty I’m not alone in this thinking. I wished away most of my firstborn’s first two years of life just because it was so darn hard—the colic, the crying, the postpartum. I wished it away. I wanted him to be five-years-old instantly. And today, he is.
Time has a way of sneaking up on you. Tomorrow, next week, or two years from now always seems to be so far away. Our elders always tell us how quickly it all goes by, which always reminds me of that Kenny Chesney song, “Don’t Blink”—we don’t think about it at the time. We’re so caught up in the chaos of our everyday lives as mothers to young babies that we have no way of seeing it until after the fact.
Then just like that—it’s gone.
Maybe it’s because he’s my last that I’ve started to take notice. Or maybe I’m more of a baby person than I thought. But all I know is not a day has gone by in the last year that I haven’t stopped to soak in the wispiness of my second son’s ash blonde hair or the way he greets me with a smile every morning when I lift him from his crib.
And that other one? The one who made me a mama in the first place? I’ve learned to take long moments for him, too. The half-smirk I get when he rounds the corner of the school bus aisle and he tells me about his day as we walk hand in hand up our driveway after school. The way he has started calling me “mama” instead of “mommy” both melts and breaks my heart because I know that before too much longer, he’ll simply call me “mom” and I’ll miss being called by either of the former for the rest of my life.
While most days I go to bed tired and I still wish some of these days away, I am grateful to be conscientious enough to know that they won’t last much longer.
So for now all I can do is ask God to grant me the patience each day to remember.
To remember the way one laces his fingers through his afghan blanket as he sits with me in the recliner.
To remember the way the other one has mastered the art of the perfect pout face that makes me hope he thinks to thank his mom in his Academy Award speech someday.
To remember the way one was the actual embodiment of the cover of “Love You Forever” just the other day.
To remember the way the other one still lets me kiss his forehead before I turn out his bedroom light each night, though it probably won’t be much longer until he’ll think that’s uncool.
To remember the way they both still ask me for a refill of their juice, even though their daddy is standing right next to the refrigerator.
To remember the wispiness of the locket of dark brown hair that resides in a baby book upstairs and also the ash blonde lockets that still sit atop the head of my last baby.
All I can ask of God is to please, don’t ever let me forget the wispiness.

This was originally published on Her View From Home

Published Work

I Thought I’d Have Girls, But I Was Destined To Raise Boys

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I never thought I’d be a boy mom. I never thought I’d hear the words, “It’s a boy!” once, let alone twice, on my motherhood journey. The thought never crossed my mind. It wasn’t that I didn’t want boys; I can’t really tell you why I never thought I’d be a boy mom or why I never envisioned myself surrounded by tiny men, but I didn’t.
I always thought I’d be a mother of girls. I pictured pink and purple dresses, hair ribbons and soft brushes going through long brown hair. I pictured Barbie dolls, dance recitals, and stealing of my makeup. I pictured a younger version of me riding a sparkly fuchsia Huffy down our driveway while yelling back, “Look at me Mom!”
I pictured a bin full of hair accessories dumped on the living room floor, while I sat for her to play beauty salon with mom’s hair. I pictured us wearing matching Easter dresses and toenail colors. I pictured all things sass and sweetness rolled into one cute package.
Life has a way of surprising you. What you imagined your life would be like very rarely is exactly the same. Sure, some of the time it’s not what you had hoped for. Yet, sometimes, it turns out even better than you could have dreamed.
Sometimes, there’s a greater plan than the one we thought we wanted for ourselves. A bigger picture than the one we had always imagined.
I learned this for myself from the moment that ultrasound tech pointed at a penis on the sonogram screen. The life I thought I had wanted changed. All of my plans of having a miniature version of myself shifted. I wasn’t sure what to think then; I was a little unsure of the route. But, once my first baby was born, I was fully onboard with having a son. After suffering two miscarriages on our quest for our second baby, I was sure I’d still have a daughter. So when my rainbow baby turned out to be a boy, too, I was somewhat dumbfounded yet again.
It wouldn’t happen until my second son was mobile that I’d get it. I’d comprehend God’s grand plan for me as a mother of boys.
It took me awhile to notice it. At first, it was in small glimpses at what was yet to come. My older son using terms like “baby brother” with a big smile on his face. Or when people would say how much one boy looked like the other. Or when big brother would pick up little brother’s bottle and give it to him.
As the baby grew and my older son became more interested in him, I really started to see it. The way they would laugh at each other. The look the baby would give his big brother, as if he was the best thing he’d ever seen. The way my oldest would be excited to see his baby brother when he got off the school bus in the afternoon.
I started to realize I was given this job for a reason. I was meant to be the maker of a brotherhood. I was made to teach these future men how to be tender and tough all at the same time. I was made to show them a mother’s grace and what a strong woman looks like.
They were meant to be mine. When I see the connection they share I understand it. Although I definitely would have loved a daughter just the same, and being a mother of boys wasn’t a path I thought I’d follow, I know now it is my purpose in this life. To nurture, love, and encourage these two beautiful creatures into strong, caring, smart men. Is there a greater calling? I think not.
This post was originally published on Her View From Home
Uncategorized

Mama Charm Bracelet Giveaway

37064441_493337014450661_5917494790970146816_n*** GIVEAWAY TIME ***

I’m teaming up with Dorothy at Dot’s Charming Beads, who is a Top-rated seller on Ebay, to giveaway a custom made Mama charm bracelet. It features “I love you to the moon & back,” heart hands and a mama owl and her baby beads, plus other colorful pieces on a beautiful silver-plated bracelet. (Please check out the comments on the FB post for more pics and how to buy more of Dot’s beads).
HOW TO ENTER
1.) “Like” both These Boys of Mine by Britt LeBoeuf & Dot’s Charming Beads on Facebook.
2.) Like the FB post and comment with the name of the person you love “To the moon and back” (initials are fine) ❤ 🌜
DISCLAIMER
This giveaway is in no way affiliated with or sponsored by Facebook. Contest ends July 28th, 2018. The winner will be drawn at random and notified via FB message to arrange for shipping of the bracelet.
Sharing is encouraged but certainly not required!
Published Work

How “This Is Us” Broke the Hearts of Middle Children Everywhere

 

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Although This Is Us is on hiatus until fall, there was one episode from season two that has really stayed with me since I first watched it in the comfort of my living rooms with tears flowing down my face. “The Fifth Wheel” addresses Kevin’s stint in rehab and during a visit from his family, some old feelings are dredged up when Kevin admits he always felt like second fiddle to his brother and sister. Kevin tells his family, “I guess, my entire childhood, I always felt like I came in second to you two with Mom and Dad. You know, like I was a fifth wheel of the family.”
That spoke right to my inner middle child and feelings of inadequacy, and of being forgotten. Call it classic “middle child syndrome” or whatever stereotype you want to throw at it, but it is very real and has lasting ramifications years after childhood.
Many of us middles are not like Jan Brady, Laura Ingalls, or Maggie Simpson. We don’t always act out, seem desperate for attention or suffer from feelings of not being loved. In my case, I never felt like my parents didn’t love me or that I was neglected. For me, it was more about the ease of the transition from being the baby of my family for eight years to the arrival of my little brother. It was difficult for me to handle the shift of focus from my older sister and me to my little brother. I love my parents immensely, but this was not a transition they handled well.
I often felt like my needs took a backseat to my older sister’s needs as the firstborn and everything that comes with that. She was the first to enter high school, the first to have a boyfriend, the first to drive, and the first to test boundaries. While I was grateful for that in many ways since she paved the road for me, in many ways I resented her because I tried to compensate for any headaches she may have caused my parents as a teenager. I was very straight-laced, did well in school, and barely spoke of boys to my parents. I worked extra hard to be “the good one” and in some ways I regret trying to fill this role in my family.
Then there was my baby brother, the one who changed my whole world with his arrival. I hated him for the better part of his first year of life. He was the one who stole my parents’ attention from me. It wasn’t until he started walking that I began to have any kind of appreciation for him. I started to realize it was never really him I was mad at, but rather my parents for “replacing” me with a new baby.
I know I sound like a spoiled brat and here I am at 32 -years-old with two children of my own complaining about the fact that my parents wanted to expand their family way back when. Yet, hearing Kevin Pearson discuss how he felt growing up, I felt a kinship with the character in that moment. I firmly believe every family that has more than two children in it has that one sibling who felt forgotten about many times. They feel like everything they did to please their parents was for nothing, and at times still feel unloved or like the black sheep.
I’ve discussed my feelings with my mother over the years. How being the middle child really helped to form the adult I’ve become. I’m extremely independent, severely defensive, approval-seeking, and I’m very hard on those in my inner circle if they let me down. I know I’m like this because of being born in the middle. I tried to please my parents and get their attention at every twist and turn, fought with my older sister because I had no other place to channel my anger (and she was mean), and I’m hard on those around me because I’m always afraid of losing their love.
My husband has done a good job of taming many of these qualities with his unconditional love and support, but they still linger.
My mom has opened up to me about that period in her life, about having postpartum depression after the birth of my brother—it made her feel withdrawn, overwhelmed and stretched too thin. Being a mom myself now, who has also suffered from PPD, I can now see why her attention might have been elsewhere in those early years with three kids. As far as my dad, I can just imagine the pressure that was on his shoulders being the breadwinner during the day, watching us kids at night while my mom went to her job and helping his wife through one of the worst forms of depression a human can withstand. It must’ve been hard for them. I get that now.
Yet, that didn’t stop me from crying during that episode of This Is Us. I was instantly an eight-year-old girl again who just wanted a little extra time with her dad at night while they watched a television show or an outing out with just her and her mom to buy some new clothes. I will always have a special place in my heart for my fellow middle children, even if they were part of “The Big Three” or not.

This post originally appeared on Her View From Home

These Boys of Mine blog

The Drawings on the Wall

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Everyday when my son gets off of the school bus, I open his backpack to see if there are any notes from his teacher or anything else inside that should be taken out. Most often there are only left over parts from his lunch or toys that he had taken with him on the bus that morning. But sometimes, there are pieces of artwork that his teacher sent home that were either done that day or taken down after its stint on the classroom walls.
I love getting his artwork.
It’s always something different. Whether it is a dinosaur, a firetruck, or a painting of a pumpkin – it all makes no difference to me. Out of his backpack and straight to the fridge almost every piece goes! So much of his artwork dons our refrigerator that I often times have to send stuff to both grandmas houses so they can fill theirs as well. They love it just the same.
When we visit my parents’ house and I see my son’s artwork on their fridge, I’m reminded of the days when my own artwork hung on the “Look what I did at school today” magnets that my mom still owns. I remember rushing through the door after school and excitedly pulling out a new painting to hang on the fridge. I’d pick out the best magnets before my sister claimed them for her own masterpieces. I’d hang it up and be so proud of the work that I had done and be so happy to have my art front and center in the heart of our house.
It is funny how it’s the little things that take us back in time to our own childhoods – a certain smell, something someone says in passing, or perhaps a song. For me, my son’s artwork reminds me of a time when the biggest problem I had was claiming the good magnets before my sister got to them.
Other times, she and I would sit at the dining room table and draw pictures for our dad. You see, my dad was and still is a health guru. He has a workout room in my parents’ basement and still uses it to this day. The room once housed the bedroom of the teenage girl of the family that built our house before my parents bought it. So my dad decided rather than painting over the strip of flowered wallpaper that went around the room, that he’d hang his kids’ artwork on the walls instead. So, part of our family’s tradition was coloring pictures for dad’s workout room and pieces that had already shined on the main stage of the fridge got a second life downstairs on the walls too.
As we colored each drawing for my dad, I’d take big pride in going downstairs when he was in there working out and knocking on the room of the door while he blasted country music and lifted weights. He’d slowly open the door and I’d hand him my newest creation. He was always grateful and complimentary of whatever we drew and not all of us were artists (me in particular). I’d take tremendous pride as he pulled out two thumbtacks from atop his stereo system and asked me where we should hang it. Once it was up, we’d stand back and look at it. I’d look around the room at the drawings we’d given him over the years – my sister’s “School Safety” winning drawing of a girl crossing the street with her dog, a ripped out page from a dinosaur coloring book my brother colored during his “Jurassic Park” phase, and the traditional shadow silhouette of my profile I’d drawn in the 1st grade.
They were all there. Proudly on display. Mementos from his three children.
Most of the artwork would stay up for years. Long after I stopped doing drawings for the wall, I’d use the workout room for its intended purpose and I’d look around the room and be reminded of days gone by. Times when the world was simpler, easier and when the highlight of my day was knocking on the door of the room I now stood in as an adult. A young girl, excited by the thought of giving her dad something she’d made him for his favorite space.
When I became a mom I decided this was something I’d carry on with my own kids. I don’t have a workout room (the exercise gene skipped me), but the kitchen is the heart of our home now. So, when my son makes me a drawing or writes his name on a scrap piece of paper, it goes on the fridge. Anything he makes is special to me.
Like my dad, if I can make my child’s day by simply hanging up something he made just for me, well then consider it done! I will gladly continue this tradition, and luckily my son didn’t inherit my non-existent artistic abilities. Not that it would matter if he did, his art would still hang proudly on the fridge.