March 1st, 2010

Hell on Wheels. Tiny, Tiny Wheels.


Last week we ventured to our local roller-skating rink for a birthday party and some good old-fashioned family fun. In truth, I had no intention of skating, or even staying for that matter. It was a party “drop and run” — be-good-and-remember-to-say-thank-you-and-I’ll-pick-you-up-in-two-hours-k-thanks-bye.

However, I lingered a few extra minutes to chat with friends and in that time got a good glimpse at the profound lack of athletic ability that plagues my family. It’s not for want of trying, both the Ladybug and the Monkey gamely stumbled, rolled, rocked and fell their way around the rink time and time again. My heart broke for them as their friends skillfully glided around in circles while my children creeped around the edge of the rink with all the grace of newborn giraffes. I had to fix this. It was time to take action. I would stay. I would skate. I would TEACH.

It didn’t matter to me that the last time I had gone roller skating I was wearing Gloria Vanderbuilt jeans, had a giant comb sticking out of my back pocket, feathered hair and a huge crush on Steve Perry. I put the skates on, stood up, ready to show my kids how it’s done, and promptly fell back down. On the rug. Before I had even gotten to the rink. I slowly made my way to the rink precariously tipping this way and that. I could see terrified parents grabbing their children as I came towards them; people picking their drinks up off the table, for fear I might come crashing down. Humiliation galore. I made it halfway around before I went down. Hard. Lying on the ground I looked across the rink only to see that both my children were likewise flat out. Skate FAIL.

However, we all picked ourselves up again and kept going. I was ready to throw in the towel and save whatever little dignity I had left, but I had to admire how my kids kept trying. It wasn’t too long before I got a little of my mojo back. The kids, too, slowly improved as the afternoon went on. Turns out I didn’t have much to teach them in the way of skating, but maybe just the sheer embarrassment of having your mother stumbling over four year-olds is enough motivation to get better.

Hey, whatever it takes, I’m willing to do it.

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This Weeks Tip

Make healthy foods like sliced bananas or oatmeal more interesting by decorating it with a few rainbow sprinkles. To kids, everything tastes better when it’s decorated!