I Hope You Have a Gay Husband

Dear Future Stella,

I got a haircut today. Right after I went to lunch with your dad and Current Stella. He didn’t notice. To be fair, neither did Current Stella, but she eventually did. I cut a lot off. I find it interesting that your Dad can spot a boob job instantly but not my haircut. Even boob jobs that are contained in a trench coat and hiding behind a tree. It’s cool though, because I have another husband that notices these things. His name is Daniel and he noticed my haircut right away. He also is the one who cut my hair so that might be why it was so obvious to him. Having a gay husband is super important Future Stella.

Daniel and I got married on Halloween 2 years ago. We got married at the hair salon that we both work at together in front of all of our co-workers. He wanted a beach Cancun wedding. We exchanged rings and vows and even had a wedding cake.

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Daniel tells me when a dress is flattering on me. Daniel gets excited about The Bachelor with me. Daniel loves drinking cheap white wine while curating my online shopping cart. Daniel tells me when its time I give up on the crop top attempt. Daniel also is super easy to make fun of and he falls for it every single time. Daniel hates bananas and cats. This means that I always stash over-ripe bananas in his drawer at his station so that when he opens it to retrieve a hairbrush he has to contain his horrified shriek in front of his clients. This also means that I steal any cat figurine from Current Stella’s room and super glue them to the surface of his station before he gets to work. I also love to flirt with Daniel because he absolutely hates it. He has never been with a girl and the thought horrifies him. Im constantly catching him off guard with my sexual advances while a camera is nearby just to document our love for each other. I will hand my camera to someone and instruct them to take a picture of us. Right before the camera flashes, I grab his private area. Here is an example of that from our most recent work Christmas party, where the theme was Greek Mythology.

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I will go at great lengths to plan these photo ops. This past Halloween (our anniversary) Daniel really wanted to be a farmer. I convinced him to let me be a pig. He thought that was cute and was totally on board, until at the last minute I made this happen

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Even today, with my haircut, I had the receptionist book it under a fake name as a kids haircut (which he absolutely hates) and then I showed up for the appointment. He’s just too easy to get all riled up.

Future Stella, be a polygamist when it comes to your gays. Collect as many as you possibly can, they are priceless and they will improve your life tenfold. I hope that the gays of your adulthood have overcome all the stupid shit that the gays of my time have had to go through. They were absolutely born gay and deserve all the same chances and privileges as everyone else. My hope is that you are reading this and are totally dumbfounded that I even have to say this. I hope it feels as foreign as the concept of slavery and anti-semites did to me as a child.

Future Stella, I love you. Current Stella, when you did finally notice my haircut, you told me it was really short and asked me why I cut it. Before I could answer, you said, “Thats ok, your dress is really pretty.” Rude!

Love,

Mom

Lets Talk About Arms and Tater Tots

Dear Future Stella,

Today while laying on the couch with Current Stella she told me that she loves my arms so so much. She told me they are always so warm. I said thank you, and that I liked her arms too. This prompted Current Stella to tell me that she loves me so so so so much and that she will never love another person’s arms more than mine. I told her that I love her arms more than she loves my arms. We argued for a bit over who loved the other person’s arms more.

Barf. I mean it makes me so nauseous to be so mushy-gushy-lovey-dovey. This is an example of a conversation that is so out of character for me, and with anyone else would feel so creepy. I am not a verbally affectionate person and I have never expressed love for anyone’s arms, ever.

Right now Current Stella’s arms are still soft and squishy. Her little hands have marker all over them, as they often do these days, evidence of her obsession with coloring. Her fingernails have chipped blue polish on them. She has a healing scrape from an accident at school and, I believe, 3 freckles- but who’s counting? I don’t know when they will form into bony arms, or arms with muscle tone, or arms with hair. Maybe one day they will have tattoos on them, although I hope not. More than tattoos, I hope they never show signs of self hatred, abuse, or drug use. If her arms end up strong like her dad’s, I hope they never hurt anyone. If they are weak like mine, I hope they still accomplish great things.

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I have never thought so much about anyone’s arms and, in a way, its easier to think of each part of Current Stella individually, because when I think about the love I feel for the whole package its truly overwhelming.

So, Future Stella, lets talk about your arms. Do you have any scars? I have 3. One is from a tater tot. I dropped it on my arm when it was fresh out of the oven and it actually left a scar. Im not going to lie, I super love having a permanent mark on my body that was caused by a tater tot. I love tater tots. I also have a scar from when I backed into a hot curling iron in beauty school. That one gets really dark when I get tan. My favorite scar is from a pencil that I accidentally stabbed myself with in 3rd grade. It looks like a tiny blue dot. I love telling people that its a tattoo of the earth from really far away. Your Dad, as Im sure you are aware, has a giant scar on his arm from a motorcycle accident. He also has a ton of freckles on his arms, which I think is adorable. His arms are also freakishly muscular, and his hands look just like his Dads. Weird, I guess I have obsessed over someone else’s arms!

I hope you have some really good scar stories for me. Scars are really good conversation starters so here is some dating advice. On a first date, scan his/her arms for scars and ask about how they got them. Even better, offer to guess how they got the scars. If you are witty and quick like me, this will either score major points or end things pretty quickly. Just grab their arm, examine the scar, maybe even run your finger over it and say something like, “You were 7. You found one of your mom’s tampons and you were playing around with it. Thinking the string was a wick of sorts, you lit it with matches you stole from your dad. You were waving it around and pretending it was a Dynamite stick when your little sister walked in and scared the shit out of you.” This should make them laugh, or create awkward silence. Either way, the real story about how the scar happened will never be as good. Fact. The man of my dreams would laugh, make an equally funny guess about one of my scars (which I would trump be saying its actually from a tater tot). Then we would spend the rest of the night talking about tampons and tater tots and we would live happily ever after.

Future Stella, I love you. Current Stella, I love your arms and every square inch of your tiny lady body except for the part of your brain that creates tantrums and meltdowns. Unless that part of the brain also is in charge of making your profess your endless love for my warm arms. I don’t really know how the brain works exactly so I might have to get back to you on that. Current Stella, I love your arms the most, but only because Gail The Puppy technically has paws, so I believe its a separate category.

Love,

Mom

Hopefully your future does not include….

Dear Future Stella,

I hope that you will never have to endure a conversation like the one I had at work today. I hope that we have evolved so much in 20 years that such talk will be considered ridiculous. I can only pray that mankind will make giant strides in the next two decades and put a stop to something that is unfortunately commonplace in 2015. 

I am living in a time where this cultural phenomenon is blasted in my face every day. Every other store seems to be an establishment that caters to this very sick, socially acceptable lifestyle. In fact, San Francisco seems to be a hot bed for breeding the very people who are running this movement. 

The movement Im talking about is juicing. Juicing is a religion in which one believes they must consume the extracts of various fruits and vegetables daily, sometimes multiple times a day, sometimes in replacement of food all together. Some believers in this religion prefer to make their own custom juices at their homes with very expensive juicing machines (you might be familiar with a blender, the juicing machine’s identical twin). Others like to purchase their potions at juice shops in adorable little bottles at a cost of 20 dollars a pop (so, like 100 bucks to you). Regardless of how these fanatics obtain their juice, one thing is for certain, they must also talk about their juice, a lot. 

Today at my work I had the pleasure of listening to 2 people debate the pros and cons of the two hottest juicers on the market while I was trying to eat my lunch. They were citing statistics, and percentages, chemical breakdowns and molecular gastronomy (I’m just throwing out terms that sound fancy but vaguely refer to food). 

I mean, fuck, I’m just trying to eat my gluten free kale detox salad over here, enough with the juice. Seriously, it isn’t that revolutionary- V8 has been on the market forever. Also, I’m not a hater. I like juice too, I like grape juice, fermented grape juice. 

All these food and diet fads never stick. When I was a kid “fat free” was all the rage. I would bring packages of gummy candy to my mom at the grocery store and be like, “look, it’s fat free!” My mom couldn’t argue with the label so into the cart it went! Skim milk was best and now whole milk is considered better. Vegetable oil used to be healthy because it was made from vegetables and now it’s poison and extra virgin or coconut oil is recommended. Low carb, paleo, vegan, gluten free, pescatarian, raw food, regurgitated baby food- whatever, nothing lasts. Please Future Stella, just eat anything you want. Just don’t eat a ton of anything. Don’t fall for this shit- it will just make you feel dumb when someone proves it wrong.

Don’t even get me started on all the different ways one can “workout” in 2015. It’s fucking stupid.

Future Stella, I love you. Current Stella, how many days in a row can you eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich? You don’t give a shit about gluten and that’s why I love you.

Love,

Mom

Do You Have a Cell Phone? 

Dear Future Stella,

Today I had an appointment at the Apple Store so they could fix the camera on my phone. After the guy helping me confirmed that, indeed, something was wrong with my camera he told me I needed to leave my phone with him so they could replace the camera. He smiled, quite pleased with his customer service, and said the process would take an hour. Excuse me? He said it so nonchalantly, as if it’s totally no big deal to not have a phone for an hour. He might as well have asked for my right arm, my uterus, or Current Stella. All of those things are on the same level in the “hard to part with” category. Actually, he can have my uterus. That thing sucks and serves no purpose to me anymore. Even my right arm would be easier to part with considering im left handed and I just acquired substantial long term disability insurance. My phone and Current Stella, though, those are like my prized possessions. I don’t know what I was expecting, my naivety assumed it would be a quick wipe down with a special Apple lens cleanser and, voila, have a nice night. 

He was handing out his hand, a gesture that said, “Just give me your phone. Everything will be all right.” I panicked and gave him this pathetic look and said, “I need to send a few texts. Inform people that will be worried if I don’t respond immediately. Can I just have a moment alone, you know, to say goodbye.” He told me to take my time and when I was ready to just drop the phone in the envelope and hand it to any employee. He then told me to come back in an hour. I wanted to freak out and be like, “How the fuck am I supposed to know when an hour has passed? You are taking my only clock you half wit.” I didn’t though, and sent out 20 texts, checked my email and my Instagram one last time before slipping it in the envelope and leaving it behind. After, I did what any concerned person would do after leaving their loved one at the hospital to undergo surgery, I went to a bar. I had a very long hour ahead of me. I didn’t have a book, I didn’t have a friend, I didn’t even have a freaking watch. I felt so lost and empty and totally alone. I sat at the bar and began to immediately nervously tap on the counter. I quickly caught myself and sat on my very nervous hands. I ordered a glass of wine and just kind of scanned the room. This is a bar I have been to many times. It looks really different though, when you are not looking at it through your peripheral vision, you know since I’m usually looking at my phone. 

I am completely aware of the fact that my generation is way too connected to our devices and it is reaking havoc on our ability to make real human connections. I even agree with the fact that it’s not healthy or productive or smart. I also know that people in my life have been irritated with me in the past for being too attached to my phone. I genuinely didn’t put myself in that catergory. Da Nile isn’t just a river in Egypt, Stella. Tonight was a wake up call. I couldn’t think of one single thing to do without my phone. My dependency on that thing became apparent when it was taken from me cold turkey. It made me think of you and made me wonder what this could possibly evolve into, you know, in 20 years. After pondering it at the bar, I guessed it could go one of two ways. The first is that cell phones will be the next cigarettes. Meaning, in a short time major evidence will surface about the dangers of phone addictions and people will slowly wean themselves off and eventually, maybe not in 20 years, people will be completely anti and you won’t be able to use a cell phone within a few feet of business and establishments. It will be a “use at your own risk” kind of deal and the stigma against people who still use cell phones will cause many people to conveniently not mention it on their online dating profiles. The second, more scary option, is that people will just have some sort of chip in their brain that acts as their permanent cell phone. That way you can have access 24/7 without the hassle of having to charge it or give it to the Apple Store for an hour.  Right now the chip option is looking pretty attractive to me but I know in that gut feeling kind of way, that I need to be better about having space from my phone. I want to be a better role model for you so that if and when the surgeon general tells us to proceed with caution when it comes to cell phones, this will be an easy call for you to make. Haha, no pun intended. Seriously, I didn’t see the pun until I typed it. I love it when that happens.

I’m not making any promises and this might be the no cell phone desperation talking, but I am going to really try to be less dependent on it. It shouldn’t be that hard. I mean, I have an IPad. 

Future Stella, I love you. Current Stella, I had to ask the guy next to me at the bar for the time so I would know when to get my phone. He totally thought I was hitting on him and got all flirty. He just told me the time and then turned back to his friends. I was like, ugh, I know the game you are trying to play and this married woman isn’t falling for it. Creep.

Love,

Mom

Future Job Possibilities

Dear Future Stella,

I had to fly home last night so that I could work today. I wish I could say it was difficult to leave you when you were so sick, but the truth is, I was relieved to be in a germ free zone. Before you go thinking I am harsh and cruel, hear me out. Whenever I was sick as a kid, usually with a 3 day long migraine, my parents would always tell me that they would take the pain from me if they could. I always thought that was such bullshit and there was no way they were serious. Let me tell you kiddo, they were dead serious. I would have done anything to take your fever the last couple of days so that you could have had fun at Disneyland. When people say they hurt when their kids hurt they actually mean it, as lame as that sounds. However, the rational part of my brain knew that I couldn’t just pull a Freaky Friday move and switch places with you so I was okay with going home to work. *Please watch Freaky Friday with Jamie Lee Curtis and Lindsay Lohan if you have not. Its pretty great.

I have always loved to work. I got my first job when I was 15 with a worker’s permit. It was a job working the register at Burger King (a fast food restaurant in case this place exists no longer. Crossing my fingers that it doesn’t). A year later I transitioned to a new job working at the front desk of a gym, where I met your father. More on that another day. Two years later, I moved to Burlingame California with your dad to attend beauty school. I got a job within a few days working at a retail store that sold jeans. On my first employable day as a cosmetologist I was hired as an assistant at the same hair salon that I work at now. That means that in 16 years (half my life) I have never had a lapse in employment. Not even a whole week without being on someone’s payroll. I love the feeling so much of earning money and I am incredibly proud of the fact that I have a job that I enjoy and that I find fulfilling. The longest time I have ever been off of work was when I had you and I went on maternity leave. When you were 11 weeks old I couldn’t wait to go back to my job, mainly because you were a lot of work, and I love to work, but not that hard!

I wonder what you will do for work? Notice how I didn’t include an option to not work? You better work. I don’t care if you don’t get paid (unless of course you are living a lifestyle that would require you to) but you have to do something, at least for a little bit. When you ask Current Stella what she wants to be when she grows up she says a waitress, a doctor and an artist. So maybe you will wait tables while putting yourself through Med School? I, for sure, won’t be paying for that so make sure you pick a fancy restaurant with great tips because Med School is stupid expensive. Then maybe as soon as you finish your residency you will decide that being a doctor really sucks and you will go to art school? The possibilities are endless and it is way too soon to know but its really fun for me to think about. Considering you are in your 20’s you are most likely trying to figure out what career, if any, you should pursue. To help you, I have included a list of Current Stella’s strengths and skills so maybe it will help inspire you. I always think its funny when the parents of successful adults are asked what they were like when they were a child and every time they find some memory or story to prove their kid had natural, God given talent. I am calling bullshit on that.

Here are Current Stella’s strengths/gifts
*Sense of smell. You have the nose of a pregnant woman.
*Ability to keep tight inventory of anything, specifically Magic Clip Princess dresses and Barbie shoes (this could come in handy being the manager of a grocery store or herding sheep)
*Photographic memory, especially brand recognition.
*Long term attention span. Like longer than mine.
*Compassion and empathy (if you don’t end up doing charity work of some kind I will be so so shocked)
*Above average swimming (please, please don’t pick this one for a job. Water jobs are scary and so are adult female swimmer bodies)
*You are a people pleaser (just don’t use this strength to be a hooker. Pretty please. Unless you can guarantee it will turn out like Pretty Woman. *ugh, watch Pretty Woman ASAP)
*Ability to go with the flow.
*Confirming things. Example: We are on the bus, you pull out my tweezers from my bag and say, loudly, “You use these to pull out hairs on your chin, right Mommy?” You already knew that they did, you just either wanted to embarrass me or you were just double checking. Double checking something you already completely know the answer to is what, I believe, makes someone a great supervisor.
*Coloring. In general you love coloring on anything but your specialty is restaurant kid menus.
*Freaky memory. I can walk into your room, rummage to the bottom of any basket, pull out the most random small insignificant thing and you can promptly give me an oral report about the toy’s origin, its use, and any other forgettable fact pertaining to said thing.
*Self entertainment. You are completely content hanging by yourself and creating your own sunshine.
*You love to dance like a free spirit on drugs at a music festival. You do this to songs on the radio, songs on the television, songs at restaurants, but my favorite is when you do this to songs on commercials. You get really spiritual and intense when the Stanley Steamer Carpet Cleaner theme song comes on.
*Observing people and silently judging them. I don’t have proof that you are doing this but I am pretty sure. If this trait continues to grow I think you would make an excellent pharmacist.

Future Stella, I love you. Current Stella, I did a lot of internet research and based on your current skills, the internet says you would excel at spray painting cars in an auto repair shop, long distance truck driving, making and selling your own pottery, and assessing correctness of business tax returns. I think its time you get a job.

Love,

Mom

Day 2 Without My Family

Dear Future Stella,

I slept like a starfish last night. Or wait, I don’t know how starfish sleep but I slept in the shape of a starfish. It was glorious. I used your dad’s pillow instead of mine because his is better and it’s a luxury that would never happen if he were here. I also slept in one of his t-shirts, which I am not telling you this because I think you will find it particularly riveting but only to irritate him when he reads this because for some reason he doesn’t like me to sleep in his shirts. Or wear his socks. He has this weird fear that he’s going to run out if I dip into his supply. Instead of trying to write how asinine this is, I will just show you. Here is what his shirt drawers, yes plural, look like. Keep in mind, he most likely has 7 or so with him in his suitcase, I am wearing 1 and there are about 4 others in the laundry.

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Another important thing to note is that he just got rid of an entire garbage bag of t-shirts to the Goodwill. So yeah, the man has a shit load of t-shirts.

The sock thing really pisses him off. I thought I solved this problem by getting him 40 pairs of socks for his 40th birthday but not only was that an offensive and inadequate gift for a 40th birthday, he STILL freaks out when he discovers I’m wearing his socks.

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So guess what? I just changed into a different one of his t-shirts and later when I get dressed I am going to most likely wear 2 pairs of his socks.

BTW, it took every shred of self discipline inside me to not get him another pair of socks for his 41st birthday, the thought being that he would always have the same number of socks as his age. I thought this would be handy as he reaches the later part of his life and the possibility of him forgetting his age becomes more of a reality. He was so annoyed at the first 40 pairs though, that I had this intuition that the next pair would completely throw him over the edge. There really is a great lesson in this for you, Future Stella. First, always trust your intuition. It has never failed me. Second, always walk the line with those you love between teasing them and totally fucking pissing them off. Your dad and I have a relationship that basically just cruises along this line at all times. For instance, considering it has been more than 20 years since he has received socks as a gift, I think it is totally acceptable and hilarious if you get him 61 pairs of socks for his birthday this year. Let me know if you need assistance (funds wise) for this, as I believe this is a totally normal and justifiable opportunity to dip into our savings.

Speaking of things as old as your father, I watched the 40th anniversary show of SNL last night. I hope that show is still on for you to enjoy, although I really doubt it can happen without Lorne Michaels. I am a diehard SNL fan, even when it’s not funny. I have so much respect for the writing of that show and even more for the actors who try and take that on. Comedy to me is everything and that show is an hour and a half of all things I adore. I’m hoping you have a sense of humor and enjoy both dishing our and receiving jokes. Laughter is basically a socially acceptable public orgasm. Like an orgasm, laughter is a pleasurable release of energy. Also, when choosing your mate in life, they should be able to make you laugh just as easily as they should be able to make you orgasm. They are equal to me in the importance department, and sometimes they go hand in hand. Similarly, making someone laugh is just as powerful as making someone orgasm. How gross is it to picture your mom having an orgasm? I know, right? That’s why I said it. So fucking gross. Yuck. You must be like so disturbed right now and I am loving it 20 years in advance.

Future Stella, I love you. Current Stella, you better not be behaving like a little shit monster for your grandparents today.

Love,

Mom

My First Day Without the Family (Par-Tay!)

Dear Future Stella,

You left this morning with your Daddy and our two doggies, Phyllis and Gail to head down to the Central Coast to visit your Grandparents en route to Disneyland. Due to work and some other prior engagements, I can’t join you for a few days. Being in our home without you is so sad and strange. That’s a lie, it’s amazing and such a treat. I genuinely miss Gail though. She’s really just the best. I am going to talk shit for a minute about Current Stella, although I don’t know if it’s considered talking shit if I’m technically saying it to her future face. Anyway, Current Stella is a cry baby little nightmare lately. She’s just soooooo sensitive and cries about everything but nothing significant. I have read all the books and I know these things are significant to her and that I’m supposed to be modeling empathy in these moments but it’s really truly difficult for me. Im not a sensitive person at all so this is really outside my realm of understanding. I don’t know if it’s a phase, her personality, or too much Caillou (that little jackass is the whiniest little baby on television), but I’m a little relieved to have a break from it. Future Stella, if you are still a cry baby then please know I still totally love you but just be glad that you don’t have a sibling because it would be a point for them in the favoritism column. Having kids when you are an inherently selfish person is quite a shock to the system. You add being married to a man for 7 years and a couple of dogs and one can feel suffocated pretty quickly. I say this only to inspire you to not feel bad about enjoying space and distance from those whom you love. Parents, and moms specifically, are always riddled with guilt and made to feel bad about spending time away from their kids. I don’t understand this at all but I think that this has more to do with the fact that I’m more selfish than the average bear. You, though, you’re a gentle kind soul who would give your own liver to someone you love (me first please). I can see this being an issue for you when you are a mom. Woah, I’m so sorry. I just totally assumed you would be a mom. I genuinely didn’t mean to assume. You could have kids, no kids, be straight, or lesbian, or maybe even bisexual. I don’t care if you adopt kids, foster kids or if you are a surrogate for someone else’s kids. Just don’t kill kids. That would be a rough one to deal with. People say you love your kids no matter what, but I don’t know about if your kid kills other kids. I wonder if that still applies? If you have kids that have killed kids and you are reading this, maybe weigh in on if you still love them. My curiosity is definitely peaked. Killing kids aside, I can say with confidence that I will love you in 20 years when you are reading this. That’s a pretty crazy thought to rationalize, for me at least. I am someone who prides myself on never saying never and the concept of not saying a good thing out loud because you might jinx it. For instance, as secure as I am with my love for your father, I cannot, with good conscious, promise you that I will be with him in 20 years. There isn’t enough wood that exists for me to knock on that can un-jinx that sentence. There are so many unknowns and what ifs and just by claiming such a bold statement I would be setting us up for failure. Side note to your father really quick: Babe, I know you read these occasionally so please know that I am not saying that I doubt we will be together or that I hope we wont be together, I am just not going to make such an enormous promise to our child that we will definitely be together in 20 years. That has jinx written all over it. Miss you!
Back to Future Stella: I hope we are still married and that we have given you an honest, yet wonderful example of marriage and parenting just like we both had from our parents. Trust me, the last thing I want is for you to have to split your holidays between our two homes. Your dad will be all fat and old looking from the depression of not having me in his life. Then I would make you feel really uncomfortable for subjecting you to my new boyfriend who will be roughly your age and look like some sort of updated Magic Mike look-a-like. Nobody needs to go through that, so I will do my best to keep your dad around. I can’t say where we will be living in 20 years, or what i will look like (I’m guessing amazing), or how much money we will have or what my favorite instagram filter will be. I can say with confidence two things. 1) I will for sure love you (I still need proof about the kid killing thing) and 2) both Phyllis and Gail will be dead.

Future Stella, I love you. Current Stella, I dare you to find something to cry about at Disneyland.

Love,

Mom

Advice on Valentine’s Day

Dear Future Stella,

Today is Valentine’s Day and you were pretty excited about it. It’s not surprising, what with the pink and the hearts and the candy- it’s a little girl’s dream! You made valentines for your classmates. Correction, some factory somewhere made the valentines, you just scribbled your name on them. You wore an explosion of all things girly that just exuded love and happiness. Your father and I were out of our comfort zone as V-Day isn’t really something we typically go nuts over but you were so into it that we had no choice but to play along.

I can pretty much know if I will be good friends with someone based on how they feel about Valentines Day. I’m passing on this wisdom so that when you are interviewing for potential friends you can add this to the many questions you should be asking. People who hate Valentines Day due to it being a Hallmark holiday are red flags. Nobody should care enough about this day to start spewing out conspiracy theories. Give them a pass if they just had their heart broken though, broken hearts definitely lead to conspiracy theories. End the friend interview right away if they say shit like “Everyday should be Valentine’s Day.” Before you write them off, ask them to clarify because if you have been dating less than a year then I think everyday should be Valentine’s Day. However, if it’s been longer than a year then this is absolute horse shit. Every day is NOT Valentine’s Day. Some days you should want to kill your valentine. Some days you will want to ignore your valentine. Most days you won’t appreciate your valentine. Occasionally your valentine and you will have days that are so horrific that celebrating each other will be so low on the priority list that you might forget to say I love you. Every single day though, you should want no other valentine. In general, Valentine’s Day should be viewed as a harmless holiday that children and new lovers obsess over and everyone else should just sort of go with it. Meaning, if you are alone or married for 20 years, this day shouldn’t define you or your relationship. I do think it’s a little bizarre when people in relationships choose to totally neglect it. No judgement, but why not acknowledge your special person, even if it’s just verbal on V-Day? It seems one would have to try really hard to avoid saying or doing something nice to their partner on Feb. 14th. Just saying…

Here’s how your father and I celebrated today. I worked all day and your dad cleaned the whole house and had to deal with you, which, lets be honest, is less than romantic. We drank champagne and together we made a family dinner of chicken with maple glazed carrots and mashed potatoes that you attempted to help with. We exchanged humorous cards and your dad got me roses (he said it was your idea- thanks!). We ended the meal with cupcakes. We put you to bed and then cranked up the R&B music. We made love in every single room of the house, even yours. You were such a sound sleeper. Relax, we didn’t go in your room. We did use your play kitchen as a prop of sorts. Lol, kidding, but now would be a good time to watch that video we made you….In all seriousness, your dad is my long time Valentine and he makes me stupidly happy. He’s a great man and a fantastic father. You and I, we are lucky that we have him in our lives. He puts up with so much of our shit and has the ability to make us laugh so hard. He’s also crazy nice and supportive and would do just about anything for us, sexually speaking on my part, and for you he will play any Barbie game that you ask him to.

Do you have a Valentine? Do I know him? OMG, who is he? Wait, are you married? These are the things I think about when thinking of you in 20 years. The suspense is killing me but the current moment is so overwhelmingly sweet that I don’t want to rush it. I will just have to wait and see.

Future Stella, I love you. Current Stella, will you be my valentine?

Love,

Mom

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Your Mom Went To Da Club Last Night

Future Stella,

I am sure by the time you read this I will no longer be cool and hip and you probably think I’m such a tragic hot mess of old tired lady parts. You also probably think there is no way I was ever cool and cannot fathom a moment where I was burning both ends of the night. I am also willing to bet that if you could visualize me as a wild party animal you would only believe it if I was talking about my life before you. For the most part that is accurate. Kids can be a giant wet blanket. So can husbands, jobs, bills, going to the DMV and UTIs. However, occasionally I am still able to have fun. Occasionally. Let me just explain my wild night last night, and the reason for my current hangover, as proof that I was once hip to the groove.

Where I went was incredibly exclusive. You had to be on the list, which when you are as cool as I am, isn’t a problem at all. I spent quite a bit of time getting ready to make it look like I didn’t try at all. I wore a black jumpsuit that had a plunging neckline exposing my cleavage and a tiny bit of my black lace bra peeked out. I wore black high heels and a gold sparkle belt. I curled my ombré-ish hair into a soft wave and wore bright coral lipstick. If what I just described to you sounds absolutely horrendous, then it shows I was on fleek (slang word alert) because it was 20 years ago and fashion lasts maybe a week. If what I described sounds cute to you then fashion must be doing that thing where it comes full circle, often making the older generations laugh as the youth try to claim these looks as original and fresh. Anyway, back to my evening. The wine and champagne were flowing. I kept getting free drinks so I lost count of how many I had. I knew every single person there- it was crazy. There was dancing and laughter and even a heated debate! Your dad’s jealousy and desire for me were clearly obvious by his texts. Texts like “where are you?” and “I’m going to bed.” He’s always been so obsessed with me. Things at da club got pretty crazy and everything was spinning but I stayed until the last minute when the bar was closing down and the party goers were exiting the building. It was outrageous.

I stumbled out to the curb to wait for my Uber. When I glanced down at my phone to check the time, I was shocked that it was 10:30pm! Book club has never gone that late. I knew my next day was going to suck but I was glad that I was able let loose with some dear friends and discuss a book that I thoroughly enjoyed.

The morale of this story is that having kids sucks the life out of fun. I will give you credit for one thing. All the ladies in my book club are the mothers of your friends at preschool. I would never have met them if I didn’t have you and they are wonderful people.

Another take away message is that reading books and having friends who enjoy this same past time is way more fulfilling then going to an actual club. You won’t believe me right now because you are in the height of your clubbin’ days but one day you will agree with me.

Future Stella, I love you. Current Stella, sorry I gave you a frozen waffle without toasting it this morning for breakfast. I was still wasted.
I told you it’s how Elsa likes her waffles (frozen) and you totally believed me.
Love,

Mom

A Human Scavenger Hunt

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Dear Future Stella,

Today we had brunch with my identical twin cousins who are in town from Florida. You, of course, didn’t like any of the food but I thought it was delicious. Cousins are an awesome thing to have and I have such hilarious memories of these boys when we were growing up. Despite the fact that they live 3000 miles away, we have maintained a great relationship. I have a pretty good feeling about you being able to experience this wonderful thing with your cousins because you already adore them and see them way more than I ever saw the twins when I was little. Speaking of twins, I think everyone should have a pair in their life, preferable identical ones (I’m for once not talking about boobs and I really mean the human being kind of twins). They tend to make most things more fun and there are endless ways to utilize them in every day situations. I like to make them grow their hair out really long, dress them up in matching outfits and send one into a salon to get a buzz cut. Then minutes later send the other one in and say “what the fuck? It grew back way too fast.” It’s probably the most incredibly awesome situation ever. You have to try it. In fact, there are a lot of different kinds of people you should have in your friendship pool. I will provide a list of these people and you should try and acquire as many as possible. Think of this as a human scavenger hunt.

1) A set of identical twins

2) Gays. As many as you possibly can. They are invaluable. Once you know 2 gays, don’t do what I did, which was try and set them up with each other simply because they are both gay. Apparently, being gay isn’t the only necessary quality to warrant a match. They actually have a very complicated list of criteria that makes another gay date worthy.

3) Hot single girlfriends. This is how you get free drinks at bars and know where all the trendy new restaurants are. To best utilize their power, here is how your conversations with them should go-
Hot single girlfriend- “So I went on a date with Jack last night (I’m using the name Jack because 1 out of 3 boys your age are named Jack). He took me to that new restaurant Angel Food. It was a nightmare. He kept talking about his ex girlfriend and he was eating the deviled eggs in one bite. Do you think he likes me?”
You reply – “Hmmm. So tell me, were the deviled eggs decent? Also, is it true the Satan sauce is crazy spicy?”

4) Friends with kids. Ignore this one if you are still a teenager when you read this. Friends with children know how to get stains out of anything. Also, they are always down for wine.

5) Outdoorsy friend. I don’t think anyone gets to the end of their life and wishes they had gone on less hikes. Hikes are more safe and fun with a friend.

6) A friend who always finds a good bargain. This friend is one you should always travel with. If you are like me, you don’t have time to shop around for hotels. It’s incredibly painful and boring. There are people out there who enjoy this. They also do smart things like bring their own snacks into the hotel room. Don’t worry if you forgot to pack your own food. Your friend booked the hotel room so they will have her credit card on file. Just crush the mini bar and she will end up paying for it anyway. Who’s thrifty now?

7) A neighbor friend. These are great for favors. They are the go-to for plant watering, pet sitting and signing for your packages. When you are cooking dinner and you realize you have everything to make a lobster feast except the lobster- call your neighbor friend. When you land in Miami and realize you forgot your child- call your neighbor. This relationship works the best when you get to the point where you exchange keys. This is great for when they go out of town and you just really want to see what they keep in the drawers next to their bed. Also, for optimal perks, when shopping for a neighbor friend, it’s best to pick the one with the biggest house.

8) A friend who prefers to drive. This one will be your best friend.

9) An elderly friend. This is a friendship that will teach you so much about life and will bring you so much gratitude. This friendship only really works out if this friend is crazy wealthy and has no family left to speak of. If you can manage to get her to add you to her will and die within 5 years then she will end up being a truly amazing friend and well worth the many days you had to spend hearing the same lame story and sipping flat champagne.

10) A friend who makes you laugh and listens to your never ending drama. This friend should also share a lot of similar interests. This friend comes in many shapes and colors. This is usually a friend that lasts a really long time and together you will have really high highs and ugly low lows. You can meet this friend in preschool or not until you are 60. You can have more than one of these friends but it’s rare to have a ton of these in your life. I love my friends in this category and they are the only friends who really matter. Except my gays. They are uber important.

Future Stella, I hope you have sooooo many good friends and a handful of best friends. I hope some of these friends are cousins and some of them are gays. I really hope one of them is me.

Future Stella, I love you. Current Stella, why did you order pancakes and then announce you don’t like pancakes?

Love,

Mom

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This is me with my best friend, Amy. I met her in kindergarten.

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Me with the twins.