Back by Popular Demand and The Forty-Five Dollar Spring Break

I unwittingly took a blog hiatus. With all that daily exercise and trying to become my best self, I seem to have run out of time for blogging. The only person who noticed, was my mother. She dropped a few not-so-subtle hints about the dearth of uninteresting anecdotes from moi. And I mostly ignored them because, despite the fact the days seem to be flying by faster than ever before, they have had a rather uneventful quality to them. (Save my trying to, quite literally, poison my family. More on that later.) But then a friend, upon seeing the thousandth game update to my Facebook Timeline, commented: ‘less gaming and more blogging please.’ And, just like that, there was demand from people (two persons equal people). The time had come to set aside my Candy Crush addiction and give ‘the people’ what they want. And so I present this unpublished ‘gem’ from 29 days ago.

“Today concluded my little experiment of eleven-straight-days-of-family-togetherness, otherwise known as Spring Break. Yes, it’s that magical time of year – again – when other people go to fun places and the Johnsons hang out in not-particularly-Spring-like Calgary.

This year, just to rub it in, the professor headed to San Francisco for four days. When I, not-entirely-jokingly, suggested we all jump in the teal Volvo and drive howevermanyhours towards the Golden Gate Bridge (you know, a little Spring Break roadtrip) he looked at me as if I were insane and mumbled something about how he wished he could if only he didn’t have work commitments and classes.

So the upshot is he went to San Francisco, on a plane, stayed in a hotel and ate in fancy restaurants, and I stayed in Calgary with the boys and treated them to one round of Happy Meals and 1/3 of a minty, electric green Shamrock shake. [Just because it’s Spring Break doesn’t mean you get your own Shamrock shake. And in case you’re thinking it, yes, I know, I am the meanest mom in the world. Trust me, I’ve been told. Repeatedly]

But I felt at least a little bit guilty about the lack of diversity in our boys’ geographic surroundings, so I decided to treat each one to a wii Skylander Giant character. If you are a parent of young children and your offspring have miraculously escaped the conversationsuck that is Skylander Giants, pat yourself on the back right now, for you are both wise and likely have not yanked out every last hair on your head.

I, on the other hand, have spent the monetary equivalent of 10 delicious lattes on plastic figures that are placed on some kind of ‘portal of power’ (yes, even the 3 year old refers to it in those terms). The portal of power lights up, characters appear on the screen and, following a significant amount of boys-jumping-in-one-spot-whilst-yelling, something happens.

I’ve no idea what happens, but pretty much from the moment they get out of bed the boys want to either talk about Skylander Giants or play Skylander Giants.

The five of us were riding around town in our teal-special one day, and the entire backseat was regaling the professor with the intricacies of the game and the characters and whoknowswhatelse. He offered the obligatory ‘oh’s and ‘I see’s’ and I muttered under my breath ‘I’m going to quiz you later to see how much you actually retained,’ and he gave me a blank stare that spoke volumes.

But, lest you imagine the boys spent 11 days in the basement glued to their portal of power whilst eating preservative-laden fast food, allow me to reassure you there were other ‘moments of awesome’ during our Spring Break. Like the time I took all the boys to the grocery store. Or that moment when – frustrated by the Gort’s relentless pestering of his younger brothers with a balloon – I grabbed the balloon out of his hands and started whacking him on the head with it. Only to realize that it’s an entirely enjoyable activity; thoroughly ruining the parental-teachable moment when I exclaimed: ‘oh, this is actually really fun.’

Somebody, please take us to Hawaii. Or Iowa. Anywhere will do.”

8 thoughts on “Back by Popular Demand and The Forty-Five Dollar Spring Break

  1. I have noticed you weren’t blogging when I check it weekly, but didn’t want to complain. However, “since you been gone” I noticed- when did the Gort all of a sudden look like a little man instead of a kid? Wow. 29 days will do wonders. How’s the new Nicola body?

  2. I have missed your blogs. We, too, were the ‘only family’ who didn’t do anything for spring break. ‘everyone’ else went to hawaii to hear it the way my boys envisioned their friends. Portal of power – we were there a year ago, it has worn off a bit… good luck. Keep writing!

  3. I had also been wondering what had happened to you! Wow – six of us?? We have been drowning in moving preparations here so I figured I was just missing you. Headed to DC in June. Maybe we will have to figure out how to have a reunion….


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