Officially a Mom to a Teenage Boy.

My only offspring is now a teenager and as expected, it kinda hurts my mama heart. His voice is lower than I’m comfortable with, he’s as tall as I am, and his friends are “dating” (but not him, so he says). We don’t hold hands anymore, but he still kisses my cheek before leaving the house so I will consider that a win.

Never could I have imagined 13 years would pass so fast. And what am I doing? Looking through old pictures finding it impossible to remember my man-child being so small and cuddly.

This day 13 years ago, I was clueless. I had no idea what the hell I was doing: I overfed him his first week home and watched him projectile vomit in his crib. I’d never cried with a newborn in the bathtub at 3AM before, brand spanking new experiences. Later that week, I dropped him. They say babies are less fragile than they appear, and he proved that to be true.

PSA: Don’t fall asleep while you’re holding your baby in a chair – they’ll barrel roll all the way to the ground.

His first word was, Hi! And it didn’t stop until it was almost unbearable.

Hi. Hi. Hiiiiii. Hi! HI! hi. -Bennett

Ya know the song Rumor Has It, By Adele? When it finished, he asked: What do you think Umar has? When he picked our brains about shooting stars he said: I’d give my wish to mom.

Now that we’ve begun the teenage adventures I’m grateful that he’s still a sweet boy, just now a little more stinky and way more annoyed. Thankfully, proper documentation is not a problem for when I’m feeling sentimental, sad, proud, and weirded out – all at the same time.

There was the Elmo phase, his first real obsession. Middle of August, it’s hot and humid and like a diamond in the rough he spots an Elmo costume at a rummage sale. Kid could care less how sweaty he was, lived in the thing all summer.

When they’re toddlers, you can’t look away for more than a second, but on the other hand, you don’t even want to. You just stare at them like,”you crazy little person, what the f*** are you even saying? Why are you so adorable? I can’t believe I made this little monster who’s destroying everything“.

and it’s kinda magical.

When he was four my dad snapped my favorite picture of us, oh, and this was also the first year he was able to write out requests to the Easter Bunny.

Dear Easter Bunny, Please bring me tattoos.

He stole the show on our wedding day. From the moment he crept up on me while taking pictures, his robot dance moves, and genuine silliness…he made our day over and over.

He began showing initiative to save money by jumping in a ride with a stranger instead of using his own coins at Chuck E. Cheese, that was a proud moment. Another personal favorite? He insisted, swore up and down that he would love tomato juice. Why? Because red was his favorite color…and tomato juice is red. Life is actually that simple when you’re five years old.

He also declared his like for big butts, and couldn’t lie about it.

…and I busted him taking his first selfie.

There was the time we pulled a pretty stellar April Fools joke on him…

His voice on that video is so small, and he hasn’t grown into his teeth yet, but if you listen close to the beginning: “I love you guys.” He’s always been one to randomly throw out an I love you and I assume that means he’ll make a pretty great husband someday (to the girl I’ll try my best to like).

And just like that, he’s a big kid. There was always a preconceived notion in my brain saying little kids are harder to parent. My big kid likes to sleep in, and so do I. The challenges don’t get easier, they just change.

I’m not scared of the teenage years, not even intimidated. I know him. Is he going to give me an attitude when I don’t deserve it? Yes. Is he going to do half the shit I did when I was a teenager? I really really hope not.

Flashback Friday: That One Friend

Everyone has that one friend, the one your parents hated and their parents hated you just as much.  The other one was such a bad influence.

267883_10150300792575452_2608530_nMy friend, shared my name & that’s how our story began.  Jenny & I met in 1996; Mr. Anderson’s 6th grade class in Richfield, Minnesota; Spartan Elementary.

Ah, the days of meeting half way to catch the bus, passing notebooks in class, secret code language & nicknames. She was Fur-Fur & I was Imp. [short for impatient – looking back, I’m not sure what I was so impatient for as a 12 year old].


As I decided which stories I wanted to share with you I relized I’m not entirely surprised our parents weren’t fond of our blossoming friendship. If I’m being honest, I’m still not sure if things we did were normal childhood liveliness, or if we were downright awful human beings.

I hope it’s closer to the first, but………………


The first mischievous thing I remember doing with Jenny H was skipping recess. Yes, it’s possible. You’re supposed to go outside with the rest of class… and we decided to sit in the stairwell instead.

Rebels without a cause; we received in school suspension for a week.

As I continue with this story, please keep in mind that we were very bitchy young.

giphy (1)

We used to pick on a girl named Sarah. She was the first chair flute and also played the piccolo.  For you non-band people out there, the chairs signify how good you are at said instrument.

Jenny & I also played the flute, we were the last & 2nd to last chair – and we did not care.

giphy (2)

We stole Sarah’s padlock from her locker more than once, which might seem innocent…but we took it to a different level when we found our band teacher in the phone book.

Mr. Fairweather; he was interesting.

He always wore a floppy cowboy hat on his way into work. Occasionally, the group of us sitting outside before school would bust into, “Where Did All The Cowboys Go” by  Paula Cole in decent harmony.

giphy (3)

But anyway… we called him.

“Hello? Mr. Fairweather?


This is Sarah.

I’m sorry to call you at home but I was wondering if you

could tutor me?”

Jenny, pretending to be Sarah basically begged him to reconsider every time he declined. The conversation ended  when she screamed:






giphy (4)

The dancing baby was big at the time…  so…

It wasn’t long before we threw our homeroom teacher, Mr. Anderson into the mix.  We ordered multiple pizzas, with lots of delicious toppings for him. Super nice of us. I wish a pizza would just show up at my door – even if I did have to pay for it.

I think there’s a chance he considered it a random act of kindness rather than a prank; it’s possible. Once that got old… we wanted to see our plan play out. We started ordering pizza for a girl in our class who lived up the road. We’d sit at the top of the hill & watch it get delivered.

Yeah…these are stickers. We stuck them all over the tennis courts in our neighborhood.

Prank calling was kind of a specialty of ours. We’d call random names from the white pages [oh the struggles before the intraweb] and conduct surveys on smoking Meritt Cigarettes.

The surveyor was, “Suzie Severson” & she had a terrible lisp. The survey always concluded with:

“Thank you for your time. Shhmoke on & have a shhmoke free life!”

Again, I like to imagine we gave people a good laugh, but…

giphy (6)

Gosh, to have this kind of time on our hands again would be amazing.

When we turned 14 we both got a job at the local drug store up the street. We’d give the cute boys discounts on disposable cameras and they’d buy us chocolates & the super romantic flowers you can buy at a drug store. We were kind of a big deal.

The Drug Store Days
The Drug Store Days

I moved out of Richfield my sophomore year of high school but when I got my driver’s license the shenanigans continued.

Actually… it was before I got my license. I had my learners permit the first time I decided to drive from Wisconsin to Minnesota in my step-dads black GrandAm, on a school day [I think it was a Tuesday].


Jenny…do you want to go to school today?


Me either… I’m coming to pick you up at your bus stop.

Pack us some lunch.

She brought us tuna sandwiches & I made her throw them out the window [sick]. 

No license… an hour drive [one way], Missy Elliot, Simple Plan, The Mall of America and a set of young-super-good-decision-making gals.

I got home roughly 20 minutes before my mom & step-dad. The day went off without a hitch, until my mother read my old journal.

“I TOLD YOU SO!” was directed at my mom more than once when she made me fess up……………6 years later.

Apparently I didn’t park the car correctly & it’s been weighing on my step-dad ever since.

“Jen would never do something like that!”

-My Mom [for 6 years].

We got through our braces & frizzy hair phase together.

We’ve recorded ourselves singing to Martina McBride…to hear how good we sound.

I cut her hair with a pair of kitchen scissors in her bedroom.

We’ve taken a cat on a joy ride through a corn field, which ended horribly, with lots of scratches & a terrified cat.

We made cosmos in her bedroom with her mom hanging out downstairs.

We went on a search for a real prostitute in Minneapolis…to see if they really exist [they do].

There are many stories I did not include. Some I believe you’ll judge us pretty harshly for, some I don’t think Jenny would appreciate me sharing & some things are better left to the imagination.

Moral of the story #1: All that mumbo-jumbo about your kids being 10x worse than you were… I really hope it’s not true.

Moral of the story #2: I hope my kid finds a friend like Jenny.

I know they’re contradicting but I mean them both.

Yes, we’re aware it’s a miracle we ended up looking as normal as we do

PS: Sarah, Mr. Fairweather, Mr. Anderson…and the other girl we sent Pizza to [Lisa]…

I speak for both Jenny & I:

giphy (7)