Let’s pretend we’re pretending

This past week has been hectic. The kids were home for school vacation. We had a great time doing things like: visiting the library, looking longingly out the window while sighing we were bored, and going sledding on the sheet of ice on our little hill in our yard. And I didn’t end up in traction, so all in all, it was fabulous spending time with them  even while suffering with a severe case of cabin fever.

What a long winter does to a kid

My daughter was so bored last week, she was forced to use her imagination. “What’s that?” she asked me. “It’s when you use only your mind to do something fun,” I said. “It’s like this magical world where you can create things, a game, a story or a song or a dance and then you have fun doing it.”  She was convinced. (Her brother looked up from his Nintendo 3DS for three seconds and smirked.)

Right away she decided that she wants to pretend to celebrate a birthday. Every day.
(I have a feeling she thought cupcakes would be involved.) So every morning last week she’d jump up and down and yell, “Mommy! Let’s make birthday hats out of paper and I’ll color them with crayons! Please! Please! Let’s say it’s my birthday today and we can pretend to eat cake and ice cream! We can dress up in heels and put makeup on! Then we can run around the house and sing Adele songs!”

Well, who could resist that idea. So we did a little birthday/tea/dance party every day. After fake singing “Happy birthday” to her for the 10th time in my best Adele voice, I asked her why it was always her birthday we were celebrating and not mine. She frowned and said, “It’s never fun on your birthday. Sorry, Mommy, but you really shouldn’t celebrate birthdays. You’re too old.” Truer words were never spoken.

But now that I let her pretend it was her birthday party, she’s decided to take this pretending thing to a whole new level. This is the calendar we have posted in her bedroom.

Looks like I’ve got some serious shopping to do.

73 thoughts on “Let’s pretend we’re pretending

    1. I know, remember when they were actually something to look forward to and get excited over? And as a matter of fact, I am stuffing my face with a green St. Patty’s Day cupcake right now. It’s never too early to celebrate bright neon green frosting.

  1. Could you do some shopping and celebrating for me too? Yesterday was my son’s birthday. You can skip the Adele part and jump right to the presents…I don’t think he knows who Adele is. He likes Hot Wheels. Thanks!

      1. Gosh, y’know, while that is a rather lofty goal you have there, looks like I’ll have to pass because we at only one shy of that record ourselves. And most of them are in a trail from my bed to the bathroom so I’ll be sure to step on each one on my way to the toilet at 2 am.

  2. John-Paul

    Children are tactical geniuses. They lure parents, even hardened parents, into their charming little games and BAM! They’ve got you with all kinds of unforeseen consequences… I speak as one who has been trapped many times, and never learns.

    1. That’s it, JP. She’s too charming for her own good. She asks me something in that sweet little munchkin voice and bats her lashes and I just nod like an idiot. I just pray she doesn’t make me go outside and cut down a tree tomorrow.

  3. Love this post, but love that fact that you played with her even more. Imagination is the one toy that won’t break–unless we break it ourselves. Oh, and since stores seem to think Christmas lands in July, she’s only a few months early.

  4. I pretend I’m pretending all the time – at least that is what the voices tell me. Right now I am pretending I don’t hear the voices, but I really do – I’m just trying to throw them for a loop.
    Can I have a doughnut?

  5. Your daughter is smart. And mean. Hope you didn’t bake her a single cupcake. TOO OLD??!!!!

    Gearing up for the big snow down here.. put the bikes away (yes, we’d resumed biking), found the sleds, anticipating a day off for the kiddos tomorrow. So you think we’ll get anything?? We did buy a snowblower this year. It’s got a layer of dust on it.

    1. I do give her some credit. When I ask my son how old I am he always starts singing and yelling “You’re an old ladyyyyy! Olllld Laaaaady!!” If I ask her she says very matter-of-fact, “You are 41, Mom. Don’t you know that?”

      WE are panicking about the snow. This is probably the biggest thing since the last time we panicked about snow. I have to get the snowblower ready and I will be the one using it all day tomorrow so think good thoughts and hope to God I don’t die in a horrible snowblower accident.

  6. Two posts in one day??? What the…??

    Love your son looking up from his Nintendo with a smirk. Sounds like he’s already reached the age of rainbows-and-unicorns killer.

    1. I know! What is wrong with me? And I have yet ANOTHER post for tomorrow morning, all ready to go (and it’s gonna be a doooooozy!) I’ve spit out more posts this week than I did my entire first year of blogging.

      Maybe it’s this leap year thing. I feel like I should crank out double the posts.

      Plus I am working my way up to hitting my 100th post and 40,000 views. Not that numbers and stupid stats mean anything to anyone in the blogosphere…

  7. Darla! You are a fantastic mom. Even if you are too old. 🙂 (Hilarious.) I’m glad you didn’t end up in traction, and your recounting of your school vacation week was one of the best ones I’ve ever read. Simple goodness. Time at home. Cabin fever — your daughter will remember these days the rest of her life. How precious of a gift you gave her, all those imaginary birthdays.

    1. We certainly had a blast, Melissa. hey, I figure, how can a fun fake birthday be a bad thing (as long as it’s my daughter’s and not mine)

      I even went out and bought some actual cupcakes the other day. I couldn’t help it. The construction paper ones tasted terrible. I am soooooo happy to see you today! I think of you often. 😀 😀 😀

  8. PRICELESS! I hope your daughter doesn’t decide that her imagination is a stupid, broken toy when she sees that you’ve gotten her imaginary presents for No School Day, her other Birthday, and Christmas. 🙂

  9. You wouldn’t want to mess with Santa’s job, Darla. So I recommend re-gifting last year’s Christmas presents. There is nothing like a threat to make any child happy.

    and 40,000 hits — Holy Toledo!

  10. That is priceless! Hahaha! Your birthdays are no fun at all. Yah, that can be true and yet they come once a year whether we want to celebrate them or not. Personally, I am always up for any kind of celebrating!!!

  11. From the mouths of babes, right? 😉 I say you make it just a tad bit educational, find somebody famous whose birthday is on that particular day, and find out why they’re famous – then throw them a party!
    (Yeah, I am truly a terminally fatal nerd. AND too old to celebrate birthdays! 😀 )

    1. John, that is a brilliant idea! I love it. Yes, you may be a terminally fatal nerd (stand tall and proud!) but are you also a history teacher? Or a birthday party planner? And can you stop over today and help me because now my son wants to celebrate his birthday today.

      1. Sorry, gotta go get my first new glasses in 16 years. (Finally got the money!) I never got the certificate to teach history, even though my sophomore Social Studies teacher let me teach the section on World War 2, as he admitted to me I knew more than he did! 😀 Party planner? About the best I can do there is Baskin Robbins ice cream cake, lotsa popcorn, and a 3 Stooges marathon. 😉
        Or, as I’m kinda hoping in the wake of the VERY bad news, a good Monkees marathon. RIP, Davy Jones!

        1. That’s as good a reason as any, Darla 😉 I think maybe I’ll take the easy lane on this one and become a Big Sister. I’ll get free kids to pick on, plus make them do all my chores.

      1. Are you sure you don’t already have kids because you just listed my other top two reasons I had mine. You would make a fabulous Big Sister. Or you could talk to your cats. I used to do that. They are a tough crowd though…they just don’t appreciate my razor sharp wit as much as I’d like.

        1. In time, you find the silence of cats to be truly golden. If those Little Sister kids I sign up for start talkin’ about how I’m treating them, well, I suppose someone out there would take issue with having an 8 year old mow my lawn for me and get up on the roof to replace the flashing around my chimney. But I would offer the defence that it was all just character building exercises. And that if their parents had any character worth passing on, these needy little kids wouldn’t have gotten shoved into the Big Sister program to begin with.

          1. Wow, you’ve really thought this through, bravo! You’ve put just the right spin on character building skills that would make any parent proud! You are well on your way to being the Biggest Best Big Sister Ever! (I plan on making my son snowblow later…I almost feel his character-building now)

    1. Ha! Exactly. I’m not sure that would convince my kids though. They are pretty lazy. I just told my son how I used to have to get up and physically walk over to change the TV channel and he looked at me like I was explaining string theory.

      1. O – LOL. Those were horrible times. But we made it through. We made it through, and now we all have blogs to reminisce about the old days, the tough times, the good ol’ days when people had kids for the sole purpose of crawling across the room and changing the TV channel for them.

  12. I’m a bad mom because I don’t want to make paper hats darn it! I’m so bad, when the ‘imagination’ kicks in and my son turns the living room into a fort. It just irks me to have everything tossed all over the place. I need to get a grip. I would love to hear your Adele version of singing Happy BIrthday.

    1. Oh, you’re not ‘bad’. Just honest. My kids have a snow day today so they are in the living room as I type this laying on top of a twin mattress they dragged out with a mountain of every single pillow in the known universe watching a movie. They have little TV trays and are eating cereal. All I can think of is how long it will take me to get them to put everything back.

  13. Haha! Now can you please destroy this post so that my daughter never gets any ideas like this. I do like your idea of giving kids imaginary 3DS handhelds unless you meant that the smirking brother was also imaginary. My head hurts…

    1. Ape! (can I call you Ape?) First, I read your reply to the Ape killing-Heston thing and just about died laughing. Everything you write is hysterical.
      As for the imaginary son and 3DS, I’m thinking I may have imagined my entire house and everything in it (I am slowly coming off of a bad Nyquil trip from last week)

      1. You sure can call me Ape. I do have another alter ego that attempts to convince others that he is a corporate manager type but I try to keep him a ventriloquist dummy suitcase when away from work.

  14. Omigosh! I have a whole post thing set to go about thosevlittlevmagnets! Now I can link up to this. Which is actually so much better. Good luck with that whole birthday-Christmas… and whatever the third thing was.


  15. Curly Carly

    Your daughter has a great imagination! You should make the most out of it by telling her to pretend she’s a maid, or something else equally useful.

  16. What is it with kids and their birthdays? My daughter has been mentally designing her 5th birthday party for the past 8 months. If I could get Adele to perform, then I’d be golden.

    1. If only. My daughter is in love with Adele. One of her songs comes on the radio and we all have to be super quiet so she can sing to it. She’s already planning her upcoming 6th bday party and it’s only a mere 10 months away.

    1. I know, I am in sooooo much trouble! I did manage to get her to end the little bday parties this week as she’s back in school. Of course now she’s already brought home two real birthday party invitations so now I’m going to have to buy these friends of hers real gifts.

  17. A really cute & funny post Darla. Yes, it’ always great to find some reasons to celebrate; it may be fake ones. 🙂 I hope you will celebrate your birth day with your family soon, as all of you are in celebration mood. I jut checked these you came up with so many new posts with in such a short time. Now I am moving on to your previous post.

    1. Thanks, Arindam. The only reason I came up with so many posts is this is the first week in years I am not working, not babysitting and both kids are in school. I had some extra time on my hands. Unfortunately, it’s back to the job-hunting grind next week so I’m heading into a looooong blogging break for awhile.

  18. A healthy pretend lobe is good exercise for an adult life. She’ll have to pretend she likes her job, her mother-In-law’s cooking, and advice. Pretending unicorns and Hogwarts is real helps me get through a long day.

  19. I love the contrast between your daughter’s response to the imagination idea and that of your son: “Her brother looked up from his Nintendo 3DS for three seconds and smirked.”

  20. Look at it this way: If your daughter keeps having birthdays every day, soon she will be as old as you are ( I know, it will take a long time for her to catch up, but it will happen eventually). Then you can point out that since she’s the same age as you, she, too, is too old to have anymore birthdays.

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