the Valentine’s Day interview

For those of you looking for a fiery Valentine’s Day.  Bonus points for ridiculously opposite answers.  Happy interviewing!

“Our friend Beefy posted this little thing on Facebook the other day, and my reply was, ‘This looks like a great way for The Mister and I to bicker with one another for 10-20 minutes! How romantic!’

Who’s older?
Apparently he was in a big, fat hurry to get here and I played hard to get

Who was interested first?
Me, but then him and then me and then him, and well, that went on sometimes not at all and also for over a decade”

We Don’t Do Valentines | joeyfullystated

what valentines would look like if I wrote for Hallmark

BrightSide’s never been a huge fan of Valentine’s Day.

We show our love every day.  It’s the little things, not the cards and flowers and chocolate, that tell the people we love how much they mean to us.  What makes February 14th the ultimate litmus test for a relationship?

Yada, yada, yada, no last minute runs to the flower shop for him.  (Although, in an extreme case of irony, I have a beautiful vase of roses sitting behind me as I write.  BrightSide dropped by the store on the way home yesterday and spotted them there; I’m not normally a flowers kind of gal, but they were a really nice surprise.)

At any rate, since there’s a whole bunch of us out here who live a less than glamorous existence – what, you mean you don’t eat brunch draped in diamonds? – I thought I’d offer up some real life Valentines.  You know, for the rest of us.

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eight years of classroom cupid

Valentines Musings for My Munchkins

We've survived many a ♥ day,
you and I...
There were years 
I was certain
we'd never survive.
Addressing endless valentines,
fumbled shoebox crafts,
scouring ingredients for peanut allergies
lest we send a classmate
into anaphylactic shock.

"Bee Mine", "You Rock",
"you're the purr-fect friend!"
Huddled around the kitchen table,
enduring the angst of picking
which card goes to whom.
Then there's always the mom
whose kid does those damn
Pinterest valentines
when we all know 
you only want
the sugar

Elementary socialism
demands a valentine
for each boy, each girl -
no exceptions.
For years we've 
faithfully followed 
the rule,
candy for everyone,
no child left behind,
until the straw that broke 
the camel's back.
Now one's on strike,
refusing to take Valentines
at all
if it means putting on
a false face.

Middle school's shark tank
throws our kids in
to sink or swim
as they tread the
social waters
of tween hierarchy.
Suddenly a normal Tuesday
is rife with angst -
girls and guys
tiptoeing around each other,
painfully anxious,
parents helpless
through it all.

I do not envy you today,
my loves.


here comes 2017

Hear ye, hear ye.  The day has arrived when all good and true citizens shall take up pens to write lofty goals and ambitions for 2017.  They shall announce said resolutions to friends and family so as to be publicly humiliated if they abandon them in May, and these shall haughtily be called New Year’s Resolutions.  So sayeth the blog, and so shall it be.

Ummmm…maybe not.


My “Not” Resolution List:

*  I will not suffer fools silently.

*  I will not endure entitled children, especially my own.

*  I will not feel guilty for taking time for myself.

*  I will not remain stuck in neutral when I see injustice in the world.

*  I will not wear shoes that rub, pinch, or hurt in any way.

*  I will not judge myself based on how clean my house is or the state of my laundry room but on the way in which I’ve treated those around me.

*  I will not ask “why” when I don’t really want to know the answer.

*  I will not listen to one more telemarketing call.

*  I will not worry about whether the kids’ clothes are wrinkled, only that they are clean and odor-free.

*  I will not helicopter parent my children, the neighbors’ children, friends, or family.


Best wishes for all the best in the new year!

Friday AND a holiday weekend? Score!

Hello, fair readers, and a very happy Friday to you all.

I’d like to take a moment to say thank you for the great gift you’ve given me.  Your gift of time, thoughtfulness, and conversation have been truly appreciated this year.  I’m looking forward to more blogging in 2017, and I can’t wait to discover even more talented writers and artists out there.  (Be sure to note it in the comments if you know a great blog.  I’m always looking for new sites to check out.)

Riddle from the Middle will be on hiatus for a few days.  I might pop in a bit, but if you don’t see me again until next week then no worries.  I hope all of you have a wonderful (and safe) New Year’s!

Love, Laura


Stockholm Syndrome and the holidays

For those who’ve survived yet another shopping season of glazed eyed wandering through the mall after reaching your wit’s end…this one’s for you.

“…a funny thing happens after a woman becomes a mother.  She becomes incapable of thinking about anything she might enjoy.  From that moment on, every item is judged by how much cleaning it requires and how much it costs.  Moms devote their lives to taking care of another person, and even after that little person becomes a functioning adult, they have lifelong Stockholm Syndrome after years of putting everyone else first.  They just can’t remember what it’s like to want things for themselves, so when you ask them what they’d like for Christmas, you’re stuck translating their vague answers into something you can order from Amazon.”

How to Interpret Your Mom’s Vague, Panic-Inducing Christmas Gift Suggestions – Sass & Balderdash