Friday, May 11, 2012

A Fistful of Little Ice Cream Sandwiches

In honor of Mother's Day and my birthday, I'm pulling a blog post from ye olde Myspace days. I believe my son was around three years old at the time and I was a big fat meanie. Happy Mother's Day to all my friends out there who are mean mamas too (on occasion). 

A Fistful of Little Ice Cream Sandwiches

I trotted through the doors of my apartment and out to the parking lot, where my son's father's truck was waiting. I'd just finished working out and was wondering if I'd have Happy Three-Year-Old or I-Hate-Mama-Three-Year-Old waiting for me in the car seat.

I did a little jig outside the car window to try to ensure a positive reception.

I could see his little mouth forming the "O" of a wail through the tinted glass and knew I was screwed. I opened the door.

"Waaah! I. Don't. Want. Ma. Ma!" Big tears rolled down his cheeks as he stretched his arm out towards his father and away from me.

"The Little Mermaid and little ice cream sandwiches!" I blurted.

"Noooo, I want Da..." He paused. "Little ice cream sandwiches?"


"And The Little Mermaid?"

"All this and more, if only you come with the mama," I gestured towards the apartment door as though ushering him into the Magical Kingdom.

"And you cuddle me on the couch?"

"Hells yeah!" I pumped my fist.

(Okay, I might not have said "Hells yeah!") Of course as I picked him up and carried him out of his father's truck (his father never puts his shoes on him), he again wound himself up and wailed as he reached his arms out towards his father.

"Littlemermaidicecreamsandwiches," I whispered in his ear over and over again like a mantra.

Thirty minutes of The Little Mermaid ("Under the Sea!") and one little ice cream sandwich later, with a smattering of hair-strokings and a toddler back rub with mini-baby-karate chops, it was time for bed.

"Five minutes," he waved me off with a pudgy hand.

"No, now."

"I didn't eat my 'nother little ice cream sandwiches!"

Okay, the kid had a solid point. Clearly there was an unfinished little ice cream sandwich on his plate and that's just plain wrong.

"Okay, you can eat the ice cream sandwich but then bed."

"No, I hafta finish watching my movie THEN I can go to bed," he said.

"No, I'm letting you eat the ice cream sandwich out of the kindness of my heart, for which you should say, 'Thank you, Mama,' and then you will go to bed a lucky little boy to have had that little ice cream sandwich." I narrowed my eyes at him.

Suddenly I could hear the theme song to The Good, The Bad and The Ugly.

"I wanna watch The Little Mermaid!" he took the little ice cream sandwich out of his mouth and slid his hands towards his holster.

"No," I said out of the side of my mouth and rested both of my hands on my hips, my thumbs stroking the handles of my guns.

"Yes!" he cried.

Then the room exploded with gun fire.

If you're not familiar with that sound, ladies and gentlemen, that is the sound of Mama being DONE. I can outdraw a three-year-old any day of the week, my friends.

"How about you go to bed now, with no little ice cream sandwich?" I snapped up the remaining ice cream sandwich and marched it to the freezer.

"But Mama!"

"March," I said. "I'm done with this."

"Ma!" he cried. Now the tears were rolling and he looked paralyzed, shocked and completely ambushed by my gorilla-mama tactics.

He wailed as he took off his pants. He wailed as we turned on the hall light. He wailed as I helped him off with his shirt. And then finally:

"I'm sorry, Mama!" His face was overwrought. He truly looked like a little man who was horrified by his own actions and stricken with grief at the price he would have to pay.

"I'm sorry too. I bet that little ice cream sandwich would have tasted soooooooooo good!" I said and rubbed my belly.

Okay, I'm totally kidding about that last line. I would never say that. What I said was this:

"I know you're sorry, baby. Maybe next time you'll say 'Yes, Mama,' instead of trying to negotiate your own bedtime." I pulled his shirt off and grabbed a pajama top.

"I n-n-n-need a hug!" he said and draped his leaden arms around my shoulders, sobbing. I hugged him and rubbed his back.

"I love you," I said.

"I love you too, Mama." Pause. "Can I have a little ice cream sandwich now?"


"I said 'I'm sorry!'"

"Yeah, but you should have listened to Mama in the first place."

"I'll be nice now, I promise."

"You are nice, I know that. Maybe next time you'll do what I ask and not try to tell me what to do. You know Mama doesn't like it when she has to ask you to do something two or three times."

"I know," he said and sighed.

"So what are you going to do next time Mama asks you to do something?"

"Say 'Yes, Mama.'"

"Smart boy."

"Yeah. I am," he nodded, looking happier again, despite the red-eyes and the wet cheeks. He knew he would live to see another day.

See how easy it is? Listen to Mama and get ice cream sandwiches before bed. No wonder his dad's his favorite. His mama's such a bitch.

*Blows smoke from pistols, returns them to holsters*


  1. This reminded me of the other blog you wrote (which you should also repost, just because it's LD's favorite.

    "I'm just good, Mama."

    I have paid that forward many, many times since the MySpaz days. He is wise beyond his years.
    Despite having never met either of you IRL, Cracky and his Mama have taught me some cool lessons, and you are both very special to me.

    Happiest of Mother's Day, Mama.

  2. You'll have to give me more detail about that one. I don't remember it. And sadly I had 5 or 6 discs full of blogs and one of them was damaged and I lost all the blogs on it. SIGH.

  3. Cheers and hip hop hoorays for mean moms! Mothers that teach respect turn boys into good men. And we need more good men. And more ice-cream sandwiches.

    (and there better be some mean mamas out there raising cute little girls....I've got three boys to marry off in the next decade or two!)

    Stick to your guns, Annie!

  4. Mean Mamas have great kids. I know this first hand. As well as having seen it.

    Happy Mother's day to you and another fabulous year of being all the wiser with great shoes and a huge heart!


  5. @Chantel: Ha. Actually, if you were to ask him, he would be shocked and affronted if anyone suggested I was a mean mom. Which is a relief.

    @Nice Peace: Happy Madre's Day to you too. I already got a nice start on that shoe thing.

  6. That kid is an A+ negotiater. I'd probably cry a lot myself if someone took me away from a delicious ice cream sandwich.

  7. I like tough Mamas. I R 1. You have to be, or they'll be running the joint before you know it.

  8. @Just Me: I think all kids are excellent negotiators. I think they come preprogrammed with it out of the womb.

    @Susan in the Boonies: Parenting is such a delicate balance between denial and providence. Ha.

  9. It's the only way they learn that actions have consequences. It's hard to deal with the tears, but the hugs and reassurances help (help me, that is).

  10. It's so difficult to be strong in the face of crocodile tears. And stuck with it. You did the right thing. The thing that is hardest for all of us. Your kids will grow up to be excellant adults. Truly.

  11. Ah, it's good to be reminded that mean mamas aren't so mean. When I throw down with my little man I feel like a beast; rereading this blog gives me a bit of perspective. I sure as hell find you to be reasonable and consistent here, so perhaps that's all I'm doing ,too!

    (It doesn't help that I'm often told by Dad, "We don't need timeouts in my house". I am both skeptical and jealous.)

  12. I so very much love the title. What a great story. Your relationship with him has always made me smile. I know it's probably not always puppy dogs and ice cream, but you two have something really special and I love when you share your stories.

  13. Hahaha! I love the bits of honesty that you felt but didn't actually say thrown in. People always talk about terrible 2's but I think 3's are really the culprit. I hope you have a Happy Birthday and a Happy Mother's Day!! Get yourself an entire box of ice cream sandwiches and eat them all yourself! ;)

  14. Hahaha! I love the bits of honesty that you felt but didn't actually say thrown in. People always talk about terrible 2's but I think 3's are really the culprit. I hope you have a Happy Birthday and a Happy Mother's Day!! Get yourself an entire box of ice cream sandwiches and eat them all yourself! ;)

  15. Hmmm... I should try pacifying my students with these little frozen nuggets of goodness! But I'd probably never even make it to class before eating an entire box...

  16. good parenting is difficult. trying to make it “easy” ALWAYS fails. you, your mate, the kid, society.

    being strict just prepares the child for the difficulties and disappointments of life. well done.

  17. *Blows smoke from pistols, returns them to holsters*

    Best last line ever.

  18. Is there any more-difficult job than sculpting a child?