I never gave an update of what happened with the playgroup because I didn't have much to say at first. The first few I went to I barely spoke to anyone. Finally though, I met a Mommy who I really dig, and her daughter is just a couple months younger than Bug! And get this...they just moved here from California! We've hung out a couple times, and our girls get along beautifully. Princess L (Bug's new friend) might just be a good influence for my little maniac, too. She is so mild and sweet, I swear she holds up her pinky when she drinks from her sippy cup. Not that Bug is wild or anything, she's just very...active. She hasn't even been alive for two years and she's already racked up more emergency room visits than Gage has in his entire life.
I'm sure when we're in public, at the park or whatever, that people think we're odd because our conversation volume suddenly goes from a 10 to a 2 when anyone comes near us. Neither of us wants to offend anyone with our talk of organic baby crackers or burlesque shows or not allowing our girls to play with Barbie's, or whatever other hedonistic things Californians do that make Southerners feel uncomfortable. It has brought me to an understanding of why new immigrants speak in their native language in public.
Us English-only Americans think it's rude, and maybe it is, but I can understand now why they might do it - just out of the comfort of being able to speak to someone in your first language about things relevant to your own culture... Ahhh....to be able to say "like" and "dude" and "rad" and "totally", in my native "Valley" dialect....it's refreshing. Am I over-reacting? NO.
Oh wait, is this another post about how much Florida sucks and California rules? Maybe a little.
In our discussions of home and the weird little differences we find between there and here, we pretty much miss the same things. Trader Joe's. A social life. Toilet seat covers. Yep, you heard. I can count on 3 fingers how many times I've been in a public restroom in Pensacola and there were toilet seat covers available. Not like, they ran out, but there isn't even a seat cover dispenser in the stall. Yeah I know, "don't all women squat anyway?" Well...mostly. Sometimes you just can't. Everybody poops. And then there are the times when you're just too drunk to have that much balance, and the possibility that you might piss on your jeans is far more terrifying than the risk of catching cooties from the toilet seat. So you just channel Oprah when she and Dr. Oz told us that the sink has more germs in the public restroom than the toilet does, and the least used stall is the one closest to the door, and you hope for the best. But still, it's gross. And really weird.
I have tried to get Bug out of the house every day lately, because wearing her out is so satisfying for me. We're trying different things, but so far my favorite was gymnastics. She ran and climbed and rolled and jumped for a full hour, and then took the most epic nap for 3 hours! I'm also pretty sure she'll be in the 2028 Olympics. She's gifted on the beam.
Another thing we really like is the Children's Museum. They have a play area that's set up like what the first settlers to Pensacola would have. A fort, a trading post, a boat, a home, etc. She mostly just runs around with plastic fruit and fish and watches the other kids play. But she'll do it for hours. And it's indoors, so I'm not sweating like a whore in church. That reminds me of another thing that happens here but never would in California. The Children's Museum has pretend wooden shotguns in the play room. So little boys are running around, pointing and swinging these long wooden clubbing devices at each other and even at the babies! Of course nobody is watching their kids....Boys will be boys or some shit, right? Yeah, no. You'd never see that in California. The more I see how careless some parents can be in watching their kids, the more I'm convinced Bug will never go to another kid's house without me. People here have guns. They loooove their guns, and they let their kids run free. How would I know how well they lock them up?? They even let people have a conceal and carry license here, with very little oversight. There is a fucking commercial for a store that makes custom leather purses with a gun pocket inside. Seriously. It's like the old west or some shit. Fucking nuts. So, I don't look at anyone funny and I don't flip people off on the highway.
I never forget to put my hand on my heart if the pledge is being said, and I tap my foot when I hear country music. Safe.
Oh, so today Princess L's Mom invited us to help with the playdate she's hosting at her house next month. I have never been to an in-home playdate, and have only met one of these women, but I hear they take it to Martha Stewart level with the brunch snacks. You know I love that shit, so I totally signed myself up to bring something. The problem is, I have only known about this shin-dig for 4 hours, and already I've gone into beast mode. I've been browsing Pinterest for 2 hours. I want to bring shame to these women's snack foods. I want them to leave feeling defeated. I want to blow their fucking MINDS and leave them in awe over my delicious and creative take on playdate brunch cuisine!.....Or maybe I just need a drink.