Saturday, January 8, 2011

It's snowing today....

It snowed today. Actually it snowed yesterday afternoon, last night, this morning and this afternoon. It is supposed to snow more tonight and tomorrow. It has dumped about 15 cm. of snow on us, a fair amount but not enough to trap us in our homes and businesses. Too bad. We’re prepared. We have lots of hot chocolate, ginger cookies, pizza fixings, a couple of sleighs, a toboggan, and a couple of Jeeps. That doesn’t even include the shovels and other implements of wintery destruction.

With a population of approximately 782,439 warm souls in Edmonton, it seems like 782,000 are complaining about the snow. That seems odd you consider it has snowed here for probably the last 20,000 years. We should be at least a little prepared for it. I know we, as a species, are not great for planning ahead. Heck, morning always takes me by surprise, but collectively we have known about the coming snow since last summer. The snow tire ads on television should have been enough to alert us to the coming catastrophe. And we did have a several hours warning of this latest snow fall.

Maybe it is because I have come under the preternatural influence of a gregarious 2 year old, but I am finding snow to be a lot of fun. A small pile of snow in the back yard and away we go, sliding for the morning. Then after the morning of shoveling and playing it is time for hot chocolate and a snack. Now that our naps are done, it is time to consider the pizza party for tonight.

Tomorrow morning, it will be back outside to clear more snow, play with some cheap sleds, and then run and fall in the snow. TroubleMaker likes winter, and I can understand why. He makes it fun.

Now if someone would just dig the car out of the snow bank, I would be grateful. There is a steaming cup of hot chocolate as a reward! Any takers?

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

The dreaded Monster-In-Law

The other day it came to light that one of my mother’s-in-law was reading my blog.

I know what you are thinking, “Multiple mothers-in-law? How did you manage to get more than one woman to marry you? Why haven’t you been arrested?”

This is not the utopian fantasy of multiple wives to serve my every whim and want. It is one of the outcomes of the changing nature of the family. Marriage, divorce, remarriage, re-divorce, drunken indiscretions have all combined to create a new family structure. In my case, it has resulted in two mothers-in-law, and I now know that at least one of them has been reading this blog. Now I have to watch what I say.

I did a bit of research about the concept of the mother-in-law. There appears to be only 10 clean jokes about them. There are lots of other jokes but they aren’t nice. The clean jokes aren’t funny.

Most of the axioms, aphorisms and proverbs about mothers-in-law are not nice, except maybe the biblical ones, but it is hard to tell if those are about mothers-in-law or sin. Surprisingly mothers-in-law are not universally respected. I don’t understand why. About the only ones who didn’t have anything bad to say about mothers-in-law were Adam and Oscar Wilde. Neither of my mothers-in-law seems overtly evil.

In fact they can be quite nice. One mother-in-law is always grateful when I carry her bags to her car after one of her stays with us. I guess the question is: What son-in-law wouldn’t assist his mother-in-law with getting her baggage to the curb?

The phenomenon of the mother-in-law is closely associated with interference. That means my mothers-in-law should be interfering with my family. I know, from my research, that this can be an insidious process that makes itself known within weeks of the wedding. While I haven’t seen anything like this in the four years of our marriage I know what to look for now.

One of the other hallmarks of the typical mother-in-law is the ‘imposition’. We all know the types of impositions. Invitations to dinner! Babysitting TroubleMaker so we can go out! Help with household chores when they visit! The list is endless! Okay, so it is not a great list, still, you get the idea!

Through all of this trial and turmoil I have learned that the grandchild is the great equalizer. He is no longer just my son. He will be my pawn. I can ransom his time with his grandparents, my mothers-in-law, for what ever I desire; a new car, a new motorhome, even a roof for the house (just to show I am not completely selfish). And as soon as I can get him and his mother, my wife, in line with my scheme to combat the mother-in-law problem we will start to see positive results. Someday they will come around to my way of thinking

So while it may look to the casual observer that I am pretty lucky to have the mothers-in-law I do have, I also know looks can be deceiving. I am just not sure how that applies to this case. Remember, you can’t let the facts get in the way of a good story.