never safety-pin anything to your underwear

Since it is prom season, I thought I would reminisce on the twenty-sixth anniversary of my own prom.

I went with my former boyfriend, Wake.  He was not my former boyfriend at the time.  If I remember correctly, he was my soon-to-be boyfriend at the time.  But, hey, it has been twenty-six years, so I may be a little off with my dates.

Wake’s sister was an amazing seamstress, so she offered to make me a prom dress.  I chose green taffeta; in 1987, green was the new black.  I loved the completed strapless dress, but it was a tiny bit too big around my chest, so my mom safety-pinned the dress to my strapless bra.

We had a great night.  Our limo driver was named Chester (I can’t believe I still remember that), and Wake sent dessert, pie I think, out to the limo half-way through our dinner.

When the dance was over, we headed back to the limo.  As I went to step into the car, my dress got caught on the heel of my shoe. (In case you are wondering, they were  dyed-to-match pumps from Leads).  Since the dress was attached to my bra, my entire ensemble was swiftly jerked down to my waist.  I did an ever-so-clever shift-and-shimmy move and simultaneously slid into my seat while I readjusted my bra/dress combination.

The car was quiet for several moments, and I exhaled with relief.  It appeared no one had seen my unintentional striptease.  Several yards out of the parking lot, John-Eric, a classmate and friend who was sharing the limo, leaned over my shoulder and said, “I totally saw that,” and burst out laughing.

The moral of the story is: strapless dresses, though cute, are generally a bad idea, and also, never safety-pin anything to your underwear.

Obviously, tanning beds were very popular in 1987

Obviously, tanning beds were very popular in 1987

Of course I kept my prom dress.  Didn't you?  Unfortunately my dyed-to-match shoes are MIA

Of course I kept my prom dress. Didn’t you? Unfortunately my dyed-to-match shoes are MIA

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doodle-poppin’

My husband had a rather wild adolescence, so whenever our youngest child does anything remotely sneaky, I blame my husband.  Now, one could argue that my husband had a rather normal adolescence, and I had a completely abnormal one.  I was, in fact, so straight-laced as a teen, my freshman year in college I received the nickname the pure one, or simply Po for short.  Not only did I never get drunk, I never drank at all.  I never smoked, did drugs, stole anything, or snuck out of the house.  I never cheated on a test, and I never lied.  I skipped school once and after fifteen minutes of sitting with my friends at the donut shop, I found a pay phone and called my mom to tell her I was skipping school.  I was concerned she would worry if the school called her to report my absence.  The truth is, I was well into my thirties before I was even in the same room as someone smoking pot.  I am not entirely sure how I avoided all the normal pitfalls of puberty, I was either very naïve or wise beyond my years; I am still not sure which.

My youngest, who takes after her father in many ways, has a keen understanding of the moments she is left unsupervised.  The second I step into the shower, the moment I go to retrieve the mail, the very instant I answer a phone call, she bursts into action.  I call this behavior doodle-poppin’.  My definition of doodle-poppin’ is exhibiting mischievous behavior which is too funny to punish.

Monday, while I was weeding the yard, Ella made “soup,” which basically means she filled my stock pot with water and dumped in ten dollars worth of paprika and oregano.

Wednesday, while I was in the shower, Ella took all the wrapping paper, ribbons, and gift bags out of the closet and wrapped up stuff she owns.  When I discovered the mess spread from one end of the hall to the other, Ella began giving me these wrapped up items as gifts.

“This is a present for you, Mommy.”

How do you yell at a four-year-old who just handed you a stuffed rabbit wrapped in Christmas paper with the ears sticking out?

Then she handed me a gift bag.  I pulled out yards of ribbon and sheets of tissue.  “I don’t think there is anything in here,” I said.

Ella surveyed me with a disdain one might feel for a spoiled child asking for candy.  “The ribbon is the gift, Mom.”

“Of course it is.  I love green ribbon!!”

Today, while I was answering emails, Ella took paint and markers and colored all her doll furniture.  When I discovered the messy project, Ella could see the frustration on my face.

“I know you think this is doodle-poppin’,” she said.  “But I think it is art!”

PS  I went to take a photo of my daughter’s “art,” but my oldest daughter has taken my photo memory card out of the camera.  She did this a week ago to complete a school project.  I am certain I will never see my memory card again.