Aim Higher

Somewhere along the lines of my parental battlefield, I've picked up a personal slogan. A party line. A personal mantra, repeated over and over ad nauseam in the hopes it will one day ring in my children's brain and guide them into positive choices, like a little mini-me angel sitting on their shoulder whispering in their ears.

Aim higher. Generally accompanied by holding two thumbs up like a cracked out, uncool, female Fonzi.

Two little words. But I say them so often around these parts I may as well tattoo them on my forehead.

When Frac walks out of the bathroom wearing enough makeup to resemble a blind street walker, I tell her to aim higher. I'm not in the business of raising tarts.

When Fric snarls a curse word at his sister in frustration I tell him to aim higher. If you are going to curse, at least do it creatively. You are the fruit of my loins after all. Grab a thesaurus and be imaginative. Don't be so common or crude. F bombs are boring.

When Jumby tries to give me a high five, I tell him to aim higher. The boy is blind. Sometimes he needs a little directional help.

My point is, I'm constantly telling the kids to aim higher. Do better. Be more. Like most parents, I want the very best for my children and now that I'm on the tail end of this parenting gig it has never seemed more important than it is right now to drill this into their spongy little brains.

I'm a walking slogan campaign and I feel no shame for this. My kids are at a junction in their lives where they are quickly being afforded more leniency and independence. I have spent the last decade and more instilling the tools within them to make wise choices, giving them the tools to hopefully succeed independently in all aspects of their lives. And in the midst of all the peer pressure filled choices they are soon to make, I want them to know it is all right to aim higher than the choices some of their friends may be making. Heck, I want them to know it's all right to be better than their father and I ever were.

For the most part I hold no real worries about where my children will land in life because I'm fairly confident they will both turn out to be happy well adjusted contributing members of society.

It's just every now and then I have a mental flash of Frac 30 years old, overweight, unemployed and sitting on my couch playing World of Warcraft while getting Cheeto dust all over my slip covers and yelling at his older sister to take care of that squalling baby of hers, as she chases a toddler into her bedroom stuffed full with a crib. I then flash to Boo and I, crippled and grey haired, wondering where we went wrong and plotting ways to pry our adult children and their offspring out of our house, away from the mother ship and off of our dole.

For the love of God kids, AIM HIGHER.

This weekend Fric and Frac brought home progress reports. Neither card held much surprise as both my children tend to do well academically. But upon looking at one child's report card, I shook my head and announced, "Looks like someone needs to aim a little higher this next semester."

Both Fric and Frac, curious to know which child I was referring to, creeped in a little closer, trying to read the name on the report card.

I quickly held the report cards to my chest and shook my head and said, "Nope. I'm not saying which child is doing better than the other. You're both just going to have to AIM HIGHER. After all, a little hard work never hurt anyone before."

Amidst a chorus of groans and rolling eyeballs I headed towards my room to file away the progress reports in the filing cabinet I keep in my closet. Which is where I went wrong.

I turned my back on a pack of teens.

Frac, being quicker of the two, silently crept up behind me and snatched both report cards out of my hands. I whirled around and using my best scary maternal voice, commanded him to return the papers to the hand I held out in front of me.

That's when I realized. No longer is my son the same height as me. (Which was bad enough.) He is inches taller than me. Over night! I swear! As I realized I was looking up at him, he realized he was looking down at me.

He stood on his tippy toes and waved the sheets of paper high above my head and with an evil smile, he grinned and said, "Looks like someone needs to aim higher."

I really hate it when they use my own damn mantra against me.


I'd like to take a second to thank everyone who nominated me for Best Canadian Bloggie in the Eleventh Annual Weblog awards.

I know it isn't cool to acknowledge these type awards but the inner insecure high school geek inside me demands I say thank you. If I were politically correct, I'd tell you to wander over there and peruse the finalists because there is some fabulous blogs from all over the world nominated for an award. If I were politically correct, I'd tell you that it didn't matter to me if you voted for me or not, just that you voted at all. But I'm not politically correct. I mean, I call myself the redneck mommy for crying out loud. So I'll just point out the fact I'm nominated, and that if I win I will BUY YOU ALL IPADS. Okay, maybe not. I'm not rich. Just delusional.

So go look, discover some new great blogs, cast a vote or don't. Just know that I thank you all for thinking of me.