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Modern Jewish Moms are Still Freakin’ June Cleavers

29 Feb

Written by Jenny Isenman of The Suburban Jungle

Every once in a while you have a conversation that is so cliché so stereotypically female, a la 60 years ago, It makes you wonder if things have truly changed that much.

I had one of these conversations last night, and the sad part?  It was so natural, I didn’t notice the irony until today.  This was the convo as close to verbatim as I can get… seriously.

It started with someone discussing her phobia of germy sponges.

spongebob sick
Germy Sponge

Mom 1: I totally rely on sponges.  You know, when they get dirty you can nuke ‘em?

Me: I run mine in the dishwasher.

Spongephobe Mom: I never use a sponge.

AND THEN IT STARTED: A conversation taken right from the script of a 1950′s commercial.

If any man were to overhear it, he’d undoubtedly say, “Dames, they love to yap about household chores.  Am I right fellas?”

guys and dollsThe rest of my little tête-à-tête with the team moms will require proper 1950s translation.

Spongephobe Mom (to us moms, who sat with our mouths agape at the idea of not using a sponge):  I don’t need a sponge. I just let my dishes soak in some hot water with JOY.

50s translation: JOY gets me “From grease to shine in half the time!”

Mom 1 (visibly shaken): What do you use… a paper towel?

50s translation: Towels can rip and tear, they’d never hold up to vigorous dishwashing.

Spongephobe Mom: Nope.

50s translation: I’m confident in the cleaning power of Joy.

Me (accusingly — like an evangelist being told about evolution): I bet you’re scraping that crud off with your nails.

50s translation: That explains why her nails look so uninviting. (Which would be said in a loud whisper to other woman at the mahjong table.)

Spongephobe Mom: Nope.

50s translation: Stop staring at my nails, gossip maven.

Me: But how do you get all the shit off?

50s translation: What about baked on caked on foods like dried cereal?

Spongephobe Mom: It  even works on caked on oatmeal.

50s translation:  It even works on caked on oatmeal!

Me and Mom 1 (in disbelief):  NO!?

50s translation:  Gasp!?

Me: But what if you sauté?

50s translation: How does it hold up to grease from deep frying?

Spongephobe Mom: No problem.

50s translation: It cuts right through the oily residue that frying can leave behind.

Me:  I nonchalantly inspected her hands for cracking and chaffing.

50s translation: “I bet your manicurist isn’t pleased with the way you do your dishes.” (Snicker snicker, then I would look to other girls for nods and implied high fives.)

Spongephobe Mom:  I only soak the dishes, not my hands, dumbass. (okay, in the actual conversation the dumbass was merely implied.)

50s translation:  Joy leaves my hands supple and soft, and it’s emollients condition as it cleans. Then she would look at my hands sitting in a bowl of what I thought was simply water and say, “you’re soaking in it.”

Oh, Madge, you sneaky devil, you.

That evening I couldn’t help using my new “now to 50s” translation on everything.

I came home and let the kids go for a quick dip in the pool.

50s translation:  I bathed my sweet children.

I put a frozen pizza in the oven.

50s translation:  I whipped up a nutritious meal for the whole family.

I Allowed my hubby to make idle chit chat during the commercials of American Idol.

50s translation: I got my hubby his slippers and cigar then gently rubbed his shoulders.

I put in a load of laundry in hopes that the cleaning lady would dry and fold it in the morning.

50s translation:  I washed, ironed and starched the family’s laundry.

I guess I never realized what a modern domestic goddess I truly am.

busy_mom_with_child_and_pets_clip_art_22864

50s Translation:

june cleaver

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A Shampoo By Any Other Name

16 Feb

Written by Tracy Beckerman from Lost in Suburbia

“What’s in the bag?” I asked my mother as she got into the car following her trip to my hair salon.  Whenever my mom comes to visit me from Florida, our first stop is always the hair salon. It must be a Jew thing because whenever the snowbirds fly up North, the first thing they do is get their hair colored.  She claims that the Florida sun bleaches out her hair, but I think she just wants to make sure if she runs into any other alter cockers up here that she knows, they will think she looks faboosh.

“I got some new shampoo,” she said with some excitement.  “My old shampoo was terrible.  It really dried out my hair.”

“What brand were you using?” I asked.  She thought for a moment.  She seemed unable to come up with the name.

“Um… Freaken shampoo,” she finally said.

I snorted.  I knew she meant a different shampoo, but had mangled the name.  My mother was notorious for this but she denyed it vehemently, so I decided to have a little fun with her.

“So that freakin’ shampoo dried out your hair?” I asked her.

“Yes,” she said.

“Did you try using some freakin’ conditioner,” I asked.

“Yes, but it’s too heavy,” she said. “It weighs down my hair.”

“You know, Mom,” I said smiling, “If the freakin’ shampoo you’re using dries out your hair, you can try another freakin’ shampoo.  Maybe some other freakin’ shampoo would work better for you.  There’s a whole line of freakin’ shampoos out there you can get.”

“That’s true,” she said.

“And you might want to try some freakin’ conditioner, too.” I suggested.  “Just ‘cause one freakin’ conditioner doesn’t work for you, doesn’t mean there isn’t some other freakin’ conditioner that would help your hair.”

“I do use a Freaken hair gel, that is pretty good,” said my mother.  “I don’t like the Freaken mousse, but the Freaken gel gives my hair lots of body.”

“What about the freakin’ hair spray,” I asked.

“I don’t really like the smell,” she responded.”

“But all the freakin’ products have the same freakin’ smell,” I said.  “The freakin’ hairspray smells like the freakin’ shampoo.”

“Really?” she said.  “I like the smell of the Freaken shampoo.”

I laughed out loud.

“What’s so funny?” she asked.

“This whole freakin’ conversation!” I shouted.  She stared at me as though I’d lost my mind.

“We’re just talking about shampoo,” she said.

“Freakin’ shampoo,” I clarified.

“Right,” she said.

“Freakin’ shampoo and freakin’ conditioner and freakin’ hair gel and freakin’ hair spray.”

“Yeah…?” she wondered.

“There is no FREAKEN shampoo,” I said.  “You combined John FRIEDA and REDKEN to make Freaken!”

I saw understanding creep across her face and I cracked up.  She looked at me and raised one eyebrow.

“You know what, Tray?” she said.

“What, Mom?”

“You’re a freakin’ pain in the neck.”

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Do Your Kids Ever Try to Make out with You or is it Just Mine?

13 Feb

Written by Jenny From the Blog of The Suburban Jungle

Okay, so the title isn’t exactly PC.  Sure, they tell you not to make-out with your kids, but sometimes it’s a fine line between so cute and ummm, scary.  What parent doesn’t secretly love it when their child says they want to marry them?  I mean for how many years are they going to want to hug, snuggle, or hold your hand?

On February 14th 2 years ago my daughter came in to wish me a happy Valentine’s Day, to give me a stunning hand-made card, and to neck.  “Oh, this card is awesome.  Come give Mommy a kiss,”  I said in a very innocent non-incestuous way.  My daughter, maybe wanting to show me the magnitude of the holiday, grabbed my face with both hands and planted the biggest smooch on me, I almost started to giggle mid-peck.  But, she wasn’t done; she started turning her head from side to side in her best Victoria Justice imitation.  “Ummm, okay cutie,”  I said feeling partly amused and unexpectedly violated.

“But, Mommy I want one more kiss,” she said as she came in for another.

“Hon, you gotta save those kinds of kisses for your husband, a random friend in camp, and pillows” I said, as if they’re in limited quantity.  “I think you’re confused my love, we don’t kiss mommies or daddies or brothers or cousins or friends like that.   It’s inappropriate.”  I feel I have the “inappropriate” convo way more than any mom of a 5 year old should, but “inappropriate” beats “slutty” any day –though I’m thinking she’s not allowed out of the house until she’s 20.

“Hey, you wanna go on a date?” she asked ignoring me, and coming in for another.

“What???”

“Yeah, let’s go on a date and kiss and get some lollipops!”  She said trying to woo me, and then planted another smack on my lips.

“Sure, I would love to go on a date and get lollipops with you.”

What?  For how many more years will she want to date me?

The days of her telling me I’m “so gay” (or whatever the equivalent will be at that time) and asking me to drop her off a block from the mall, so she doesn’t have to be seen with her queer mom, are around the corner.  If she wants a lollipop date, I’m in.

“Let’s go, but we gotta stop making-out.”

“But Mom, I love you sooo much” she said squeezing me tight.

Awwww, is this not the sweetest moment EVER?  I thought.  Well, until she followed up with “I want to puke of love!”

Okay, so she’s a bit confused, but she said it in her “sexy voice,” which means it was a compliment.  I will overlook the fact that it also means it was an attempt to pick me up.

PS my son’s card read:  You are my lover and I love you… Will you be my valentine when I’m with you? … Just askin.

To you, my insecure child, who is also clearly a bit confused, yet doesn’t want to make-out with me, but I hope still wants to marry me, “Yes, 1000 times yes.  You make me want to puke of love!!!”

Who knows what this year will hold?

Have a HAPPY V-DAY!!! even if it’s mildly inappropriate.

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Jewish Mother Guilt- want some?

13 Jan

Written by Melissa Chapman from Married My Sugar Daddy

I LIVE, BREATHE and yes EAT guilt, as in, when I’m feeling guilty there is no tool to stave it off better than a pint of cookie dough ice cream. I’ve got guilt coursing through my veins- namely because I was raised in a very strict Orthodox household and went to a hardcore Yeshivah. Yes, I got all the training and was primed to be a nice religious girl- until the end of tenth grade when I decided I needed to be free of gemarah, rashi and halacha. So, I dropped out of Yeshivah high school and high tailed to the mean streets of public high school and set the precedent for a guilt induced adulthood. [...]

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So, I Have a Cleaning Lady – No Need for Verbal Assaults

9 Jan

Written by Jenny From the Blog of THE SUBURBAN JUNGLE

This story ended up in a book of hilarious Mom essays, but it was originally run when I first started blogging, by a major newspaper and their coordinating website, I will not name where.
No, stop asking, ‘cuz I won’t.
Don’t tickle me… stop it.  
ENOUGH.

Ok – the response was a mostly a verbal assault and a judgmental lashing from people who would never spend their hard earned money to have someone else help around the house.  Personally, I have no problem spending my husbands hard earned money to have someone do that.  (What, you think blogging pays a ton?)  

Ironic, comparison right 'cuz she was the hired nanny.

Frankly, I would consider spending my last dollar on it.  In fact I would clean someone else’s house to make the money to pay someone to clean my own.  I feel I don’t need to apologize for the sanity and extra time I get to play with my kids or the joyful feeling I get from walking into my home- like Julie Andrew’s character feels in the Sound of Music when she’s spinning on the mountain top singing, “The Hills are Alive.”

Oh, you can picture me doing it right?
Cuz I do.  
With song.  
And a flowy 1940‘sesque dress.  
Every time I walk in and smell the fresh scent of Lysol “Fresh Scent.”

I thought I would let you all decide if you can relate or if I’m a horrible person  – for liking a clean house – for putting this extravagance in my budget – for wearing frocks…

Here goes: [...]

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