F It & Nutcracker 2016

My son now says “fuck it.” Over the summer he had a brief “fucking Jesus” phase. Both naughty phrases, he can pronounce perfectly. Meanwhile, he cannot pronounce yellow (says “ellow”).

I know where he got the “F.J.” from. He heard it from someone frustrated in our household spoken under his breath during distressing toddler-parenting times. Names will be withheld *cough* Kyle *cough.*

I don’t know where he got “fuck it” from. I told him those aren’t kind words that we say in our family and asked who he heard that from. He said Captain Hook.


On Sunday, I took Roger on a mom-son date. We went to see The Nutcracker at The Benedum. When taking a three year old to a ballet, you want to go in with an open mind and the expectation that, depending how things go, you could be ejected from the theater.

The first hiccup occurred when Roger skipped his nap. Ideally I would have left our house earlier and gone on a leisurely country drive to get him to give in to some shut eye. Instead we left a bit early but he was excited about driving downtown to see The Nutcracker. He asked if we were near or far as we drove down Fort Duquesne Boulevard. We parked in a garage and made our way to the theater and Will Call nice and early.


The ushers people in and Roger started exploring. He is an adventurer. We walked to the top of the theater, in and out of aisles. He figured out how the chairs go up and down and won the hearts of some cute older female ushers as he sped by.

If only the Pittsburgh Ballet Theater offered a special toddler show and special ticket prices. I bought two seats but we only used one. I paid for the whole show but we left at intermission. During the play, Roger did a pretty good job of sitting still. He was in a weird overtired but stimulated state of mind and body. He sat on my lap and would cuddle in to me then perk up to stare at the stage. He asked me a lot of questions and we tried to communicate at low volume.

I really enjoyed sharing the experience with him. Plays, dancing, music and imagination are all wonderful parts of life and the theater can encourage us to incorporate them into our lives.

As we made our exit after intermission (quitting while you’re ahead = parenting skill), we stood in the entry space between the exterior doors and glass doors to the theater. I told Roger “it’s time to get your coat on.” He belligerently yelled “No!” Unexpectedly, I hear “yes you will!” I look up to see a 70-something lady loudly scolding Roger. The two of them went back and forth hollering yes/no back at one another for about three rounds until I got him to tune back into me. This is the kind of thing that a year ago would have made my blood pressure rise. Now I just focus on the task at hand and stay calm. I am ready to be assertive and tell her to back off or take Roger into a more private area and get stern with him. The options abound. At any rate, parenting peanut gallery – keep quiet unless asked. Thanks and may your nutcracker holiday season be magical.




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