Did you pick up the manual when you left the hospital? You know the one that tells you how to handle every parenting situation? I must have left mine or lost it moving one of the 5 times we’ve moved since I had my first. I can’t find it anywhere. Help a friend. Make copies. I’m winging it over here.

Some of my parenting issues in the last few days include one child who normally doesn’t care about anything suddenly show up in my bathroom looking like a $3 hooker before a Glee Club performance. The same child that had a cute little red nose and reindeer antlers and jingle bells in a parade 3 days prior, took it upon herself to thickly shellac her face five minutes before we needed to leave. That child out of now where has body issues, self confidence issues, seems to be over compensating at times. Look, I think every girl, even at 37 has some sort of body issue. I need to teach her a healthy way to get over it. I seem to be at a loss.

In the meantime, we have scheduling issues. Scheduling issues even when I make a point of saying that I don’t let my kids sign up for many extracurricular activities…Scheduling issues that when they aren’t resolved end up costing money. I can’t seem to find more hours in the day or convince anyone not to do everything on a Tuesday.

We have learning issues, grade issues, how do I help with this stuff when my child is almost as stubborn as me issues. I want to throw my hands in the air. Why wouldn’t she? Oh, by the way, we’ve been here one year. Our time is running out. Home school haunts me like the Ghost of Christmas present. If I can’t seem to get through with homework, how do you finish an entire day’s schoolwork?

Did I mention the Napoleonic three year old? Enough said.

Just when you think bed wetting and accidents are conquered, another one is thrown in for good measure just to keep you on your toes until it happens again in three months.

All of that… still trying to teach them values, modesty, loving God, doing the right thing. In the end, sometimes I wonder if we walk away just hoping I didn’t raise the next serial killer. (Not likely statistics wise since right now, we have all girls but it’s something to consider.)

Where is that manual?