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the plan vs. the reality

January 31, 2011

The Plan:

Fly to Minneapolis to attend a wedding. Spend quality family time together. Take a break from the computer/TV/Internet. Don’t be impatient. Don’t yell at Maya. Lay off of making fun of Ali. Don’t complain so much. Realize it’s not always about me.

The Reality:

I flew to Minneapolis. I attended a wedding. Everything remained about me.


A: When presented with a choice of spending time with the family by riding on the Jimmy Neutron Atom Collider 5 times at the Mall of America or shopping at Bloomingdale’s, I will choose Bloomingdale’s.

B: When presented with a choice of being proactive when Maya drops a bottle of water all over her flower girl ensemble or screaming at her uselessly, I will scream at her uselessly.

C: When presented with a choice of listening to Maya sing “Like a G-6” over and over on a 4-hour flight or paying $13 for inflight Internet and clamping on noise-cancelling headphones…well, the choice is obvious.

Lessons Learned:

I am not perfect. I am on the Internet too much. I waste too much time on Twitter. I make fun of my family too much. I complain too much. I will never like amusement parks. I spend too much money at Bloomingdale’s.

The flower girl...after I utilized the blow dryer to dry her ensemble.

I also learned that no matter how many times I say, “If you don’t stop playing with your water its going to drop all over your dress,” she will never stop playing with her water. And it will drop all over her dress.

97 Comments leave one →
  1. Erika permalink
    January 31, 2011 1:06 am

    The flower girl looks absolutely beautiful. Have a great time!

  2. raana permalink
    January 31, 2011 1:43 am

    Your posts always crack me up and I absolutely like your honest approach to everyday matters.We women treat the life almost the same way that’s why we have different energy,stress,tolerance and apprehension levels than in the men.
    Maya looks gorgeous in her lovely attire!!!!(sorry for my long absence from comments if you remember me)

    • January 31, 2011 8:17 pm

      Hi Ranaa – of course I remember you! Thank you for coming back and for your comment. 🙂

  3. January 31, 2011 4:14 am

    She looks beautiful even if she didn’t listen! 🙂

  4. January 31, 2011 4:37 am

    The really, really could be sisters, our two girls. She is stunningly beautiful (like her mother).

    My sis lives in Minneapolis but I have to admit that when I’ve visited her, I avoid Mall of America like the plague. Now that Dudette’s here, I might have to end my “no visit” streak, but malls make me claustrophobic, even if they do have rides in them.

    Stay warm.

  5. January 31, 2011 5:05 am

    Haha the absence of perfection is an important lesson to learn! We are all cuckoo in our own little ways!

    Maya looks so beautiful!

    And I would totally shell out $13 for internet too. No shame!

  6. January 31, 2011 5:11 am

    Awwwhhh, Maya looks such a cutie padootie, you can only just faintly see the horror of her near tragedy all mixed up with that ‘Geez I’m gorgeous’ Madonna smile. Whatever your doing….., keep doing it, it seems to be working just fine Lovely 😉

  7. January 31, 2011 5:17 am

    water spill or no water spill, maya looks precious! i’ve never seen a flower girl with a crown of roses like that. beautiful. and your conclusions are hilarious.

  8. January 31, 2011 5:29 am

    haha, she looks pretty adorable in that dress!! Loved this post-yours always make me laugh!

  9. January 31, 2011 5:34 am

    Awww, Maya looks beautiful!!! She looks like she could be modeling for some expensive children’s cataglog!

  10. January 31, 2011 5:40 am

    Thank goodness you gave her water–and not, say, grape juice. Also, she looks beautiful!

  11. January 31, 2011 6:10 am

    She looks beautiful… I am sure going to Minneapolis during the dead of winter would not be fun and if presented with opportunity to go to a wedding in MN or FL in january you would choose well, not that it was an option. I totally agree with Tracy at least it is not grape juice or wine.

  12. January 31, 2011 6:18 am

    I agree with Tracey. Clear liquids were a good choice. 🙂

    And Maya looks adorable.

  13. January 31, 2011 6:24 am

    Maya looks darling! At least it was water…
    I would pick Bloomingdales too 🙂

  14. January 31, 2011 6:44 am

    ohhh minneapolis, i love that city! i have to say, even with the 0 degree temps, i prefer it to LA 🙂

  15. January 31, 2011 6:51 am

    This post cracked me up– love! And Maya makes a beautiful flower girl 🙂

  16. January 31, 2011 6:52 am

    Oh, did you get to go to Mall of the Americas? I have always wanted to see it, but I can’t imagine I’d ever end up visiting Minneapolis. What was that like? Amazing or junky tourist attraction?
    Daaaaahling, there is only one life, we are living it. Be the star of it. Life is too short to listening to like a G6 featuring Maya (that being said, that really is a darling picture of her, she looks angelic).
    *kisses* HH

    • January 31, 2011 8:51 am

      Yes we were at the Mall of America – they have a Nickelodeon land in the middle of it and Ali took Maya there while I went to Bloomingdale’s. Because as you said, life is too short to waste time on themed rides when Joie is calling, right?

      I was surprised at how nice Minneapolis is actually! I wouldn’t mind visiting again – in the summer of course.

  17. January 31, 2011 6:54 am

    at least it was water! she looks precious!

  18. January 31, 2011 6:54 am

    Maya looks ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL in that dress.

    I have to say sometimes Maya can pull of an expression like ” see how calm and pleasant i look. do you guys really think all those things my mama says about me are true ? ”

    I am with you on two of them. But I would be thankful for it being water.

  19. January 31, 2011 7:02 am

    Maya is gorgeous (even if she does sing pop songs and spill water more than you’d like!)

  20. January 31, 2011 7:06 am

    Maya looks beautiful! Hope you had a good weekend. I can definitely seeing doing anything possible to drown out “Like a G-6.” I just don’t get that song.

  21. January 31, 2011 7:10 am

    Maya looks very cute.
    I went to the mall of america a few years ago, it was crazy!

  22. January 31, 2011 7:24 am

    Maya is gorgeous! I think the other lesson here is, don’t let your kids drink anything besides water while wearing hard-to-replace dress at formal events.

  23. actorsdiet permalink
    January 31, 2011 7:35 am

    how pretty does maya look?!?!

    wait, you missed the mall of america?!?!

    • January 31, 2011 8:48 am

      No, I didn’t miss the Mall of America – Ali took Maya to the Nickelodeon land inside of it while I visited Bloomingdale’s! That place is insanely large.

  24. January 31, 2011 7:56 am

    She looks beautiful!!! And your last paragraph sums up motherhood in 2 sentences!

  25. January 31, 2011 7:57 am

    Awww, Maya looks beautiful! Definitely worth the 8 million people screaming in a mall with a roller coaster 🙂

  26. January 31, 2011 8:00 am

    bahahahaha! I would make the same choices as you! ❤ Time and time again!

    My husband keeps begging for children and I have mastered my response "It's going to be adorable… but the biggest pain in the butt the world has ever known!"

    Maya looks adorable! she has the sweet and innocent look down pact 😉

  27. January 31, 2011 8:00 am

    But she looks so precious!

  28. January 31, 2011 8:30 am

    the flower girl looks cute 😀 …

    about ur post well atleast the lesson is learnt 😀 lol

  29. January 31, 2011 8:32 am

    Maya looks cute in that dress. Think of this way, it’s not too bad only water that she only spilled water…it would be much worse if it was soda or juice. Eek! And sadly sometimes things never go the way we planned.

  30. January 31, 2011 8:36 am

    The good news is it’s just water. The other good news is that you can shop at Bloomingdales!! I only dream about that place! Hope you had fun there….bet it was freezing!!

  31. January 31, 2011 8:58 am

    Oh, the days when I could sing age-inappropriate songs at the top of my lungs without having any idea what they meant or caring how disruptive I was to other people. My mother didn’t have the luxury of headphones, either, because all of our trips were in the car and she had to stay alert to drive. I wonder why we took so few family vacations….

  32. January 31, 2011 9:06 am

    Maya looks so prcious in that picture. I hope you’re framing this one. I’m also really glad it was just water. What a disaster that could’ve been if it were anything else!

    I’ve never been to the Mall of America. My kiddies would go crazy over the Nickelodeon land. Girl, I totally understand. When we visit my in-laws, they take the kiddies to the play areas in the mall and hubby and I run like the wind. We totally shop separately too. Sometimes a girl’s just gotta drop everything (and by everything I also mean everyone) and really shop.

    Hope you have a great rest of the trip!

    • January 31, 2011 9:19 am

      “Run like the wind.” I love it. That’s what I did! I was in and out of Bloomingdale’s in 45 minutes. I’m already back in L.A.! It was just a 3 day trip unfortunately.

  33. Leslie permalink
    January 31, 2011 9:13 am

    Your writing style is ever evolving, Ameena. Stylistically, I adored this post. You zero-ed in the on the irony of the situation with elegance. Bravo!

    You deserve a medal: I Suvived the Mall of America! But you neglected a crucial aspect in your report: inquiring minds want to know what did you buy at Bloomingdales?

    Maya looked gorgeous, as always. And I heartily concur with your followers who complimented you on giving her a clear liquid. I assume her darling mama looked as lovely as ever.

    If you ever go back there, go in the late spring. Wild lilacs bloom in immense profusions along the roads. If you drive at dusk with the windows down, the essence of spring will inundate your senses. Heavenly!

    Or go in September for the State Fair. That’s a trip. You can walk around and see people eating fried mac&cheese on a stick. *shakes her superior California-eating-habits head* Worth the price of admission.

    • February 1, 2011 1:43 pm

      Leslie – I was so close to buying a couple of things at Bloomingdale’s but we ran out of time! The pesky wedding got in the way of my shopping. So I’m going to order a few things online instead. PS – I’m alterately disgusted and intrigued by macaroni on a stick??

  34. Michelle permalink
    January 31, 2011 9:56 am

    Maya is growing up so fast! She looks so beautiful!

  35. January 31, 2011 10:08 am

    Well . . . at least she spilled water and not cranberry juice. 🙂

    Regardless of whether or not she was listening, she looked adorable!

  36. January 31, 2011 11:02 am

    Aw Maya makes such a pretty flower girl…there are worse things than water I suppose. And man I have to admit I would be first in line on the Jimmy Neutron ride, lol! (Not to put down your choices, there’s a big difference between wanting to do something and being dragged over to it by your kid). Hope you guys had a good time at the wedding<3

  37. January 31, 2011 11:07 am

    LOL! Glad your trip was successful at least in the self-indulgence aspects 🙂 Hope the freezing weather didn’t get to the 3 of you too much. I know it is getting to me…

  38. January 31, 2011 11:48 am

    Maya looks great – I can’t believe that dress dried out without staining! As to your choices – I’m with you all the way, Bloomies, internet over G-6 singing – really would anyone else choose differently?

  39. January 31, 2011 12:12 pm

    Maya looks gorgeous! Hope you had a great trip!

  40. January 31, 2011 12:13 pm

    Awww…your daughter is beautiful 🙂 You are hilarious Ameena…love reading your posts!

  41. January 31, 2011 12:24 pm

    We are so much alike it’s frightening!!!!
    Maya looks beautiful in her dress!

  42. January 31, 2011 12:28 pm

    Nice Macgyver moment with the blow dryer.
    You officially upped your street cred with all of those folks who take tour buses to the Mall of America by choosing to shop 🙂

  43. January 31, 2011 12:42 pm

    Well, it’s important to know who you really are, right? “To thine own self be true” and all that. 🙂 And Maya is GORGEOUS!

  44. January 31, 2011 1:26 pm

    Your daughter looks like an angel. And you didn’t desert your family to shop. You were letting Ali bond with his daughter. See how that works!

  45. January 31, 2011 1:32 pm

    Maya is the cutest thing ever! Hope you guys had a fantastic time at the wedding!

  46. January 31, 2011 2:28 pm

    If Bloomingdales is wrong I don’t know who wants to be right… You are awesome 🙂
    Such a pretty flower girl!

  47. January 31, 2011 3:39 pm

    High five for keeping it real!

  48. January 31, 2011 4:30 pm

    She looks beautiful! I bet that sweet little face is deceiving isn’t it!! lol!

    Isn’t it amazing how many times you repeat yourself and they still don’t listen? It’s almost like kids are wired not to. Same goes for men too. No matter what I say, mine doesn’t listen. Sometimes he is right, but boy do I POUNCE when he isn’t. I rub it in like no other…

  49. January 31, 2011 6:06 pm

    I love how much better you make me feel- because at least I’m not the only one! I also waste way too much time on the internet (it is such a time suck! I need to stop this, but I can’t). I also spend too much money (that I don’t actually have). And I may or may not complain a lot. I try not to, but I get too impatient to hold back sometimes.

    Oh, and my hatred for amusement parks. I was trying to help my sister plan a vacation with her boyfriend, and for some dumb reason, he realllly wanted to go to Disney Land. I had to spend an hour convincing her that she should rethink that idea, because what could possibly be fun about that? Screaming children and nauseating rides…yes I’m washed up and no fun. But I also happen to know that my sister would in fact hate a trip to Disney Land, and she realized she completely agrees with me. So you aren’t alone on that front.

    • February 1, 2011 9:31 am

      I went to Disneyland with Maya once and then I told Ali that from then on taking her to amusement parks was his territory!

  50. January 31, 2011 6:33 pm

    I completely understand Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato, Taylor Swift…that sort of thing. But Like a G6? That’s like what you turn to when you want to get down with the gangsta inside.

    Gang affiliations aside, Maya looks absolutely adorable in her flower girl ensemble – I’m SO glad that dress worked out!

    And, for what it’s worth, I consider escaping Nickelodeon Universe for Bloomingdales (AKA Beauty and Quiet) to be The Only Coping Mechanism.

  51. January 31, 2011 8:10 pm

    She is beautiful in the dress.
    You were at MOA? I was there last week too! I was even at Bloomies. Any good deals? I could certainly go back.
    and hey, i’ve been to Nickelodean world a few times. I am pretty much known for dropping the “disappearing” act and hitting the stores.

    • February 2, 2011 9:23 am

      There were so many good deals at Bloomingdale’s and I do wish I could go back and get what I had to leave behind!! Please do so on my behalf.

  52. January 31, 2011 8:54 pm

    I HATE and LOVE not being perfect…but more so, really don’t like being HUMAN sometimes: irritable, self-serving, vain, scared, attempting to avoid all of the above, and then making more of it. Honestly? There was a moment yesterday where I just didn’t like myself, and spent 2 hours in the middle of the night thinking about it. Forgiveness, I think, is the key. Learning how to be less judgmental about myself, I am less judgmental about others.

  53. January 31, 2011 9:55 pm

    Maya is gorgeous little precious princess! I’m glad you had a nice time at the wedding! 🙂

  54. January 31, 2011 11:02 pm

    Awwww, your flower girl is gorgeous!! 🙂 I don’t do roller-coasters either! 🙂 I would have gone to Bloomingdales too – actually, I would have gone anywhere other than the roller-coaster, to avoid disastrous consequences afterwards… and Zach would have pouted that I didn’t go on the roller coaster with him… Ah, I sympathize with your struggle, my dear blog-friend! 🙂 Thank you so much for your wonderful, wonderful comment on my blog – you made my day!! 🙂

  55. February 1, 2011 4:39 am

    She looks beautiful!! I actually really, really like the song “like a G6”. I know that’s horrible, but I totally would’ve been singing along with Miss Maya 🙂

  56. February 1, 2011 7:10 am

    What a gorgeous gorgeous daughter you have! Definitely looks so stunning and calm (even with a hint of mischievous smile) in that photo. Haha does Maya know “Like a G6” word for word…I admit I had to some of the words in that song!

  57. February 1, 2011 8:26 am

    I am so glad I aced the Quiz! I mean it was meant to be a Quiz right?… righ..t?

  58. February 1, 2011 8:59 am

    Aw, she looks so cute in her flower girl dress. So funny she was singing “Like a G-6”. My cousin (age 8) was singing “Apple Bottom Jeans” forever and it was hilarious…he would mumble over the bad words and hope no one noticed.

  59. February 1, 2011 9:44 am

    Noise canceling headphones are necessary for everyone on airplanes!! Thankful for whatever genius invented those.

  60. February 1, 2011 11:01 am

    This made my day! I would totally pay the $13 – just for internet alone – I’m an addict too! PS Your daughter is BEAUTIFUL!!

  61. February 1, 2011 11:23 am

    Maya looks beautiful!! At least it wasn’t hawaiian punch 🙂

  62. February 1, 2011 12:38 pm

    hi ameena, your daughter is really beutiful:) just like her mother.

  63. February 1, 2011 1:22 pm

    You always make me laugh! Maya is beautiful. I fly to Boston next week…hope I don’t end up sitting at an airport for hours.

  64. February 1, 2011 1:44 pm

    See reading your post has just made me feel a lot better. I just did a perfect switch from nice mum to mean mum in the space of 30 minutes. Just like that. Started off with best of intentions to give sympathy and love and ended with mean thoughts and (slightly less) mean comments. Sigh. At least we have great intentions…I think that is probably worth at least 80%, don’t you agree?~!

  65. February 1, 2011 1:56 pm

    okay, okay…but MAYA is so stunning in her little beautiful (and thankfully dry) dress.

    I don’t even know what I am headed for with my BOYS…..oh my god but LOOK HOW SWEET she is!


  66. February 1, 2011 3:16 pm

    traveling already sucks thank GAWD for the internet splurge. Maya does look stunning though…ps. everytime I go to bloomingdales I think of you!

  67. February 1, 2011 5:06 pm

    Hey, by opting for shopping or internet, you are choosing to put yourself in a better frame of mind for future familial endeavors! Sounds smart to me.

  68. February 1, 2011 6:27 pm

    GORGEOUS! Great, honest post.

  69. February 1, 2011 7:13 pm

    I love your blog 🙂

  70. February 1, 2011 7:13 pm

    She looks gorgeous!

  71. February 1, 2011 9:12 pm

    Does it help that Maya is awfully cute? Or does that make it worse?!

    • February 2, 2011 1:45 pm

      Kristina – Her cuteness is what has saved her on many, many occasions!

  72. February 1, 2011 9:26 pm

    Your girl looks beautiful…and I’m happy to say that I can join you in loudly saying, “I’m not perfect…not at all!” We all have our weaknesses and short comings, but it takes a strong person to be able to admit it. At least you and Maya are both adorable..this always help 🙂

  73. February 2, 2011 12:34 pm

    She does look adorable in that dress…thank goodness for blow dryers, and thankfully it was not grape juice in that bottle 🙂

  74. February 2, 2011 1:33 pm

    Whew…rough, rough draining day…

    So what did I do…I decided to come here 😉

    And you made me smile. Thank you.

    It also makes me feel good that you say you waste too much time on the Internet. Ditto. And that you KNOW these things about yourself…well, so do I…and you know what – SO WHAT! Blah, sick of being so hard on myself.

    Your perfect just the way you are.

    Now Twitter…have not gone there yet….;)

  75. February 2, 2011 3:31 pm

    Hey, Ameena proposes, Ameena disposes.. Thy will be done!!

  76. February 2, 2011 5:18 pm

    I don’t know that g6 song… but pretty sure I would have had the earphones in too lol

    maya looks simply gorgeous….

    any italians in your family? i have a photo of an aunt as a child flowergirl , an old b/w pic ,this photo reminds me of it, esp the circle of roses 🙂

    • February 2, 2011 7:38 pm

      Hi Bernadette – we don’t have any Italians in our family but in this photo Maya really does look like one!

  77. February 2, 2011 6:07 pm

    Beautiful flower girl! Awww!!

  78. February 2, 2011 10:35 pm

    LOL I’m sure your daughter is just like u 😉 Or atleast she is as pretty as you are sweetheart! So adorable….did you meet up with Sabera when in MN? I miss all the fun here

    • February 3, 2011 1:39 pm

      I didn’t get a chance to meet up with Sabera unfortunately. I was in and out of MN in about 48 hours. And thank you for the compliments – you are too kind!

  79. February 3, 2011 9:01 am

    Hmm, I think this post could have also been called ‘Finding Zen’. I’ve been thinking about finding ‘Zen” a lot lately, as so many of the things you listed above from irritation to imbalance could really be related to it and the are the types of things that so many people want to correct. Hmm, I will have to think on how we can improve ourselves realistically (smile).
    Oh, and you still seem wonderful to me even with your imperfections…

  80. February 4, 2011 9:53 am

    echo to everyone else who commented by maya looks beautiful! i love her flowered wreath. i kind of want one for myself! i could totally pull it off…maybe.

  81. February 4, 2011 6:15 pm

    Wow Ameena, your daughter is stunning. Apple doesn’t fall far from the tree 😉

    • February 4, 2011 7:39 pm

      Thank you for the compliment Jamie! You are too kind!

  82. February 6, 2011 12:08 pm

    She’s gorgeous! My daughter is Maya also, though we pronounce it like the month, with an ‘uh’ at the end. She’s named for my sister, so I guess you can blame my dad for the funny pronunciation!

    I think your priorities are perfectly in order. Rides in a mall with screaming kids, or Bloomingdale’s? Duh.

  83. February 7, 2011 7:11 pm

    Be careful or I might have to make up a hip hop routine to Like a G6 and teach it to Maya! And PS she’s gonna be a boy-crusher one day.

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