the smell of my desperation has become a stench

Lil’ Donette

When we were considering names for Marlo and had nailed the list down to a solid four candidates, I always imagined that if we did name her Marlo I’d get to talk about my two kids, Lee and Lo. Maybe that’s just the liberal arts major in me, daydreaming about the alliterative qualities of my children’s names, or maybe that’s just one of my more annoying qualities. Right up there with knowing every word to every song by Milli Vanilli AND BEING DAMN PROUD OF IT.

We’ve often referred to Leta as Lee Lee, but that’s only one of several nicknames that we toss around. It’s Lee Lee, and Leta-Loo, Scooter-Boo, and Jonny Jr. Many times it is, “YOUR DAUGHTER did this.”

YOUR DAUGHTER ARMSTRONG.

I’m usually standing in the kitchen, one arm perched angrily on my hip, the other pointing at an intricate mess, and Jon is just standing there shrugging, because I guess this? This mess? This is nothing. You should have seen the way he traced the lines on his mother’s faux marble countertop with a black permanent marker! Creativity is to be celebrated!

Really. Because I remember when creativity was to be smacked with a belt.

And so I thought Marlo’s nickname would instantly be Lo. But that isn’t even anywhere near the top of the list. Leta calls her Mario. Jon calls her Mar-Mar. And when I see Marlo’s face the only word I can muster is BUTTERNUT! I imagine that this is terribly confusing to her, all of us screaming different names her way. She could quite possibly grow up thinking her name is COCO!!

However, I do think she is catching on to the M sound in her name, or maybe, JUST MAYBE, she knows how to say Mama:

Message to Jon: I WIN!

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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