When your daily activities are in concert with your highest priorities, you have a credible claim to inner peace. – Hyrum Smith


My Beef with Caillou's Mom

I used to watch the same show with Parker every night when he was little.  It's a cartoon on PBS featuring a four year old boy named Caillou (KI-you) who had an unusually high-pitched, whiny voice.  The story lines were simple and positive, and the shows were short.  Parker was allowed only 15 minutes of TV a day because, you know, he was the first child, and I strictly adhered to the American Academy of Pediatrics' recommendations.  (These days our fourth child watches 7+ hours of PG-13 rated shows a day...not really - just 6 1/2....)   

But back to Caillou...For at least one solid year, this was my daily allotment of television.  I didn't have the time or energy for adult shows.  I fell into bed every night, utterly exhausted.  Each day I watched Caillou, I became a bit more bitter.

"Why?" you ask.  It wasn't the annoying boy who was the problem.  It was his mother!  Apparently her name is "Doris."  Well, Dolly, you're on my list.  I'm just going to call a spade a spade and say, "You're a fraud!"  

For years I watched you deal with your whiny son and care for his baby sister all Mary Poppins-like.  Not once did your eyelids droop from exhaustion or annoyance.  Not once did you snap at the kids.  Nope, you bebopped along with a spring in your step and the patience of a saint.   

Doris a.k.a. The Fraud

I think the problem was that I used to buy it.  I used to think I should be Doris.  I should always be cheerful and energetic and sunny.  The problem is, that's just not realistic.  It's great to be positive, but even the most positive mom has a bad day.  

Now, 9 years and a million cartoons and books later, I have a larger sample of fictional moms with whom I can compare myself (because I'm sure that's super-healthy and productive, right?).  I can relate to these ladies.  Why?  Because they look haggard.  They have young kids, and they are tired.  Isn't that what all momma's really have in common?  We love our kids, but we are T.I.R.E.D.  Allow me to share some illustrations of more realistic cartoon moms...

The Family Circus mom...


Llama, Llama Red Pajama's Mom...

Arthur's mom...

Phineas and Ferb's mom...

I'm not saying I want all moms to be miserable.  I'm just saying, let's keep it real, people.  No one, but no one can be as chipper as Doris all the time.  So mommas out there, struggling to do everything just right, to keep a smile on your face, to just keep your eyes open, give yourself some grace.  Turn off Caillou, dump some blocks on the floor, and curl up on the rug for a nap next to your little one.  

[End bizarre cartoon rant.]


  1. Hilarious Jessie! So, so true. The only thing I ever thought they got right on Doris is the fact that she has the mom belly. On a side note, we always laugh because when they show the Dad in his swimsuit, he has no nipples. So strange!

    1. Never noticed the missing nipples...Just one more reason this family clearly can't be trusted!