My kids lovingly refer to me as “Bear”.

The nickname started because I’m just not much of a morning person and if I attempt to talk too early, my words come out more like growling than speaking.

My growl is much worse than my bite but I guess I can be a pretty scary mom. A girl who liked my son refused to come to the house and meet me. She met my husband and the other kids, but I scare her.

My kids know the truth. I’m a big ole teddy bear. My daughter was in trouble for something a couple of weeks ago and I was laying into her in my mommy tone and she smiled, patted me on the head and said, “Mom, I still love you even though you’re yelling at me.”




As a side note, Happy Birthday to the Mad Hatters! I hope they reach Julie’s goal of 250,000 visiters by the end of the day on 9/11.

65 Comments on “Unbearable”

  1. duncanr says:

    What a cute pic !!!

    P.S. You need to put a bit of color on that hair – you’re starting to go a bit grey πŸ˜‰

  2. 25BAR says:

    I’d love to go photograph polar bears sometime.

  3. nursemyra says:

    She patted you on the head? Were you sitting down at the time?

  4. ~Sia McKye~ says:

    If you don’t overwhelm me in the morning, I’m nice, if rather quiet. Give me a hard time, and I’m like you, I growl and rumble. If pushed too far, I can definitely be a biter, lol!

  5. George says:

    Great pic of the polar bears. My wife calls me her big ol’ grizzly bear. That’s a term of endearment, right?

  6. spikeace says:

    lol @ the last sentence! must be quite a sight… what did you do then? yelled more or became mellow?

  7. yorksnbeans says:

    I’m sure you receive the respect that many parents don’t!

  8. Gryphon says:

    I have an work acquaintance named Claire who I call Bear as in Claire Bear (“Care Bear,” from the 80s).

    • Geez Gryph! Get this: My daughter calls me “care bear” or just “care” because I’m a bear but I still love her. We also exchange bear trinkets. I have stuffed bears, statue bears, bear t-shirts and figures. I went to my first book signing in North Carolina and brought back Boyds teaberries which are little bears on teapots.

  9. I have that growling problem as well. This comes from me trying to get the kids’ attention while simultaneously trying to keep things quiet so my wife can get some sleep (she works nights).

    My 2-year-old entertained his grandmother (my mother-in-law) with his clenched teeth, growling impression of me while visiting her one afternoon.

    He does it pretty well. My four-year-old has also started using one of my phrases to berate his younger brother. I frequently hear him telling his brother that (x item) is “not a playground.”

    They also occasionally swear. So, school should be fun…

    • Your little lions… my little bears. They’re all cubs. When I met my husband, Tim, my oldest son was 2 years old and Tim’s favorite word started with an F. I believe you and he share the love of that word given the size of it in your tag cloud. Anyway, my son immediately learned the new word and made sure to repeat it to Tim’s mother the first time we met. Right after he flipped her off, another lesson from Tim. After that, Tim stopped saying that word within earshot of little ears and he kept his fingers down.

  10. Vicki says:

    Dear Bear-Tree!!

    How adorable! I love the quote from your daughter… they know us more than we think…

    Its very obvious you love your bear cubs!


  11. frigginloon says:

    Why is there a baby bear head stuck on momma bears chest? Is is why I say “no” to lab testing on animals!!!!

    • It’s nearly impossible to wean that one!

    • I hear ya’, Loon. I’d be against the animal lab testing as well, but they get even more irate when I offer to use their human child. They say something like, “Look, we really don’t need another mouth to feed, no matter where it’s located.”

      • And that’s their only concern about the lab testing on their human children?

        • I may have been deliberately vague on the details.

          It went something like this:

          (cue flashback wavy lines and reverb; set bullshit-detectors to “High”)

          CLT: Good evening, sir or ma’am. Are you concerned about your children’s future? No need to answer or even turn my way completely. Of course you are. What kind of parents would you be if you didn’t care?
          Couple with child (CWC): Wha-
          CLT: You’d be terrible parents. Terrible parents who let their children wander too close to our carefully secured premises. What you do to raise your child is your business and what we do at the Kathie Lee Gifford Learning Center and Sweatshop is our business. If you have any further questions, such as “What did you just say?” and “Didn’t I just have a child like a minute ago?” can be directed at the fake microphone and facade 50 feet to your left.
          CWC: I think we will complain to somebody, perhaps even a police-
          CLT: Let me cut you off there and direct you to something somewhere along the horizon while I tap you briefly with this blackjack on your skull.
          CWC: Did you just-
          CLT: (Whistles cheerfully. Heads off to collect “New Hire” bonus.)

  12. That’s funny…people call me Bear too. It’s a good thing we don’t live in the same house or it would be confusing.

  13. bschooled says:

    Ha! Although I don’t have kids, I was talking to my Mom last week about how as a child when I would misbehave, she would “threaten” me with the wooden spoon.

    I would fall on the floor bawling hysterically, and acting as though she was “Mommy Dearest”. Then, when she finally followed through, I spent the whole time over her knee, wondering why I could barely feel anything.

    After that, all of her wooden spoon threats just made me laugh hysterically. My poor mom.

    • You’ve been coaching my daughter haven’t you? Actually, I don’t think she’s ever been spanked. She just never really needed it. I don’t even threaten because my kids know I’d never hurt them. When I get to the point where I’m serious and enough is enough, I actually get quiet, I go down to their level and I tell them, “You have 15 minutes to get your clothes folded and put away or you won’t be going outside to play (or swimming or watching tv or whatever it is they want to do most that week) until next Friday.” That’s when they know I’m serious and I get results.

  14. Claire, I think you’ve done everything right if you can growl and they still know you love them.

    And when they’re grown and in their new families, it won’t be frightening when someone gets upset – they’ll know people who love each other fight and the love doesn’t go away.

    • I think the worst thing in the whole world for me would be my children ever thinking I don’t love them. I’m proud of my kids. They are all strong, independent people so I think I’m going okay by them.

  15. Donald Mills says:

    Interesting that you identify as a polar bear.

    I would have had you picked as more the Kodiak type. Or possibly the Cinnamon bear.

    All the best


  16. I did notice.
    Are you endangered?

  17. xxhawkeyexx says:

    It’s a nice post, it made me laugh :)!
    I liked what your daughter said.

    I’m not a morning person either, so I tend to look and act like a zombie for about thirty minutes before I can actually be “awake”.

    There was one day when I had just woken up and I couldn’t really get what the others at the house were telling me! I nodded and agreed , but I was only able to catch a few words like: London, cat, window, and breakfast. I even recall eating breakfast and going back to bed.
    Well…I was extremely tired since I hadn’t been able to sleep very well… but, was that a weird and lazy morning!

    Take care,

    • Hi Hawkeye! Good to see you!

      I’ve had those mornings where my kids will ask me questions and I will mumble some answer and they think that’s their “approval”. Then when I wake up for real, they’re in trouble!

  18. Of course, this is the same little girl that told Santa to jump off the roof.

  19. I knew that you were just a big, cuddly, white, 1200lb teddy bear. I’m just kidding hun. I hate morning people myself.

    • I am just a big teddy bear. I’m glad my 1200 lbs don’t concern you. As well as the long claws and the sharp teeth. Come give me a hug.

      I’m just not a morning person. I don’t really wake up until I’ve been at work for at least 2 hours. That explains why I sleep through the weekend.

  20. ralfast says:

    Never mess with Mama Bear! πŸ˜€

    Poor girl though, but I wonder what exactly scared her off. I’ve heard of dads trying hard to scare off boys who come knocking at the door to see their little girls, but this is the first time I heard of the reverse happening. And apparently not on purpose either, right?


    • OH no Relfast! I would never threaten.. I mean harm.. er.. intentionally scare.. hmmm. I swear, I never even saw the girl.

      I really don’t know why she’s afraid. But I feel sorry for my daughter while not being sorry at the same time. Little girl has 3 older and very protective brothers. She will NEVER get to date!

  21. alantru says:

    So… Claire… Please tell me; this girl that liked your son…Did you threaten to brain her with a scotch bottle?

  22. Now playing on Radio CLT – More Music, More Talk

    The Pixies – I’ve Been Waiting for You

    Lovely cover of a Neil Young track featuring bassist Kim Deal on vocals.

  23. Neil Reid says:

    Well, you’re the prettiest bear I’ve ever seen! Don’t quite seem to fit, but I understand the reference. Seems too, a sizable club – also my nickname as well, though for other reasons I’d suppose. And why my blog is named as it is! Too, it sounds and seems, bears can make pretty good parents too. Fierce in care and regard!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s