Friday, December 28, 2007
The best Christmas presents were the roll of turquoise duct tape from my Bible study friends (they've seen WB in action) and the monkey backpack harness (bondage to one's parents never looked so cute). I have resisted the urge to use the duct tape, but it is safely tucked away in a convenient spot just in case. So far, WB seems to think the monkey is a great idea - and we'll just let him continue thinking that, won't we?
Monday, December 17, 2007
I hope the anticipation of Advent has been a blessing for your family.
What an interesting day Sunday turned out to bee. Our day was abuzz with activity. We had missed a Christmas party with Our Fearless Leader's grandmother, so Sunday morning we jetted over for a visit. We discovered that Miss M has an intense dislike for animated statues of elves - the poor thing burst into tears anytime she was near the creaky old statue. She did, however, enjoy rocking out to the musical stylings of a stuffed polar bear and his entourage of dancing penguins. I imagine the staff at the center were all too happy to see our boisterous family leave... and I'm betting that musically gifted polar bear was retired as soon as the automatic door swooshed shut behind us.
We flew home to prepare for Uncle Firefighter, Aunt Magic Hands, and the Dynamic Nephews to arrive for our annual gingerbread house decorating. It was decided that we needed to snap a few pictures outside, so we set out to find the perfect backdrop for our photogenic young people. No sooner had we arranged them in a very cute pose, when I saw something fly into the collar of Wonder Boy's shirt. It dawned on me just as the perfect photo was about to be captured forever in digital form - the "something" was a BEE!
Once again, I had one of those slow-motion moments - I'm yelling "Waaaaiiiiiit!" and leaping forward just as Wonder Boy locks eyes with me, cringes and begins to wail. Suddenly I was right there, the now-bottomless bee was still crawling on his hand and the stinger was still stuck... in Wonder Boy's neck. The poor guy scratched himself horribly trying to get whatever was stuck off. Needless to say, the perfect photo op was ruined and beyond salvage.
Oh, well. There's always next year. In the meantime, may peace bee yours. ;)
P.S. I had to wait to post this on the off chance that my mother read my blog. The photos we were posing for at the time of the Great Bee Attack of 2007 were for her and I hated to spoil the surprise.
Monday, December 10, 2007
After spending the afternoon playing phone games, I have left a voice mail at the Dept of Education. spoken to my insurance company, and spoken to the county homeschooling liaison. The county call was relatively useless. All she could suggest was that I call the state DoE... and then she gave me a number that's no good. So after tracking the correct number, I called the DoE. I went through the voicemail options, finally got a live person who transferred me to "the consultant of the day." Yeah, that's a direct quote. Guess what? I had to leave a voicemail. Great. So I did. Then I called my insurance company. Yes, speech therapy is covered as long as it's medically necessary. (Um... speech isn't medically necessary for survival, so what gives with that?) Anyway... it's covered... but falls under my deductible. Have I mentioned that my deductible FIVE THOUSAND dollars? Great. Peachy. So, while it's a theoretical option to go with private therapy, it's basically out of our league. Miss Consultant of the Day still hasn't called me back and I'm fairly certain I won't hear from her today because it's so late in the day.
Do you have any idea how much I regret ever changing our deductible to such a high one? Oh, wait. That's because it was hideously expensive to keep the higher premium/lower deductible combo. And now we pay MORE in premiums than we did back then AND have the higher deductible.
I want to cry. And I really want to break something. Preferably something that shatters and makes a loud crashing sound that would startle the next county's residents.
Thursday, December 6, 2007
I was willing to give the benefit of the doubt to the district. So I made an appointment, waited FOUR weeks to get to the assessment in November, was told it would take FOUR more weeks to call me and set up an evaluation. I called today (it's been two weeks since the assessment) to check on the progress of evaluation scheduling. I was told that they are just finishing up SEPTEMBER's assessments. >:/ AND that I should just check back after the holidays... on January 7th.
It took every ounce not to scream at the woman handling my call. I WAS nice to her because I realize it's not *her*, it's the district administration. The preschool development/special ed folks are understaffed, and that's the fault of the administration. So I made two more phone calls until I finally got the name of who I need to talk to - BUT it does nothing to move my kid along.
If I wait to hear from or contact the preschool in January, that will be about 3 months since I first contacted the district for an evaluation. An evaluation that has not happened yet. We have only had an assessment to reveal that - DUH! - the kid can't talk and needs to be evaluated!!! So by the time I get an evaluation and a treatment plan, we're talking end of February as a best case scenario, four or five months later. That's nearly a HALF of a YEAR!!!!
I am beyond aggravated. I am praying that my pathetic excuse for health insurance covers therapy because we just can't wait this long. I take it back, I'm not aggravated - I am angry beyond measure.
This is the group of "experts" that I am supposed to entrust my children's education to? If they can't be adequately staffed and supported to help the kids in desperate need, what are they doing with the kids getting along ok? Please, don't answer that. I already experienced the answer last year.
Monday, December 3, 2007
Sunday: We ended a lovely Thanksgiving weekend. The brined turkey was the best ever - we'll be doing THAT again! Our Fearless Leader cleaned out a set of cabinets in the schoolroom and I planned in my head what to do with the newfound space.
Monday: We returned from Park Day after chasing Wonder Boy down in the parking lot. I thought that little adventure might be the wonder moment of the day... but Wonder Boy was feeling curious. At some point I paid attention to the niggling idea that something was amiss and sought WB out. He was in the schoolroom unattended... with an open bottle of glue. He announced, "deedee" as he pinched his fingers together and pried them apart when I ran in. As I turned to the countertop to place the now-closed-and-sticky glue bottle down, I mentioned that he should not play with... I never got to finish that thought because I turned back around to see him with an open bottle of red craft paint. That would be craft paint, from the now emptied cabinet, that I had tucked in the far back side of a basket and placed as far back on the desk as possible. I grabbed the bottle and quickly escorted WB to the bathroom. Somehow we managed to avoid painting the carpet and only dripped on the tile. It took three hand washings to rinse all of the paint off. We did have to retire a bathroom towel though - it lived a long and useful life, though it's colorful demise was not expected.
Tuesday: It's all a blur. But we survived.
Wednesday: A fantastic time was had by Miss M, WB and I on the baby swings at the park. I don't think I've ever seen two kids enjoy swinging more.
Thursday: Homeschooling issues abounded, diapers were strewn about (unused, of course), multiple time outs by the middle children, but it was a good day all in all. Once again, we survived.
Friday: It rained. It rained. It rained. And it rained some more. I was waiting for the children to ask me who was sinless in the world and where should they look for the next ark. It rained some more. Then it got dark and rained. There was a point when it sounded more like a tsunami had somehow become vertical and landed on the house, but we checked and it was just more rain.
Saturday: I thought "Please shoot me," as we woke up to more rain. The boys went to work with Our Fearless Leader and Miss M and I went grocery shopping with the ENTIRE city. Apparently no one else likes to shop in the rain either, but after Thanksgiving leftovers ran out we all found ourselves with bare pantries. Mass was served, dinner was made, and a hilarious movie was enjoyed by OFL and me.
Sunday: An uneventful day. Bu the noise level in our house by four children after two days of rain is not a pleasant experience.
Monday: Miss M discovered sand and grass at the park today. WB decided to throw sand at Miss M, inspiring the Park Day Playground Monitor to stalk over and tell me that "that little boy has been throwing sand at that poor baby...." It was a prickly moment, and I had to tell her that they were both MY children and thankyouverymuch for noticing. At that point we began to pack up. It's 4pm now and we still have dinner, RE class and baths to go before I can lay my little ones to bedtime rest. Wish me luck.
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
- there is a styrofoam solar system drying on my kitchen counter
- several piles of various... stuff... lying on the same kitchen counter
- a half-done list of chores on another counter
- a "cleaned" bathroom that needs to be recleaned under adult supervision
- a toddler in need of a bath
- a baby in need of a bath
- a semi-thawed turkey for which I can't find a container to brine it in
- a patio that hasn't been swept in a month
- I have a raging headache
- the ever-growing Mount Washmore seems to be taking over the laundry room/pantry
Thursday, November 8, 2007
A 12 year old and 7 year old found watching Thomas the Tank Engine in rapt silence.
A screensaver bouncing across a 12 year old's computer while wild whooping sounds emanate from the backyard.
Cooing and giggling heard in the living room whilst you read aloud in the kitchen tales of martyrs being hanged, drawn and quartered. Upon glancing up, you notice your audience is suspiciously absent.
Your child is at least a week behind on assignments, yet amazingly has the time and patience to sit with his baby sibling and attempt to teach her to walk.
A few minutes later, the Yet-to-be-Named Wonder Child was making bold statements of the truth....
Squishsquash is real!!!!!!
Wednesday, November 7, 2007
Then it was the recycled trash can. Not only can the entire wastebasket be used as a walking aide, it also is a handy way to tote around fun toys - stuff like pop cans, papers of all shapes and colors, boxes and loads of other nifty items. Mominator is such a stick in the mud, though, and always seems to interrupt the fun.
Railroading accidents have become commonplace in the living room. Poor Thomas the Tank Engine probably knows more about Miss M's oral hygiene than I do.
Now then... where DID I put that baby gate?
Sunday, November 4, 2007
Yesterday Our Fearless Leader sent me off for a mid-day shopping escapade with the Quilting Bee (that would be my mother). The Quilting Bee and I had a grand time gallavanting about the mall - a place I've not set foot in for at least a year or so. When I called to ask the older children to be ready to head out the door for Mass upon my return home, I heard that Wonder Boy had fallen asleep, snuggled up to Our Fearless Leader. It was just a 30 minute nap.
Bedtime just didn't come soon enough after that. Wonder Boy took the nap and a Wild, Fussy Beast woke up in his stead. Unfortunately for me, the mall closes at 9pm... I might have run away if given the opportunity.
Friday, November 2, 2007
Even for Mommy. A.L.W.A.Y.S. If you have to ask, the answer is no. Every time. No matter what. Without a doubt. Undoubtedly. Uh-uh. No way. NO!
Guess who ate cheese pizza and is paying dearly for the dairy escapade?
Thursday, November 1, 2007
Say it's not so! Please!
Miss M has left a path of destruction in her wake. Among the casualties today: Wonder Boy's painstakingly constructed train track; the floor of our school room; the back of a piece of framed art I've had yet to hang; the cups & bowls cabinet; the diaper cabinet; the playdough remnants accidentally left on the floor (by the way, playdough does, indeed, seem to be non-toxic); my computer keyboard; and the dog's food & water. And this was with supervision!
Saturday, October 27, 2007
There were a few Wonder Moments at the park: WB threw rocks at his cousin (we're not sure why); WB took off toward the playground once or twice, but actually stayed fairly close by; the Yet-To-Be-Permanently-Named 7yo managed to convince us all that he was lost; and WB tried to go and feed the ducks in the pond - alone. But all in all, it was a fabulous time.
The best present opening at a birthday party was witnessed by us all. Wonder Boy opened the gift from Uncle Firefighter and Aunt Magic Hands - it was an official firefighter t-shirt. Now... I know that there are kids who say they like receiving clothes, but three year olds don't tend to be among those ranks. Well, let me tell you... WB stripped off his shirt so fast and screamed with glee upon opening this present. He wore the t-shirt for the rest of his party (and to bed, lol). He also got a ball... which somehow ended up needing to be rescued by Uncle Firefighter. No ducks were harmed during the ball rescue... but Uncle Firefighter probably needs to burn the shorts that got wet in the pond.
I am thrilled beyond words to see my Wonder Boy has made it to three years old. After his rough start and all the Wonder Moments of the past several years, we have come to realize that it's always touch and go with this one. And I won't lie and say it made it to 3 unscathed - he is now sporting a limp and his ankle is an "owie."
Oh well. He's alive. And that's what matters.
Friday, October 26, 2007
Happy Birthday, Wonder Boy!
The day so far:
The morning started with a time out for pushing his sister's face into the carpet for no apparent reason. Later, WB followed me upstairs and ran into his napping sister's room. Napping sister ended up screaming for 15 minutes. Then he climbed up on my bed, but not before falling off the side several times. He grabbed a book by the pages and ran about with it. He refused to go down the stairs when asked. When we got back downstairs, it was only 10:00.
We went to the grocery store where he: knocked all the milk cartons in my cart over several times; he aimed for (but missed) the eggs; he poked holes in the paper plate packaging, ripped several "sale" signs off of the aisles; began to open a box of crackers; took multiple boxes and jars off of shelves or caused them to tumble to the floor; squished the dinner rolls meant for his party, then bit a hole in the packaging for said rolls; he discovered how well his shrieks would carry in the store and proceeded to let out a good one every 5 minutes or so just to be sure; he grabbed at the cake (but I managed to rescue it); and, decided not to carry the bins I was buying and nearly dropped them on me. Did I mention that he was restrained in the cart seat? BUT... the eggs made it home whole and I did actually manage to get 99% of what was on my list.
Once home, he was starving but didn't want to sit at the table. He wanted to play, but didn't want to go outside. My eldest son is out there now - teaching WB to RIDE A SCOOTER. I'm questioning the wisdom in allowing that.
It's only 1:37. Wanna bet more happens?
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
May Christ be...
in your going forth
in your coming back,
in your rising
in your lying down,
on your right hand
and on your left,
and behind you,
and beneath you.
May you find
the presence of Christ
in every person you encounter.
May you bring
the presence of Christ
to every person you meet.
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
My aunt and uncle have been in town staying with my parents. I hadn't seen them (the aunt and uncle, lol) in about 20 years or so. We've been over as much as possible these past few days. And I have to say, my kids make me proud.
Wonder Boy is sleeping in a Big Boy Bed! No more tent! Our Fearless Leader, brave man that he is, worked for 6 hours on Sunday to recover the Lost Boys' Room. He found the massive bunk beds, the bins for toys, and various stuffed animals. He decommissioned the tent and made the lower bunk fit for a Wonder.
Wonder Boy is also sleeping sans binky! It had become nothing less than a choking hazard and could have posed as a plastic puppet (the bulb was practically severed). I told him it broke, he said, "bwoke, bye bye bee." And that was it. Blessedly anticlimactic.
The oldest of the Super Children are plugging away at their school lessons... when we manage to work on them. Discipline has been sorely lacking in our home, mostly MY discipline. Our groove of 5 years of homeschooling was a bit more interrupted than I thought. It's taking more time to get up and running.
Mominator has gone strictly vegetarian again... but that's a post for another time.
The Urchins are awake and demanding breakfast. Wish us luck on this new day.
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
A few days ago the kids and I had to run out in the afternoon. I decided not to take the typically most congested road out of our town and opted instead for the slightly longer route. It involved a bit of construction and many 4-way stops.
Let me just pause here to ponder the 4-way stop. It seems like an efficient traffic control option for a country founded on the principles of freedom, personal responsibility to the social good, and just plain common sense. The 4-way stop is actually a surprisingly good meter for the common sense and manners of our fellow countrymen. You'll see what I mean in a moment.
The ideal 4-way stop experience would involve multiple cars coming to a full stop, the drivers paying strict attention to giving the right-of-way to the vehicle on their right, and proceeding through when it is safe and legal to do so. Simple, really. The REAL 4-way stop, however, is a free-for-all where only the rude and truly clueless driver are in their element. Crabby, overtired, overworked, and just plain stupid or mean people prevail in 4-way stop intersections. They just drive when they feel like it, regardless of who arrived at the stop first or whose turn it actually is.
We were nearly broadsided several times on the way to our destination. My particular favorite was the boil on the bottom of humanity driving the gigantic truck to our right. He must have been there for hours and/or got his driver's license from the proverbial Cracker Jack box, because I am at a loss as to why he thought he should drive through the intersection directly after the vehicle to my left. The next in turn, of course, was me. So I started... and had to brake midway into the intersection. He gave us a lovely hand gesture, which all of my children saw and a couple commented upon. Niiiiiice. Really nice. What a guy, flipping off a mom with children in the van.
Crying on the freeway because you are so angry is not a good idea, but I did it anyway. I was angry because he was not the first OR the last one to do such a thing to us that day. And yes, when Mr. Anonymously-Driving-Thousands-of-Pounds-of-Metal purposely drives in a dangerous, illegal manner and then has the presence of mind to yell at me and gesture obscenely, I do feel that the action was completely directed at ME and my family. It ceased being a clueless or random act of idiocy when he flipped the bird. It is evil to make a gesture like that at a woman driving a minivan with children in it. Especially a woman who is driving like a normal, sane person. (Hm. Do you think I'm a bit bitter about this?)
Back to some sort of point. What I see happening at the 4-way stop is exactly what I see in the rest of society these days. Don't feel like waiting your turn? Just go - the rules don't apply to you. Annoyed because you can't see around the minivan in front of you? Go ahead, pass on the right and press on through - the rules don't apply to you either. Once people think no one is looking (and that's exactly what we think when we climb into our vehicles - admit it), or at least that no one will know who we are, we suddenly have a lot more in common with Mr. Hyde than Dr. Jekyll. We cave in to those vicious thoughts and urges, and it's safe to do so because there's no face on the other vehicle that we have to look at. We suddenly think we are the only ones that matter, our task or errand is more important than anyone else's.
It's shameful. I admit, I'm ashamed that I absolutely wished for that man to, at the very least, experience a breakdown in the middle of the construction zone during rush hour traffic. Preferably a breakdown involving train tracks, cement, mud, tar and feathers. An oncoming train would have added a nice touch. That makes me no better a human being than he... But I will maintain that I am the better driver.
Monday, September 24, 2007
Augh! I had to order more birth certificates from Vital Records. I am supposed to send in an affidavit of intent to homeschool within 30 days of beginning homeschooling. I have to have certified copies of the birth certificates to do that. Ok. Fine. I downloaded the request form at the Vital Records website, wrote my check and sent it off at the beginning of September.
Today I get my forms and my check BACK with a letter that says as of September of 2004 they no longer accept personal checks as payment, BUT IT CLEARLY STATES ON THE FORM *ITSELF* THAT PERSONAL CHECKS ARE ACCEPTABLE! Augh!!!! So NOW I have to send in my debit card info because some idiots in a government agency don't give a rat's fuzzy rump about the accuracy of their own stupid forms. And I'm upset because I will probably miss the deadline for registering the affidavits (which is probably not a big deal, and I am keeping copies of all correspondence to back me up). I am also irritated beyond measure because I have tried to call the office twice to speak with a customer service rep - when I select the "speak to a representative" option on the voice system IT HANGS UP ON ME. Every. Single. Time.
To say that I am unimpressed by my state's government today is an understatement.
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Amazingly they knew when SNACK TIME was, but not when to start school. Hmmm.
Monday, September 17, 2007
I have picked up more times than I ever should. I have sent WB to the corner more times than I thought possible. Even the baby has been confined to her playpen. Why?
Because we own a dog who actually would like to drink clean water and eat clean food.
The smallest people in our house have dumped the dog food into the water multiple times today. Once was not enough fun apparently. I am at my wits' end.
I want chocolate. And I'm not sharing.
Sunday, September 16, 2007
I want to buy barrettes. I want to buy headbands. I want to comb some hair!
Friday, September 14, 2007
Wonder Boy has disemboweled the fifth hamper this year. For some reason that I am just incapable of grasping, the boy likes to work the wires out of the skeletal frame of these hampers. If he disappears on laundry day, I know that I have mere seconds to rescue a hamper from this fiend. And the kicker is that then I have to worry about a toddler with exposed wires. Think about this: Wonder Boy... Wire. Wonder Boy... W.I.R.E.!!!!!! Not good.
I should have known that I've been failing in my mission to teach him to use his super powers for good - last week he managed to separate his super-cape from the tie. I'm thinking there's a parallel here... stripping off the cape of all that is holy and good in this world and abandoning it for a life of crime. Apparently he' s begun his Reign of Terror by holding my hampers hostage.
Thursday, September 6, 2007
Just a quick email to update everyone on all the goings on. Buttercup is doing well in cheer practice, Bufford is almost done reassembling Daddy-O's engine... just missing a few screws and found some extra bolts. Daddy-O did manage to lose 47 pounds from walking to and from work though. Junior's carrots are growing well and Miss Bessy found a new use for dry spaghetti.
Oh, before I forget: we decided to try a new schedule this year. Between the hours of 9am and 2pm we are implementing a strict no-phone, no-door policy. We ponied up for voice-mail though, so don't worry about us missing out.
Ciao for now and take care!
The Crazy Homeschooling Relatives (insert your name here)
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
Oh, we had many wonder moments today... but today was exceptionally good. We had our first Park Day of the year with our home schooling group. I was not looking forward to it. Actually, I was looking forward to seeing my friends and having the kids play - but I was not looking forward to taking Wonder Boy to the park.
Think about it. A park. It has playground equipment (good), bathrooms (necessary evil), grassy knolls (ok... but they lead to the surrounding neighborhood), a parking lot (very, very bad), and is bordered by roads (so bad, there aren't enough adjectives to go around). I had visions of duct taping him to the back of the stroller and stuffing a cheeseburger in his mouth as a gag.
But... he LISTENED. He stayed on the playground 98% of the time. He ventured out to the grass and came back when I showed him back to the playground. He wandered to the bathrooms and came back when I showed him back to the playground. He immensely enjoyed the fire truck that came to hose the kids down (it's horrifically hot here in the desert) and the fire crew had no need to rescue him.
And when it was time to leave, he got in his carseat and didn't pitch a fit. I was dumbstruck.
Today had to be one of the calmest days this child has ever had.
Tuesday, September 4, 2007
...and Wonder Boy.
The plan is a work in progress and I need to iron the kinks out. Plan A would involve duct taping the boy to a wall in the room with a door and then placing cotton balls in my ears. Plan B would involve duct taping cotton balls to the walls of the room with a door (think "padded cell") and locking myself in. I haven't come up with a Plan C yet.
I'm also implementing Plan Pizza tonight.
Friday, August 31, 2007
Our 7yo, thoroughly engrossed in the film, asked what was happening. Our Fearless Leader said Miss Darrow was to be a sacrifice.
Our Young Man in Training, without skipping a beat, said, "No, she's a snackrifice."
He really does have a wickedly good sense of humor. I hope to hear more of it.
Monday, August 27, 2007
He has taught the baby to play "fetch." Late last week he demonstrated her new developmental skill. He'd take a toy, show it to her, toss it across the room and tell her to fetch. AND SHE DID! She'd crawl as fast as her little hands and legs would go, grab the toy, sit down and show it to him, then crawl back with it. They did this over and over. I just about died.
My baby plays fetch and tag. She's a good little dog? :p
Saturday, August 25, 2007
Thursday, August 23, 2007
On a forum I frequent this poll was posted today:
Do you read food labels before making purchases?
Yes - I spend a lot of time scrutinizing labels.
Sometimes – It depends on what the food is.
Not often – Labels aren't important to me.
This poll is fundamentally flawed, as no mother can really answer it. It presumes that Mom is able to go shopping without her brood in tow. Labels are important to me; I'd love to be able to scrutinize them, but I haven't had the ability to read a food label in at least three years. Here's a typical exchange while trying to decide on, oh, peanut butter:
Me: Peanut butter, peanut butter... where's the doggone peanut butter?
Kid1: Mom, can I have the Super Crunchy Awesome Pile'o'sugar Bombs? Please? They're on sale!!!
Me: Not now, I'm looking for peanut butter, do you see the peanut butter? (As I say it, I am taking the bread, now squished, from Kid3's hand.)
Kid2: wheeeeeeeeeeee! (Don't ask... it involves spinning and sliding in the aisle)
We enter the third aisle, still looking for peanut butter...
Me: Grab the plates. You, grab the taco shells. Hey! Stop squishing the bread, you turkey.
Kid1: I'll get the turkey. (runs off)
Me: Wait! We don't need turkey! Your brother is the turkey! Grab a straightjacket if you see one!
Kid4: bbbbbbbblllllllllllpt (this involves lots of drool.... but it's cute and entertains the old people shopping)
Elderly Man: What a sweet little boy. (said while gazing at the baby dressed in nauseating cotton-candy pink ruffles)
Me: Thank you very much. We love her so. (arm whips out to stop the spinning child before I need dramamine)
Kid1: They're out of turkey. So, have you thought about the Sugar Bombs? Crusty Crunchy Chocos are good too.
Kid3: Mine! (grabbing for the eggs)
Me: Ok... that's everything... (grabs nutter butter cookies, sugar free koolaid, and a bag of tortilla chips on the way to the checkout)
Later, upon unloading the shopping bags in the kitchen....
Me: WHERE IS THE PEANUT BUTTER???
Now... did you notice any label reading?
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
Last night my beloved, Our Fearless Leader, came home from work at 7pm. God bless him, he cooked his own dinner and sent me upstairs and said, "You're excused from life for the rest of the night." Have I mentioned I love this man?
So I plopped down on the sofa after taking a refreshing shower. I was in jammies but just not quite ready to turn in for the night. Our Fearless Leader was watching a family favorite movie: Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark. Thing One and Thing Two were playing Kadoo - Thing Two had to ask me "What does this say?" every other turn because he still lacks sufficient reading skills to vanquish Thing One. Wonder Boy and Miss M were tucked snugly in their tents and cribs (yes, WB really does sleep in a tent... but that's another story for another day). Have I mentioned yet how tired I've been?
I fell asleep, sitting upright, with all this commotion going on at 8pm. I don't think I actually woke all the way up to read Thing Two's game cards to him. My beloved admitted this morning that he kept glancing over in amazement as I drifted off, open-mouthed in my little sofa nest. I'm afraid to ask what was so amazing. I think it had something to do with that head whipping motion in combination with the ever prolonged blinking. I still have several years of sleep to catch up on, so checking out on the sofa seems so... inviting.
Oh, well. Tonight I owe Thing Two a game of Uno, which we'll play as Thing One is chained to the sink doing dinner dishes. I can hear my pillows calling to me, sirens that they are. But I shall resist and play. If only I could figure out how to throw a game of Uno without getting caught (the penalties would be steep, I have no doubt).
Tuesday, August 7, 2007
If you stop and nurse your baby for more than 30 seconds, you are giving permission to any other siblings baby may have that it is Open Season.
Good gravy. I sat down for just two minutes to nurse Miss M and get her ready for her afternoon nap. No biggie. We've done this every day now for, what, 10 months? Wonder Boy took note and proceeded to drain his juice...
... under the kitchen table, onto the floor, by shaking his cup violently.
Apparently he though his skin needed moisture, too. So he sat in the juice puddle and swished his tooshie and legs in it. Meanwhile, the older kids are yelling, "Mom!" As if I had nothing else going on. I must be doing a very bad job of teaching Household Management to these people because no one recognized that this was a prime application of their "Many Uses of the Kitchen Towels" lecture from this morning.
Wednesday, August 1, 2007
Wonder Boy really needs to learn to listen.
It's raining - and in Arizona that calls for the family to stand on the porch and make silly comments like "look! it's raining" or "are we going to float away?" or "is the street really supposed to look that wet?" So there we were. And Wonder Boy was full of wonder. No sooner had I said we should head in and he took off like a shot...
It was like a scene out of a movie... in slow motion, but you know it's more like "bullet time." His feet flew out in front of him, he hit the ground with his bottom and slid forward, and his head made that awful *thud*ing sound. We actually picked him up and got him inside before the first wail... though I think he did create something of a vacuum when he sucked in all that air.
Poor kid. He looks fine... but I wonder if he had any sense knocked into him?
Tuesday, July 31, 2007
The funniest part was loading up the van. All four kids were packed in there and then all of the boxes and jars were jammed in around them. All the frozen foods were up in the front passenger seat, the diapers were shoved in the floor space under the carseats, the box of wipes sat precariously between the two older kids in the back. The rest was creatively stacked in the the "cargo area" of the van. (Anyone with a Kia Sedona can tell you that the "cargo area" is a joke.)
We did manage to entertain the elderly shopping today... until Wonder Boy decided to get mad at his brothers for touching the cart.
Sunday, July 29, 2007
We are building shelves in our schoolroom. A friend has been gracious enough to do the brunt of the assembly for us and we are doing the staining and finish. However, the assembly has required the use of a router, a saw, and a pneumatic nail gun. I've had compressor hosing draped across my living room for half the weekend. Now, the tools have never been plugged in without our friend being right there to actually operate them... but the hosing has had to stay in place. Just after lunch yesterday, I found the Miss M at one end of the hosing... and WB at the other end! I am happy to say that I don't have any accidental "Run By Nailing" incidents to report. Our Fearless Leader and Friend had to run up to the hardware store two or three times - a task we've come to expect with any home project. (LOL, it's not a project unless it involves a great deal of sighing, a trip to Home Depot, and possibly some swearing.) But other than supply runs, a cut finger for our Friend, and a lot of sawdust, nothing too exciting or bloody happened.
I have to give WB a lot of credit. He was cooped up inside all day long because outside was just not safe with the saw & router. He was so cute running to open the door every time Our Fearless Leader and the Friend were carrying the 7-foot-long boards through. Then he'd run to the middle of the board and "help" carry it. He eyed the nail gun... but asked to leave the room once it was in use - praise the Lord that the darned thing is so loud! I am relieved, however, to have all the equipment gone and be left with the task of varnishing today.
Friday, July 27, 2007
I have been thoroughly engrossed in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Thoroughly. I actually had to make a daily chore list and include meals and changing diapers on it. I figured pancakes was a simple dinner -- throw it together and babysit the griddle. No biggie.
Burned pancakes, anyone?
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Let's just say that Malt-O-Meal sounds a bit like snow... and we all know the odds of snow in a Phoenix pantry in July is something of an impossibility. I had to vacuum the whole darned pantry for 15 minutes to get the cereal out of there. It still smells like chocolate. :)
My life is NEVER boring with this kid.
Monday, July 23, 2007
Miss M is teething. She has 4 fabulous, little, razor-sharp teeth and is now of an age to experiment with biter biscuits. Enter Wonder Boy. He sees said biter biscuit and... takes a bite. The next thing I hear is "eh eh eh." That, by the way, is Wonder-ese for "Mommy, get this out of my mouth before I puke." I know the drill, so I grab a paper towel and instruct WB to spit the goo out of his mouth. While he does this, I am saying that he shouldn't take his sister's snacks and...
WB took his spitting a hair too far and puked everywhere, including MY feet. Ew. Ew. Ew.
So I grab a few more paper towels, strip WB down, wipe up the floor, wipe off my own feet, put WB on the clean mat by the stove, and proceed to mop the floor. Then it was off to the tub. Would you be impressed to know that all of this took place in the span of just 10 minutes?
Thursday, July 19, 2007
I wish I could report that Wonder boy has mastered English... but alas, I cannot. There's always tomorrow.
Friday, July 6, 2007
Our dinner conversation was amusing. Being the 4th, I thought I'd ask the kids about politics - you know, every 12yo, 6yo, 2yo and 9mo is totally engrossed in today's political scene... right? Here's how the conversation went:
Me: So, Beloved 6yo of Mine, are you a Democrat or a Republican?
6yo: Um... a... Publican.
Me: Yes! (hands shoot up in the air in a victory stance) THAT's m'boy!
Me: Ahem. So, WHY are you a Republican?
6yo: (without skipping a beat, mind you) Because it sounds American.
Ya gotta love it. :)
Thursday, June 21, 2007
Today's Wonder Moment:
I was on the floor changing the lovely Miss M's diaper. It was quite an undertaking, require full HazMat Gear. Wonder Boy was perched, upside down, on the arm of the sofa. He decided to launch himself down...
... and landed, feet first, IN THE MESSY DIAPER.
There are 3 hours, 23 minutes left until his bedtime. Not that I'm counting.
Sunday, June 17, 2007
Today we were listening to our Fearless Leader's iPod. Foreigner's "Waiting for a Girl Like You" came on. For those who want to jump in the Way Back Machine for a moment, here ya go:
WAITING FOR A GIRL LIKE YOU (Foreigner)
So long, I've been looking too hard, I've been waiting too long
Sometimes I don't know what I will find, I only know it's a matter of time
When you love someone, when you love someone
It feels so right, so warm and true, I need to know if you feel it too
Maybe I'm wrong, won't you tell me if I'm coming on too strong
This heart of mine has been hurt before, this time I wanna be sure
I've been waiting for a girl like you to come into my life
I've been waiting for a girl like you, your loving will survive
I've been waiting for someone new to make me feel alive
Yeah, waiting for a girl like you to come into my life
You're so good, when we make love it's understood
It's more than a touch or a word can say
Only in dreams could it be this way
When you love someone, yeah, really love someone
Now I know it's right, from the moment I wake up till deep in the night
There's nowhere on earth that I'd rather be than holding you tenderly
I've been waiting for a girl like you to come into my life
I've been waiting for a girl like you, your loving will survive
I've been waiting for someone new to make me feel alive
Yeah, waiting for a girl like you to come into my life
I've been waiting, waiting for you, ooh, I've been waiting
I've been waiting
(I've been waiting for a girl like you, I've been waiting)
Won't you come into my life?
After a few minutes, the boy turned and said, "This song is about basketball, isn't it?"
Friday, June 15, 2007
...and the freak driving it THREW A HACKYSACK AT ME AND HIT ME!
Yeah, it was only my ankle, but still. Who throws stuff out of a car at pedestrians? Especially pedestrians on the OTHER side of the road, posing no obstacle? A woman pedestrian, at that?
WHAT is UP with that?
Wednesday, June 13, 2007
We've toured the upstairs three times today. We've become well acquainted with the Time Out Wall. I learned that he does indeed understand a great deal more than we give him credit for. This was evidenced by the Bathroom Lock In. I know you must think that such events are strictly for the political protester... but I assure you, they are for toddlers as well. Apparently he does understand what that room is for, at least my nose tells me he does, but he seems to also think it's fine to run in there and lock the door. He also understands that when Mommy yells to unlock the door, she means "turn that lock right now, Mister."
All of that to say I really need to plan menus. Once again I looked up and realized it was 4:45pm and I had NOTHING going for dinner except lofty ideas. Lofty ideas make for binge eating after kids go to bed.
Tonight's fare will include Cottage Dill Bread, Baked Chicken, and Green Bean & Potato Smash. I actually got it all going in less than 20 minutes... but am now trying to entertain the End of the Day Baby and supervise outside play time. Whew! I need a snack. ;)
Sunday, June 10, 2007
I am eight months post partum. I am nursing. I am not one of those fabulously lucky women who nurse their babies and drop to 5 pounds below pre-preggo weight. Nope. I'm one of the busty gals whose body freaks out when it realizes it's still growing another person and packs on an extra 20 pounds for good luck. So I'm lumpy all over.
I spent 2 hours today at Kohls trying on every single swimming suit I could find. I tried on the tankinis. I tried on the wrap around skirts. I tried on the one-piecers. I tried on the separates that you have to hunt down to find the right sizes for top and bottom. I looked in juniors. I looked in misses. I looked in plus sizes. I looked everywhere.
I will not describe to you what I saw. It's not a visual you should take to your grave... and I already will be taking it to mine. It was depressing. Cottage cheese looks slimmer than my backside. Jello is firmer than my bust.
A note to manufacturers: Come on, people! I have had four children! I don't need a housecoat, but I do need something that passes for swimwear. Those four children who have shared my insides want to swim free, darnit! I live in the desert - swimming is what we do.
So begins another week in which I will fret and wonder how I will cover myself decently, so as not to drive my children and their friends to therapy before their time. With any luck, I will find my pot of gold over the rainbow... then again, I'd just settle for a decent tankini in a nice, neutral color.
Friday, June 8, 2007
Today on a favorite message board, the innocent question of how to burn a DVD was asked. Now, I'm not a computer savvy gal - this blog is about as techno-geek as I can get right now in my chronically sleep deprived state. But I saw this question and was immediately frightened of my internal monologue. It went something like this:
Q: How do I burn a DVD?
A: Um, douse it in lighter fluid and strike a match?
Memories of dumping salt on snails and lighting ants on fire with a magnifying glass came rushing back. Have I mentioned that I have no sisters? That may explain a lot.
I am afraid. Very afraid.
Thursday, June 7, 2007
Again: Getting out of the pack n play.
Again: No loveys or binky.
Again: Found in older brother's room playing.
New: Woke up little sister, who is now napless and very cranky. This would be the sister who woke up at 5am this morning. The very same sister who is teething and desperately needs rest.
I give up.
Wednesday, June 6, 2007
Lots of running.
Lots of running at dusk.
Yes, Wonder Boy escaped again. Not from his bed, as you may have logically concluded after the last several posts. No... today's escapade was at my in-laws' house. He tricked my mother-in-law into believing that he was feeling compliant, so she let go of his hand as we were loading up into the van to come home.
I had to run down the street to catch him. He was four houses away by the time I snagged a shirt sleeve. Needless to say, I was not a happy mom. And he is now in bed without any loveys (for escaping at naptime) and without a binky (for the Daring Dusk Dodging).
It remains a great mystery whether or not he or I will survive his childhood.
Tuesday, June 5, 2007
The Set Up
Naptime is always a gamble these days. Wonder Boy displays awesome Feats of Wonder during naptime. You may recall the Ascension of The Great Bunk Bed last month. It's the one time of day that I put him down and try to keep him down since we both need a lot of rest by 12:30pm. Yesterday's nap was one of the most wonderful... in all the wrong ways.
I checked on him a couple of times because there didn't seem to be much resting going on. In fact, there was a lot of thumping around. But both times he was, indeed, in the playpen with his legs up in the air, kicking the wall. I chose to leave him be. Once the older boys were home from school, the oldest said he heard WB wandering about and would be happy to check on him. I said not to, thinking that if WB heard or spotted him, the gig would be up.
If only I had listened.
The Great Escape
I did finally go check on WB... and found him... in the oldest boy's room. He was next to a container filled with scrapbooking supplies; you know, things like stickers, scissors, a stylus... oh, yeah... really safe stuff for a toddler to play with unattended. When I walked into the room, WB looked at me and realized that he was, indeed, caught. So he proceeded to squeeze out big crocodile tears and give me a sob story about an owie as he pointed left and right in the room. Nevermind the fact that I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that he was just fine because I had watched him playing in there for a full two minutes before he noticed me.
As if this weren't enough, the oldest showed me his Lego pirate boat had been disassembled during the The Great Escape. And his computer had been messed with. And his bedsheets strewn about. And something else had been done that escapes me just now (but didn't escape becoming an object of wonder for Wonder Boy).
To add insult to injury, this morning we discovered that the middle boy's things had also suffered similar demolition. His Pokemon cards had been strewn about the room. His rock collection was not just dumped on the floor, it was dissected with glee... even the card and box were ripped and unhinged. There was a pile of toys in the doorway to the closet that I'm sure weren't there before The Great Escape.
I am now the not so proud mother of an escaped con artist and two very unhappy older boys. If only I had listened.
Naptime today promises to be no better for his Puppy will not be sleeping with him. Wandering Wonder Boys don't get loveys, especially after destroying their brothers' things.
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Today our Fearless Leader discovered Wonder Boy out of the pack and play.
On the top bunk.
With the ceiling fan on.
I don't know what we're going to do. I'm thinking a creative and liberal application of duct tape might buy us some time. I'm not crazy enough to think it would seriously hold him down... but it might give us a few precious seconds to breathe easy.
Monday, April 30, 2007
Hello, and welcome to today's lesson in Juicing.
It should be common knowledge, but just in case you missed this important point in previous courses, I remind you that juice should never be given to a toddler unsupervised. This includes car trips. Even short ones to the post office and back home. Again: never leave your toddler with a cup of juice, even if it has a sippy lid.
I must apologize now, for I never finished writing this lesson. It seems that I will be cleaning the carseat yet again. I wonder how prune juice will smell later today after baking in the sun for 2 hours?
Wednesday, April 25, 2007
Tuesday, April 24, 2007
It all began this morning, sometime before 5am. Miss M decided that the crack of dawn was the ideal time to begin our day. Oh, there was some talking and playing with her lovey and it was very cute. So I rolled over and assured myself that she'd nod off again at any moment. At about 5:15 I began to wonder about the crazy dream I was having: it involved me getting up and... oh, wait. That part really happened. So up we were. The poor dear was tired and ready for her first nap of the day before the rest of the family was even conscious.
We sent our Fearless Leader off to work early. It was more than a little strange to have half of our family dressed and breakfasted by 6:15. Strange, indeed. It was up to me to awaken the other half of the family, get them breakfasted and off to school. Surprisingly enough, it went fairly well. (Although I still don't understand how it is that the Wiggles have such a mesmerizing effect even on 11 year olds to the point that the children are unable to hear and see that the parental unit is headed out the door.) We prayed for each other on the way to school, and the kids were right on time.
I decided that it was time to brave the grocery store. We were out of cereal, eggs, milk, yogurt, bread and a host of other items. What did we eat for breakfast you wonder? Protein shakes and bagels. The Breakfast of Supers. We arrived at the store nice and early (always important in the desert), found a cart and got started. Again, all went fairly well. I managed to stow the bread under the carseat so Wonder Boy couldn't squeeze the life out of our future lunches. I stashed the chips under the main basket so that we could prove once and for all that chips are really made with potatoes larger than 1/4" across and are, in fact, larger than confetti. I actually found everything on my list. We made it to the check out. I began to unload the cold items first so they'd get bagged together - always thinking, I am. And then...
... It was like one of those slow-motion scenes in a movie. I turned from the conveyor belt to snatch whatever the next item was that Wonder Boy was going to be able to reach. My Mominator senses were tingling, I knew something was awry. I turned, only to find that WB had grabbed the dozen & a half eggs... and dropped them all over the remaining groceries in the cart. The word "noooooo" escaped from my mouth in that weird, slow-mo sound. It was then that I knew the day would truly be every sense of the word "long."
The day continued on in like fashion. Infractions before lunch included interesting indoor sporting events such as: Humidifier Toppling; Couch Long Jumping; Snack Dropping; Vacuum Vaulting and a host of other fun events.
I served lunch by 10:45. Nap quickly followed at 11:30. I was a bit sad when I had to spring him from Toddler Jail, I mean, bed, at 1:00. It is now 4:30. The patio is covered in rocks and aloe flowers. I think I see a solitary clean spot on that square inch between his shoulder blades. And he just grabbed his sister by the head while she plays in the exersaucer.
The grocery clerk took pity on me and sent a runner for new eggs... and she didn't charge me for the broken ones, either. I found that act of kindness to be most helpful today.
Now the crazy thing is: I really do like this life. I'm tired. I'm bruised, literally. I'm exasperated. I'm envious of friends whose children are all older. But this is the life I signed up for. These seemingly never-ending moments of dirt, temper tantrums and diapers will stop one day. And I will probably miss them.
Well, I will miss most of them. Some I won't remember. And the rest... that's what therapy is for.
And it is my hope that God can actually use me today to reach my kids. Because today I am broken. There is no way I can do this by myself. There's no steam left in my teapot. But I know deep in my heart that this is the moment God has been waiting for: for me to stop trying so hard to control my little people so that He can step in and lead us all together. I do hope, however, He has a bullhorn... or the kids will never hear Him.
So today I leave you with this:
Glory be to the Father,
and to the Son,
and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning,
and ever shall be.
Thursday, April 12, 2007
Last night we continued in our catechism efforts. Let it not be said that I threw my hands up in the air and thus encouraged my children to become unrepentant, atheistic axe murderers. No. We've been talking about the fact that our desire to know God is a built-in need, common to all human beings. We hunger to know Him and that, despite our efforts to feed that hunger with other things, only He can fill us. We talked about the importance of being able to tell others exactly what we believe, the "reason for our hope." We talked about the Apostle's Creed and some of the specific phrases in it. There was no talk of zombies rising from the dead. There was, however, some drawing of Super Duck saving the day from Evil Sheep... evil sheep with horrible, gnashing teeth and bat wings by the Free Spirit. It was, I think, a successful evening for all.
Wednesday, April 11, 2007
There we were at the dinner table. We were unable to go to services because they were starting too late for the Littles to go - and, of course, we really don't take Wonder Boy to church right now anyway. So, DH and I decide that going through the Stations of the Cross as a family would be a good idea. I had the papers they both brought home from their respective Religious Education classes the week before and thought that would be just right. About 20 minutes, tops. A little explanation here and there.
I was in the middle of trying to explain to the 6yo about the Resurrection and that Jesus "was dead, but then He came back to life" and what does the 11.5yo contribute? "Yeah! A zombie!"
I wanted to ground him until his 30th birthday. That's great. My kid is equating the Resurrection to a freaking zombie!!!!!!!!!
I guess teaching standard prayers, sending them to RE classes, blessing them as they go to school, praying when we encounter emergency vehicles, praying before meals, praying/blessing before bedtimes, and having a holy water font (usually filled) are woefully short of adequate when it comes to imparting our faith.
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
Tired of the daily question "what's for dinner," I had thought ahead and pulled out a chicken & stuffing dish from our freezer. It was clearly marked with temperature and baking time. I pulled it out early this morning and thawed it well before we needed to cook. I noted that it was about time to bake, so I made cornbread. Cornbread done, my attention turned to placing the chicken in the oven. Simple, really. I even gave it an extra few minutes uncovered to get the stuffing nice and crispy and golden brown. The kids set the table, the baby was fed and had a toy, the toddler was in his high chair eagerly awaiting his dinner delight. The serving spoon parted the lovely stuffing crust...
... only to find a watery, undercooked mess underneath. Oh, dear friend, it's true. My well-thought out dinner was a waste. I'm not sure what went wrong - I'll have to consult the recipe I used when I was stocking up the freezer with tasty eats. This was not, I repeat not, a tasty eat. It was not even edible. It was, I dare say (because it's my own cooking), revolting to behold.
I pulled out a bag of unspectacular ravioli and the kids ate corn muffins while I hurried to pull together some kind of entree. They looked rather pathetic... the children, that is... so I tossed them a few fruit cups. That bought me a few precious moments to finish the Plan B meal.
How was Plan B, you ask? Thoroughly bland and not unlike eating spinach with a dirty gym sock for flavor.
This was truly a culinary mission I failed to accomplish. There's always tomorrow.
How many times can a toddler squeeze a peanut butter sandwich before it no longer resembles a sandwich?
Extra Credit Questions:
How many minutes will elapse before the peas a baby ate suddenly appear on her dress?
How many versions of Mr. Potatohead can you come up with?
Friday, April 6, 2007
"Ahhh! BAYBAY!!!" (At this point, Wonder Boy is shrieking and kicking in his carseat... rather vigorously I might add.)
"OH! You see an AIRPLANE!?"
"uh" (This is toddlerese for "yes.")
And let's not forget:
"Yes, the choo choo trains are all gone." (A main road leading to/from our town runs parallel to the BNSF railroad.)
"Yes... the trains are gone."
"YES. The choo choos are all bye bye. They're gone, honey."
"Hey, you wanna get some french fries?" (This is my lame attempt at redirection while driving.)
And Mystery Baby has begun the joyous journey to Eating Solids. (shudder) This phase of babyhood has pretty much worn out its appeal. With the first two kids, we always commented on how cute they were as they spewed more cereal out than we shoveled in. With the third one, well... we were just happy if he ate anything. (#$%^$# reflux) Mystery Baby... well... she could stay on a liquid diet and that would suit me just fine... except I NEED some sleep. Maybe if we expand her dietary horizons, she will stuff herself silly and sleep. Just a little. Hey, a mommy can dream, right?
Tuesday, April 3, 2007
Mommies are walking, talking napkins.
I like to think of my clothing as my memo board. Our Fearless Leader gets home from a long day at the office and asks what we did. All I have to do is look down:
*We played with sidewalk chalk.
*We ate a snack.
*We took care of a runny nose.
*We ate lunch.
*We went for a walk... through a lot of dirt.
*We ate another snack.
*We helped with homework.
*We made dinner.
*We ate dinner.
*We took a bath... well... the kids did.
Someday, I will miss these Wash & Wear days.
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
And now, it's back to my Regularly Scheduled Life. On today's lineup:
Picking up the Mail (our boxes were broken into last week, so it's time to pick up the pieces and find out if we have had our mail stolen)
Best of luck with your own day!
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
How many times can a toddler be bathed before breakfast?
How many times will a toddler repeat himself to be sure he is understood?
How many times will a toddler strip naked in his crib and pee on his pillow, loveys and sheets?
How many times will a toddler ask for juice between breakfast and snack time?
How many times will a mom sigh, smile and/or groan when pondering these mysteries?
Thursday, March 1, 2007
Wednesday, February 28, 2007
Mystery Baby's ears didn't quite clear up, so she is on Round 2 of antibiotics. For all those unfamiliar with Omnicef, let me just say that it's some potent stuff. She now has Chernobyl Orange diapers... and anyone who says that a nursing baby doesn't have stinky poos has never met this child. She is, after all, a Mystery.
Wonder Boy scared us to death. He just couldn't stand for Mystery to get all the germ-killing goodies I guess. He also is now sporting a double ear infection and, not to be outdone, bronchitis. Have you ever taken a two year old for a chest xray? It's not pretty. He's been on Omnicef since Monday, too, but we have yet to experience the biohazard dipes that we are sure will eventually come.
My goals for today seem monumental:
1 - Keep the littles in clean dipes.
2 - Make sure everyone eats.
3 - Time everyone's meds so as not to OD one and unmed the other.
4 - Supervise homework.
5 - Go to bed at 8:30.
6 - Avoid going postal on anyone under the age of 35 in the house.
It's number 6 that has me worried. Then again, I am assured of having plenty to confess come Saturday.
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
Enough with the sickness already!
Thursday, February 22, 2007
If you have a toddler, congratulations. You are aware of the messes they make and that including stock in Kimberly-Clark and other assorted cleaning companies is good for your financial portfolio. I have nothing newsworthy to tell you. If you have never experienced the great outdoors, or indoors, with a toddler, you have much to be thankful for... and much to learn.
When preparing a toddler to play outside, especially after a rainstorm, be sure to have several key items on hand: 2-3 bath towels, 2-3 washcloths, 1 12-oz bottle of baby wash, 2 spare diapers, 1 door mat, 1 bottle laundry detergent with bleach and/or color boosters, 1 mop, 2-3 multipurpose cleaning cloths, 1 bottle cleaning solution, 4 extra hands (those of siblings will suffice), 1 bathtub, 1 can tub cleanser, 1 package baby wipes, 2 sets of pajamas, and a vat of hand sanitizer. This is the bare minimum to have readily available before sending your tot out to play. It is also highly advisable to avoid cooking dinner or anything that must be watched while the toddler is outside - playtime will end all too soon and, as you will discover, it is not a simple matter of opening the back door to allow the youngster in.
Once playtime is complete, do not allow your tot to enter the family dwelling. Place your toddler on the door mat and proceed to strip him down to the diaper. Keep telling him he is an airplane to entice him to keep his hands up in the air as wings, rather than pawing your shirt for balance with muddy hands. This is important. I f you fail to distract the hands, you will need to add a shower, spare adult sized clothes, shampoo, body cleanser, and a hairdryer to your list. The diaper comes into play here. If your toddler discovers the true zen of mud play, he will completely relax. And I do mean completely. And you will remember that mud is 100% dirt+100% water and that diapers are exceptionally absorbant in these modern times. You may need to strip the diaper off, use 20-30 wipes, afix the new diaper and then head up to the bathroom for the daily disinfecting of all your toddler's personal surfaces. Have you remembered to keep the hands busy through all of this?
Toddlers 102: Mission Impossible (Basic Bath Routine)
Indoor plumbing is highly over rated. A garden hose may be required to loosen any large debris from your toddler. (Note: Garden hoses should be used out of doors. If you have already ascended the stairs with your mudpacked tot, do not attempt to back track to the yard. If you do, be sure you have the number to a reputable carpet cleaner on speed dial.) Should you decide to avail yourself of your swelling's indoor plumbing facilities for the purpose of cleaning your toddler, plastic sheeting is recommended, as is a wet suit for you.
Do not bother to adjust the water temperature - this is no day at the Kiddie Spa. Your mission is clear: bathe the toddler with minimal fuss. Whatever you do, do not allow toys in the tub. Toys predispose your toddler to end-of-the-day meltdowns. Just place the toddler in the center of the tub and turn on the water. Do not plug the tub until the water runs clear when poured atop the head. Using the body wash (see above list of required supplies), completely cover your tot in suds. Do not panic if you cannot feel your toddler under the mud - this is normal. Rinse the brown sudded creature in the tub. If the creature still does not quite resemble your toddler, lather and rinse again. You may need to use the entire 12 oz bottle.
When it's time to remove your toddler from the tub, do not announce that bath time is over. Announcements of such magnitude are sure to cause Evening Meltdowns. Promises of watching Finding Nemo will do you no good. Just wisk the toddler out. Use one towel on the toddler by lifting from under the arms and quickly wrapping him as though he were a taquito. It is recommended that you watch nature shows about spiders silking their prey to perfect your technique. Use the second towel for yourself.
Toddlers 103: Cooking Dinner and Too Much Quiet Are Never Good
Pre Requisite: Toddlers 101 & 102
Your fully cleaned toddler is nearing the end of the day, and you are nearing the end of your patience. This is normal. Food will do much to lift your sagging spirits... so will a nice glass of wine. Be cautious at this point and do not be fooled into thinking that your little cherub will tolerate your preparation of a 7 course dinner. Think mac & cheese.
While stirring the butter into the noodles, take note of your living room's ambient sounds: too quiet? Remove the pot from the burner and run, do not walk, to the bathroom. If you should find your toddler swishing Thomas the Tank Engine in the toilet, do not panic. You still have one bath towel ready, a third diaper and a second set of pajamas. Because you are the efficient mother that you are, you know that you have cleaned the toilet sometime this year and that Junior is probably near perfectly disinfected from the blue water. (You also will remember that you haven't scrubbed the redecorated upstairs bathtub yet anyway, so there is no hope for another cleansing.) Deposit the repajamaed Wonder Child into his high chair and placate him with snacks. (Note: you can serve dinner at this point as long as you loudly proclaim it to be a snack.)
Immediately after you discover that your toddler is too full to eat "dinner" (aka, seconds of "snacks"), declare that it is bedtime. Bedtime will be discussed in another Mother's Guide class when an instructor becomes available.
Friday, February 9, 2007
We went to his pediatric GI yesterday and had a great followup. He had a blood draw to screen for food allergies - what a little trooper. He bawled when he got stuck, but wouldn't you know he insisted on giving the lab tech a big hug and kiss when all was said and done? And he said thank you in his sweet little voice. We get results next week and I am eager to see what they are. Gluten intolerance and/or celiac runs in our family and all of our kids (so far) have had a mile reaction to peanut butter. It's going to be nice to have something more definitive to go by.
Once we get the results, we will probably try to take WB off his wonder drug, Prevacid. I love, love, love this stuff. It has made a world of difference with his reflux. He's been on it for just shy of 2 years. We are hopeful that this time, the symptoms won't come back and he'll have outgrown the reflux.
Wednesday, January 31, 2007
At first it was quite difficult for me to be a stay at home mom (SAHM). More accurately, I should say that I am a work at home mom (WAHM) because I have always either designed or kept the books for our business. But the majority of my days are spent running after the kids, delegating housework, changing diapers, remembering two out of four food groups for dinner, and attempting to conquer Mount Washsomemore. I often get lost in the shuffle, but always manage to reassess and come up for air every couple of days.
The tough part about being home is how long the hours are, yet the weeks seem to fly by. I now forget the "to do" lists. Well, I don't forget to make the lists, I just no longer count on actually crossing much off of them. Kids have a funny way of changing a parent's priorities. Sure, it's often thankless... but everyday I get some priceless gem of joy from each of my kids. Today, I spent a good hour on the floor with Mystery Baby, howling with laughter. She has this throaty little voice and coos and ahhs about everything. And sprinkled into the conversation were spontaneous bouts of laughter on her part. It just was an overwhelmingly happy time.
If you are reading this, maybe you can relate. Maybe you're glad you can't. Maybe you wish you could. All I can say is that my kids have changed my life in a way I just can't describe adequately... and God has blessed me immensely. I wish you the same joy, however God bestows it upon you.
Tuesday, January 30, 2007
Wonder Boy is a tornadic ball of energy, destroying most of what lies in his path. It is useless to clean or declutter with him nearby. And then there's the dog. These days she is consistently planting herself about 4" from my feet at all times. At least I am now remembering to look before moving my feet - she's going to be the death of me. But I really do wonder just how I am supposed to get my home in order and keep it decent these days.
After a thorough rinsing, a sippie cup of milk and a call to Poison Control, I am happy to say all was well. So lasting damage, not even a rash. You'd think by the fourth kid I would not have to call Poison Control... but no. I have their number on a giant yellow magnet on my freezer. Kid #2 taught me to keep that number handy... so I guess Wonder Boy comes by it honestly.
Yes, the soap is up high in the pantry now.
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
I've been watching too much television lately. (This happens when I have a new baby.) I am really liking the shows on TLC about large families (shows like By The Dozen). I truly wish we could be that kind of family... I do. But I've also been pondering the scripture (one of Paul's letters, I think) that speaks about being content in all things. Single, married, one kid, lotsa kids, no kids... it is impossible to be in the moment and truly present if we're always looking away at the situations of others. However much I might like to think about being a different kind of family, I have to really focus on the wonderful family that we are right now. And right now is all I really have. There are no guarantees about tomorrow and yesterday is already gone.
I haven't been FLYing much this past week. I have great intentions... but we all know the path to domestic hell is paved with them! So I'm back to baby steps again. I'm dressed to shoes (even though it's 6:30pm). I have a plan of what I'll wear tomorrow. I'm thinking on tomorrow's menu already. The kids are shining the sink... well... getting the dishes done. And, as Babe's owner would say, "that'll do, Pig."
Saturday, January 13, 2007
This has been a wild week. Is there any other kind of week with a family of Supers? Wonder Boy and Mystery Baby had me running in circles around the diaper pail, Mount Washmore has achieved new monumental heights, the yet-to-be-named older supers had their first week back at school after winter break, and our Fearless Leader brought home the bacon as usual.
Monday: Mominator has a panic attack upon entering the office. The Leaning Tower of Important, But Ignored Papers was in serious danger of crushing her. She announced to our Fearless Leader that she did indeed need to work that week. Our Fearless Leader called in Grandma to hold the fort downstairs so Mominator could scale down the Leaning Tower upstairs.
Tuesday: Wonder Boy has an uncomfortable day, unable to poop and with a horrid diaper rash. (On a serious note, it's not uncommon for kids with GERD to have a rough time in the pottying department. Our little guy goes back and forth from Nuclear Dipes to golfball Dark Matter within days.) After a quick conference, Mominator and Grandma decide that he needs to relax in the tub. Mystery Baby spent the day pretending to be a milk fountain, so she needed a quick scrub down as well. This is when the week fell apart.
There we were... WB in the tub, complete with bubbles and toys; MB on the floor, freshly wiped down, rediapered and awaiting jammies; the yet-to-be-named Supers were honing their Nintendo skills in the loft. Momintor wiped the sweat from her brow and suddenly heard WB howling in pain, grabbing his "equipment" and then it hit her - he had become a little too relaxed in the tub. She had heard stories of toddlers letting loose in the tub, but had never experienced it in her own tub... until today. Bathtime was over, WB was whisked out of the water, pajamaed and put to bed in 30 seconds flat. Mystery flailed on the floor, wondering where everyone was running. The yet-to-be-named had a small argument on the finer points of blowing up enemy somethings of some sort. Grandma began to laugh. Mominator scoured the tub and flushed the fruit of Wonder Boy's labor. And then... the toilet backed up. Mominator quickly turned off the water, called our Fearless Leader and located a plunger. (Until that moment, she didn't even realize that the Super Family even owned one!) After a quick lesson in plumbing from our Fearless Leader, Mominator rescued the Master Bathroom from the ravages of the Super Littles' bedtime routine. Luckily, Grandma never passed out from laughing... a true miracle.
Wednesday: More work on the Leaning Tower, a phone call to the health insurance company over conflicting coverage of her wacked out thyroid , and a call to the lab to recover a double payment that could cover three months worth of utility bills (cough).
Thursday: More of the same.
Friday: A break from the paper chase. Lots of train track construction. Thomas the Tank Engine experiences multiple deaths and massive destruction - Wonder Boy has a blast. Mominator and our Fearless Leader attend the annual office party and a new babysitter is broken in. She actually said she'd love to babysit again... Mominator did a happy dance.
Saturday: Mystery Baby wears no fewer than three outfits due to infant plumbing issues. Mominator concludes that the blue soak bucket on the kitchen counter is likely a permanent fixture for the next 9 months. She considers buying a new bucket that is color coordinated with her kitchen. The Super Family attends a Welcome Home luncheon for our Fearless Leader's best high school chum, who has just returned from a 16 month tour in Iraq - many tears were shed and all were thankful for his safe return.
What does Sunday hold? Another adventure, I'm sure.
Friday, January 5, 2007
My 5 year mission: to explore strange, new antibiotic reactions; to seek out clean diapers and diaper changing techniques; to boldly go where no Mominator has gone before!
Ok. So I've been here before. Mystery Baby is exploring the possibilities of her super powers. Thus far, her super power appears to be superpooping. I'll spare you the details... but I will say that I need an industrial sized bucket to soak her outfits in now. Wonder Boy, though no longer on antibiotics, is running a close second in the development of superpooping powers. It's only lunchtime and he's already had one bath. We shall see what the afternoon brings.
I'm not FLYing so well today. I am dressed (but not til 11am!) to shoes and I do have my roast in the crock pot. My sink is piled with prep dishes and breakfast dishes... so that's first on the list of things to do while the kids sleep. Speaking of sleep... off to change more diapers and get them settled in.
Thursday, January 4, 2007
For those of you who know about it, I just ask: Have you shined your sink today?
For those of you who don't know what the heck I'm talking about, I say: Go check out www.flylady.net. I don't know if her routines will work for you, but they do help me. I am shining my sink as I post this. I am dressed to shoes, and yes - they are closed toe tennies.
That's probably all I'll manage today.
Wednesday, January 3, 2007
Will Augmentin help Mystery Baby?
Will Mominator be overcome with diaper explosions and laundry?
Tune in next time to see if Mominator has survived the first week of 2007.
Tuesday, January 2, 2007
I give up.