Wednesday, May 30, 2007

The discipline of daily blogging and not looking for a result

I think the hardest thing about doing this blog will be to write everyday and not be obsessed with going for the result, as in I have to be a fabulous blogger every day. It is difficult for me, but I need to be challenged, especially challenged by myself. I certainly am not lacking in being challenged on a daily basis by little people. I'm sure that I will get into a rhythm, but when you have those times where you are drawing a blank...well, yeeees that would be about now. I know that I have to continue to plug away and that just the act of writing for myself daily will be a discipline that I will benefit from. Or so I tell myself...

I've been very excited about creating this blog! More excited than I've been in months. I'm feeling alive and driven and I think, no I know, that that is important to listen to. (Sorry, I'm bad about ending with prepositions. SHUT UP!) O.K., I'll go on..Oh...please don't. It seems a perfect fit for me right now; to have a space where I can just put my thoughts and stories down and I DO confess the hope is that other people will enjoy it, too. Of course, not everyone is going to be agog over stories of preschoolers and blathering of a self-absorbed mommy on a quest for creative expression. However, maybe someone will laugh or see a reflection of their life in mine. O.K., I'm going to throw up now. Signing off..

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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

You're gettin' on my very last nerve

Girl had a full-blown tantrum at 5pm today. I believe I truly had the patience of a Saint (Bernard), but after some 20 minutes was quite frazzled. Then E asked me if I had any idea what was going on with her? (You’ve got to be F’ing kidding me!) I had kept my cool UNTIL then, but that really sent me over the edge. Especially when he told me I obviously was not ready to discuss it right then in a very condescending tone. DUUUHHH!

What was the life or death crisis you ask? She was having a melt down over her wardrobe choice and the clothes not fitting properly. Whaaat are we a teenager already?? I got her calmed down and then E made the mistake (poor man) of trying to help her go potty and she was set off yet AGAIN for another 10 minutes.

I’m afraid my drink of choice is whiskey – Jack Daniels to be exact. I should have downed one, but instead have been drinking gallons of hot tea so that I can stay awake and do some projects. Now I really, really, really understand the Southern expression …you’re gettin’ on my very last nerve.

It's quite late and I just may have to tear into the SSOC (Secret Stash O' Chocolat). I've earned it. Cheers! O.K., I'm shameless with the italics...

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Monday, May 28, 2007

You blow all the musik out

God, I love the phrases coming out of our little ones. Girl's new one this week, "I have a plan." Today's classic...Girl commenting on how to blow one's nose. "Mommy, mommy, mommy...mommy, you blow all the musik out and then the cold goes away and you say bye-bye to colds."

Boy putting on his sock, "It's perfect for a little boy." And when I call him our little rooster (as he wakes up right around 6am everyday) and he says, "I'm not a little rooster. I'm Boy!"

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Sunday, May 27, 2007

Why the hell not?

O.K., so today I bought a T-shirt. It is neon pink, has a male couple and a female couple on a big wedding cake and says:

Our Agenda
Equal Rites
blessing All unions
The Episcopal Church
Welcomes YOU!

I figure why the hell not? I am supportive of ALL unions. Is that a bad thing if people want to be committed to each other? Boy has two friends who have 2 mommies in his class. What an amazingly open world our children are growing up in today. And that makes me feel good. Maybe I can put the T-shirt on and walk past that Evangelical Church around the corner for kicks? Besides, I've always been a sucker for neon pink!

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You don't say dammit & big ol' hootenanny

This morning we were trying to get the kids in the car to go to church. It usually isn't a huge deal, but sometimes they poke around not wanting to get into their seat belts. Boy will climb into the back of the van and start pretending he's in a space ship or a train or a rocket. So, Boy has this current thing where he doesn't want to get his feet wet on the grass in the morning. (He can't take the grass being wet, but loves to cover himself in mud - go figure.) He will stand on the sidewalk and refuse to walk around the car to get into his side of the van, unless he can walk on the driveway. Depending on how I've parked the van, and spacial distances not being my strong suit, there is always a good chance no sidewalk will be available. There is only one option - he must be carried. E picked him up and as he was walking Boy around the car, one of Boy's feet left a dirt trail on E's shirt. E let go with a good "dammit" and this conversation ensued... Boy: "You said DAMMIT to me. We don't say dammit to people." Long pause... E, "Yes, you are right, Boy, we don't say dammit." It seems he is on to us. A few months ago Boy picked up on me saying it and started copying me, knowing that it was a bad word. It was pretty funny because he would mutter it under his breath just like an adult would try to do around kids and I would ask him what he said. He'd say "dammit" and I would redirect him with, "we don't say dammit, you mean 'oh, NUTS!'" It is interesting to see that he can now take the whole concept in, whereas before he would just keep repeating the word over and over while laughing.

Tonight we got back after having a fun evening at a friend's house. The kids played, we actually had some adult conversation, it was great. Getting them to bed was another story. I made the mistake of trying to put them down at the same time, which is something we haven't done for a long time. They had a bath, brushed teeth, E read them a story, and then I tucked them in and told them a Silly, Silly Sam story. This time Silly, Silly Sam and Goofy, Goofy Mary & Sneaky, Sneaky Trevor enlisted Curious George and went camping together in the front yard. Poor Sam was sprayed by a skunk and Mary & Curious George had to go to the grocery store and get 30 cans of tomato juice. Then Mary, Curious George & Trevor poured all the tomato juice in the kiddie pool and gave Sam a tomato juice bath and washed him with a really big washcloth. Then Sam had to run through the water sprinkler to rinse off. And so on and so on... Then a lullaby and kisses blown good-night. And they went to sleep. NOT. By then it was 9pm and they were just getting started. They kept flicking on the light, leaping from their beds onto the floor, throwing stuffed animals around. After the 3rd time of going in and telling them to knock it off, I just decided I was going to bed. I figured they would tire themselves out eventually and would turn their light off and go to bed. E was already in bed and we were both wiped out, even if our children were not. So, they continued to have a big ol' hootenanny in their room. I was so ...tired and felt like that lady in the old commercial who is about 90 saying, "I've fallen and I can't get up" - remember that commercial? Was it for The Clapper? Can't remember. This is what lack of sleep over several years does. So, E got up after about 15 more minutes of full out Circus tricks (no, not in our room) and thumps coming from their room and took Girl out. Bless him. Boy quieted down. E read a few stories to Girl and she fell asleep. And E found a little bit of heaven in the sweet rounded cheek of our girl on his shoulder. I dozed through most, but was left with such gratefulness and appreciation of my husband.

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Subtle Shifts mean Great Leaps and other notes to myself

Suddenly I realize so many things that have changed. Boy and Girl are now sitting on real chairs at the dining room table. The booster seats are in the garage. We're using all real eating utensils; no plastic toddler spoons and forks. No diapers! Only pull-ups at nap time and at night. Boy's shoe size is 11. Girl's shoe size is close to 9. He is wearing 5T. She is wearing 4T. They've both learned the name and number of our street address. They can both count to ten or more. Boy can count down from 10 to blast off! They both can almost always dress themselves. I watched Boy the other day and realized he puts his shoes and socks on himself, before he goes outside. Girl will now wear dresses on occasion and likes hair barrettes. They play together at least half of the time. Yesterday I saw them playing hide-n-go seek. Girl spends at least an hour a day "reading" to herself. She sometimes reads to Boy, especially in the car. Girl is doing more intricate puzzles (ages 3-5.) Boy is creating elaborate worlds wherever he goes, both alone or bringing Girl along for an imaginary train ride or a "bear hunt."

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Thursday, May 17, 2007

Who the heck are Silly, Silly, Sam & Goofy, Goofy Mary & Sneaky, Sneaky Trevor?

Silly, Silly Sam & Goofy, Goofy Mary are our dogs. Sneaky, Sneaky Trevor is our cat. A few months ago I started making up stories about the 3 adventurers at bedtime and now it has become part of the every night ritual, especially for Boy. E does it, too. He sometimes sings made up songs about them. The children are very blessed not to have me singing them the stories. E can sing. Alas, I cannot.

Some of my greatest childhood memories are of my father making up stories about a stuffed animal bear. The stories were called, "The Bear's Gang." The bear and his gang were always getting into trouble. They always traveled to exotic locales - i.e., a tennis ball factory. If I can provide half the wonder that Dad gave me, I will have given my children much.

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Thursday, May 10, 2007

A good healthy whiz on the carpet to start the day

The morning started out so nicely. The kids actually slept in! Girl was up at 7:00am. As I sat here on the computer, she shuffled in, her hair in lovely disarray, sleepy smile on her face, ready for a hug. She is so snugly. Boy woke up at 7:30! A record. He's normally our little rooster, stirring before 6am. So, this was a delicious, lazy morning. He has the gift of always waking in good spirits, ready to start the day. After breakfast, we turned on "Curious George", and I helped him take off his nighttime pull-up. He has gotten really good at dressing himself, but sometimes in the pursuit of expediency I help him. He's had a bad case of eczema lately and I wanted to slather him with Aquaphor the miracle ointment (although I don't recommend it for a 2 1/2 year old to slather on their clothes and bedding ...[see last post.]) So, I go into the kitchen to throw out the pull-up and suddenly hear a sound not unlike a waterfall. At the same time I hear, "I'm going pee pee!" - said with a fair amount of gleefulness, I might add. I run back into the living room just in time to see Boy whizzing directly on the living room rug. It is his first pee of the morning and it is ...shall we say....plentiful. I cannot contain myself from shrieking "BOY, WHAT ARE YOU DOING!!! (At the moment "don't make a big deal out of it, you don't want your child to be shamed and set him up for many years of future therapy" thoughts were just not present. No, I have to say those recommended ways of parenting were quite far from my consciousness.) "Boy, GO TO THE BATHROOM AT ONCE AND CLEAN-UP!" Poor little guy just stood there kind of stunned, dribbling pee down his legs. Girl, of course, never one to miss a prime learning curve, took it all in smiling like the Cheshire Cat...probably filing the idea under "fun things to do to outrage Mommy." So, after clean-up - God, I HOPE pee comes out of Persian carpets.... I am certainly awake now and ready to start the day! Or, maybe I should go back to bed and pull the covers over my head...

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Saturday, May 5, 2007

Chapter on children's creative use of alternative substances...

Last Thursday afternoon, I tucked Girl in for her nap, closed the door and went into the office like I usually do to check emails/do paperwork, etc. During the next 30-45 minutes I heard occasional thumps and stirrings from the next room, nothing that seemed alarming or unusual as Girl frequently changes outfits or shoes several times or reads books before she goes to sleep. After almost an hour had passed, I was continuing to hear noises so I opened her door. The sight which greeted me was only second to the GRAND POOP DEBACLE of Boy’s crib days. Girl was covered from head to toes with great GLOBS of Aquaphor. I mean GLOBS. (If you don't know what Aquaphor is, think Vaseline. It is used as a skin ointment.) We had one of those large jars of the stuff and 3/4 of it were on her and all over her toddler bed, the bedding, Boy’s toddler bed, the bedding, the dresser, and her drawer had been pulled out and almost every piece of clothing had a nice blob on it.

I was SO stunned when I opened the door that I felt my mouth drop open and could only manage a shocked "OH...GIRL..." – which immediately brought on (in wailing, keening tones) – “I WANT MY DADA...I WANT MY DADA...I WANT MY DADA...” It was such a dramatic display of SMEAR that I had to laugh. I let her join Boy in the living room and it only took me about 2+ hours to wash all the bedding and clothes and wipe up the blobs. Getting it out of her hair took about 3 nights of shampooing! That’s our Girl! You gotta love the creativity!

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