Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Day in the life

Monday was a holiday from Mother's Day Out. We desperately needed to get out of the house for awhile. My poor children had not been anywhere or done anything fun in days because I was sick. Thanks to the wonders of modern medicine and a feisty cocktail of steroids and antibiotics laced with various allergy medicines I thought I could make it out the door for a short time.

We met some friends in Austin at the Science and Nature Center. It is such a great little place to go and it's completely free. They have various rescued animals to look at, trails, a dinosaur fossil digging sandpit and a creek. So we had three mama's, six noisy boys and Emma. Poor Em. I really need to find her some girlfriends.

Emma loved the animals. She especially liked looking at the coyote and the bobcat. Then she found her love of dinosaur bones. Or maybe it was just a love of putting sand in a bucket. But she could have stayed in the sandpit all day I think. Jake had an unfortunate shoveling accident that ruined dinosaur bones for him forever. They are dead to him.

My brave friend Katha led the boys on a wading expedition in a creek while we were there. I just didn't have the strength for it although I did have to do a little rescuing from the sidelines here and there. I'm glad she took the plunge because this was absolutely Jake's favorite part of the day. He couldn't stop talking about it. He was so soaked that he had to ride home in just his shirt and underwear but isn't that what boyhood is all about? Jumping on wet rocks, falling down and ditching your pants as soon as you possibly can? He was delighted.

And worn out. As soon as we got home he went and laid down. He wouldn't even get up to eat lunch. He just took a three hour nap on the playroom floor in nothing but his shirt, socks and underwear. Now, that's a good day!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Things I heard at home today...

So I am still not feeling well. But after an ordeal at the hospital last night I finally got some decent drugs and am doing better. I'm tired of being sick and am very short on patience with the kiddos right now. However, there have been a few bright moments of the day.

Emma has regaled me with tales of what's going on in her diaper all day long. Seriously. Every time I turn around I hear "mommy, mommy, mommy I poop!" Then I say "you pooped?" and she says "yes!" or she says "no! i pee peed. just pee." I think it might be time to start the good old potty training around here.

Jake came into the playroom at one point and found Emma and I watching Tinkerbell together. He said, "hi guys, is it okay if i can join you?" in his most polite voice which was so pleasant because franky I had not heard his polite voice all morning long.

Later in the afternoon after Jake summoned me to COME WIPE HIS BOTTOM! he looked at me so sweetly and said "why thank you young lady." This cracked me up. He has taken to calling me lady lately but this was the first time he put a "young" in front of it! It also reminded me that I am essentially a lady in waiting around here whose sole purpose in life is to serve these little royal cherubim. I'm just very thankful that my little prince is such a gentleman.

Then, he passed out in the living room on the ottoman.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Glass half full! Glass half full!

I could start off by telling you all that just days after paying a month's income to get our Jeep out of the shop that it broke down again. I could tell you that it happened to Mike while he was at HEB with Emma and they were stranded because I was home sick with a sick Jake and no car seat to come pick them up. I could focus on the part of the story where he called the mechanic and they said they would send someone right over but instead chose to send a tow truck with a non English speaking driver who took the Jeep with him but left my family members out cold in the HEB parking lot. INSTEAD, I'll tell you about the sweet little lady who watched the whole thing unfold and then gave my peeps a ride home. And she wouldn't accept payment or even dinner she just told Mike to pay it forward.

I could tell you that after the Jeep was fixed that night the mechanic told us we could come pick it up and he would leave it out in the parking lot if it was after hours. So then we illegally drove Jake in a car without a carseat to pick up the Jeep which was indeed not in the parking lot. It was indeed locked up in the shop. Which meant that I would not be able to drive myself or my child to the doctor the next day. INSTEAD, I will focus on the fact that the problem with the Jeep was the battery which was under warranty so we didn't have to pay for it. WOO HOO! And after a phone call from Mike the next day someone from the shop drove the Jeep to my home. When I opened the door looking truly horrific from my near death illness he just looked at me and said "Oh, honey, here are your keys." I teared up and said "My car?" He said "yes, here's your car." And then he left me in peace.

I could tell you that for the fourth time this year I visited my doctor feeling like I was near heaven's door, knowing that I had the flu or strep at the very least but most likley the bubonic plague only to have her tell me that my allergies were "acting up again." These allergies are tougher to discipline than my children. I could tell you that she prescribed no less than eight medications to be taken daily until I get better and when I went to the pharmacy to get two of them filled they didn't have either one in stock so I had to wait a day. INSTEAD, I'll tell you that when my doctor found out about one that wasn't going to be available for three more days she called me and told me to come to her office to get some free samples. My lungs feel better already.

I could focus on the negative. But let's talk about the rest of the positive. Last night we got our income tax refund info back and it looks like we'll be getting back enough to cover the cost of all of these car repairs. YIPEE! Sure, I would rather have used that money for a vacation or a new car fund or some clothes but I'm trying to be postive. Work with me.

And lastly, can I tell you how adorable my family is? On Valentines Day Mike and Jake hid approximately 30 little Valentines all over the house for me. I've only found half of them so far. Jake was so excited to show me where some of them were that he forgot he was sick for a few minutes and just walked me around the house pointing things out. Then he told me multiple times that he got me those Valentine's because he loves me so so much. Sigh. Many hugs followed. Melt.

And little Em. She is talking up a storm and when I'm healthy it is so dang cute. My favorite is when she goes through a list of all of her "bee-boos" every night and wants me to kiss them. She spends all day long bringing me things and asking me "what's that mommy?" Then she says "OH!" and repeats it back to me. She has the cutest little voice. Her teacher says she sounds like Mickey Mouse. Ha!

So happy to report that amidst all the bad and the ugly there is lots of good thrown in to keep me sane. That is all.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Things are looking up!

I realize I'm more of a glass half empty girl. I try really hard to be positive and think only good thoughts. But then life throws a curve ball and I go into a tailspin. I can go from the glass is half full to the glass is half empty to there is a hole in my glass and everything is dribbling out to I can't even find my glass who took my glass? to my glass is shattered all over the floor and I'll never get another glass all in the span of about two minutes.

So yesterday I was pretty bummed about our car and the fact that I won't be able to spend money on anything fun for at least a year. But then, THEN, I woke up this morning and read a comment that was left on my blog post from yesterday.

Some sweet soul named Debbie informed me that Rick Springfield is going to be in Austin the night before his concert at the rodeo. AND he will be at Barnes and Nobles for a book signing. SWEET!

I immediately called Amy and left her a voicemail. I was so excited! When we finally talked later she realized that she knows the music manager of that particular location. So she's going to see if he can hook us up and make sure we get in to see Rick. Do you realize what this means? It means that finally after 30 years my life long dream has a chance of coming to fruition. I can actually take my Rick Springfield autobiography to the book store and meet him in person! And get him to sign my book! And say hello to him! And maybe get my picture taken with him!!! Maybe things are beginning to go my way after all.

And also we got our Jeep back tonight. Finally, I am free to leave the house again. More good fortune!

Of course, the car cost a small fortune to get fixed. And I'm already worried that Rick might cancel the book signing at the last minute. See? Glass half empty. What is wrong with me?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

If it weren't for bad luck I'd have no luck at all...

About two weeks ago Amy informed me that Rick Springfield will be in Austin in March performing at the rodeo. So naturally I got all excited and started saving money for a ticket. But I never did buy one. Then Amy and I started discussing the concert and although we were both excited about the prospect of seeing him neither one of us was dying to go because we just saw him a couple months ago. I KNOW. I can't even believe it either. We decided to think about it for a couple more days before we purchased tickets.

That was Sunday. Monday on my way home from work our JEEP which was already having some problems decided to lose its power steering almost completely. Mike took it to the shop Monday afternoon and they said they could have it ready by Tuesday evening. Just in time for us to pick it up so I could have it for work today. Tuesday evening rolled around and they finally called us to say that they ordered the wrong part so it wasn't going to be fixed until today. Yeah. We still don't have our car. The part got held up in Dallas due to the bad weather. Seriously.
I had to call my boss last night and tell her I couldn't come to work today because I didn't have transportation. At first she told me that she needed me to come in anyway. I had horrible visions of walking my children for an hour through freezing rain to get to work because they couldn't find me a sub. I think we all know that wasn't going to happen. Luckily, she found someone at 9:30 last night to come in for me.

That's the good news. The bad news is that we've had to shell out so much money for this car in the last five weeks that I think my Rick Springfield concert ticket issue has been decided for me. In fact I think any money related issue that doesn't involve gas, groceries or utilities has been decided for me for the rest of the year. Too bad I didn't buy the $500 autographed guitar they were selling at the last Rick concert we went to. I could probably sell it on EBay right now and pay off the JEEP. Although I think we all know that would never happen either.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

I think we have crossed a little dotted line...

Do you remember the moment as a mommy when you realized you would never have privacy again? I think for me it happened as soon as Jake learned how to crawl. He was always very fast. He followed me everywhere and still does to this day. In fact, what used to be Emma's naptime and his "rest" time in the playroom has turned into Jake being in whatever room I'm in "quietly" playing with his toys or just sitting beside me on the couch reading books. It's sweet but still I crave some alone time. Try explaining that to a four year old. He just looks at me and says "but mama I just want to be with you." And then I melt. And he gets to stay.

I know this won't last forever. I know I should just count my blessings that I finally have these wonderful children. And I do! Still, it is hard for someone who is naturally introverted and self reflective (is that a word?) to have someone around ALL the time. My thoughts need time with my brain.

So anyway, I can't remember the last time I got to have any sort of privacy in the bathroom when the kids were awake. During my showers, Emma is usually in there climbing in and out of the bathtub, getting into all of my bubblebaths and trying to climb onto our window seat above the tub. So there I am washing my hair yelling at her to get down already. And since there is a glass partition between us she feels free to look at me and say "NO."

Then Jake usually comes barreling in. Jake is a force of nature to be reckoned with. Generally, he runs in, leaps into the tub, jumps up and down, does something to make Emma cry and then jumps out of the tub. You see why I want him to wear his bicycle helmet all the time? He is a daredevil. During that part of my shower I usually choose to close my eyes and pray that everything will be okay.

But a couple weeks ago we had an incident that made me feel like a line had been crossed. And it has happened a few times since then. My sweet girl follows me into the bathroom for all occasions. I'll try not to be too graphic here. BUT, I was sitting on the potty. We were having our normal conversation about what I was doing in there and she was telling me all about the toilet paper. Next thing I know she was wiping my bottom with some TP she picked up. It all happened so fast I didn't know what to think! I was all "uh, thanks Em!" She said "you're welcome" and went on her way. Now I know it's not really a big deal. (It's not, is it??) I know she's just curious about the potty and maybe this is a step in the right direction letting me know she's ready for some potty training. But there are just some things I need to do for myself, by myself, and with myself only.

Am I alone out here? Does anyone with little ones feel like you just need a moment? To yourself? In a closet maybe? With some wine? And some toilet paper? Just asking.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Homework already??

Last Wednesday when I picked Jake up from Mother's Day Out he had some special things in his bucket for the day. Along with the usual artwork they send home there was a big roll of red butcher paper, some stickers and some lace heart doilies. As we were leaving the room his sweet teachers informed me that we were to take these objects, go home, find an empty box and decorate it for their class Valentine's Day party.

Okay. I have to admit my first reaction was not so nice. I was thinking that for goodness sakes they are only four years old and we don't need any homework yet! His teachers are so darn sweet though that you can't be really mad at them. So we hauled everything home and I made note of the due date for the project. It was Wednesday the 9th. So, naturally I thought okay we'll do this on the night of the 8th right before Jake goes to bed. Because that's how we roll.

However, we've had some bad weather around here. The kind of weather that doesn't permit going outside or leaving the house. So yesterday, I found myself needing to find something for Jake to do. Voila! I pulled out the Valentine's project. He really wanted to cut the paper. With scissors. I let him cut a practice piece while I wrapped the box. Then he did everything else. I have to say I was quite impressed at my boy's ability to handle the Elmer's glue. His Aunt Cheryl will be so proud. He glued hearts and stuck stickers on to his little heart's content.

Yes, he's wearing his new Lightning McQueen bicycle helmet. Mike bought it for him on Thursday and he's had it on ever since. Yes, I know that he's had the bike since Christmas. We've been busy. He even wore that helmet to PetSmart and the toy store today. I don't care. He's accident prone so I think it's a good choice. On a side note, has anyone out there ever used propecia for women? You know, the drug that is supposed to help you grow hair? Because I am clearly thinning in the temple region and it is bothering me. I blame all the years of ponytail and dog ear wearing. And still, I can't wait to do the same thing to my own daughter.

Anyway, let's get back on task. This is what he ended up with. I think it's fabulous.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Super Bowl I can't remember the number

What are ya'll having for the Super Bowl? I really did not care about this game until Mike got me excited about the food he wanted to have tonight. We started off with some artichoke/feta cheese dip. If dip could change your life I would be a changed woman right now. Run out and get Tricia Yearwood's cookbook just so you can make this recipe. Seriously. I also just decided after the first quarter that I want Green Bay to win. GO PACKERS! This will make my father in law upset but my daddy proud. We just can't have the Steelers winning a 7th Super Bowl.

Next, we had some of Pioneer Woman's bacon wrapped jalapeno's. Yum. Now it's about time for me to unbutton my pants and get comfortable.

We're having hot wings for our main course. These are Mike's favorite. I think I'll go put on my stretchy pajama pants now.

Lastly, we're finishing up with some peanut butter chocolate chunk cookies. Yum. I will now go and lay on the couch in a semi coma until bedtime. That is all.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Arctic Blizzard 2011

Okay, it snowed last night. We woke up to not the 2 to 3 inches the weather guys predicted but to a light dusting of snow on the ground. I was a little disappointed and may have said something to that effect. Mike told me that I am never happy with what I get. I don't think that's true. I'm perfectly happy when I get what I'm expecting. I may get a little unhappy when people promise me one thing but then deliver another thing. What can I say? I'm a work in progress. Anyway, under that dusting of snow is a layer of ice. So everything is pretty much closed around here. Mike doesn't have to go to class tonight and it looks like none of our neighbors have to go to work today.

After breakfast we bundled the kids up and headed out to join the neighborhood congregating in our street. We don't have gloves for the kids so we put socks on their hands. Wearing socks on your hands is cool for about one minute. Then you realize you are wearing a foot product on your hand and you want to take it off. The kids looked like they were setting foot on an alien planet. They didn't run out the door and immediately scoop up snow and start throwing it around. They were both very cautious and just stood around watching everyone else. So I decided to teach them to make snowballs. That is very hard to do with snow that doesn't pack. One of our little neighbor boys came over to learn also.

Emma lasted about ten minutes out in the cold before she started crying. Mike took her inside to warm up and Jake stayed outside with me another two minutes to build a snowman. Here he is. We call him Tiny.

After Tiny was made Jake told me he wanted to go inside because he DOES NOT LIKE THE SNOW!. He cried all the way inside. Once inside he cuddled up with Mike and Emma
on the couch and declared that he would "NEVER, EVER, EVER, NEVER" go outside in the snow again. I really wish he could learn to express his feelings.

Except for Mike don't they look pitiful after their ten minutes in the snow? I'm hoping it's nothing a little hot chocolate and homemade popcorn can't fix.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Arctic Blast 2011

I have a newsflash for you. It is cold. Yesterday morning it was 16 degrees here when I had to get the kids out to the car and buckled up to go to Mother's Day Out. As soon as I opened the door to go outside Emma started screaming "COLD! COLD!" And Jake started screaming "MY EYES! MY EYES ARE BURNING!!" We are not short on the drama around here.

On our way into school I looked back at Emma to see if she had once again taken off her shoes and socks while in the car. It's a fun little game she likes to play. I was hoping that with her declarations of "COLD!" she might decide to leave her little piggies covered up. No such luck. Shoes and socks were both off and she was telling me that her feet were "COLD!" Well, duh. Of course we were running late because I had to do a complete search of the house looking for my lost car keys before we could leave. They were not in the key jar where I always put them. I called Mike to see where he had put my keys. He told me he had no idea where they were but there was a spare set inside the locked JEEP. I didn't see how that could help me. I interrogated the children to see what they had done with the keys. Again, no luck. Blank stares. I think Jake told me where I could find his Shamu. I said a little prayer for the keys safe return and just before I reached for my phone to call my boss and tell her I wouldn't be at work because I had no transportation I felt the keys in my back pocket. They were exactly where I had put them not two minutes before I started frantically looking for them. This is my life.

Anyway, back to the cold. "They" are even predicting snow for us tonight. We live in a part of Texas that doesn't get much snow. So when Jake found out about the possibilities he was beside himself with joy. He started shouting "WHOOPIE! SNOW!! I LOVE SNOW!" Now I think we all know the reality of the situation. If it does snow and we do go outside to play tomorrow this is what I will hear. Emma will be saying "COLD!" And Jake will be screaming "MY EYES ARE BURNING! IT'S WET! I WANNA GO INSIDE!"