Saturday, January 31, 2009

The chaperone

Its oddly refreshing for me to see evidence that I do have time to do some pointless things, like put stickers on the dog and photograph it. Tamayo didn't want to be boxed in, he took that chaperone label right off.

He is a chaperone, though. He follows us around the house. Sometimes I stop quickly so he'll crash in to me, it never fails to amuse me. He always steps on the heels of my shoes, though and that makes me crazy. He gets nervous when he hears crying or yelling, and I'm afraid that our lifestyle has made him a basket case.

He doesn't like it when the girls and I are apart, and he can't watch us all at the same time. We're not apart very often or for very long, but this will change, and slowly has. H and S can play upstairs alone for short periods of time now- Mayo paces the stairs, or presses his head against the gate watching them. Then he'll come look at me like I've lost my mind. Do you KNOW they're upstairs? Do you KNOW what they're doing up there? He pokes his head in every picture, his nose in every corner.

He drives H crazy as he's always underfoot and in the way- she taught S to say "bad boy!" very early on, before S was saying much of anything. She always said it affectionately. Buh boi

He's a good boy, a good chaperone, and I'm right there with him not liking the girls out of my sight. I know I'll have some company when they venture out further.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Tyrant-a-saurus rex

Tantrum because S wanted second yogurt after giving the first to the dogs.
Tantrum because S couldn't drink out of the milk carton.
Tantrum because S wanted candy canes for breakfast. (WHY do I still have candy canes in the house? They need to move over for the valentine bounty sure to arrive any day now. Whats with every holiday having candy anyway?)

Interlude from S's day of tantrum to bring a tantrum from the usually tantrum free H. She wanted to wear all purple, and the only purple pants she has (in the right shade. She has at least 3 pairs of purple pants. Just one that is 'light' purple) are way too small, they come up above mid calf when she sits. (Not so far below the knee.) They had been put away. They were brought out again. And paired with a purple shirt that was also too small. 4 year old tantrums suck because they have words that go with them. H contorts her usually lovely face into a mask of doom and despair and spits out,
"I'm MAD at YOU"
"Because your pants don't fit?" I ask.
I know this is just going to feed the flame, and encourage the sarcastic gene I've passed down- but I can't help it.

Tantrum at Target (for reasons unknown to me) that resulted in S smacking her forehead against the wheel of the shopping cart, and getting a goose egg sized bruise. Me feeling like worst parent of the year and wanting to run away.

Tantrum from S getting into car, getting out of car, getting her jacket on (all 5 times so far today) and countless tantrums from not getting her way with the refrigerator.

Somewhere it between the tantruming I hear a phrase I've not heard from S's lips before, "Dat MY" Over and over. It goes nicely with the other phrase that rose above the consonants a few days ago, "LETS GO" That prompted a woman at Old Navy to say, "Did she just say Lets go? She's been shopping with Daddy too much!"

On the way to pick H up at school, I think the car doesn't feel right. Its pulling to the right. I keep going, although I do slow down at least. Park. Look at the car through the cracks in my fingers shielding my eyes, a flat. I call J, who U-turns off the highway, and is at the car changing the tire before I even get outside the building. My hero. We stand outside on the ice, me feeling like a damsel in distress, and not even minding so much. Yes, I did park the car with a flat tire on ice. I'm warm, because in other heroic behavior, J stopped on the way home from work last night to buy me the coat I was waiting to go on sale. I guess I am a damsel in distress. But, a warm one with a car with 4 tires. Could be worse.

Inside the school, H was disappointed because she had thought she was going to a friends house after school, but not everyone was privy to the plan, and the play date had to be postponed until next week. More tears.

After the tire changed, more tantrum from S at getting back in the car. I hardly noticed, though. this is the new normal.

We made it safely home, I put on the Curious George movie for us all to recoup. H's suggestion since S gets scared at every other movie we have. H said "She only gets scared at the roar." Which I half way heard but didn't understand. S is a monster, she is demanding, she tries so hard to be fierce, but she gets so scared so easily. Sure enough, in the beginning of the movie, a lion roars, and my fierce little tantruming baby cries her eyes out, scared, buries her head in my lap and melts my heart.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Nice Penguin

Yesterday as I was getting dressed, I put on a white tank top and a black shirt over it. H looked up and said dryly,"Nice penguin."

Do I ever comment on her fashion choices? Not to her I don't. Nice Penguin.

I really let the girl down with all the black and gray in my wardrobe. She's been known to ask why I don't wear pretty colors. She's given up on my by now, but used to come in every morning and suggest I wear the fuchsia sequined dress I have in my closet to take her to school. Maybe one day I will.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

snow blind

A snow day. My brain is on snow day. We're all on snow day. It was really, really great until about 8 o clock this morning when the "where are we going today"s started. Shortly after that we did the dump all the toy bins on the floor and then cry and whine about cleaning things up thing.

The thing is, its not even a snow day. I mean, yes there is snow on the ground- but maybe 3 inches. Thats being generous. It was icy last night and possibly this morning, but its all melting and raining, so its just a mess more than anything. I have been programed by the mere mention of snow day that it means you stay inside and make soup, or bread. Our start was delayed enough to make me not want to leave the house. I trick myself into thinking I like days like this, but honestly, I loose it by the afternoon.

I did make bread, though. Rolls, actually, because the only thing we have in the freezer were turkey burgers and it seemed better at the time to make rolls than to go dress everyone and trek out to the store.

I just checked the time and had to laugh- earlier today J called me a few times to encourage me to leave the house, saying he's just tried to help my sanity come 4 o clock. "Fine", he said when I told him I'm not going anywhere. "Stay home and make crazy then" Yep, its quarter til and I'm making crazy. We're all making crazy up in here.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Craft Hell

I am going to pulverize glitter, shave pipe cleaners, rip stickers into tiny pieces, eat the glue, melt the crayons, dry out the markers. I have just had it up to HERE with craft projects imposed on me by books and TV. There's a... suggestion? a how -to? something, on Noggin about how to make a Ni Hao, Kai Lan pillow. While I love that there's a show that teaches mandarin and Chinese culture,- my problem here is with the pillow.

First of all, I do have a TON on craft supplies at the ready, and my own studio supplies that I've had to tap into, but this particular pillow needs fleece (which i actually have, but not red, therefore I may as well not have any at all) and fabric glue, which I don't have, BESIDES which, I really doubt fabric glue will hold a pillow together, especially in this house of jumping pulling and tearing. I even have pillow stuffing. I even have a sewing machine. I have cool metallic thread. But no, I have to make the crap ass noggin glued pillow. Except I can't make the pillow as I don't have the red fleece and the glue. Or the will. Well, this just won't do and major whining and crying ensued.

We diffuse H's pillow drama, and she pulls out a book made by the cheerio people that tells you how to make (frankly, ridiculous) crafts using cheerios. (And recipes, which are good.) H want to make a pencil holder from this book which involves a soup can, construction paper, pom poms, pipe cleaners, and cheerios. I actually have all these things- but, hello, soup cans are sharp once they don't have soup in them anymore. In frantic get this craft DONE mode I decide, I should duct tape the lid to make it not sharp. Well that was a pain in the ass. The glue wouldn't stick, my warnings of cheerios not long for this world in this house went unheeded- if the dogs don't eat your cheerios craft S will. Which is what happened. S ate all the cheerios I pulled out to be glued, there was a tirade, but then H and S both were distracted by some heart shaped lollipops that their grandmother slipped into the brown bags of fruit she always gives them when we leave her house.

I was so thrilled to be done with trying to make this stupid craft work, I was fine with candy in front of the tv. And, speaking of tv, how awesome for Ian Falconer that Olivia is now a show. I'm not bitter, why would I be, I haven't even written a book yet. Because I am too busy arguing about fabric glue or gluing cheerios to soup cans.

Ok, we don't watch TV with commercials in this house, (well, the big we's do, but the wee we's don't) but because I was curious about the Olivia show, we're watching a channel with commercials and now H knows about Dora on ice.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

I'll tell you when its morning

When H woke up at 6:30 she called me into her room to ask if it was morning yet. No, I said.

J went in to her room 15 minutes later and came back to me "you have her sitting in bed looking at a clock?" Yeah thats right. I told her it was morning when the big hand got to the 12. Now that I'm awake I'm feeling a little bad about this, leaving her staring at the clock for 1/2 an hour. I could hear her, Daddy! Its almost morning! But not yet!

J got all the way up with the girls after it became "morning" and I slept until 8:30- I feel almost human. Amazing. They were still up all through the night, but this is starting to bore even me so enough about that. Except to say that Ruby didn't wake up. So thats good.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Sitter AWOL and pee with a message

Man.... my babysitter just quit.

It took me forever to come around to the idea that some time to do my work was not a luxury but a necessity, and that doing work after a grueling day of child chasing followed by the bed/bath scramble was not working as well as it should. It took even longer for me to act on this revelation. It was with much anxiety that I contacted this sitter, and only because through her email address I could tell she was an art student. It relaxed me to have an art student babysitter- I could wrap my head around that quite nicely. And she was great, I really liked her. Ok, I still like her. At least now I don't have to figure out how to let her go after I sign S up for pre-school.

Ugh. I am so bummed.

Tonight is going better than last night because I gave everyone their way up front. I am ashamed to say I was acting very passive aggressively with H and her mommydaddy bed issues. I must stop this immediately, I can NOT be on the receiving end of this behavior. I will not be the one who teaches it to her.

Earlier today I was remembering, almost fondly, that when H was younger.. maybe a year or so ago, she would pee when she was mad at me. Like a cat. She peed all over the damn place- on the front porch, on every rug we have. And would always smile sweetly and say "I had an acci-gent". We all know there are no acci-gents. But get this, she did it again tonight! She hasn't done this is well over a year, what are the odds? She is a mind reader this one. Smart AND clairvoyant? Not fair.

Tonight shes in the bathroom, and she calls to tell me shes had an accident (we now have the 'd'). My ass, an accident! She has her clothes off, and there is pee on the bathroom rug and splattered on the tile. I took a very discrete deep breath and had some even more discrete internal screaming and said as calmly and as not-give-a shitingly as possible, "well, I guess you better clean it up then." This best be the end of the accidents.

To all the editors in the house

I know I am a lazy gramatasist, lazy punctuator, that I use made up words and that I'm horrid, putrid speller that sometimes spell check can't even help.
Just sayin.


Last night, when Ruby woke me up by whining in my face because her covers fell off, I nearly lost it ALL the way. I got up for the countless time to silence the whining, to cover her up. Of all the whining in the night, hers is the easiest to stop- but WHY why why oh why am I getting up at night to swaddle the dog?

How has this happened? That my dog has trained me to wake up at night and cover her up?

Last night sucked all around for creatures getting to sleep. H and S were having a competition to see whose cry would be the one to break me. I was getting in that quiet prickly place where I stand very still in the living room and hope no one is looking through the windows in case I look as psychotic as I feel. After HOURS of H screaming that she wants to go in 'mommydaddy' bed, and S screaming because she wants me to hold her until shes fallen asleep (and how did THAT happen? That my child who has always gone to sleep on her own has trained me to hold her until she falls fast asleep? Don't even ask why I started the no mommydaddy bed thing- is it that big of a deal? I just want my bed. they've taken the rest.)

No! I wasn't having any of it. They would just have to scream and cry, I said. 45 minutes later I was hoping the neighbors hadn't called child services. It sounded so pathetic in here, sobs of MOM! MooooooMMMMEEEEE!!!

And the manipulation! H says "Mom, if you want me to stop crying, put me in mommydaddy bed." Well hells no, after that. I go into S who stops crying when I pick her up (which I wasn't going to do) and then points firmly to the rocking chair. I'd had it with both of them.

I called J who was working late, I haven't done this since H was a baby, but I needed him to come home because I was thinking horrid thoughts I won't even bring back into my head now.

J gets home, I had goddammit held S and she was asleep arg arg arg, H was still going strong. J's up there for 3 minutes at the most, comes down- all is silent. I asked what he said to her. "Oh, I put her in our bed."

Well. Why didn't I think of that.

I was too far gone at that point. I briefly considered going up and putting her back in her bed- but the silence was so nice, and I was too tired. She'd out stubborned me.

This morning, the first thing H said when she opened her eyes, "Mommy? last night? When you were downstairs? Daddy put me in mommydaddy bed" Yes, I say, I know he did. I thought I should say something else, but didn't know what it should be- so we dropped it.

So, in conclusion, I'm a huge pushover. When the dog whines for covers, it seems like a small price to pay. She goes back to sleep and doesn't sass me in the morning. But this is how it starts.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

The dentist

About ten minutes until the dominoes start falling: Pick up H at school, drive to gymnastics, after which drop the girls off at J's studio so I can go across the street to the dentist.

I like MY dentist, but hate going to the dentist. There was a big long stretch of time where I didn't go to the dentist at all- and now I will pay forever. I am on a need to know basis at the dentist. I am only told what I can handle, what has to be done immediately. I am fine with that. I would probably never go back if I knew the big picture of what has to happen inside my mouth.

Part of the reason I like my dentist is that when I finally went to see him, after not seeing another of his kind in, oh, 10 years or so, he didn't give me any shit. There was no attitude or any making faces at my teeth. He just said gently, "Well. You're here now." I tuned out the KA-CHING I heard echoing in his head at the sight of my mouth. I have horrible teeth. They chip on nothing for no reason, they're yellow no matter what kind of whitening I attempt, they're crooked. I'm told they have shallow roots. My dentist in Mexico decided to seal some of my teeth I guess to protect them, but he used a bright orange sealant so it always looks like I just ate cheetos. Very festive indeed.

The other part of why I like my dentist is that he's also an inventor. I can't tell you his ideas, I don't know about his patent situation- but he has some crazy ideas. He wears a mickey mouse watch, he had the craziest caterpillar mustache, but J has his appointment the other day and reports that the stache is no more. He talks about how the later seasons of the Sopranos weren't violent enough while holding sharp dental instruments in my mouth. His staff is all women- I don't know how he pulls this off with out seeming creepy. And that goes for the mustache, too.

Now how about this: My gums started bleeding this morning and haven't really let up. I can only think this doesn't bode well for my bank account, or my teeth.

When J had his dental appointment last week, he said the dentists and hygienists gathered around him and gushed about how fabulous his teeth were. I believed the word 'dynamite' was used. During my appointment I heard "Oh..I don't like this at all. This isn't good. If its still like this in a week you need to come back."

And he looks much better without the mustache.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Teddy has a smile

H has been asking for some time now if she could draw a smile on teddy. I, while SO impressed that she asked instead of just doing it, kept saying no. We only draw on paper, blah blah blah. She asked again last night, and something clicked in me and I (finally) saw that this was a really big deal to her. So I said, no, we won't draw on him, but we can sew a smile on him. Tomorrow. There was some discussion and indecision about what color his smile would be. Last night ended with me promising we'd make teddy smile today. I really hate making promises, especially to H, because you just never know.

While H was at school S and I went to get some embroidery thread, we got black, brown and pink. There were tantrums, there was traffic, the roads icy, I really wanted to watch CNN.

After school, while I was glued to CNN watching the inauguration, I started sewing teddy's smile. H looked at the needle and got very serious- 'its not going to hurt teddy, right?' She couldn't watch. I confess to being a nervous wreck and wondering what I was thinking jamming a needle in this treasured creature. I had a lot of performance anxiety.

The craziest thing, looking at these pictures, H was absolutely right. Teddy needed a smile.
before smile

with smile

Smiles all around

Where I'm from

I am completely shocked at how moved I am by these moments leading up to Barack Obama's inauguration. I have been moved to tears all day. True that years of attempting stoic badassery in my youth have backfired and now I'm the kind that cries at insurance commercials, but I am just amazed at this moment. At so many people coming together. At the hope.

My relationship with the United States is one I am still working to understand. My heart is in Mexico. I left Mexico before I was ready, and resented this country for that. I have struggled about what it means to look like I'm 'from' here but feeling 'from' somewhere else where I will always look like an outsider. I haven't lived in Mexico in 20 years. (20 years!) which ads more confusion about where it is I'm from.

When I first moved to Mexico, it was a different story. I was 8, and didn't want to leave my friends. I didn't know anything about Mexico. I thought donkeys and cactus, and as much as my sisters and I laughed at all the questions we'd get when we came back to visit- (do you have water there? Have you heard of the Dallas Cowboys?) I might have asked those questions too, at 8.

We DROVE to Mexico City from Rochester NY. It was long. It was hot. My two sisters, my mother and father and I- in a large bright orange van with out air conditioning. With a car sick collie and a cat who screamed the whole way. We got to the border and were turned away- the one person who could sign the papers for us to cross the border was on vacation. I'm not sure how long we were detained, but long enough for us to detour to live at our grandparents house in Colorado and go to school there for a few months. When we finally got to Mexico we lived in a hotel for (ever? It seemed long), our belongings stuck in New Orleans - (I don't know why, I was 8).

I wasn't happy. My cat ran away, I didn't speak the language, everyone stared at me because I was blond. I vowed to never learn the language. Having read the Black Stallion way too many times I often (too often to comfortably admit) tried to look wistfully, mane blowing in the wind, nostrils twitching, in the direction of my home. I am very directionally challenged, I could have been longing for South America for all I know.

I'm not sure when it changed. Somewhere during my 10 years there, Mexico wove itself into my being. As soon as I recognized this, I learned Spanish what seemed like over night. I stopped fighting it, and it came out of my subconscious. I fell in love with every aspect of Mexico, the ground, the dirt even. I understood what it was like to love a place- why people fight for their country. I think that was the beginning of the end of the aforementioned stoic badassery

Watching Obama today, and listening to so many people from so many places and walks of life feel at home here makes me remember that it takes all kinds. Today I am proud, if not for a country then for a people. Who are here, home, from everywhere, and that is the great thing about this country.

While was sitting here, waxing poetic about where one is from, my daughters were in the kitchen dumping water on the floor. So right now I'm from the house that has no dry towels.

Monday, January 19, 2009

When it bites you in the ass and you don't even mind

Making dinner tonight, H comes into the kitchen and turns the lights out. No matter the hour of day, unless the lights are on in the kitchen you can't see a thing. With her usual impeccable timing, I was there holding something hot and not able to see where to put it down.
me: "Turn those lights back on right NOW! I HATE it when you do that!"
H (quietly): "We don't use 'hate'"
No. No we don't. But I really, really, really, really don't like it when she turns those damn lights out when I'm making dinner.

Drawing Curious George

It hasn't exactly been the productive, getting things done day I was aiming for, but some fun nonetheless. H and I just did the draw Curious George tutorial (tutorial?! I am an art geek. That seems a bit much!) that's on the bonus features of the Curious George DVD. What impressed me the most was how much H really wanted to do it, she got all her materials out. At first I tried to do it with out the DVD, thinking I didn't need to reference it- but she kept yelling at me "Mom! No! That's not right!" with such urgency that I put the DVD back on and paused it a thousand times to allow us to draw up to that point. She was right, I wasn't going about drawing Curious George the way they said to on the DVD. It made me very proud, how excited and serious she was about doing it right- and I was pretty impressed with her technical ability, I have to say.

Not bad, eh?
And here's a blurry picture of mine:

Thinking about this now makes me laugh. Its my way to attack things head on, hope for the best and call my mistakes character. I was saying to her, yeah yeah, we'll draw Curious George- we don't need the eraser until the end, she was going insane IT SAYS WE NEED A PAPER PENCIL AND ERASER TO GET STARTED- which is just like her father. Everything in a line, everything just so. As much as this anal behavior can make me want to jump off buildings, I do sometimes wish I had just an once or so of it.

Here's to the gene pool- and hoping for the best of both worlds. The patience to do it right, and the ability to roll with the punches if it doesn't come out quite the way you planned.


Oh the funk. I think I'm on the upward swing, crawling out of this pit. Its a tell, when I start taking world events to heart the way I did a few days (weeks? I don't know) ago- that I'm about to slip down that slope. Some moping, some stomping, some fretting- I'm almost ready to move on.

The thing about the funk is that its makes me feel like I'm swimming in concrete. With this treadmill existence I have, if I stop all hell breaks loose. I do feel like a hamster on a wheel of dishes, laundry, finances and futile attempts these days. The laundry and dishes expand, choking me and shutting out the light, the funk breeds and grows.

But, I'm about to Lysol that shit. I will get up, make myself look at tax papers, as our appointment is a week from today. (Will I make it in time? Stay tuned.) I will get to the bottom of whats responsible for the stench in the refrigerator. And something else productive, like maybe move the plate of apples that I just found in the window sill.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

bad mood and freak show

I am in such a foul mood. The kind that feels like poison. I'm having images of tourettes, or rabies. I wouldn't be surprised if I'm frothing at the mouth. And the worst part is that there is no reason for this. Or, well, I don't know the reason for it.
I woke up tired again- and this is ridiculous, the girls slept until 8. I brought S into our bed at 6, but she went back to sleep until 8, and only kicked me a few times. I can't sleep all the way with the girls in our bed, though. It feels a bit out of body- I'm sleeping, I know I'm sleeping but I'm on some kind of heightened alert. H was up a few times during the night, I don't know whats going on with her, shes been waking up a lot. I'm thinking it has something to do with the fact that I said to another mom in our gym class, "shes a great sleeper now" I said it out loud and with confidence, with out a disclaimer, or knocking on any wood or even formica.

S is in some kind of velcro mode and won't. get. away. In a proud parenting moment I said "Whats going on with you freak show?" Of course H is on the floor laughing FREAK SHOW!? Fabulous.

Off to mend my mood.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Andrew Wyeth

I am having a day in awe of Andrew Wyeth. He lead such an incredible life- painting since he was 14 (please- don't fact check me. I think I read that somewhere.) Painted beautiful, haunting, glowing images until he died in his sleep in his 90s. A full life of painting and seeing.

While I've always appreciated Wyeth, I may have taken him for granted. I am not the most knowledgeable about his career. I'm in Pennsylvania and the state believes he was our personal artist, and his landscapes, when not of Maine, are very familiar. People here speak of him as if they know him. The paper this morning talked to a waitress at the diner he ate at once a week.

I love the stories that Wyeth's neighbors in Chadds Ford would lead tourists astray when they came hoping to find his studio. I've heard, and this could be artist urban legend, that he had lead tourist astray himself, replying when asked "Andrew Wyeth? Never heard of him"

Friday, January 16, 2009

The grocery chronicles version ten million

If having water for dinner for the next year meant I wouldn't have to go grocery shopping with S again, I'd do it. I suppose that is what it would mean, but it would be cruel to not feed my children simply because I think I my fragile sanity will shatter into a thousand tiny shards if I have a repeat performance of this mornings shopping trip.

Its not that the store behavior is any different, but how I'm able to handle it is. There is always the refusal to stay in the cart. I do ridiculous things like decide (and here I picture myself in a crown with a staff) Today... we will not be snacking while shopping. I...have...spoken....The deli lady gives S cheese. 2 pieces. It lasts one aisle. Today she wanted the rest of the cheese, and was trying to jump out the cart to get it. There is no belt that will contain this child, shes like houdini. There was screaming, head bashing, floor lying, feet kicking. I maneuvered us all the way across the store to the bagel bin, tore one in half, half to feed the monster and half to show to the cashier to prove that I am not stealing bagels, despite my desperation. S was appeased. I had store staff coming up to me for the rest of the time I was there saying "Oh! She was just hungry!" No. No she was not hungry. She was pissed because she was not getting her way. Oh the long and winding tangled web of a road we have ahead.

I gave into the eating in the store. I brought out the pacifier. I said no walking. I said no walking with the bagel. I said, ok you can walk with the bagel.

She won the battle, but I'll win the war. I will.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

What'sa matta you HEY!

Do you remember this song:
What'sa matta you, hey!
Gotta no respect, whatta you think you do,
Why you looka so sad? It's-a not so bad, it's-a nice-a place,
Ah, shaddap you face!

Well for some reason it popped into my head a few days ago and I can't stop singing it. I say "for some reason" but I'll tell you the reason. S WONT STOP SCREAMING! So I follow her around all day saying "What'sa matta you HEY!" Which H finds very funny, so at least theres that.

This morning I actually pulled a skirt out of the hamper to break up the patterns H put together. I continue to put out clothes for her to wear, but really should just save myself the time. She says, every day, "MOM! I want bright and SHINY!" Like I'm the biggest idiot around. Which I just may be, because at the beginning of the fall I bought H a pair of brown corduroys (Brown. What was I thinking?) I thought because they have gold sparkles in them that they'd pass. Plus, she needs to have SOMETHING that is a solid color. These pants have become like broccoli. I try to sneak them into everything. They were vetoed yet again today. She went with a bright green shirt with tiny black owls all over it with bright orange leggings that have flowers. One pink sock one orange. The dirty skirt (its not THAT dirty!) is purple- the only solid color H will wear. Oh and this is all topped of with a fuchsia fleece sweatshirt with hearts on it. And of course the purple ear muffs AND a purple hat.

What evs.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Split personality

I'm at the WHY do I bother?! part. I have so many ideas, plans, obstacles to conquer and just writing this sentence I've been interrupted 5 times. H won't sleep, I don't know why.

I feel split down the middle between parent and artist. I can't help the art part, it won't go away- if I don't feed it it gets worse. During the bad times it feels like a demon mafia demanding its kick back. The good times are of course good, and satisfying and make me feel all is right with the world- which for jaded cynical me is really saying something. As pushy as the drive to create, produce and express is, it really has nothing on the pushy needs and wants of my children. And they should come first, thats not my point.

Theres a minuscule line between art and self, and if I don't nurture the art, I loose the self starting with the mind. I need to do work, but it is so hard to do the work. Thus the WHY do I bother?!

When H was born, coming up to 5 years ago, I told myself I'd take some time off. I took about 2 years off, started to get into the swing of things- learned how to be an artist and a mother- then S came. People do it, they have kids, they create art. From the outside it may appear that I'm doing it too, I have kids, I have done some work- but it doesn't feel like enough, and I can't get myself out there the way I should be.

Christ in the morning, theres H calling me again.

I don't mean to complain- I love that I have this time with the girls, I know I'm lucky to be able to spend this time with them. I try to tell myself to wait on this work stuff- there will be time for that. I still feel split.

Amy Stein
has a show at the Print Center right now that I want to get down to. Its called Domesticated- I think its meant more as a commentary of humans coexisting with the wild- but the first image I saw was a suburban house with wolves in the trash outside and I really related to it. (No, not just because of my animals in the trash obsession of late.) It made me think of this split thats in me.

She's giving a lecture next week that I'll try to get down to also- but know that I'll be sick to my stomach with why aren't I doing what shes doing? Why aren't I there yet?

I'll remind myself that I haven't showered, can't believe I left the house the way I did today, haven't gone up to the studio because of an hour of back and forth up and down stairs saying 'no, you can't sleep in mommydaddy bed'. That tonight I made dinner with 2 kids running in circles around my legs, trying to climb on top of the refrigerator, and into the oven, and just when I thought if it got any more chaotic I'd start crying, Ruby came up to me and vomited what looked to be a bucket full of water with a couple Cheerios and some sticks in it at my feet. Thats why.

No, I wouldn't change it, I wouldn't trade it. I just want it all. Please.

Suck it

I have such a love hate with the pacifier. It is so good at pacifying, but so stupid looking I can hardly stand it. H would never go for one, and while frustrating to listen to her near constant crying for 3 months, I was happy that she didn't have one. She never went for her thumb either. Or any kind of blanket- Teddy is as close as it gets, and sometimes I feel I push that relationship. The closest it got with H was a little pink slipper she'd carry around. And now she sleeps with ear muffs every night, insisting that Teddy sleep in his own bed, while I cover my mouth to hold back telling her to practice what shes preaching.

S, on the other hand, is very much enamored of all things comforting. Of the monkey blanket, of the kitty, of the other kitty. And of the pacifier, which as far as I can tell is just called 'that'. We need to have the whole cast of characters at bed time.

Now that shes getting older I figured its high time to limit this "that" use. My original rules of pacifier (which lasted all of 5 minutes) was that it was to be used only for sleeping, and never leave the crib. But thats how they get you, those pacifier people, they just work so well that next thing you know their only allowed in the crib and the car. Then its the crib the car and the stroller. Then you add the shopping cart. Then you say screw it. Free reign pacifier, knock your self out.

I've started leaving the pacifier at home when we leave the house. Now this may seem to not be a big deal, but it feels like I'm playing with fire. S is a second child, so I don't care at all about the volume of her tantrum or what anybody thinks, but she has some physical tantruming. She tries to knock herself out of her misery and its all I can do to prevent it. She is hard to hold on to. Picture a fish, no, a shark, out of water. The flailing, the flapping, where a shark would be gnashing his teeth, S instead head butts. If not your head, her head. Any head will do. The only logical thing to do is to abandon the mission and leave where ever you are- but I'm too stubborn for this, and also can't bear to spend the time coming out a second time. My point here is that the pacifier often saves me- so the hardest one to wean from the pacifier it turns out is me.

We started a few days ago. I can relate to the lack of control a small person with no control has, so I tried to let her control not bringing the pacifier. Which of course isn't controlling at all. Smoke and mirrors. Thats how I run this operation. After S woke up Id say, "ok! Put the paci back to bed- Bye paci!" And she'd put it in her crib, I'd give her a high five, she looked proud. This was all going very well- I even made the mistake of thinking 'wow- not so bad after all.' Well, then she realized what it meant for her to put the paci back to bed- and our walk down stairs in the morning became challenging. Me having had no coffee, and trying to avoid being head butted and falling down the stairs.

Then theres the crying all day. For the last two mornings I have had to force S out of the house to drop H at school. After forcing her shoes and coat on. I don't know if this is pacifier related or not. Yesterday morning she asked for ice cream, when I said she couldn't have any she had her shark tantrum for 45 minutes. I timed it. Today S asked again for ice cream, but accepted that she couldn't have any. Instead she asked for a banana on the way out the door. I said no- (it only takes one time to learn the banana mushed in the car seat lesson) but then said fine ok after the freak out. When handed the banana she threw it across the room. (J said, maybe thats why she wanted it?)

Its a work in progress. One day at a time.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

I may stop reading the local news

I opened up the newspaper this morning to the usual doom and gloom and shock and awe. There is some awful news out there these days, but its the truely horrific human interest type shit that makes the local news so disturbing and makes me think sticking my head in the sand isn't such a bad idea.

Some head lines:

"Daughter, friend held in father's death"
A girl paid her boyfriend 1000 bucks to shoot her father because she didn't like the way he was yelling at her. The pair then hacked him a part with a chainsaw and rolled him up in a carpet and left him in the woods, where he was discovered by a deer hunter. That shit doesn't even work in the movies- what the fuck? And if you used the chainsaw, why would you need to roll him up? To say nothing of the obvious what is going ON? That kids are shooting their parents and cutting them into pieces.

Then theres:
"Guilty plea in murder of young hobo"
A hobo. Thats what the article said. It went on to say he was addicted to heroin and left his prior roller hockey champion life to "travel the country as part of a culture of people who ride the rails, squat in abandoned buildings, and panhandle." The kid who killed him was apparently coming to the defense of his girlfriend who was sexually assaulted by the 'hobo'. I used to know a lot of people who remind me of what this hobo may have been like, and that makes it feel more tragic to me in a way- on both sides. The article is clearly sided with the hobo, first off by calling the kid that. The story ends with the mothers of both kids crying in court, the hobo's mother empathising with the other kid's mother because they understand each other, as mothers.

I pray to anyone whos listening that I never have to understand another mother in that way, from either side. I can't stand to read this shit anymore. Can't we all just get along and all that.

Monday, January 12, 2009

talking more trash

Ok, I am telling myself this is the last picture of my trash can I will post. That is my serious intent. I will try. But check this out:

What the hell? I do feed these creatures, quite well, as does S at any chance she gets. The dogs are the clean up crew, and the perma snacking that goes on around here creates quite a crumb bounty. And that says nothing of the handouts.

I am paying for my smug boastery about my trash latch- however. The other day I had gone across the street for FIVE minutes to retrieve H from our neighbors house. S didn't even have shoes on, thats how fast I went. The dogs sought other destruction and found H's lunch box. I walked in the door to find lunch box foam all over the floor, and yet another tupperware lid with teeth marks in it.

This is a relatively new lunch box that replaced the last one which met the same fate (which replaced the LAST one which met the same fate) the damage was just on the inside of the lunch box, so I brought out the duct tape. H was not thrilled about me fixing her lunch box with duct tape, so I brought out some rainbow stickers. I have heard it said that duct tape fixes anything. Not so. Rainbow stickers fix anything. This morning, when I sent her to school with her lunch in her duct taped rainbowed lunch box I wondered if this moment would come up in a therapists office some day. It made me think of something my mother always said when we were growing up. Her pat response to the (frequently made) statement "you're EMBARRASSING me!" was "Well, at least I'm not boring you." Got it.

CHO, Motha F-er

I've been working on taxes and financial aid forms. My head is a tangled mess from numbers relating to our finances. Insurance premiums, unpaid principles, line items, dependants, claims and all the rest. My head feels all at once like a centrifuge, a roulette wheel and that money sponge at the zoo that you put the quarter in and watch while is goes round and round earning its 25 cent entertainment value.

Once I get going with the numbers I get a strange little rush from all the pieces fitting together. In part because I'm amazed it makes some kind of sideways sense. Any real book keeper would be traumatized for life at my methods. I file in piles, when I file. Most of what I need is in a huge yellow folder that says 'to file' on it. Or in the shoebox next to it.

It goes downhill fast. Its easier to humiliate myself and call the mortgage company ask ask how much a property I own is insured for then to find the paperwork. Yes, I could find it if I HAD to. Then more self loathing at the part on the form where is says parent #2 salary and I write $0. Then underneath where it says occupation and I have to write 'homemaker'.

I only write 'homemaker' because thats what our accountant named me on our tax forms after the 3rd year of calling myself artist brought no income, I'm trying to keep things consistent. It kills me just a little to write that, though. Home maker. What does it MEAN? That I made my home? That I make my home? That I make the beds? I don't.

It reminds me of... I think it was... Still life with Woodpecker by Tom Robins in which the dishwasher preferred to be called an under water ceramic engineer. Homemaker sounds like I need an apron, like I need to know where the broom is at all times. Like I should go churn some butter. How about CHO, Chief home officer. Or just your highness.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Please get sick museum

Ah the sweet smell of vomit. I love to wake up to vomit at 6 am on a Sunday. Or on any day for that matter. I still need to bathe the vomiter, part played by S this morning. She's so sleepy, I feel badly dousing her in water even though she stinks. I woke up to her crying at 6 am, I don't know how long she'd been crying, but she was lying down which makes me think she'd been at it for a while. I need to go to bed early I think - I don't know whats with this not waking up lately. Anyway- there was vomit all over her crib, and monkey was positively soaked. This did nothing to change his appeal (for S, it did everything to change his appeal for me) Here she was snuggling with this soaking wet foul smelling blanket. I managed to pry monkey away to the wash- threw the kitties in for good measure and poor S wandered around searching for her friends for the whole wash and dry cycle. I was afraid to suggest any substitutes as this is how our entourage grew the first time.

My stomach is behaving a little strangely itself. I'm hoping its the coffee on an empty stomach. S and I went to the children's museum on Friday. Its called the Please Touch Museum- J and I always call it the Please Get Sick Museum. It has built in antibacterial gel dispensers in every room now so I thought by mass antibacterializing at every turn we'd escape the wrath. Perhaps I thought wrong.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Sweet mess

I would say about twice a year, I totally freak out about all the clutter in my life and do something about it. The 'do something about it' part is the biannual part- the freak out part is daily. I'm building the less cluttered pyramid brick by brick, makes me feel so much better than just freaking out about it every day. Go figure.

I've been finding things I've been oblivious to for months. Like a bowl full of tubes of dried up cake icing. On top of some "extra" cookie decorating sugar. I must have thought it might come in handy someday, after we all decorated enough cookies to finish up the arsenal of colored sugar I already have in the pantry. (Although, the way H decorates, that may not be as long as it sounds) There is an uncomfortably large part of me that never wants to throw away anything. That is my default, if I don't pay attention I will become some kind of Hansel and Gretel sugar hording witch.

This latest surge of organizing came from gluing that latch on the trash can. 8 years of these dogs getting into the trash, and a lifetime of past dogs getting into trash. And other things. Most notably some bright green playdough resulting in neon green dog poop, and even more notably a sock of my mothers then boyfriend- which my mother collected and washed then returned to its owner.

Its taken me a long time to lock up the trash. Then again, it wasn't all that long ago that I thought nothing of someone salvaging a sock from a pile of dog mess. Another day in the life.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Under lock and key

It has come to this:
Yes. Thats a latch on the trash can.
Because of this:

And this

It was hard to get pictures of the dogs by the trash can, they know they aren't supposed to go anywhere near it. Look at those guilty faces.

And yet, this is what I came home to today:

My latch held, so I'm happy. Looks like I'm destined to have to reposition trash bags and the actual trash can, which was in the middle of the kitchen for the unforeseeable future. And yes, the trash can is dented. Thats from when I channeled John McEnroe and kicked the can across the kitchen because I couldn't get the trash bag out. Its now even harder to get the trash bag out, what with the dent and all. Unless of course you are a vizsla with a taste for trash. Then its easy to get the trash out. Or It was, before the latch.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Feed me, Seymour

I'm hoping this is a growth spurt and not a tapeworm, but I'm having my doubts. S is eating like a T Rex. And still wants 'Moe'. Shes had so far: the better part of a bag of grapes, a pb&j sandwich, a waffle, a banana, a container of yogurt, a cheese stick, a granola bar and I think I'm forgetting something. She just squealed when I said "lets go downstairs for lunch" and she nearly tore my face off this morning grocery shopping trying to get to the bag of grapes that she housed as soon as we got home. Yesterday J went into work late so I could work on this kindergarten financial aid application (I'm still incredulous that I use those words in the same sentence) he yelled up to me, "I'm going out, to get S away from the refrigerator" When he came back he said "She really likes Burger King chicken nuggets. She ate all of them." Then proceeded to try and convince me she's on his side of our continual BK vs. McDonalds debate. Which is silly. We all know she prefers McDonalds.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Strobe lights, Bon Jovi and the moon

The ONLY thing I like about its being dark so early in the winter is that I just came down from getting the girls to bed and its 6:45.

Sometimes I have a pang of guilt when I come down and look at the clock. Sometimes I don't know what time it is when I start herding them upstairs. Sometimes I do. I feel extra guilty on nights like tonight when I don't give them a bath and can't even say its because its too late. I scrub the marker off their hands (and ears. and knees. and feet.) with a washcloth. Tonight I even tried to get the toothpaste that H put in S's hair (accidentally on purpose) with a washcloth. It didn't come out very well, but was an awesome mohawk gel. H was being a pest during the tooth brushing portion of the evening, as may have been indicated by the aforementioned toothpaste to the hair- she kept shutting the bathroom door and turning out the lights. Our bathroom is the size of a thimble to begin with- add myself and the two of them, the stepping stool- there's just no room. This could have gone two ways- I could have gone totally bat shit and lost my head screaming at her to turn the fucking light on and open the door, very easily in fact. Instead I carried on. The girls have toothbrushes that flash red light- in theory to get them to brush long enough- in the dark bathroom, they made a really cool strobe light. We danced around- it was very mosh pit-esque as there was no freaking room and we kept slamming into each other. Oh yeah, and S's mohawk.

Back in H's bedroom, S turned on the cd player. The girl is a serious music freak, she wants music all the time and dances like crazy. She's going to have dance routines soon, I know it. Dan Zanes started playing Hello, Hello, and Hannah says "Mom, can we listen to Bon Jovi?" WHHAAATTTT???????? She looked at me sheepishly and repeated "Mom, what does bonjour mean?" I don't know what so horrified me about Bon Jovi, other than having to suffer through more years of listening to Wanted Dead or Alive. (I have all Bon Jovi songs from every album etched permanently in my brain, along with the sound track from Annie, thanks to my sister, K) Have I scarred H from ever speaking french? Is she going to associate bonjour with freak out? "Bonjour, mademoiselle" "WHHAAATTTT?" I can see it now.

Then! And then! I'm recovering from that, and H says "Hey mom, look at this" I turn around and she has her bum in the air, shes mooning me! I couldn't help it, I cracked up (no pun intended) which means there will be many more moonings in my future. Not only that, but S caught on that it was funny, and she stuck her little diapered bum up in the air too. Two moons. Major not sleepy behavior ran rampant after that- the moon came out many more times until it really wasn't funny anymore.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Lest anyone think I exagerate about either the entourage or the earmuffs

The arg box

H bit the inside of her mouth tonight. After she ran around wailing and jumped in my arms- I sympathised with her and told her how much I hate it when I do that, and it makes me yell. She stopped crying and said "like the arg box?"

The arg box is known to most people as the DVD player mounted to the ceiling of their car. I don't like DVD players in cars on principle, I am a strong proponent of license plate bingo and the rest. We've never used the one our car came with, although we came awfully close on our drive to Virginia. I can't say that we'll never use it, I imagine we will at some point. I never told H what it was because I didn't feel like having the argument about watching movies on the way to the grocery store, but I strongly suspect she knows that its a DVD player and is humoring me. Or maybe she thinks I don't know what it is.

Ok, so why arg box? Because I am constantly hitting my head on this stupid DVD player, while buckling the girls into their car seats, and when I do I yell AAAARRRRGGGG! Instead of Holy shit mother of christ that hurt like a bitch.

next verse same as the first

This was not meant to be a sleep journal- but I can think of nothing else to say but how tired I am.

At the post office yesterday during my time at the counter, the clerk sighed and said twice "I'm so tired" to no one in particular. I thought- wow, I really don't care- and I usually care too much about random things like these. I actually thought "how boring to walk around saying how tired you are all the time." Yeah. And yet I go on. Sigh. I'm so tired.

One step forward two steps back keeping S out of our bed. She has never slept in our bed or expressed any interest in it until recently. I'd been bringing her in over the winter break, around 6, instead of just getting up like I usually do- she'd sleep until 7, or 7:30. Well, shes been waking up earlier and earlier to come in our bed. 2 am seems to be her preferred time. Where she used to just go back to sleep, now she leans and points out her bedroom door, squirms and growls. After much insistence and pissedoffery on my part, I've gotten her to go back in her own bed at 2, but when she woke up at 4:30 this morning, J was on his way out to take pictures, and couldn't sit with her-(and acting very defensively, "All I did was wake up!") I brought her in bed with me- I was too tired to resist and all my consistency went out the window. Was it worth the kicks of tiny heel to my eye socket? I don't think so. Will I regret tonight at 2 am? Ay-yuh.

Monday, January 5, 2009

If I had a hammer

H made her first saved up purchase from her piggy bank yesterday: a small flowered hammer she's had her eye one for months. I know, who knew flowered hammers exist. They do. And they have tools (weapons, J said) in the handle. Before J took her to the hardware store to get it, she picked up a pen and paper and asked "how do you spell hammer?" List and money in hand off they went.

Petite and with flowers, it is a real hammer and a bit scary for us the parents. Really, why does a 4 yr old need a hammer? She's hell bent on making a bird house, for one thing. So, we've established hammer rules, and she made it through the waiting period.

I came up with the perfect use of hammer today, and thought we should hang up S's kitty calender she got for Christmas. (S has been itching to cross out the days on H's calendar for some time now) So, I started the nail, and H gave a few taps. I had S in a headlock for her own safety, she wanted to hammer very badly. I suggested we let S hammer for a minute- expecting this would not fly- this was after all a major important big kid fancy hammer job. H didn't hesitate, and gave S the hammer, and I helped S 'hammer' while managing to keep myself and the dogs out of the way. S gave one little tap to the nail and H gave her a kiss and said 'I'm so proud of you! You did it!' S was beaming, and H was too. I wanted to bottle that shit.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Thanks for asking

This morning H asked me if I was tired. "Yes", I said. "Thanks for asking." She burst out laughing that crazy deep machine gun staccato that she has when shes laughing really hard. She made me repeat it five times- then, barely able to say the words through her laughter,"Ask me if I'm tired." I oblige- she spits out "yes! thanks for asking!" What a wacko. Seems like my side of the family's bizzaro sense of humor has seeped into another generation.

S is testing my sense of humor and giving me gray hairs by the bucketful. She is TWO. No, not yet calendarwise, but is exhibiting text book two year old behavior, and boy is it terrible. She is incredibly cute, and whip smart and she does make me laugh- she is so sweet, I love to watch her care for her entourage of kitties- I can't help but pick her up and squeeze her many times during the day and must look like a total freak the way I'm always smelling her hair and sucking in that baby smell. Its the flip side of tantrums at the drop of a hat, combined with the recent how to sleep amnesia shes been having are pushing me closer to the edge. She is a demanding, neat freak tyrant who, if she had the words, would be following me around all day yelling "I NEED IT NOW!" She does have the words to say "uh-oh! UH-OH!!" about anything that's on the floor that shouldn't be, and in this house that's lot.

So lets see- H is back at school, I've been to the bank, the post office, Target- I have forgotten again to return the library books, I'm procrastinating paying bills (and finishing the financial aid application for where H might go to Kindergarten, and also avoiding doing the taxes that have to be done early also for said potential kindergarten) we're officially back. The fun and games of slacker late December are over, yeah yeah happy new year, now get to work.

All about the peanuts

Its times like these- when while getting dressed I wonder if wearing earrings counts as getting dressed up- when I don't feel at all like a grown up. Yet, I am increasingly called ma'am at stores and restaurants. Even as I walk around thinking I need grown up clothes because all I have or wear are jeans and t-shirts.

H just told me she wanted to have peanuts for breakfast. I thought to myself "what are you an elephant? Who has peanuts for breakfast" which lead my mind down the elephant peanut tangent- elephants eat leaves, trees, grass.. I'm sure they like peanuts, but am pretty sure herds of elephants don't walk around being sustained solely on peanuts. So who started this elephant peanut rumor? The mice that elephants are supposedly afraid of? H asked again for peanuts, as all this tangent in my mind was taking up time and I hadn't answered her- she said "can I have peanuts? Like an elephant?" So either shes reading my mind, or they plant this peanut/elephant thing early.

Upon googling elephants and peanuts, I confirm what I already know a) sure, elephants like peanuts if you give them to them b) this has been pondered a lot already, mostly it seems by drunk college students. So, see? I'm not a grown up after all.

Ode to sleep

How can someone who has been up all night and then all the way up and out of bed at 5 be in a good mood? I would love to find out so I can replicate this feat. I was up most of the night, and then out of bed at 7 and am not particularly pleasant, and J was up most of the night and up at 5 and was most definitely not pleasant at all. So, how does the sleepless monster do it? And I suppose a why would be in order. Todays sleepless monster is S. H had her sleepless moments, believe me, but she is now a champion sleeper. H never napped, even as a newborn. She didn't sleep through the night until after she was a year old. I've blocked it out, but I'm pretty sure is was way after a year old, maybe closer to 2. H's sleeplessness hit us hard because we were not already exhausted by one child when she came along. We were used to leisurely mornings and sleeping late if we stayed up too late. I am not even asking for that- I would just like to sleep for some consecutive hours.
This is on my mind largely because we have been getting more sleep in the last few weeks thanks to the generosity of our family. J's parents get up with the girls whenever they're here or we're there, my mom had them sleep over her house. I was actually well rested on new years eve day, the girls had slept over at my mothers house the night before and I felt so sharp, so awake- it was making me nervous, actually. I kept thinking, whats wrong with me? Whats with this energy? Then it hit me, I had gotten to sleep the night before, all the way through the night- and had woken up when I was ready to, not jolted awake by the chainsaw yell of S- which is how I'm woken up most mornings. (She really does sound like a chainsaw. Once they were doing some work on trees down the street while S was napping, and I went up to get her- she was sound asleep. It was the chainsaws I heard.)
I have been functioning exhausted for so long now, and I know I'm not alone in this, that its the new normal. Well, not that new- but I'm still working on what it means to feel like you're on speed when in reality you have gotten a night sleep. I probably won't have to worry about that for a while.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Stinky guilt

I am so full from too much pizza and cake at a birthday party we took H to tonight. We went back and forth about going, H has had a fever off and on for the last few days- but she was fever free since the morning, and we were all really housebound- so off we went. H was tired, not herself and I worried I'd made the wrong choice in going to this party. I'm still not sure.

J's parents stayed over last night- which was nice because J and got to go out (2nd time this week!) and they woke up with the girls this morning- J and I slept in until 1o. I am ever so slightly racked with guilt, though. After J and I got home last night, we still wanted to talk and weren't quite ready for bed, so since J's mom was asleep on the couch, we took 2 beers upstairs to our bedroom. Except we didn't just take them up, we snuck them up. Who wants to try and explain to one's mother (or worse ones mother in law) why they are taking beer up to the bedroom- what is this? Are we 18? (This is very telling that I think this is 18 year old behavior- especially since I edited myself and the original age I was thinking of was 16.) I kept saying to to 'we're almost 40! What are we doing?' First of all, we have a few years until we're 40- I'm not going to say 'almost' again until a few days before my 40th birthday. Secondly, what they hell does it matter? It was fun to hang out with my husband and feel like a kid again, and if that means talking and drinking beer in ones bedroom with sleeping parents in the house, so be it.

The guilt I have is not so much about that, but that the girls woke up at 2- and I didn't hear them. I wouldn't have believed this possible- I heard them when they woke up at 1, and got up with them then- but apparently my mother in law was up with them from 2:30 until 3:30. Then, because my mother in law is guilt and martyrdom impersonated, she told me three times this morning how H kept saying she only wanted me, and kept calling for her mommy, and that S was screaming ("and I mean screaming!") While I am a bit frustrated that I wasn't there for H, I am glad my mother in law was. I did explain to H that J and I were going out that that Dado (what she calls her grandmother) would be there if she woke up. Yes, I did apparently need the sleep. I like to think I would have woken up if my mother in law weren't here. I am there every night- but can't all the way quiet the nagging voice that has been reminding me I wasn't there last night.

In other news, today S started announcing that shes stinky when she needs a diaper change. I hadn't realized it, but when ever I think shes pooped I ask "Are you stinky?" Its very cute, she points at her backside, gives a stern look and says "Stinky."

Friday, January 2, 2009

Oh what a night

I know there will come a time when I long for the days the girls would crawl into bed with us, and we all were packed like sardines that kick like mules. I also know that this morning I certainly do not long for this in the near future. Yesterday I said I could have a day like I did for the rest of the year. If I have a night like I had last night for the rest of the year I am in big big trouble. And so will be the filth mouth of my offspring. I have done a reasonably fantastic, if I do say so, job of containing my expletives to when the girls are asleep or somewhere else. All bets are off in the middle of the night though.

And, S, what is with the constantly slamming me in the refrigerator door? It is completely maddening- made more maddening when you laugh at me when I angrily (and this morning colorfully) tell you to stop.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!

I read the Mutts comic strip in the paper this morning and it said something to the effect that what you do the first day of the year is what you'll do all year long. I've never heard that before and it caused me some agita. In the comic strip the dog (or cat I don't remember) was eating and he was fine with doing that all year. Survival and all. I found myself worrying all day though, if things hit a snag- they way they do all day, at least for me, Oh no! My whole 2009 is going to be full of tantrums! Full of dogs getting into the trash! Full of nit picking and nay saying! And, it probably will be. I'm going to turn this half empty bus around though and tell you some half full stories. We spent the day with friends and family. We ate all my favorite foods: chocolate, cheese, salmon, olives, AND had wine and coffee. J woke up with the girls and let me sleep. I didn't worry too much (I know I worried about this day being everyday, but thats superstition, not worry. I didn't worry about taxes, or how many ideas are in my head that aren't on paper, about the endless things to do, that the house is a mess, I didn't worry about any of that. Too much. Until maybe now.) The girls were good to each other, asking after each other, checking in or each other. Making each other laugh. I could have this day for the rest of the year.

I would change a few things, of course. I didn't get the dogs out for a walk, didn't do any work. (Ok, enough with that. Does anyone work on New Years day? I'm on the 364 more days like this thing) And, H had a mystery fever that came out of nowhere and seems to have gone just as quickly. I don't want her to not feel well for the rest of the year. She put herself to bed in the afternoon (unheard of), and asked for some Gatorade- insisted on going to my moms house for dinner, as was the plan, and lay down there (unheard of) and then was fever-less and back to her energetic loud self.

2009. H will start kindergarten this year. She'll turn 5, and S 2. I WILL get my website up and updateable. I WILL do more work. Those aren't resolutions, I don't do that.

To quote my sister on the subject of 2009, bring it!