Sunday, September 30, 2007

This Really Happened

Last night, as I was putting the boys to bed, Nicholas picked up a dixie cup that had been sitting by his bed all day and brought it up to his mouth. Lillian was there, and she said "Nicholas, whatever that is, it's old. I didn't give it to you." And I said "I think it's juice - did your Daddy give you juice?" And Nick said "I think it's pee."

I took the little cup from him and smirked. "No," I said. It's juice, why would it be -" I sniffed it.

It was pee.

I am well familiar with the laziness of males that causes them to suddenly be unable to walk ten feet to an appropriate place and need to pee in cups or jars or bottles. I drove cross country with two guys. I have had guys as roommates. I have seen the horror. I do not understand it, but I have seen it. The last place I expected to see it again, however, was in my own child. At least at the age of THREE.

"Why is there pee in a cup?" I asked as I poured it down the drain and sprinkled Comet in the basin. "Well," Nick said, "I had to pee..."

Of course Lillian was there to witness the whole thing, and she was kind of laughing, and I suppose I was laughing, too. I honestly didn't know Nick was able to aim that well. But apparently, he is. I just hope that he listens to what I said and does not repeat this behavior... at least until he's grown up and away and living somewhere else where I won't have to come face to face with it.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Remember to Remember...

For the past couple of months now I have been lugging around a cell phone with a dead battery. I am not as dependent on my cell phone as some other people I know. For one thing, I do not get cell phone reception in my own house, so immediately the time I can actually use the thing is cut down to about 5% of the time. For another thing, and please no one take offense, but I strongly believe that cell phones should NOT be used while driving. I know, I have several friends who use commute times as the time to catch up and make calls, and I love hearing from them, but it's dangerous and unsafe and whenever I see a driver on the phone I want to throw something through their windshield because usually they are also doing something really stupid and just haven't noticed. When I need to use my phone while driving, I get off as soon as I can. So... there's another chunk of time I don't usually use my phone.

The thing is, when you're pregnant, particularly as you get bigger and bigger and it seems more and more likely that your body might just split open at any moment, a cell phone seems more and more like a must. What if my water breaks while I am at the grocery store? I should have my phone with me. Just in case. Because you don't want to have to drive yourself back home - even if it's only 15 minutes - when you might be having contractions. That makes cell phone use while driving seem logical.

Anyway, I plugged in my cell phone. And for the past four days it has been sitting here on the kitchen counter, fully charged, as I drove around doing errands and shopping and picking kids up from school and taking them to the park. If I don't forget to charge the thing I forget to bring it with me.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Nothing Personal

It's nothing personal, but I hate everyone this morning.

Perhaps it has to do with the fact that the boys have started waking up at 5am again. Perhaps it has to do with the fact that I am pregnant and my fingers are swollen and I am uncomfortable. Perhaps it has to do with the fact that I can't do anything without one of kids wanting something from me, and being very aggressive and not too polite about how they are asking. Or perhaps it is just that my heart is two sizes too small.

Whatever. Just... I'm an Emotional Idiot. So get away from me. I mean, come here.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Defenses Up

I can't stand it when parents worry so much about what their kids eat.

I'm not saying we, as parents, should be feeding our kids ring-dings and happy meals non-stop. I am not insane. But there are parents out there that so carefully monitor their children's food intake that the child can reach the age of fourteen without ever having had to metabolize sugar in some of it's most glorious forms.

I feel a bit silly "talking" this way because I don't like to sound ignorant, or as though I am against health food. But the truth is, I am against most health food. Not that health food is BAD, but I find most health food BORING, and honestly, if I had to live life without diet soda or pie or snickers bars... I'm just saying that I find most (ahem) "Health Foods" lack taste. I mean, actual flavor. I have never been able to cook brown rice so that it doesn't resemble a bowl of boiled beetles. Whole grain pasta never quite cooks long enough for me. I will eat fruits and vegetables, but I am very picky about bruising and rotting and after a few days I go back to the frozen variety.

So when it comes to feeding my children... sometimes I feel a bit outdone by mothers who scan ingredients for artificial sweeteners. When I grew up, juice was healthy, but I know parents that now refuse to give it to their children because of the sugar. It's not that I don't want my children to be healthy. I do! I really, really do. I want them to be able to make the right choices and I would like to do whatever I can to prepare them to make those choices. But does that mean pretending that twinkies are heroin and banning them from my house?

There is this theory that playing in the dirt helps boost the immune system. That is to say, if you disinfect everything your child touches, and your baby grows up in a mostly sterile environment, her body will not learn to fight off germs that one might encounter every day. So as the child grows, she will actually get sick more often. I like to apply this theory to food. If I expose my children to sugars and fats, not to ring-dings but to the occasional ice cream and pizza and oreo and chocolate chip cookie, then my children will learn to metabolize it.

Funny thing is, my kids are mostly good eaters. Sure, they'll go for the junk food if I give it to them, which I will occasionally. But they really like tomatoes and broccoli. They like chicken and green beans. They love apples and oranges and pineapple. Nathan will turn flips for berries and Nicholas still has never met a food he loves as much as cottage cheese. The doctor says they are healthy, they are growing well and their weight is fine. Both of them are bright boys. So am I really doing anything wrong, here? Why do I then feel threatened when I see parents refuse juice of any kind, scanning labels for sugars as though it were poison? I guess I feel they are judging me, as a parent. It doesn't make sense, does it?

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Imaginary Friend

At Steve's old job he had a co-worker named Mario, and a people usually do with co-workers, Steve spoke to Mario on the phone from our home, and his name came up in conversation at the dinner table.

It just so happened that about this time Steve was playing a lot of Super Mario Brothers on his big screen, and some times he would let the boys watch him play. After all, it's almost like a cartoon, right? And both Steve and I began to have a sneaky suspicion that Nicholas had the idea both Marios were the same, and that Steve went to work with this little mustache dressed in red who jumped around a lot.

Time went by. Steve now has a new job at a new location. He no longer speaks to or about Mario. Nicholas, however, still speaks to him daily. In fact, Mario is now HIS "Office Guy." He speaks to Mario on the phone all the time. He talks about Mario constantly. Mario this and Mario that and Mario is five and sits in the back seat of the car. Mario also washed his hands and got his shirt wet. Mario doesn't have a toy car like this one. Mario likes lollipops, but only BLUE lollipops, and he shared his lollipops with Nick.

I find the presence of Nick's imaginary friend a little unnerving. After all, he came from nowhere and seems to be everywhere and I'm never sure if we're speaking about an adult or a child or an infant as it seems to change depending on the subject matter. I recognize the fact that this is a normal, even healthy thing, though, and I'm content to let Nick exercise his imagination and vocabulary with all the stories about Mario that he wishes. But no matter how strange it is for me, it is even stranger for Steve, who pictures his old co-worker whenever Nick speaks about his little friend.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Words, Words, Words...

When Nathan was born, Nicholas called him "Nay Nay" at first, and for a few months. Nathan is now about the age Nicholas was when he was born, and his language skills are improving daily. It really is amazing to realize that your child is telling you things. "Ahh! Communication!"

Nathan calls Nicholas "Brother." Probably because I am constantly saying "look at your brother!" or "That belongs to your brother!" or "You are getting to be just like your brother!" And now, when the two of us walk into Nick's classroom at the end of the day, Nate extends his arms for a hug, and rushes over to Nick shouting "BRUDDA!"

Nate is also the independent sort. He wants to get undressed himself, even when I can tell it will require help. "I Giddit!" he cries. And when he wants something he talks about "Habits" as in "I Habit?"

Yesterday I took Nathan to the doctor where he was declared to have an infection in each of his ears, and we were sentenced to "The Pink Goop," standard sentence, twice a day for a week. So far I have given Nathan two doses, and we have gone through half the bottle because that's how much he has spit out onto the floor, his clothing, his eyes, my clothing, etc. This morning, as soon as he saw the medicine dropper, he said "No." Then he said "M&M?" remembering that last night he got treats after his ordeal. I said no, because no mother says yes to M&M's at 7am. Then he asked for a "PeePop?" which is actually a lollipop. I again said no. During the 20 minutes it took for me to get him to swallow most of the meds, he managed to call out for him Daddy, for his Brother, and told he he didn't want it.

Meanwhile, Nicholas stood next to us, and kept asking if he could have some of Nate's medicine. Please?

Monday, September 24, 2007

Baby Brother

Also, Everyone must wish Jamie the Happiest of Birthdays!

Happy Birthday To You!



There is that saying, "Ignorance is Bliss." I've given it a (very) little thought and I've come to the conclusion that Ignorance is actually NOT bliss... or at lease, Bliss isn't necessarily ignorance. In my case, for example, Bliss is putting Nate in his bed and having him fall asleep ALL BY HIMSELF in a matter of minutes. And then having Nicholas do the same. And knowing that I will nopt have to sit with them to put them to sleep when they are filling out college applications. Bliss is also, by the way, having both boys STAY ASLEEP the WHOLE NIGHT while I am able to relax in my OWN BED, and dream actual dreams, and wake up feeling well rested and like a normal human that can actually function and do laundry and pack a school lunch without having a nervous breakdown.

Here is the second video in the "Twinkle" series. You might notice the camera jerk, or strange noises coming from off camera. This would be me and Steve laughing, because for some reason our children struck us a very extremely funny during these performances. Especially Nate, who for some reason remained in that very strange crouching position until the end, where he gives himself up for arrest.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

I don't know what this is.

Yesterday morning was great. Nathan was adjusting to his new sleeping arrangements - sure, I had to sit on him until he was almost asleep, but then he'd sleep in the bed the whole night long. And at least I COULD help him stay in the bed, because with climbing out of the crib it was a little bit harder.

Anyway, after a good night's sleep Steve actually took the boys AWAY to get haircuts, which was also good, because no matter how much I brushed down Nick's hair it would stick up all over the place. And they were gone for some time, which was also good for me, although not for them because poor Steve had to deal with the boys at the barber shop, which was crowded even for Saturday, and Nicholas is going through that "question" phase where he asks for everything and wants to do everything all the time. (Can we have a picnic in the garage? Can I have my very own soda? Can I take the pillow from your bed and give you the pillow from my bed? Can I wear my winter hat to the park? Can I brush my teeth you your toothpaste? Can I bring this bag to school?)

When the boys got home it was lunchtime, but Nathan headed right up to bed. "Nigh nigh" he said. And then... and then the world fell apart. I went to check on him, and he started to cry and WOULD NOT LET ME GO. He wouldn't fall asleep. He wouldn't really stop crying. His breath was hitching with sobs so that even when he tried to stop crying he would still be hitching and then the crying would start up again. I put him in the car to help him fall asleep, and he fell asleep thirty seconds into the drive. As soon as I stopped the car, however, he woke up. He cried and cried and cried, and he had no temperature or any other symptom so to speak of...

Eventually I put on the Tigger Movie, and he turned into himself again. It was as though nothing ever happened... until last night. At about midnight the whole thing started up again. I tried rocking him. I tried sleeping in the bed with him... the thing is, he would start the crying in his sleep, without waking up. I tried giving him Motrin, just in case there was something hurting him, and he swallowed about half of it before throwing a fit and then puking all over the bathroom floor.

I did not get a lot of sleep last night. And this morning Nate woke Nick up very early, and then I put in the Tigger Movie, again, just so I could sleep on the couch while they turned back into normal humans. And they DID turn back into their normal selves, which unfortunaely meant that they bounced like little Tiggers all over my trying-to-sleep body, tried crawling on the couch to sleep WITH me (there is no room for that anymore!), and asked me for juice, cereal, milk, a trip to New York, and chocolate covered graham crackers until I seriously wanted to cry.

Why do kids only get sick on the weekends? I don't feel like I can take Nathan to the Emergency Room and pay $100 just to say "he's been crying a lot instead of sleeping, but he's normal otherwise and has no fever." They would happily take my money and send me on my way, and then laugh at me before I was fully out the door.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Ladies and Gentlemen...

I like to think that I am supportive of my friends. But when I think about it, there are a number of performances, or concerts, or shows, which I have not been able to make it to. It's just not as easy as it looks. I have the feeling that, without kids, it would be a lot easier to make to the the assortment of friend-related activities I have missed. But regardless, the point is I feel bad for not supporting people more. And so... so I am vowing to be as supportive as I can. In any way that I can reasonably be, pregnant and with two small children.

Someone very special to me has started selling jewelry she makes over the internet. Check her out , she's OhSusanna. Her items are worth a look - I happen to think they are pretty neat.

And I will try to make more announcements as other performances and accomplishments are met. For the masses of readers this blog gets! Oh, and many more videos of Twinkle Twinkle.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Attention To Detail

The past few days I have been drinking more than my share of coffee.

I have never really been a coffee drinker. Every once and awhile I would stop and get a coffee on the way to work, or sometimes even grab one AT work if I sensed the day was going to need an extra lift, but I have always been perfectly content to get my caffeine fix from soda and chocolate.

Something happened, though. Steve started drinking coffee, and we started making coffee, and now that he's working at home, we're making coffee every single day.

When my mother was pregnant, she apparently drank one or two cases of TAB every day, but these days they warn you off everything when you are pregnant, including sugar, artificial sweeteners, and caffeine. So I usually try to limit the number of coffees and sodas I have in a day to one. Each. Lately, however, I have found myself pouring a generous second cup of coffee, and Steve has been staring at the coffee pot and asking me if I was SURE I made a whole pot?

Which brings us to this morning, when Steve somehow made it downstairs before we did, and suddenly he cried out from the pantry where the coffee maker is. "Have you really been making DECAF?" he asked. Decaf? Me? What? no. Not me. But apparently, YES. When I purchased the coffee as I usually do I somehow managed to grab a bag of decaf instead of a bag of regular coffee, and did not notice. All this week, that's what we've been having. Decaf. Which would explain why I have been so grumpy, and why Steve and I have both been drinking more than usual.

Steve, of course, has some idea that I had it all planned out. To thwart him and his caffeine consuming ways. "It's like the checks," Steve mumbled, referring to the time I ordered checks off the internet, and they somehow showed up with pictured of Winnie-The-Pooh all over them, and of course Steve thought I ordered them that way on purpose, and was a bit upset about them because it's one thing for me to hand over a check of Tigger and Piglet romping about in fall leaves, but quite another for Steve to write a check of a car part or a computer part with the same check. But I swear I just ordered plain old regular checks and I have NO IDEA how on earth we ended up with the ones we did, despite the fact that I really, really love Pooh and I can't blame him for thinking that way. Just like I have no idea how I could have purchased Decaf, make decaf for almost a week, and consumed the same product, all without noticing it was decaf.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Nothing Stays Where I Put It

I put the same items away more than just a few times each day.

On another note, I have recently given up my sewing room. When we moved in to this house, I took the smallest bedroom over as a sewing room, intending to spend hours in there happily quilting away. But I got pregnant and then had a baby, and I found that it is easy to quilt when one is alone, or even watching a movie, but when an infant is crawling around on the floor and trying to grab your fabric cutter to chew on, or start his very own collection of pins, quilting and sewing becomes an exercise in stress and needless torture. So the sewing room became a place where I would stick all random items "to be put away later." It was where I would put the gifts I would give people, the pictures to be stuck in albums or frames, the cards I wanted to keep...

But with the new baby coming, well... we have to stick him SOMEWHERE. I could fit Nick and Nate into the same room, but when Nate was born Nicholas was still napping twice a day, and I felt it made sense. At this point, Nathan is already down to one nap, and I don't think the older boys would be able to sleep through night feedings.

So I have spent hours taking things OUT of the sewing room and finding new homes for them. Today the delivery men arriving with a new bed, a big boy bed, one for Nathan. I am a little frightened, but ever since Nathan learned to climb out of the crib, bedtime has been a bit stressful and long, anyway. But now you know what will happen, don't you? Both boys will want to sleep in the new bed. There will be fighting and crying and tears and I am going to have to sit on Nathan to get him to stay in the bed and sleep.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Once Upon A Time...

Yesterday I registered Nicholas for Story Time at the library.

In the past, we've only done Toddler Story Times. Registration was done by phone, and parents simply called up (fighting the busy signal) and signed up their child for one of two morning sessions.

But Big Kid Story Time is a little different. It was a process that had always confused me. Instead of calling up, you had to be there in person, and it was done by number, and there were 5 different sessions available, a few in the morning, a few in the afternoon, and on different days... The registration leaflet said numbers were handed out as soon as the library opened at 9am. So I packed up both kids, and we were there a good ten minutes before the library opened.

As I drove up the dead end street where the library lives, I thought to myself that it seemed there were an awful lot of police and firefighters parked in the lots today, but I chalked it up to some public service meeting that I didn't know about.

And then we pulled into the library.

I just want to make clear that I had wanted to be there at 9am for a reason, and that Steve smiled at me indulgently as we left, exclaiming that he was sure we'd be back in ten minutes. Part of me thought he was wrong, but a bigger part of me really, really wanted to believe him.

There was not one parking spot at the library, and the line in front of the doors snaked down the walk and onto the walk beside the parking lot. Kids were running and screaming everywhere. The library was not yet open.

Once the library was open, the children's librarians handed out numbers to each person in line, which let me know just how many people were in front of me on the line. I was number 52. FIFTY TWO! So then we had to wait at the library, along with fifty four other families (there were only 3 people behind me) while the librarians called each number up and signed children of our town up for an hour of stories and arts and crafts each week.

I wasn't sure I was going to sign Nick up, anyway. I mean, he has school 3 days a week. I don't know if this is something he needs, or if it will just take away from time he could be doing something else. I've thought that it might make more sense to sign him up for gymnastics or music or something he can't get elsewhere. But this has obvious attraction because 1 - it's free and 2 - I know these librarians. Also 3 - Nick loves the library. So I went for it, figuring we had nothing to loose. Except, apparently for sanity. Because it was nuts there, it really was. I never expected it to be such mayhem.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Things are just normal

One of the fun things about having a child Nicholas's age is the ability to tease him. For example, whenever he asks me what we are having for dinner, I tell him we are having bugs. He never falls for this. He also never falls for the one where he asks where his Dad is and I tell him he went to the moon. I tell him all sorts of things - that I will sell him to the gypsies, that I will turn the pets into a stew, that I'm going to stay in bed all day. He doesn't believe any of it.

The other day Linda sent me an email filled with really funny photographs, and as I was scrolling through them, Nicholas ran up and started acting up - something both kids do frequently when I am sitting down and not paying attention to them. (I don't think they do it on purpose, I think they just see an opportunity and their little minds seize it.) In any case, instead of stopping what I was doing (I am REALLY working on the "not interrupting" thing) I pulled him up onto my lap as I was going through the pictures. And then we came to this one, the title of which was "Fridge Magnet":

Right away I started joking. "Look at the kitty that got stuck in the refrigerator door!" And then I took a look at Nick's face. He was staring at the photo with wide eyes and a pale face devoid of any humor whatsoever. And So I immediately changed tactics. "It's not real!" I said, smiling my biggest smile. "It's just a silly magnet that LOOKS like a kitty is stuck in the door. That's why it's funny!" And eventually he smiled and then walked away.

Honestly, I never wanted to be the kind of parent to torture small animals on front of my children. We even free spiders and bugs caught in the house rather than smush them. So I was horrified. But when you think about it... Steve watches all sorts of cartoons that involve limbs falling off, the Grim Reaper walking around, and people generally getting hurt... but smash ONE KITTEN in one door...

Monday, September 17, 2007

Running Late...

This morning I woke up to find that the power had gone out... but only for a matter of minutes, maybe even seconds. It's just that when I wake up I usually focus my groggy eyes on the cable box to tell me how insanely early it still is, and the cable box was dark.

The power was out just long enough, however, to knock out our internet connection until Steve did something to fix it, which he did thirty seconds after he woke up. But I usually post while he's still in bed.

And this morning we were in a bit of a hurry to get to school early, so that I could be back by 9am and sign up Nathan for Toddler Story Time at the library. So I didn't wait around to post, I just got on with my day until just now.

By the way, we did manage to get to school early this morning, and I was back in plenty of time to make the phone call to register Nate. However, when I picked up the phone and started dialing at 9am, the phone was busy... and busy, and busy, and I kept doing housework while pressing redial, and it didn't take THAT long, but when I finally got through at a quarter past nine, a full FIFTEEN MINUTES after registration officially started, the 9:30 class was already full. Which means that plan I had of dropping Nick off at school and then going right to the library has fallen through. And now I have this strange time lapse where I get to drop Nick off, return home, have snack, try to do... something? in that odd period of time we have, then stuff Nathan back in the car and take him to Story Time at 10:30. Then I get to hope he doesn't fall asleep on the way home because it isn't far, but it's far enough so that if he falls asleep, he might not nap, and then he turns into BABY CRANK at about 4pm, when napping will ruin his bedtime.

The end.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Not a Performing Monkey

For the sake of uploading a video... and because I am too tired to think of anything creative to say. You might have noticed I took yesterday off... or maybe not. Bloggers take days off all the time, and I usually don't. But these days I've hit a roadblock. Last week I got this burst of energy that make me feel like Tony the Tiger (GRRRRRRREAT!) and it only just wore off yesterday morning. Suddenly my back hurts and my abdomen hurts and all I could think of posting today were a bunch of "anytime" posts that could go up... well, anytime.

So. There we go.

Friday, September 14, 2007

The Long and Short of it

I spent too much time this morning trying to upload a very old video of Nicholas dancing. It was only thirty seconds long - not too long, but longer than Nathan playing the giant piano. And after two different attempts of waiting for over ten minutes, I gave up. Because this file wasn't THAT huge. I mean, waiting ten minutes for thirty seconds of video is just not worth it. Not to me.

So instead I thought I would once again draw your attention to the scary babies above, and point out that we have moved down one scary baby! I now only have two scary babies to go! How Exciting! Must use exclamation points!

I now have to go take a shower while the kids dismantle my room, and then hurry and shove them into the car so Nicholas can get to school on time. And then Nathan and I will go someplace a little special. We don't know where yet. I hope something occurs to me soon.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

South Of The Border!

The other day I went to visit my friend Betsy at her house.

Betsy is pregnant as well, but she is about 9 weeks ahead of me. She is also expecting twins. And every time I lodge a complaint about the discomfort of bulging tummies or heartburn or fatigue, I feel a slight pang of guilt because I know she has twice the baby inside of her.

I may have a basketball shaped tummy, but at this point Betsy's tummy is shaped more like that of a Beach Ball. Not one of the small ones, either. Next to her, I looked like I was ready to model swimsuits, and I know that isn't the case based on the number of strangers who have asked me what I was having or how many weeks I was. (Most of these inquiries are met with a blank stare, as I honestly have no idea what they are talking about for a number of seconds. Having? Did I order something? Weeks? Does she think I'm someone else?)

In any case, I am looking forward to Betsy having her baby girls. As Betsy is, I am sure. But my reasoning is a bit less unsound. Betsy having her babies is one of the land marks I have noted in my journey to having MY child. It's like driving to Disney World and passing South Of The Border! The roadsigns inform you it's coming up in 200 miles... 150 miles... 125 miles... 100 miles... 90 miles... 80, etc. and even though you know you're not stopping there, you're actually headed to Florida and to Disney World, passing South Of The Border! will bring you THAT MUCH CLOSER to your final destination. As Betsy's Babies will somehow bring me that much closer to mine.

Yes, I know, I am insane.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Trying Something New

Here is a video of Nate playing a giant piano. I'm just trying this out to see how video works on blogger. The clip itself is rather short and not too terribly interesting. But let me know what you think!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Time After Time

I promise that today I will download whatever I have on my camera, and tomorrow I will have more photos to post. And that I will also start taking pictures again.

There are several good books about time travel that I can think of off the top of my head. The Time Traveler's Wife is a very good one. I also really liked Timeline, by Michael Crichton (Movie was bad, book was good.) The Thursday Next novels have a certain amount of time travel in them. And so does one of the Harry Potter Books.

But for a three year old, time is confusing enough as it is. Meshing together the past and the future is almost more than Nicholas can deal with. He understands that some things have already happened, and those things all happened "yesterday." Remember when we went to New York? Yesterday. Storyland? Yesterday. Christmas? Yesterday. But he also throws in a few "nevers" which muddles things up quite a bit. "Do you remember Logan?" I asked him yesterday (the real yesterday.) Nicholas nodded. "Yeah! We saw him yesterday (February) at my house!... I never saw Logan before."

I think the "nevers" are confused with forgetting or length of time.

But the nevers and the yesterdays are not half as confusing as the future. Nicholas asks me every other day is the baby is coming yet. Because to him, "December" means as much as "in two minutes" or "when hell freezes over."

I told him he could watch a movie on TV when it aired next Monday night, and that we could have a special movie night in PJ's and with special TV treats. He was thrilled, at first. Then he spent all last night crying because I wouldn't let him watch it RIGHT NOW. And it did no good to explain that I wasn't in charge of programming at the TV station, that I couldn't just make a TV show BE ON TV. He wanted to watch it RIGHT AWAY! And I beat my head against the wall and wondered why I say anything to begin with when I can't even bend the forces of the universe to allow time travel.

Monday, September 10, 2007

No Time, No Time

Last year when I took Nicholas to school we always seemed to be early. I could pull right up to the front of the school almost every day. We took our time going in, hanging up his stuff, and many days we were there before the teacher was ready for us.

This year it is completely different. No matter how I try to get out the door early, we always seem to make it right on time. Not that time actually matters - it is a class of 3 year olds, after all, and it's not like he's going to miss some important topic that will be on his final exam. And Nicholas has also always been really easy to drop off, getting absorbed in toys right away and waving goodbye as an afterthought.

But being just on time puts me in the same category as "every other parent in the school" and I have had to park some distance away each time, trying to ignore the tall, skinny, perfectly dressed parents convening in front of their SUV's parked right in my old spot, chatting away blissfully before they take off for yoga class, as I waddle my big belly to the door of the school, towing the two kids by the hand. And also later, as I hold a kicking and screaming Nate and waddle back TO to car. (Nate thinks he's ready for school. I think he's wrong.)

It frustrates me that I can't move faster, and each morning (and afternoon, for that matter) I can feel myself overreact to the whole parking space situation. I know it's not worth the complaining. But I can't seem to help myself, and there are some people in particular, or at least their cars, which I have learned to hate. (But honestly, who drives a bright yellow hummer? With vanity plates that spell out a vacation island of note? I would dislike this person anyway.)

I should go now and start getting ready for school so I can try to be early again.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Being a Mom

One very important aspect of becoming a full time Mom, one which just doesn't seem to get enough attention, to my mind, is the loss of self. I mean that every moment of your life becomes about what someone else wants and / or needs, and gone are the days where you can sit and think about what kind of pasta sauce to have for dinner or take for granted that there will be time to shower during the day.

Being pregnant, I have to use the bathroom a lot. It's a fact that the bigger the baby gets, the less room there is inside me for anything else, like food, or pee, or even air for me the breathe. Quite often the need to pee interferes with other things.

Yesterday, for example, Nathan asked me for some milk. I happened to know he had a sip cup somewhere, and I insisted we find that one. The trouble is, he's 20 months old. He has no clue where he left it. He needs ME to find it FOR him.

During this great sip-cup search, I had to pee. I sat down, hoping for a few moments, but Nathan walked in on me and caught me sitting down on the job, as it were. And it upset him immensely. "Mommy! Get up!" He cried, pushing at my legs to try to get me to stand.

"Nathan," I explained, "Mommy has to use the potty. When I'm all done, I'll help you find your sip-cup."

At this, Nathan reached over and flushed the toilet. "Thanks, Nate, but I'm still not done yet!" I said. So Nathan clapped his hands and said "Yeaaaa, Mommy!" Then he reached over and tore a strip of toilet paper off the roll - which he did lengthwise, about a third of a square across - and turned back to me. He then stuffed it down my pant leg.

And that was it. I was done then, right? Back to more important things, like finding his milk, for goodness sakes!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

What would be nice...

... you know those mornings where you wake up groggy, then stumble over to get yourself coffee or tea, and spend the morning reading or slowly figuring out what you are going to do for the rest of the day? And those options might include going back to sleep, or going out for a run, or just reading in your PJ's all day...

I really wish this was one of those days.

But I have to figure out something to do to get these kids of mine away from the TV. Nathan is crying because he wants more milk NOW and I asked him to wait until I was done at the computer - he's screaming and clinging to my arm and shoving the empty sip cup onto the keyboard. Both kids also need to get dressed and Nate needs a change and I can see that, no matter WHAT we do, it will probably not involve my reading or staying in my pajamas, unless I can go to the playground in this nightgown.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Congratulate me!

See the scary banner with the babies at the top of my blog? The one that counts down the days to the due date of my youngest child? Well, according to that counter I have only 100 more days to go! I'm practically there! There should be much rejoicing.

The other day I read something in this baby book that went something like this: "By the end of this month your uterus should be about the size of a basketball, and that may look like what it is you're carrying around inside! You may even think that you can't possibly get any bigger, but you still have three more months of exciting expansion ahead of you!"

I then tore the book in half and burned it. I'm not being vain, really, you understand. I'm just being uncomfortable, and I remember how much more uncomfortable I am probably going to get.

But at least now I can count down in double digits.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Wait! Let me Explain!

Nicholas on the teacup ride. He appeared to have a good time. Jamie said Nathan was mostly confused, though. I, of course, was on the sidelines watching, as the teacup ride would scramble the new baby's brains.
I wanted to explain and apologize about yesterday's post. See, Debs had posted a bit on HER blog about why she was blogging, trying to figure things out, and it got me to thinking about reasons why I blog. After all, I'm pretty good at it. I mean, it may not be the most interesting stuff to read, but I post EVERY DAY, and take it from me, that's harder than it seems. Of course, the obvious reason that I blog is to keep in touch with my family and friends who are far away and we don't get to see very often. My parents and my siblings basically watch the boys grow up via the photos on this blog. Many people find out what is happening via the words on this blog.

Besides just keeping in touch, this blog is meant to be a record of some sort. I post things here that I might not remember in a few months or years, and this way there will be some record of it all. Because that baby book I have? I still haven't reached last summer, and I might never even get pictures of the new baby in there.

But the truth is, I spend the first part of every morning trying to find a "safe" topic to post about. You might think this is crazy, or needless, but things are constantly being taken out of context or blown out of proportion. Case in point: Steve asked me yesterday if I was mad at him, and if there was something I wanted to post about him on this blog. NO! I SWEAR! I love my husband and I would never post anything on this blog that didn't reflect that.

But there are many, many things that I think about, and maybe that I feel strongly about, that I usually choose not to post about. And others that I have posted about thinking nothing of it, but it turned out I hurt a whole bunch of feelings. Taboo topics / comments include: "I wish my husband would pick up his socks," (Steve - I love you anyway!) or "My friend said / did this thing and it made me feel bad," or "I am not a bad mother just because I let my kids watch TV and feed them cupcakes," or "Gay people should be able to get married and have children."

Anyway, I was not the happiest I could have been yesterday. I admit, I have been sick, and I am pregnant, and yesterday I got a big case of being lonely and feeling left out. You can chalk it up to hormones, or just my belligerent manner. Sorry! Life will go on, just know that I wasn't really mad at anyone in particular, I just get frustrated sometimes tip-toeing around. And today, today I just put on my boots and stomped all over the poor tulips.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Why Am I Doing This?

This was supposed to be a very serious post about the reasons for blogging, and how I censor myself as I write this blog so as not to offend anyone. After all, my husband reads this, and so does my mother. So do my friends and family. And even other people I have never met. More than a few feelings have been hurt in the past by a careless word here or there, and I also know that there are so many varying viewpoints of topics from politics to child rearing, even among my very small group of readers. Of course I have my own views on things, and sometimes I will actually express them, or at least come very close. I have my own feelings, and at times I will sometimes post that they have been hurt or that I have felt slighted. But the truth is, it's more trouble than it's worth. Blogging is not really like writing in a diary. Not if your readers actually know who you are.

Anyway, I WAS going to write that post, but it's hard because I simply got all worked up about all the hub-bub I have caused in the past, and I couldn't really think straight. So lucky for you I decided to just post this photo of Nate in the misting tent at Storyland. Where he stayed for 20 minutes and got very, very wet. He thought it was a ride.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

My Confession

Just so everyone knows, all of the photos I have been posting over the last few days have been taken my my brother, Jamie. I like to take pictures, but for some reason my photos end up images of deformed creatures with half-closed eyes, missing limbs, and twisted faces, not to mention fuzzy outlines. I just can't seem to take very good pictures. Jamie, on the other hand, has taken quite a few. Thanks Jamie!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Peas and... Peas

I have this cold.

It's not the worst cold I've ever had - I'm sneezing, coughing, and more than a little congested. But it's enough so that I've broken down and used nose pray a couple of times, even though I know I shouldn't because it's not on the list of OK medications. I've tried the saline sprays, and the only thing they do is sting my nose. The medicated nose sprays do not hurt, and they actually DO something - withing 5 minutes I can breathe, my ears start to drain, and I can feel like a normal person again.

The cold is made worse by the fact that I have horrible acid reflux, caused by the pregnancy. Last night I also took one more Tums than I was supposed to, but it wouldn't stop the burning in my throat. Apparently, water causes acid reflux. And when you can't drink water, you know there's nothing that can be done.

Not to mention the fact that I am now too big for comfort. I am remembering now why I was so impatient for Nathan to be born. Because It's uncomfortable. Not just the not-fitting into clothing, but the fact that rolling over in bed is now a gymnastic event, and bending over to pick up the sippy cups that are scattered and leaking all over the house three million times a day has become more of a workout than my previous 10 mile runs. Not to mention the fact that a two-pound baby is constantly kicking me in the gut.

Alone, any one of these things can be dealt with easily, but together... together it spells GRUMPY MOM.

And now I shall celebrate Labor Day by cleaning my house.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

The World Is My Canvas

When Jamie was here we forced him to move a lot of heavy furniture. Actually, it was a great favor to us, especially to me, because one of the first things they told me at the doctor's office when I was pregnant was that I shouldn't try to lift anything more than 20 pounds. Which is laughable, as I have two small children both over 20 pounds. The jug of cat litter? That bag of dog food? Both over 20 pounds.

But when it came to moving furniture, I decided to err on the side of caution, and restrict the amount of pushing and pulling and straining I would have to do. This meant that, for several months we have had extra mattresses in rooms, extra furniture in others, and I had the feeling my life was cluttered and out of control.

One of the things Jamie did was to move a new mattress onto our bed, and take that one off. Our previous mattress was HUGE and poofy, and I was rolling off the bed and scrambling to get on it. I only have to get up to pee an average of thee times a night, and I still have 3 months of pregnancy to go, but near the end I knew how irritating the height of the mattress can be.

But I had gotten used to it. We have this spectacular mattress on our bed now, and it is easier to get on and off, but I keep looking at my bed and thinking "what happened?" It looks like our bed has been replaced by a cot. Which it hasn't, I'm just that used to seeing the pillows at a certain height.

By the way, our guest room now has our old mattress on it, and now our guests will need a step ladder to get into bed.

Saturday, September 01, 2007


Here's what Jamie did while he was here:
- go to the movies with me (The Bourne Ultimatum)
- watch 2 movies here (Blades of Glory, and Black Snake Moan)
- go grocery shopping
- help with a gigantic art project in the driveway
- take us to Storyland
- help clean up after dinner
- move several large items of furniture to different locations in our house
- play outside with the kids
- almost hit a moose with the car
- check email

Have a good Saturday!