Monday, June 30, 2008

Choices


At the end of the day, when the kids go to sleep, I have free time.

I am never sure what to do with this free time. I could do some quilting. I could work on some of my scrapbooks. I could paint the kitchen. I usually opt for watching TV because then I don't have to move, but even this required choices. Actual TV? A film from Netflix? The entire first season of LOST? There is just SO MUCH.

And it reminds me of the boys when we go to a park or to a play place. Because they want to do EVERYTHING and they want to do it all RIGHT NOW. And they end up running around from one thing to another with frantic looks on their faces. MUST DO THIS! NOW THIS! NOW THIS!

After all that... well, there's a lot to say for being so tired at the end of the day you fall right into bed.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Encyclopedia Brown and the case of the Blue Monk

OK, the title of this post is misleading, because there is no actual CASE to solve... although If I WERE cleaver enough to come up with a few I would be very pleased with myself.

No, it's just that today we went shopping for ovens - just to get an idea of what was out there. And the major chain store we visited had exactly ONE OVEN that matched our specifications (double oven, 27 inches.) But while we were there I purchased a bag of grass seed because our lawn has been attacked by grubs and these huge bare spots are all over, and over the past few days, during the heavy rain, a great deal of dirt ran down the slope and collected in our driveway because nothing was growing to hold it down, so something had to be done.

So I got this grass seed and this afternoon, in the heat of the day, I walked up and down the slope in front of our house sprinkling this seed. Now, I've been reading this book that starts off in a monastery in the 4th century, and I'm a little into it. So the whole time I'm putting my hand in the bag and sprinkling grass seed all over the dirt I'm imagining I'm a Monk at work, sewing seed in the fields out of my love for God or Food or something, a Monk who, apparently, has three small children running around. And people passing by the house were looking at me strangely and I KNEW I wasn't doing this grass planting thing properly - I didn't prepare the soil and I was just THROWING the stuff down... but they were kind of rude about it, the way they were looking... Did they know what I was thinking?

At the end of my sprinkling I was just coming out of my daydream when I looked down and saw that my hands were both blue up to my elbows... apparently this grass seed has dye in it. And my face, which had been sweating and that I had been rubbing... it was also streaked with a bright blue. My feet were blue because I was wearing flip flops. No wonder passers by were giving me odd looks.


Anyway, I went inside and washed up. Then I checked the weather for the next couple of days, to see how favorable grass growing conditions were going to me. And just in case you didn't know, this is something you should do BEFORE spreading seed. Because the forecast for TODAY said "THUNDERSTORMS AND HEAVY SHOWERS." And five minutes later buckets of water were pouring from the sky. And thirty minutes later the sun was shining again, but all the grass seed had run off, along with the loose layer of soil on top, into my driveway.

So the Mystery question is either: How long before my driveway has more grass than my lawn? Or: How much will it cost to redo our entire kitchen so we can get whatever oven we want?

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Holy Fruit Crusader!

Batman Fruit Snacks should not exist.

It's not just that I don't like the idea of fruit snacks. I like them. They are yummy. Even though they are essentially trying to make you think there is actual FRUIT in the sugary gummy substance.

Diego is allowed to have fruit snacks. Cinderella. Scooby Doo. The Backyardigans. But The Caped Crusader? Batman? I don't know what he eats, but I'm pretty sure he would scoff at the fruit snacks. Especially the new Batman. Maybe the Adam West Batman would eat them once in a while.

Friday, June 27, 2008

oweKAY!

So... I guess that last post was a winner.

Either no one read my post, or no one wanted to waste 4 minutes of their time... OR people hated the video and are trying to spare my feelings.

whatever the reason, I got no comments at all. This will not discourage me. I shall keep peppering you all with videos. Next time, it will be a video of my cats.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

My Video

Here's my first attempt at a "full length feature" on the web. It is four minutes long. I put clips from our trip to Tennessee - mostly from the park we went to - to music. Let me know what you think.

I already know that my voice is annoying, that I shake the camera too much... and... let me know what else.

video

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Food For Thought

video

I hate it when anyone asks me "What's for dinner?" My mother used to ask us what we'd like for dinner and it would drive me crazy. Just make something! I would think. Anything! Why are you asking ME? These days I actually make up the week's menu before I go to the supermarket, but I always find myself sitting there, sifting through the depths of my brain, trying to come up with seven meals for the week. That I can cook. And that my family will eat. Try doing this. It's harder than it looks.

Steve has recently expressed the opinion that we are eating too much hamburger (ie. stop making hamburger helper every third night) so this week I decided to try something new and make lamb chops. This was really courageous of me because, not only have I never cooked lamb, I do not eat it. But it was a moot point as I discovered that A - lamb chops are really tiny B - lamb chops are kind of expensive and C - there were only three lamb chops left in the meat cooler at the store. So instead I got a pork roast. WELL, IT WASN'T HAMBURGER!

The pork roast was good! Once it cooked. But whoever wrote the cooking instructions on the wrapper should be shot. They either lied about the cooking time (25 - 30 min/ lb.) or about the temperature (325) or maybe they got the weight wrong. Because what should have taken 90 minutes to cook ended up taking almost three hours. With only adults this is an excuse to drink more wine and relax more. With small children it is a disaster.

Anyhow, Andrew was the only one who got fed and to bed on time. I have had trouble feeding him lately. I plans to gradually move him over to formula have been thwarted by his decision to now never take a bottle AT ALL! And he now refuses most baby food, simply smiling with lips together at my attempts to make him open his mouth before the mush falls completely off the spoon... which isn't really a spoon, but more like a rubber tipped stick, as nothing actually stays IN there.

But today Andrew's first tooth came in. THAT'S something, huh?

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

A Little Something


I am not blind, nor am I stupid. But I like to believe that, most of the time, people who are arrested are arrested because they have done something wrong. I like to think that people who are convicted of a crime are guilty. I like to think that the conviction will be just. Call me optimistic, faithful, loyal, naive, whatever. It's what I like to believe. It isn't, however, what I ACTUALLY believe. It isn't true.

There are places in this world where people are persecuted for no reason. Where they are arrested with false charges. Where they are held with no conviction, and where they are treated inhumanely. This country I live in is no exception. But I am not posting about my country. I'm posting about this one man.

This man is in Prison in Belarus, and I've met him. It was a long time ago, when I was a kid, but still, he is family of people I once considered myself very close to. I am posting a link to a website. I think the site itself is a bit thrown together, and perhaps a bit one sided and emotional. My point is, I can't claim to know the motivations of people or of governments. But I don't think it's right to deprive a person of legal counsel or of medication, let alone to mistreat them physically. This website sheds a little light on the situation, and offers information on what can be done. I think it also might be monitored by family members.

I guess I am simply writing this to raise a little awareness around this one guy's case. Because when I heard about it I wanted nothing more than to be able to DO SOMETHING. And really, what more can I do?

Here is a cut and paste of a document my brother sent me:

UANetwork Office AIUSA 600 Pennsylvania Ave SE, Washington DC 20003 T. 202.544.0200 F. 202.675.8566 E. uan@aiusa.org amnestyusa.org/urgent/

Note: Please write on behalf of these persons even though you may not have
received the original UA when issued on May 7, 2008. Thanks!

16 June 2008

Further Information on UA 121/08 - Torture and other ill-treatment/serious ill health

BELARUS Emanuel Zeltser

Emanuel Zeltser is still being refused the medication that he desperately needs to treat his diabetes and arthritis. Since his arrest on 12 March, the Belarusian authorities have denied Emanuel Zeltser the treatment he needs and he is now in a great deal of pain, is unable to walk and has difficulty talking.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION
Emanuel Zeltser was arrested and detained on 12 March as he arrived by plane in Belarus. On 21 March he was charged with “use of forged documents.” He is being held in a state security services detention facility in the capital, Minsk, where he has been interrogated, allegedly beaten and denied the medicine he needs urgently to treat his diabetes and arthritis.

RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send appeals to arrive as quickly as possible:
- calling on the authorities to ensure that Emanuel Zeltser immediately receives the medication prescribed by his doctor, that his lawyer has provided to the detention facility;
- calling on the authorities to order an urgent, independent investigation of reports that Emanuel Zeltser has been tortured or otherwise ill-treated, and to bring those responsible to justice;
- urging the authorities to ensure that Emanuel Zeltser is protected from further torture and other ill-treatment, and given regular access to US consular representatives, lawyers of his choice and any medical attention he may require.


APPEALS TO:
Alyaksandr Lukashenka
President
Administratsia Prezidenta Respubliki Belarus
ul.Karla Marksa, 38
220016 Minsk
BELARUS
Fax: 011 375 17 226 06 10
011 375 17 222 38 72
Salutation: Dear President Lukashenka

Grigorii Vasilevich
Prosecutor General
Internatsionalnaya str., 22
220050 Minsk
BELARUS
Fax: 011 375 17 226 42 52
Salutation: Dear Prosecutor General

COPIES TO:

Vladimir Naumov
Minister of Internal Affairs
Gorodskoi Val str., 2
220050 Minsk
BELARUS
Fax: 011 375 17 203 99 18
Salutation: Dear Minister

Ambassador Mikhail Khvostov
Embassy of the Republic of Belarus
1619 New Hampshire Ave NW
Washington DC 20009
Fax: 1 202 986 1805
Email: usa@belarusembassy.org



PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY.
Check with the AIUSA Urgent Action office if sending appeals after 28 July 2008.

Monday, June 23, 2008

my house is falling down


Some days I feel as though the walls to my house are crumbling, and I'm running around with a roll of scotch tape trying to fix everything before the plaster turns completely into sand and fills the hallways with sandy dunes of former house atoms.

I've already posted about the hammock snapping off. I didn't post about it, but the towel rack in the boys' bathroom fell off a few weeks ago, leaving holes in the drywall which now need to be patched and painted.

Last week I felt that I got a lot accomplished. I called people to come and fix our garage door. I called the electricians to come and fix the phone jacks, so that we can have more than one phone. I painted Steve's office, finally coving up the bare drywall that the previous owners of our house left us when they moved out their hot tub. I did a LOT. And this week I was going to bask in my home, taking pride in all I had done to fix it up.

Last night, our microwave died.

This is an inconvenience, to be sure. Because I have grown DEPENDENT on this microwave to heat things up. And replacing a microwave should be easy, right? I mean, they sell these things EVERYWHERE.

Only our microwave just happens to be part of a system built into our wall. Connected to our oven. You can see it behind Nick in today's photo.

So now we need a new oven. AND a new microwave. Unless we just buy a microwave and use our old oven and let the old microwave just sit there.

.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

I'm Saying Something

Last night I saw Mike Daisey's performance of "How Theatre Failed America" in New York. It was so cool. It was especially cool because, as Meg pointed out, he said my name two or three times. And it wasn't just my name, he actually meant ME! It was a great performance, a wonderful show, and I encourage everyone and anyone to see it if they ever get the chance. Only tonight was his final performance in this run, and he' s off on a tour of "If You See Something Say Something!" He's going to Santa Fe. And then to many other places. But NY people - he'll be back in the fall!

Seeing old friends makes me very nervous for some reason. I get nervous before, and I get nervous afterwards thinking that I will or I just did make a fool of myself and look stupid. I was nervous last night. And that's just dumb because Mike has already seen me make a bigger fool of myself than I ever hope to be again. But I got nervous anyway. And I don't think it's him, or any other friend I happen to get nervous around. I think it's me. I get nervous because I feel like a very different person from the girl I was when I really knew him. I am RESPONSIBLE. I have a CHILD! Heck, I have THREE. And I am BREASTFEEDING! And I'm OLD! I'm not nearly as exciting and interesting as I used to be. I mean, it's really altogether too odd. Plus, I just feel nowhere near as cool as anyone else.

And I have to laugh at myself because I know how silly it is, even as my heart is thumping a million miles an hour in my chest and my face is a billion degrees. Because I am NOT the only one who has grown up, you know? It's a process and a major sode effect of LIFE. And I end up having the BEST TIME. Which I did last night. THE BEST. The silliest and best and a lot of fun. So, besides Mike, who provided the entertainment, and his wife Jean Michelle, I have to thank all who made the night possible, including Meg, Jamie, and Anne-E. Why the heck don't I do this more often?

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Internet For Kids

Nick and Nate like this game.

I like this one.

And they can spend hours watching this and this over and over... just the theme. Not the show. (Although there's a lot of punching, isn't there?)

Friday, June 20, 2008

Time in a Bottle

I have this game, the Simms, which I used to play constantly.

In case you are unfamiliar with Simms, it's kind of like this: you get to create a "family" made of of a few people. You are them responsible for each member of your family. You need to make sure each member is housed properly, is fed properly, gets enough sleep, takes showers, uses the bathroom, etc. You also have to make sure the person has a job, so that you can get money to buy food. You have to make sure other needs are met - like staying in shape, improving one's mind, having a hobby, having a social life... And the kicker was, the game kept track of time. So you had to make choices about what to do next to make sure everything got done within a certain amount of time.

I was horrible at the game. I would ignore people who needed to use the restroom because it would take them twenty minutes. I refused to socialize. I would let them oversleep and they would miss work. The house would catch on fire because my people would throw tantrums in the middle of the game because they hated their lives so much. And all I could think was that it wasn't like real life. In real life, there was enough time. It didn't take forever to do things.

Well, I was wrong again. Because these days I run around like a headless chicken doing one thing, another, three at once, and I still don't get everything done.

.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

No Photos

I was all set to download the photos from my camera tonight, but I just didn't get around to it. Besides, most of what's on there is footage from the boys' gymnastics recitals, which looks like ants jumping through hoops in the distance. I'm working on putting the clips together to make a short film for you all. Hope it works!

Anyway, I probably won't have pictures for a few more days. Sorry, but I'm just letting you know how lazy I am.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Remember the Time...

Larissa called me today. We spoke about our trip to Disney later this fall, and Larissa told me about her family trip, when her brother, who was very young, was terrified of every ride and character he came upon, making the trip frustrating for all involved.

I have no doubt that my boys will be able to deal with most of the rides, although they might not want to get too close to the gigantic cartoons-come-to-life. I was, however, reminded of this time we went to the circus, when Emily was about 2 years old. And there we were, having a wonderful time, when my father got the crazy idea to get us all cotton candy. He got us each our OWN cotton candy, so there he was, edging through the seats to bring us our treats... and when Emily got a look at the coton candy she took her fingers out of her mouth and started screaming. It was as though the cotton candy were the most terrifying thing she'd ever seen. SHE WOULD NOT STOP. We had to leave. I was upset.

That Emily! I sure do miss her.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Thanks where Thanks is due

This morning I had to rush the boys out the door to take the car to The Car Place, where they listened when I told them the car was making a flat tire sound even though there was no flat tire. A little over an hour later they told me they rotated the tires, charged me twenty bucks, and I drove off, the car still making that flat tire sound.

But getting the boys dressed and fed and out the door was an effort. Mostly because both Nicholas and Nathan now have a full understanding of "Free Will" and a finely developed sense of "Selective Hearing," so I have to repeat the same requests several times a day, every day. And I need to request every step. I can't just say "Get Dressed" I need to say "Take off your clothes" but even that is too much sometimes and I need to narrow it down to "Take off your pants" but many times it need to be prefaced with something like "Climb out of the clothes hamper" or "Take your finger out of your brother's ear."

This morning, as I was putting together the diaper bag and making a bottle, I was trying to get Nick and Nate to GET WITH THE PROGRAM, which was, of course, "Getting in the car", only they were confused and thought it was "Running around and spreading toys all over the house." I looked up and shouted out to the first child I saw "Put your shoes on."

Nick was talking, but he wasn't talking to me. I think he was talking to Mario. And he was walking back and forth in the dining room, very busy, but mostly very involved in ignoring me.

"Nicholas, put on your shoes!" I shouted. "Get your shoes from the shoe mat and put them on your feet!"

Nothing.

"Nick! Shoes! Now!" I yelled, picking up Andy, who was already crying, and making an attempt to strap his wriggling form into his car seat.

Nicholas kept talking, but suddenly he took a deep breath and said "Mom, Thanks for reminding me about my shoes!"

Seriously? I didn't know what to say.

Monday, June 16, 2008

40 Winks

What do people think about naps? I mean, for themselves and for kids?

Because I never napped as a kid, but as an adult I could nap every day.

And my kids nap. When I can get them to sleep, they nap very well.

But Nick has started to wake up sooner and sooner. And it's taking him longer and longer to actually sleep.

Sure, he's falling asleep before dinner...

I still think if I could just get them all to sleep 40 minutes longer in the morning, all would be well.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Imagination

Ever since I wrote about Nicholas's imaginary friend Mario, people have been telling me about their own imaginary friends. Either that, or they remind me of the children from The Shining or The Amityville Horror, because THEY had imaginary friends TOO, and LOOK WHAT HAPPENED TO THEM!

The most unsettling thing about Nick's imaginary friends, aside from the fact that he talks to them aloud sometimes, is the consistency. Oh, sure, Mario happens to be a two-year-old who drives a car and can write his own name, has a cell phone, etc. But the relationships between the people he dreams up... there is a whole cast of characters here. And they do not change. He remembers them all. He talks about them all.

First of all, there is Mario. The original.

Then, meet Jackie, Mario's little brother.

Then there is Sam, Mario's father, who drives all three of them (Mario, Jackie, and Nick) places on occasion.

Then, there is Mario's Mother, Salty. Please do not ask me about this name, because the first time he said it I collapsed into a huge fit of giggles and had to leave the lunch table.

A little over a week ago, Mario acquired a little sister. Her name is Rhonda. I have no idea where Nick heard this name, but I don't think I have ever actually met anyone named Rhonda. The Beach Boys? Was I singing the Beach Boys?

And finally, today Nicholas mentioned yet another member of this family. Jackie's younger sister (not to be confused with Mario's sister Rhonda). She is new, as of today. Her name is Tuna. Yes, Tuna, as in fish. The daughter of Salty and Sam. Tuna.

Maybe Nicholas will be a novelist.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

One Of THOSE Days

You know those days. The ones that are predestined to be horrible and emotional because the baby wakes up at 3:30 am and then mistakes you for a pacifier, causing you to breastfeed for over an hour straight, dozing in and out, and when you wake up and try to dislodge the seemingly asleep baby from your breast he wakes up and screams for a whole half hour. And you never get back to sleep.

Andy has developed this habit of nursing until he falls asleep, but it's taking him longer and longer for full sleep to come upon him. And if I dare to try and "break the seal" before he is completely asleep, he wakes himself up with the screaming and the thrashing about.

Anyway, I did not have a good morning. I was tired. I couldn't get two minutes without someone crying or asking for milk or needing something. Everywhere I looked I saw things that needed to be done - appointments I need to make, decisions I need to make. Errands I have to run but can't with the kids in tow. Projects I would really like to complete but I can't without someone doing something else first. I was overwhelmed with the fact that I do laundry EVERY SINGLE DAY and that, no matter what I do, I can't get the smell of pee or milk out of certain items of clothing. I was feeling sorry for myself that I have to bend over backwards to spend a night at the theatre - and I STILL don't have a babysitter for next Saturday, by the way. Anyone know any NYC sitters?

Anyway, I ate a lot of chocolate and drank a few sodas and got mack into my groove, more or less. I just need a little vacation. A little ME time. You know. For ME.

Friday, June 13, 2008

I SCREAM etc.


As I mentioned in a few previous posts, I am now feeding Andrew "solid" food. Meaning that I feed him mush from plastic containers with pictures of real food on them. So far he likes yellow, loves orange, hates green. We've even progressed to the "Stage 2" series, the ones that actually MIX the foods together, and are supposed to be even MORE solid, but to tell you the truth I think it's the same junk in a bigger container. Which is why we get it - the bigger container.

Anyway, Andrew's appetite ranges from eating a few bites and then sputtering mush all over the place with his lips (green) to swallowing everything and crying because I have the audacity to start CLEANING UP!

But no matter what, he is always cranky when the family sits down to dinner. Now I make a habit of feeding him BEFORE dinner. I know it isn't fair, but I have this thing about wanting to eat my own dinner without getting mushed squash up to my elbow or interrupting to wrestle a spoon away from a soggy green mass of baby fist. So when we sit down to eat, Andy is in his high chair with NO FOOD! I have started giving him a few stars, little melty puffs, and he attacks them and grabs them in a soggy fist and then tries to get them into his mouth, but mostly he misses and they stick to his hand until he has ten of them there, and no more in front of him, and he starts crying because HE CAN'T FIND THEM!

But mostly Andy wants what we have. And we can't give it to him because he has no teeth.

Tonight, though, I broke a rule. I actually fed Andy a tiny, crumb sized dot of Steve's Ice Cream Birthday Cake.

And he loved it.

He loved it so much, in fact, that he began screaming and reaching for my cake, and the screaming would reach an unholy level of rage whenever the fork passed him by and took the ice cream to my mouth instead of his.

Andy is not supposed to eat dairy because he's only 6 months and too young. But somehow I have already gotten him hooked on ice cream.

Oh, yeah. I'm that good.

.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Friday the 13th

In case you haven't looked at a calendar today, tomorrow is Friday the 13th.

In some places, Friday the 13th is supposed to be good luck. Or at least the number 13 is, so maybe I'm just making assumptions.

But here, in MY world, Friday the 13th is supposed to be BAD luck. Like the movies. The Friday the 13th movies. Which you settle down to watch and then you realize they are just SO BAD and you are wasting your time and your brain cells are melting, and isn't that bad luck? Picking so awful a film?

Anyway, this time around Friday the 13th just happens to me STEVE'S BIRTHDAY. The bad thing about this is... well... I never know what to get him. Or I know but they don't make it anymore, or I know because he forwarded me an email with the link to the specific item he wants. And I have, in the past, actually purchased computer stuff to give him without having the slightest idea what I am buying. I am probably on some list somewhere for people who order strange electronic equipment in an effort to build a giant machine to control the forces of the universe. Because Steve is probably building one in our basement right now.

The REALLY bad thing about Steve's birthday being on Friday is that Father's Day is on Sunday. The whole weekend becomes about Steve. But I only end up with enough soap on a rope for ONE Steve-Day. Not two.

And I guess what I am saying is that I wish I could just once come up with something so special and amazing and leave him thrilled. Something that will convey exactly how much I care and think about him and love him and appreciate him.

Happy Birthday, Steve!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Knock on WOOD

For the past week, I have had only one child in diapers.

Well, excepting nap times and night time.

But seriously... enough said.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Grocery Store

When I was a kid my mother would shop for groceries at a store twenty minutes away. There were closer stores, and I remember asking my mother why, oh WHY did we have to go so far away for groceries?

Today I tried a new grocery store. Well, the store isn't new. I just don't like going in there because the few times I've had to grab small items there it seemed... grungy. And my grocery store, the one I usually shop at, it really nice! The produce section has fake trees for ambiance, the aisles are wide enough for carts to pass each other, and I KNOW WHERE EVERYTHING IS. Seriously, you can NOT underestimate this when you're shopping with three kids.

But I tried the new store because I had heard from several people that it was so much less expensive to shop there.

It was, to say the least, a frustrating experience. The produce looked like it had been swept off the street - there was no fresh clean look about it. Dirty, in fact. And I couldn't find tomatoes or carrots. I later learned that lots of tomatoes have been pulled, which makes me wonder about the hard pink ones I eventually bought. Anyone hear anything about carrots?

Then everything was in the wrong place. I couldn't find what I needed, cereals were all jumbled together, the sweet ones with the healthy ones, which made it VERY hard to suggest good choices. They didn't have the all the brands I use, so I had to make some quick choices as the boys ran around like lunatics.

In the end I didn't spend as much as I usually do. And it's true that some items did end up being less expensive than at the store I like. But it still isn't clear to me if the overall total was lower because if the prices, or because I didn't buy everything I had set out to.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Hot N Dirty

Monday is my designated "Clean The House Day." I have to designate a day to do this on the weeks the cleaning service doesn't come. Usually, it's OK. I get as much clean as I can and then either save the rest for the next day, or the next week. Because I usually need the house to be just clean enough to function.

This morning I started cleaning before I got dressed. Why? Because I noticed the dining room table was covered in yellow pollen. So I dusted it. But this afternoon when I deposited my unfolded laundry on it... well, it was covered in pollen again.

And upstairs my nightstand is covered with pollen, also. But I didn't get to clean upstairs today because it got too hot to move. So not only are our brains baking inside our skulls and our flesh threatening to melt off our bones, but they will be nicely marinaded in yellow pollen when it happens.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Heat In The Kitchen

Lillian took this picture yesterday at the Library Festival. See how sneaky Andy is as he tries to steal my Diet Coke? But I'm on to him.


Yesterday it started getting hot. I said that. I said it yesterday.

But today it kept on being hot. The whole night was hot. At 8am I realized that the only outdoor time we'd get that day would have to happen immediately. And forty minutes later we walked out into the backyard. (It took us forty minutes to get shoes and sunscreen and hats.) Thirty minutes later I was drenched in sweat. This is 9:15 am.

So we went back inside. And the day got hotter.

The kids were cross and I was short tempered, so I tried an early nap. An hour into naptime Andy woke up, and Nick and Nate were still chatting and singing and kicking and jumping out of bed and then trying to jump right back in before I could make it to their room to see who it was. So I lost it. I dragged Nate into my bed with me and Andy. Andy immediately began smiling and laughing because to him, getting to be next to Nate is just the best thing in the world. And Nate immediately began poking his fingers into Andy's ears. I had to get in between them. And even then Nate started poking the moles on my back and running his fingers through the ends of my hair.

It was so hot.

Nate finally fell asleep for a few minutes, but Nick never did. All afternoon they fought and whined and kicked and demanded milk or juice or grapes or whatever. And I snapped at them because I was hot and tired and cranky TOO!

Honestly, it's been hotter. I guess we're just not used to it. Seeing that only on Friday we were wearing JACKETS.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Slip n Mud

Today was the first very HOT day that we've had. Nicholas, of course, wanted to ride his new bike, speaking of which... I guess I accidentally deleted the videos I made. Oh well.

Anyway, I decided that it was too hot to stand in the middle of the driveway, and instead I hooked up the new water slide I got a few weeks ago. It's something like a Slip 'n Slide. You know - a huge strip of plastic with water sprinkling on it. The idea is that a small child jumps on it and slides to the other end, into the big huge mud puddle that has formed in the grass.

Here's what I learned:

- the plastic will not propel the child all the way to the end unless the child takes a running leap

- if the child takes a running leap, then it will hurt, because the ground is hard

- if the child steps on the plastic with his foot, he'll slip and fall

- water and dirt make mud

- boys and mud make muddy boys

- just because a boy screams when he gets wet in the bathtub, with heated water, doesn't mean he won't yelp with delight and roll around in the dirty, muddy, cold hose water

The boys had a great time. It was worth the bother and the extra laundry. I have no pictures. Which is good. Because my camera would have gotten soaked.

Also, Jamie was not there. This is just a picture from when he WAS here.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Sleep Baby Sleep

Not too long ago I was under the impression that Andrew was sleeping through the night. He would sleep from 7pm until 3am-ish. And then wake up again just before five. But that's good enough for me. I'd climb into the guestroom bed with him at five and get as much sleep as I could before the older boys woke and started running up and down the halls.

Unfortunately, Andy didn't like that plan. He like the morning part just fine, the part where he was nursing in bed with me. But the rest of it, the part where he was alone and I wasn't with him? Yeah, he didn't like that as much.

So he began crying. And screaming. Many, many times a night. Sometimes he begins crying before I can fall back asleep from feeding him the last time. Sometimes he starts crying before I can get back into bed.

The daytime isn't really much better. He sleeps for hours at a time, but not during naptime! Oh, no! He'll fall asleep, but before the older boys can stop their chattering long enough to fall asleep, Andy is wailing in his crib. I try to run with him on the floor, but he cries as soon as I begin, wailing as though I were causing him pain. So working out is sporadic and frustrating. And as soon as it is over Andy goes to sleep on my bed.

Sometimes I skip working out just to nap with him, so that I can get some sleep.

I keep telling myself it's a phase. I hope it is. Because I've never been very good at letting a baby cry.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Chatter

video

Noise Noise Noise NOISE

And because the joys of potty training never end.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Summer Lovin


Friday is the last day of school. There are two more weeks of Gymnastics. Aside from four weeks of swim lessons in July, the boys are free... and I, apparently, am not.

There are pros and cons to having an open schedule. It's good to not have to be anywhere, and to know we can go to the beach or the park or even - if I'm motivated - into Boston or to the mountains or the REAL beach. But on the other hand... days can drag on. We can go stir crazy. And the boys can drive me bonkers when I don't get a break.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Breaking Point

That's it, I've had it! The kids are driving me crazy. Between crying and lifting Rolos from the candy display at the supermarket, to hitting each other, throwing a fit because I demand washing hands before dinner...


I'm packing the boys up and sending them to Alaska. Or Argentina. Or Las Vegas. Nick plans on visiting those places eventually, anyway.

Actually, we had a pretty good day today. But I sure am tired.

.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Let The Sun Shine

At this point I would just like to say that I appreciate the weather change. The kids and I go out almost every day. I hang clothes on the line. The boys ride bikes. As soon as Nick's out of school I plan on taking them to the beach and the park.

But I don't like sunscreen. And the fact that I have to chase the boys to put it on. And I don't like how I have to keep putting hats on heads.

And at some point I shall get more photos up here. Just haven't had the... motivation, really.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Six Years

Steve and I were married six years ago today.

Four years ago today we left Nicholas at the hospital NICU.

And yesterday Nick had his first Birthday Party with friends from school. I was nervous about it, more nervous than I should have been, because of the Moms. I had to take hold of myself and remember than other moms are people, too. And that it was 90 minutes, and a kid's party.

It went OK, I think. The kids seemed to have fun. And I got to see Betsy again and her little smooshie babies! They are pink! I mean girls! Hee hee!