Mom’s nap

Remember when you were young, unmarried with no children and the weekends were AWESOME??!  Fun, sleep.  Fun, sleep.  Talk on phone.  Awesome brunch.  Perhaps some champagne?  Maybe a bloody mary.  Laugh with friends.

You don’t?  Yeah, me either.  Barely a memory.  Of course they’re fun for different reasons now.  Seeing your child attempt to play soccer.  Snuggling in bed at 7am  giggling with your kids, who are bouncing all over the place.  Going to the park.  AGAIN.

But let’s be honest.  Weekends with kids are really just an extention of the week, especially if you’re a stay at home mom.  You’re basically doing the same shit.  It just happens to be Saturday, and instead of being at work, your husband is napping peacefully on the couch.

Anyway.  K is awesome about letting me sleep a bit on Saturday mornings and takes the kids downstairs.  I can still hear them, as documented in this post here, but the point is, they are somewhere else.  When I got up, we took the kids to the Museum of Nature and Science for a while and, truly, all I wanted to do was take a nap later on even though I had been allowed to sleep in(I stayed up way too late reading).  When we got home, K had somewhere to go, so I settled in with the kids and put a movie on for them, thinking I could just lay on the couch and rest.  My mistake.

Nap attempt 1:  Zoe lays right on top of me and DOES NOT STOP MOVING for a solid 30 minutes.  Squirming, squiggling, kicking her feet, waving her arms.  The girl is lucky she’s cute, is all I can say, because I was well and truly pissed after being used as a jungle gym.  I finally managed to settle her beside me, instead of on top of me.

Nap attempt 2: Approximately 10 seconds after I close my eyes, Max settles his face directly in front of mine.  “Mom, can I have some Girl Scout Cookies?”  No.  “C’MON MOM”  No.  “MOOOOOMMMM”  No.  “I never get anything I want!”  This nightmarish exchange lasts about 10 minutes.

Nap attempt 3:  Eyes are closed.  I feel a presence.  That presence is Zoe’s bare butt.  The child has stripped nude and is attempting to sit on my chest.  Gorgeous.

Nap attempt 4:  “Mom, can I have some milk?”

Nap attempt 5: “Mommy, pee-pee!”  *points to floor*

Nap attempt 6: “Mom, I don’t like this movie….can we watch something else?”  We are more than half way through the movie.

Nap attempt 7: Max yells from the bathroom, in a sing-songy voice.  “Mooooommmmmmyyy.  There’s no toilet paper in heeerrreee and I poooooped!”

Nap attempt 8: Settling in.  On the verge of sleep.  Zoe yells, “Mommy, ight wa-wa, tee!!”  (Ice water please)

Nap attempt 9:  Movie ends.  Arguments ensue about whether we should watch Ninjago or Peppa Pig.  Pushing and shoving. Yelling.

Nap attempt 10:  Ahh sleep.  Max–“Mom, do you know where my crayons are?”  Zoe–“Mommy poop!” *points to baby potty*

Give up.

A father’s attempt at a nap on the weekends.

Nap attempt 1:  Lay down on couch, with a football game on low volume.  Sleep.  Children color quietly for two hours.

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Horrendous children’s toys

Christmastime is upon us all and it is time to practically go into debt trying to please the little people who run our households.  I’ve started exclusively shopping online because I hate stores/malls/lines/people in general and I’ve found some interesting stuff.  By that I mean, absolutely horrendous, ridiculous, gross, insane children’s toys.

Follow me:

This.

What in holy hell???  I’m sure they would get Max instantly with the phrase “crawling disgusting maggots”, but they definitely haven’t sold me yet.  And I’m unclear, are there seriously maggots in here or is it fake?  Because I don’t want maggots in my rice, and I certainly don’t want them in my child’s hand.

 

This:

Imagine the humiliation of someone thinking that your little girl is *gasp*, a boy.  Or even worse, a frickin baby.  Baby gotta have bangs.  Can’t just look like a baby.  The only way I would ever buy this is to get the “afro” bangs and put it on my white baby.  Just to keep people guessing.  Yes, the website does have different nationalities.

 

This:

Oh good, something that can make my house messier than it already is.  Some sort of concoction that turns water into “goo”.  Because enormous amounts of dirt under my kids fingernails isn’t enough–we now need to mix it with goo.  Not to mention mixing goo with children’s private parts.  I can’t even begin to imagine what my bathroom would look like after this fiasco.  Water is everywhere after I bathe the kids together.  I really don’t think that adding a gelatinous red substance is going to improve what the place looks like.  Isn’t the point of a bath to be cleaner?  And “gelli baff”?  Um, gelli is spelled jelly and baff is spelled bath.  Do we have to be messy and illiterate?

 

This:

Because life is now so dangerous, that babies are not even allowed to learn to walk on their own.  They must have support.  We must come to their aid.  I just know that without this groundbreaking invention, all babies will crawl forever and we will have a whole new generation entirely made of crawlers.  Everything will be built on a smaller scale.  No longer will nine foot ceilings in houses be the norm.  Three feet is more than enough.  A  stove top can be built right into the floor.  A football field will be two yards.  Olympic gymnastics will consist of rolling all over the floor.  Thank God, thank GOD for One Step Ahead’s forethought.  This is right up there with knee pads for babies that are crawling….what must kids who live in African mud houses do???  And 30 bucks?  Seriously?  I’m pretty sure I could make this out of a reusable grocery sack.

 

This:

Do you smell that?  It’s the smell of every mother’s despair after a play doh session, in which she will be scraping and digging dried doh out of every surface of the house.   “Now in a convenient spray!”

 

Okay not really an insane child’s toy, but AWESOME:

Soap.  In the shape of  baby hands.  Do I need to say anything else about this product?

 

This:

This is either really weird, or the greatest thing I’ve ever seen.  I can’t decide.  The normal person in me says, “okay c’mon, do we really need to humiliate dad this way?”  And then the stressed out mom (with a side of crazy in me) says, “Yeaahuss!  Let’s put daddy  to work!!  GIDDIUPP!!”  Max and Zoe would love his thing!  Max might even break out spurs.  Zoe would be all, “YAY DADDY YAY!!”  And I would laugh and drink wine in the corner, while facebooking obviously.

 

My search continues for Christmas gifts.  Because none of these are going to cut it.  I will continue to search the web in an effort to avoid malls/lines/people in general.

And did you know that there are actually toy play houses out there that cost, like $25,000?  And mini cars for $14,000?  Who are the people buying these things????

Mommy Wars

The Mommy Wars.  Have you heard of these?  Apparently it’s a battle between stay-at-home-moms and working moms.  Add to that, the battle between mommies to be “popular”, in the right mommy clique, get their kids into the best school, compete with other mommies about potty training, sleep training, their kid’s behavior, keep up with the Joneses, etc, etc, etc.

I’ll be honest, when we moved to Qatar, I had experienced NONE of this.  Max was only 15 months when we moved there, I only had  a couple of friends that had children and they were much older and both K and I were pretty busy with work.  We also had fantastic friends that we had known forever and never felt that we were in competition with anyone.  Fast forward to Qatar and we were thrown into a community that consisted of expatriates from all over the world and everyone had left family and friends at home to move to this strange country.  Therefore, everyone you knew became family….you accepted everyone, flaws and all.  Whether they worked or stayed home with the kids.  Whether you liked their kids or not.  Whether their house was big or small.  Whether they were 25 or 40.  Within three days of meeting someone, you were comfortable calling them up and asking them to take your kids for a few hours because you had a last-minute meeting or a doctor’s appointment.  Within three months of forging a friendship with our closest friend’s there, we were traveling to frickin Thailand with them.  High school teachers were best friends with CFOs, stay-at-home mommies were friends with HR Directors.  We ate dinner at each other’s houses constantly, kids were thrown together at get-togethers whether they got along or not.  If someone’s spouse was traveling for business, you were invited automatically to someone’s house for dinner so you didn’t get lonely.  It was expected.

I thought that was normal for friends and family.  Then I moved back to “the real world” with two kids.  And I’m not even sure if  the real world is the problem or it’s just the community we chose.  It’s lovely and beautiful, tons of parks, 4 pools, bike paths, good public school and tons of kids.  But we’re experiencing something new to us.  That thing is not having close friends and the mommy wars.

We’ve lived here a year.  Neighbors?  Only one with kids and, for some reason, we never see them.  There are 5 houses on our block that I have literally never even seen a person walk in or out of.    Watching kids as a favor?  HA!  I swear I feel like I couldn’t pay someone to watch my kiddos for an hour while I ran to the doctor, much less watch them as a favor.  Being invited to dinner at someone’s house when K is traveling?  Double HA!  Discovering that a group of people you know all got together for an event and didn’t think to call you?  Painful.

I’ve talked to several people about this in my community and MANY have agreed that they see this too….cliqueness, cattiness.  I mean, really, how many times can you ask someone if they want to get together and not get an answer before you give up?  You join every group you can possibly think of and have nothing to show for it.In an ironic twist, one of the friends that I recently discussed this with is moving to Malaysia for the expat life.

I don’t get it, I really don’t.  I have friends that are stay-at-home moms, friends that are CEOs of companies, liberal friends, conservative friends, friends who have really annoying kids.  Why does any of that matter?  A friend is a friend.  And this is something that’s definitely new to our generation…..this did not go on when I was a child.  I was an annoying, bossy britches when I was a kid–made my parents miserable half the time.  The fact that I beat up Alex Lowe on a daily basis did not affect the friendship between my mother and Alex Lowe’s mother.  Now?  Mommies don’t put up with that and friendships are tested.

Is this normal or is this my neighborhood?  I recently read an article by a French author that claims that the mommy wars are an American phenomena.  I’m inclined to agree after what we experienced in Qatar.  I was chatting with a friend from home the other day and she said that it took her 8 years of living in Hinsdale, IL to make friends she was comfortable with .  8 YEARS.  That’s shocking to me.  Shouldn’t we all be supporting each other in this parenthood journey?  I know I can’t be the only one that has broken down in tears at 3 in the morning with a kid screeching in my ear.  I know I can’t be the only one that’s struggling with potty training, tantrums, arguments with my husband, lack of sleep, etc, etc, etc.  Why aren’t we there for each other?

I would say that parenting is 50% wonderful and 50% horrendous.  And on that note, I leave you with a test to see if you are truly ready for parenting, if you aren’t already….

1. Women: to prepare for maternity, put on a dressing gown and stick a beanbag chair down the front. Leave it there for 9 months. After 9 months, take out 10% of the beans.

Men: to prepare for paternity, go to the local drug store, tip the contents of your wallet on the counter, and tell the pharmacist to help himself. Then go to the supermarket. Arrange to have your salary paid directly to their head office. Go home. Pick up the paper. Read it for the last time.

2. Before you finally go ahead and have children, find a couple who are already parents and berate them about their methods of discipline, lack of patience, appallingly low tolerance levels, and how they have allowed their children to run riot. Suggest ways in which they might improve their child’s sleeping habits, toilet training, table manners and overall behavior. Enjoy it — it’ll be the last time in your life that you will have all the answers.

3. To discover how the nights will feel, walk around the living room from 5pm to 10pm carrying a wet bag weighing approximately 8-12 lbs. At 10pm put the bag down, set the alarm for midnight, and go to sleep. Get up at 12 and walk around the living room again, with the bag, till 1am. Put the alarm on for 3am. As you can’t get back to sleep get up at 2am and make a drink. Go to bed at 2:45am. Get up again at 3am when the alarm goes off. Sing songs in the dark until 4am. Put the alarm on for 5am. Get up. Make breakfast. Keep this up for 5 years. Look cheerful.

4. Can you stand the mess children make? To find out, smear peanut butter onto the sofa and jam onto the curtains. Hide a fish stick behind the stereo and leave it there all summer. Stick your fingers in the flowerbeds then rub them on the clean walls. Cover the stains with crayons. How does that look?

5. Dressing small children is not as easy as it seems: first buy an octopus and a string bag. Attempt to put the octopus into the string bag so that none of the arms hang out. Time allowed for this: all morning.

6. Take an egg carton. Using a pair of scissors and a pot of paint turn it into an alligator. Now take a toilet tube. Using only scotch tape and a piece of foil, turn it into a Christmas candle. Last, take a milk container, a ping pong ball, and an empty package of Cocoa Pops and make an exact replica of the Eiffel Tower. Congratulations. You have just qualified for a place on the playgroup committee.

7. Forget the Miata and buy a Taurus. And don’t think you can leave it out in the driveway spotless and shining. Family cars don’t look like that. Buy a chocolate ice cream bar and put it in the glove compartment. Leave it there. Get a quarter. Stick it in the cassette player. Take a family-size packet of chocolate cookies. Mash them down the back seats. Run a garden rake along both sides of the car. There. Perfect.

8. Get ready to go out. Wait outside the toilet for half an hour. Go out the front door. Come in again. Go out. Come back in. Go out again. Walk down the front path. Walk back up it. Walk down it again. Walk very slowly down the road for 5 minutes. Stop to inspect minutely every cigarette butt, piece of used chewing gum, dirty tissue and dead insect along the way. Retrace your steps. Scream that you’ve had as much as you can stand, until the neighbors come out and stare at you. Give up and go back into the house. You are now just about ready to try taking a small child for a walk.

9. Always repeat everything you say at least five times.

10. Go to your local supermarket. Take with you the nearest thing you can find to a pre-school child — a fully grown goat is excellent. If you intend to have more than one child, take more than one goat. Buy your week’s groceries without letting the goats out of your sight. Pay for everything the goats eat or destroy. Until you can easily accomplish this do not even contemplate having children.

11. Hollow out a melon. Make a small hole in the side. Suspend it from the ceiling and swing it from side to side. Now get a bowl of soggy Wheeties and attempt to spoon it into the swaying melon by pretending to be an airplane. Continue until half the Wheeties are gone. Tip the rest into your lap, making sure that a lot of it falls on the floor. You are now ready to feed a 12-month-old baby.

12. Learn the names of every character from Barney and Friends, Sesame Street and The Power Rangers. When you find yourself singing Barney’s theme song, “I love you.. You love me…” at work, you finally qualify as a parent.

Your basic trip to the ob/gyn

So school starts in exactly 10 days.  Do you think I am counting?  Yes, I’m practically counting the minutes.  Look, I adore my children, but I am with them roughly 13 hours a day–anytime they aren’t sleeping–and I’m mostly with them alone.  They spend the majority of that time fighting over the iPad (even when it’s in “iPad jail” on top of the mantle, which it is, A LOT), yelling, doing the opposite of what I ask, complaining about food in front of them, begging for everything and anything (yesterday Max wanted me to buy him some sort of Ninja weapon called a shurikan and seriously wouldn’t let it go for an hour), sitting on me, holding on to my leg and continuously asking me for water, milk, an apple, a cracker, a wipe of a butt, a pen, some paper, chapstick, candy, a piece of bread, etc etc.  By then end of the day, they could probably be on the front lawn, nude and hitting each other with loaves of French bread in front of 20 neighbors and I’d be all, “eh, that’s okay….no discipline is needed here.”

So since said children are with me 13 hours per day, it stands to reason that they go with me everywhere.  Where to yesterday, you ask?  The friggin gynecologist.   Like I didn’t humiliate myself enough to give birth to these little people?

What was supposed to be a consultation on an IUD, turned out to be a full on insertion of the IUD.  Remember the whole vasectomy debacle from this post?  Yeah, so this is where we ended up on that front.  Because it’s not enough that I spent 9 months baking each child and pushing them out of my vagina–almost dying with one, but okay–apparently now I have to have a foreign object inserted into my uterus for 5 years.

So anyhoo, we arrive and they announce that since we talked about it 5 months ago at my annual appointment, I can have it inserted now.  Cue two children staring up at me with curiosity.  Thankfully, the nurses took Max to the nurses station (where he had them all in hysterics, by the way).  Zoe, however, refused to leave my side, so we strapped her in the stroller next to the table.  So there I am, making casual conversation with my doctor, feet up in stirrups, while Zoe cranes her head as far as it will go to see behind the sheet.  I’m sure if she could talk, she’d be all, “Hey Momma, what the sam hill is goin on behind that blue sheet?”

So I guess that’s just a typical day in the life of a stay at home mom I guess.  Don’t ask me about the scary metal instruments they brought out for the procedure.  We can talk about that another time.

When does school start again?

Despite the fact that my home looks like an episode of “Hoarders”, summer hasn’t been as bad as I feared. Lots of pool time (which unfortunately doesn’t allow for a lot of talking with friends…..between the “watch me moms!” and the constant vigilance of the 2-year-old jumping into the deep end, clueless to any danger…talking for more than a millisecond is impossible).  But it always guarantees a good nap from said two-year old if we spend a few hours at the pool in the morning.  During that time, I usually clean   pay bills   relax spend two hours arguing with Max over something.  It truly is like arguing with a drunk person. It goes something like this:

“Max honey, please change out of your suit into your clothes”

“NO!”

“Excuse me?  I asked you politely and we can’t sit on the couch in a wet suit.”

“It’s my choice to be wet and you’re not the boss of my bathing suit!”

“Well I am the boss of you and I say either change out of your suit or sit in your room doing nothing….THAT’S your choice.”

“WELL, I SAID that I would if you would listen to me but you’re never paying attention and my suit isn’t wet ANYHOW!!!! angry mumble angry mumble  “And you shouldn’t yell at me, because you’re the mommy and mommies shouldn’t yell and I’m just the kid and I’ve decided that my suit should stay on!! “The suit is my choice!   AAANNDD, I’m HUNGRY!!!”

“You may have a sandwich when you’re changed.”

“But MOOOOOMMMM, I need to go poop first”

“Fine”

“And when I yell I’m ready, you come in and wipe my bottom!”

And so on.  Then Zoe wakes up and arguing between Max and her begins.  It goes like this:

“Zoe don’t do that!  You shouldn’t touch that!”

*silence from Zoe*

“Stop it Zoe!”

“Moooommm, Zoe’s looking at me!”

*silence from Zoe*

“Quit it Zoe!”

*Zoe innocently playing with a puzzle piece that Max played with approximately 3 1/2 years ago*

Hey!!!!  *running at top speed towards Zoe and shoving her with all his might*  “Don’t touch my things Zoe–Moooommm!  Zoe touched my puzzle piece from three years ago!!”

I seriously feel like I’m living in a hospital for the criminally insane.  The only way to stay out of this asylum is chilling out with a marathon of Hoarders….which at least makes me feel better about the state of my house!

 

School’s out, Act 1

School has been out for two weeks now and, so far, things have been going well.  We went to Santa Fe to visit grandma and grandpa for a few days, so that was a nice little distraction.  Max received a gift of two more Lego ninjas, cementing his obsession with all things ninja even further.  Yesterday at Walgreens he was really good helping me shop so I agreed to guy him something from the dollar aisle before we left and we found this….

Seriously?  Does this toy need to be THIS small?  Notice he is not much bigger than Max’s eye in the background.  He is approximately the size of my thumb nail.  Between this, Polly Pocket, and ridiculously small Lego pieces, my vacuum cleaner is going to be jam-packed by the end of the week.  No wonder my house is a friggin mess.  I cannot keep up with these things.  I decided to really check out the toys my kids have and do a little inventory.

I give you a random sampling of one of the drawers in the children’s toy cabinet.  I reached in, grabbed a handful and came up with this:

A. One fourth of an orange crayon;   B. A yellow golf ball;  C. An old dehydrated apple chip (personally made by me….do you see the respect I get?….just tossed into the toy drawer instead of eaten???;  D. A random Lego piece, which belongs to who knows which set, small and sharp enough to slice my foot right open;  E. A small traffic cone;  F. A teeny tiny pretty pony;  G. Pretend Cream of Chicken soup….mmmmm;  H. A pipe cleaner shaped spider that I have never seen before in my whole life, but the thing is sharper than a steak knife;  I. A plastic shaped ball, which opens and is apparently supposed to hold something;  J. A pretend lemon;  K. A Lego head, which is super cool because, as you can see, he’s totally rocking sunglasses;  L. Random tiny Lego pieces the size of Zoe’s smallest toenail;  M. A Ninjago catalog to convince children that they need more Ninjago stuff;  N. An angry bird pig;  O. An Angry Bird band-aid, unwrapped, but, mysteriously,  unused.

I can’t cope.  No wonder we can never find anything…..none of this stuff even matches anything else in the same drawer.  It’s all just random and driving me insane!  Time for a serious toy reorganization.  I’ll just fit that in between my 6234 loads of laundry, 12,000 dishes and 24 trips per week to the grocery store.  Oh and in a brilliant maneuver, I told Max we would make homemade granola bars tomorrow and we bought crapload of oats, nuts, honey and coconut today.  Because that won’t take any time at all.

Spirited Children

This weekend, I attended my first meeting with the “Spirited Children” group here in Denver.  What is a spirited child?  In the past, I have always though “spirited” was just a nice term to describe spoiled brats, with mothers who clearly had no control over their behavior.  Then I became a mother to Max.  Then I became a mother to Zoe.  THEN I read this article.  I completed changed my mind and decided to join the group.

Spirited children are generally just more difficult.  They are more emotional.  They are high energy.  They are stubborn as hell.  They are generally just more child.  This is my life.  Max is sent to his room at least once before he even goes to school.  Every morning is a battle.  No amount of consequences or rewards (for good behavior) has changed that.  If he decides he is going to refuse to do things or be in a bad mood, that’s the way it is.  There is no breaking this child.  I always thought I had it bad.  Until I joined this group.

Obviously the meeting involved large amounts of alcohol, in the form of margaritas.  Then the stories of people’s struggles started and *cue singing angels and violins*, I have found my people.

Max has always been very stubborn and strong-willed.  And it’s becoming more and more obvious that he cannot seem to control his emotions.  The slightest disappointment–a rained out soccer game, a canceled playdate due to illness, the realization that we have run out of peanut butter…..all of these result in complete meltdowns.  He freaked out and stomped around crying two days ago because he spilled a total of three drops of water on his pants.  No amount of talking to him can calm him down.  And the will he has is impossible to match.  The “tie-shoes incident”, as I like to call it, from a month ago is still happening.  Every day I pick him up from school, and I mean every day, he asks me can he have a pair of shoes that tie and when I say no, because he doesn’t know how to tie yet, it results in a screaming fit on the way home.  This is every day for the past month.

But my stories paled in comparison to some of the other ladies of the group.  One lady said that her child screams until she’s faint and turns almost blue.  She has left countless full shopping carts in the store because her daughter has freaked out over the fact that mom didn’t get plain Cheerios.  She has to leave virtually every playgroup and music class that they go to because something sets her off and she simply cannot recover.  She and her husband are not planning to have another child because they can’t face the thought of getting another one like this.

Another lady said she has two highly spirited children and they spend roughly 1/3 of the day screaming at the top of their lungs.  Recently, they drove by a train and her son announced that he wanted to “hug the train.”  When told that this was not possible to do, he screamed for two hours.  They are so difficult, in fact, that her mother, their grandmother,  refuses to babysit or spend any time with them (which I think is beyond evil, but whatev).  Said grandmother spends a lot of time with all her other grandchildren.  That’s how difficult they are.

Where am I going with this?  I guess just to explain how nice it is to find people who understand and don’t judge.  If you ever see a woman in the grocery store with what appears to be a wild spider monkey in her cart, don’t judge.  That woman has probably done everything possible to gain some control, but absolutely has to get some food for her family.  If it looks like she’s not doing anything, it’s probably because she is just flat-out exhausted from dealing with said spider monkey.

How to expertly handle tantrums

Today was epic.   On the plus side, I got to try out some new parenting techniques that K and I learned at our $180 parenting class!  Yay.

I’m two glasses in, so excuse any spelling errors.  Meaning two glasses of wine.  Yep, I’m that mom.  The bottle was opened at 4:59.  The first sip at 5:00 and from then on it didn’t matter that Zoe threw her plate across the room or that Max somehow ended up with his pants off again.  I really need to learn to buy the Target wine box (or the “T-box”, as they call it), discussed often at Rants From Mommyland.  But I digress.  

Anyway, the day began with a diaper situation that almost had me calling the Center for Disease control because that simply can’t be normal for a 24 lb child.  Then I got her back to sleep for a few minutes and Max came in, acting like a character from Night of the Living Dead….”I’m hungry…hungry…brains, brains!!”  When the day begins with shit and screaming, it’s not good.  I am not a morning gal.

It was Wacky Wednesday in Max’s class and we decided he was going to wear a t-shirt, a tie, swimming goggles and two different shoes.  He was totally into it.  Until we were three feet from his classroom.  Suddenly he didn’t want to dress wacky.  He wanted matching shoes.  He was shy.  He was embarrassed.  He didn’t like Wacky Wednesday.  He wanted to drive home and get his matching shoes.  Um, no.  Thank God for Mr. Jason, one of the teachers, for wearing a rainbow colored afro-like wig.  Because if it hadn’t been for him, Max would have been coming home with me and then the wine might have been cracked open at noon.

Crisis averted, I walked downstairs to the lobby of the preschool and calmly walked out…..yep I’ve got this under control.  I am a competent, calm, mother of two.  Zoe and I walked across the street, holding hands, where upon she decided, in the middle of the street with a truck approaching, that she didn’t want to hold hands.  I took her hand back and calmly told her that street = hand hold.  Nope.  A collapse to the concrete, truck be damned and commence shrieking.

A fellow room mom was in front of me and she laughed and said “How old is Zoe again?”  I told her two and one month and was met with “Oh yeah, the terrible twos!”  This comment, two days after a person that works at the school remarked “Haha!  Terrible twos huh?” when Zoe was throwing a tantrum in the actual school.  Laugh it up people.  Laugh it up.

After a harrowing ride home, whereupon Zoe shrieked and pointed at various things, trying to communicate God knows what, the next couple hours progressed relatively painlessly.  In fact, she even went down for a nap after only 20 minutes of back rubbing and singing, rather than the usual 40 minutes of incessant cuddling, back rubbing, singing and various other tricks to force a 2 year old to calm herself.  She woke up after only 45 minutes, per usual, but the point is it only took 20 minutes to get her to go to sleep.

Wednesday is a busy day for us because both kids have swimming right after pre-school ends and then Max has soccer practice so I (usually) wake Zoe from her nap, race to the preschool with Zoe still in jammies, get Max, race home to change Zoe and grab the swim bag, race to swimming, race home and get the kids an early dinner and then troop off to soccer practice.  Max apparently had other plans for the day.  Every time I have picked him up from school for the last two weeks, he has greeted me with telling me the latest thing that he “wants”.  Today it was sneakers with laces.  Forget the fact that he doesn’t know how to tie laces, he wanted these right now, today.  I, of course, said hells no because guess who will be the one tying them every three seconds?

What followed can only be described as a category 5 tantrum.  And of course it happened in the middle of the lobby of the preschool.  These people must think my children are insane.  All the way to the car, he’s screaming that I’m a bad mommy.  After 5 minutes of it, I whipped out a “consequence with empathy” (Thank you Love and Logic parenting class!)  “Oh dude, this is so sad but since you’re screaming at me, you’re going to lose the TV and the iPad for the rest of the day.”  More shrieking ensues about the thought of no cartoons.  No lesson learned whatsoever.  Hysteria for ten more minutes.  “Oh, Max I’m so sorry, but you’re going to have to skip soccer practice today now also”.  Nope, nothing but screams.  Straight to his room when we got home, which resulted in kicking the door, throwing books and pillows, etc, etc.  He finally calmed down about 45 minutes after the whole thing started and his face was blotchy for the rest of the day.  All this over shoes with laces.  Seriously?  I think I’m doing something wrong.

Parenting with a sense of humor

I have a pretty good compilation of embarrassing parenting moments.  I have more stories than I can count, but we can save those for another day.  I give you this:

*When DS was younger, he liked to pick his nose.  One day I took him to the mall in his little buggy (the red one with the blue handle).  As I was shopping, he kept saying, “mommy, mommy”, but I didnt really pay much attention.  Well I guess he had picked his nose and had a big ol’ booger at the end of his little index finger and was trying to get my attention to show it to me.  Another lady saw this and started laughing.  I just got a wipe and cleaned it off of his finger, but I felt so embarrased.  God only knows how long he was flashing his booger for. 

*I’ve nicknamed one of my 3 year olds Gossip Girl. Every time I pick her up from preschool, she feels the need to report who got in trouble, who got a time out, who didnt listen. And this is in front of all the parents. I try to quickly change the subject, but its always immediately “Justin didnt listen today. John got yelled at” And I’m sure shes so innocent.

*In line at the supermarket, DS noticed the very large woman behind us was buying those YoCrunch yogurts with the candy and cookie stir ins.  He told her, “that’s not very healthy food!”  I guess I should be glad that he knows!

*My husband always makes sure it be known when asked in the morning from Jadyn “where are you going Daddy” …as he is off to work…..with his reply ” I am going to work to make the money”………Last week someone asked Jadyn what does your Daddy do for his job?…..Her reply ” He “makes” money!

*When DD1 was just under 3, we were at French class doing the opening song. Each child would take a turn while we all sat in a circle, singing, in French, “Hello (name) how are you?”.  When it was DD’s turn, she sat quietly for a second. Then she turned around, looked at me and grabbed my boobs. As if that wasn’t enough, she shouted out “Mommy’s boobies! Mommy’s boobies!” laughing hysterically, and squeezing my boobs w/ both hands with everyone looking on.

*My husband, as well as many others his age, are in love with Star Wars. And slowly your children get introduced to the characters…not by watching the movies themselves, but seeing items my husband owns, commercials, and happy meal toys. Well, my three year old decided it is pronounced as “Star Whores”. Now I see the error in my ways thinking this is hysterical and I didn’t want to correct her and take away our amusement. And it never was an issue….until Halloween. Because we had just started school last fall, we were slowly being introduced to the children in our subdivision and getting to know the parents. One family dressed all five of themselves as Star Wars characters….do you see where we’re going now? In the middle of trick or treating…”MOMMY, MOMMY…LOOKS IT’S STAR WHORES”. Thank goodness it was dark, because I felt my face get hot and time was frozen as I swear hundreds of families just stop and stare in the middle of the street. I felt like I was naked. So I quickly corrected her and laughed trying to not sound bothered by the whole scene. Then I hear a heckler in the crowd…”No honey….that’s a completely different movie” Laughter errupted as we quickly fled the scene.

*Erin lets everyone know that boys have a penis and girls have a vagina. She will just randomly announce it. Then goes on to clarify that Sean has a penis and she has a vagina. And that I have a vagina. Then will say “girls have a vagaina. Boys have penis. Girls have vagina. What comes next mommy?? BOYS HAVE PENIS!!” While happy that she has the whole anatomically correct thing figured out, it gets a bit old having my 3 year old announce to the cashier at King Soopers her knowledge of the vagina and the penis. I suppose it’s better than the story my mom tells about my brother when he was 2. We lived in a VERY caucasian little farming town in Michigan and they were visiting my grandparents in Detroit and my brother saw some African Americans and loudly asked my mother about the chocolate people. How fun for her.

*David’s new favorite thing to do is wipe his snot on my shirt. Ever since he’s had his most recent cold, I have had to change my shirt 2 to 3 times a day. I don’t have a lot of maternity clothes, so it has made for some lovely belly shirts.

On another note, some douchbag dad asked me today if I was having twins. I laughed (to avoid the tears) and told him no. He then said “I bet I’m not the first guy to ask you that.” OH REALLY! What a jerk.

I concur with that–what a jerk.  In my opinion you aren’t even allowed to ask a woman if she’s pregnant unless you actually see a baby emerging from her vagina.

Give me a few more days to write of my 7 days with the kiddos alone.  I’m still recovering!