Monday, March 26, 2012

It's Hard Being Little

L asleep in the grocery cart.

One night, my niece, O, awoke in the middle of the night and went into her parents room.  My sister-in-law told her to get back in bed and go to sleep.  To which O replied, "It's hard being little."

I still remember this story and it gives me a chuckle everytime I think of it.  I believe she was around 3 years old when she said it. (When she said it for the first time anyway!)

So, I got to thinking about all the ways "it's hard being little."
  • You have your own stylist.  People help bathe you, dress you, pick out your clothes, and brush your hair.  Yes, sounds awful. DO NOT sign me up for this.

  • You have your own personal chef.  You do not need to worry about what to eat.  Your meals are planned for you.  Your meals are cooked for you and someone serves them to you.  Oh the inhumanity!  I can see the unappeal in not being able to make your own food.

  • You have your own maid.  Someone does your laundry, washes the dishes and cleans the house for you.  Gosh, I don't think I could stand it.  I just HAVE to clean my own toilets, don't you?

  • You have your own chaffeur.  People drive you wherever you would like to go while you sit in the backseat, drinking the beverage of your choice from your sippy cup.  I don't know about you but if I don't feel like I have really lived unless I can experience road rage on a daily basis.

  • You get to take naps everyday.  Someone reads you a story, then gives you some kisses and tucks you in with your blankie.  This sounds like the worst of the lot.  Sleeping?  In the middle of the day? Preposterous!

  • You get showered with compliments.  People are constantly telling you how "cute" or "adorable" you are.  No thanks.  Don't care for it.
So, there you have it.  A few of the many reasons why "it's hard being little".  Being grown-up is so much more fun.  Don't you agree?

Friday, March 23, 2012

My Doctor Is Getting Punched In The Face

After J was born, I remember Jeff and I snuggling with him in my hospital room.  There was nothing sweeter, more beautiful or more perfect than my precious baby boy.  I remember marveling at those little tiny baby toes and his tiny little face.  He could not have been more perfect. (The picture above is of J when he was two weeks old.  Isn't he the sweetest?!)

Since I had J via c-section, the recommended time frame is for you to stay in the hospital three days.  Dr. V (No joke!) told me they would do J's circumcision on day two as he didn't like to preform the operation on the day the baby is born.

On the second day, early in the morning, Jeff and I were enjoying cuddling and admiring our sweet baby boy.  Jeff had been with me the whole time and did not get much sleep the night before.  He was a real trooper helping me get to the bathroom and helping with J.  Jeff was in dire need of some caffeine.

Jeff: Mind if I run downstairs and get a cup of coffee?

Me: No, honey.  Go ahead.  Get yourself some coffee.

Jeff: Alright, I'll head downstairs then.  I'll have my cell phone with me if you need me.

Me: Okay. I'm sure we'll be fine.

So, Jeff leaves to go get a cup of coffee.  Right after he leaves, the nurse walks in. 

Nurse: Dr. V is on his way. He is ready to do the circumcision.  I'll take him (Baby J) now.

Me: Okay. (I look down at my sweet baby. I start to tear up.)

Nurse: It will be okay. Dr. V knows what he is doing. They use numbing cream and it's very quick. It doesn't hurt the baby at all.

Me: Okay. *Sniff. Sniff.*

One minute later, I can hear Dr. V out in the hallway talking to the nurses. Then, I hear a door open and close, I can tell he is talking to someone in the room next to me.  Then I hear a baby crying IN THE ROOM NEXT TO ME!

No way!  NO FREAKING WAY! They are circumcising my baby in the ROOM NEXT TO ME.  My sniffling turns into full on crying.  I call Jeff.

Me: Jeeefff! *Sniff. Cry.*  Jeeefff!

Jeff: What's wrong?

Me: It's J-J-J!  He's screa-a-amming!  I can hear him! *Sob. Sob.*

Jeff: Calm down.  I am sure it's not J.

Me: Nooooo!  It is J!  I he-e-eard Dr. V's v-v-voice next door, then I heard a b-b-baby crying! *More sobbing.*

Jeff: Okay, sweetie.  Calm down.  I'll be right there.

While I sit there sobbing, all I can think of is my sweet baby boy!  My poor sweet baby boy!  What have I done?!  He is only two days old and I am already the worst parent ever!

After the procedure is finished, the nurse brings J back into the room with me.  I immediately grab him and start to nurse him to make him (and myself) feel better.  I vow to never let anyone hurt my baby again! Jeff walks in as the nurse walks out.  He takes one look at my face and he knows that I am tore up from the floor up.  Jeff comes over and hugs on both of us.

Two minutes later, Dr. V comes in smiling, chewing his gum.  (This man has NO FREAKING IDEA how much I would like to punch him in the face.  If I hadn't been gutted like a pig and been turned inside-out, I would be on him like white on rice!)

Dr. V: So, the procedure went well.  There are no complications. (Registers my red, puffy, tear stained face. Places a hand on my shoulder) It's okay. It's over now.

Jeff: Yeah, she heard.

Dr. V: (Looks confused.)

Jeff: Yeah, she could hear the whole thing next door.  She heard you talking, then the baby crying so she heard the whole thing.

Dr. V: (Lightbulb starting to go off.)

Jeff: Maybe you should not put a mom with a baby boy in the room next to where you give circumcisions.

Dr. V: That is a good idea.

Geez, ya think?!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

What Did You Just Say?

Ever look back on your life and think about some of the crazy things people have said to you?  Things that made you think "What did you just say?!"  Now, I am here to tell you that I am at a place in my life where I can laugh at these things that were said to me.  (Well, okay, I lied. I can laugh at most of these things. Otherwise, I visualize these people stepping on a lego or getting a speeding ticket and that makes me laugh.) 

Some of the sayings on this list are from people who I love dearly and I want you to know I harbor no ill will.  The past is the past.  (And to those people, once those words left your mouth, they became fair game!)
This is a post of  some of the craziest things ever said to me in descending order.
6. "What happened to your eye?" - The Grocery Cashier, the lady walking her dog, the new dental hygienist, my former psych patient, the mail carrier, the kid at the playground, etc.
  • Little kids, you get a pass.  But adults, okay, yes, I have a birthmark underneath my left eye.  IT IS A BIRTHMARK, NOT A BLACK EYE.  It is wine colored, not black and blue. If it really was a black eye, way to be sensitive and ask me about it.  Geez Napoleon!
5.  "Are there two in there? There must be two in there." - Grandmother when I was pregnant not only the first time but the second time as well
  • Because you gave birth to my fantastic mom, I will cut you some slack.  Here's a tip. No pregnant women likes to hear someone ask her that.  Pregnant women feel self conscious enough as it is and are worried about so many things without people wondering "Dang, she is so huge! She must have a couple of babies up in there!"
4.  "Are you gonna fix your hair?" - Mom, on our annual girls' trip, AS WE ARE LEAVING THE ROOM TO GO OUT
  • Uh?  What the what? I think this one is self-explanatory.
3.  "L can stay with you." - J, in response to me asking if he would stay little and stay with me forever
  • I was just teasing him, but ouch, that stung a little.  I know he will grow up (probably way too fast), and be out of here before I know it.  And that is what I want him to do.  Become a God-loving, compassionate, hard-working, independent person and to have a life for himself.  (But it still makes my heart ache thinking of him not being under my roof.) *Sniff, sniff.*
2.  "My girlfriend doesn't like it when I flirt with you.  She knows I like you." - Guy friend many years ago, pre-marriage days
  • Yeah, I know. You may have to read this one again.

And for the numero uno!  (Drum roll please.....)

 1.  "Isn't that for skinny people?" - K, my sister-in-law, in response to me telling her I have Graves' Disease (i.e. overactive thyroid)
  • Yep, this one needs no explanation.  

PS I really love my family!  I wrote previous posts about my mom, Tino, and my sister-in-law, K, and how I love them lots. You can read about them here and here.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

That Person In The Mirror Is Scary

Next weekend, my friend B is getting married.  (Yeah B! So happy for you!) Jeff and I are going to the wedding which means adult conversation, adult beverages and adult attire. (*Sigh.* Sounds blissful, does it not?)

Since I am going to aforementioned wedding, I need something snazzy to wear.  A little dressier than my usual t-shirt and jeans momiform.

So, I packed up the boys in the car and headed off to the mall.  I told them if they were good they could look at the tractors (i.e. lawn mowers at Sears) and get a cookie.  (In my experience, if you are going out in public, it's always good idea to have some sort of proverbial 'carrot' to hang over their heads to incite good behavior. I'm not above bribery, people!)

We get to the mall and head to one of the big department stores.  Once we are in the dressing room, I remind the boys to be good.  And as an extra incentive, I pull up cartoons on my phone that they can watch while I try on dresses.

With the boys occupied, I try on the first dress.  Holy guacamole!  Is the dress supposed to fit like this? This doesn't look right. I'm putting it back.  Starting to feel a little bummed.

Second dress.  Oh sweet sausage!  I look like Fatty McFat Pants!  What is the deal with the bulge here and the pouch there?! This is a definite no-go. Feeling a little worse.

Third dress.  Crap fire and save the matches!  Who is this chunky monkey in the mirror?! I look like Chris Farley when he did "fat man in a little coat" in Tommy Boy. Feeling pretty bad right now.

About this time, J looks up from my phone, smiles at me and says, "Mommy, you look pretty."  And you know what?  I don't feel so bad anymore.  In fact, I feel pretty good.

I look back at myself in the mirror and really take a minute to look at myself. Yep, my body doesn't look like it used to that's for sure.  But, I see something else.  

I see a mom who loves her children more than anything.  I see a wife who is crazy about her husband.  I see a woman who has a nice smile, kind words to say and a wicked sense of humor.  I see someone who is beautiful and that someone is me.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Things Heard While Getting the Boys Ready For Bed

We have a nightly routine for getting the kids down for the night.  (Who doesn't, right?) Our nightly routine with the boys is dinner, playtime, tubby time, then bedtime.  L usually goes down first with J following closely behind. 

We shoot for having both of them in bed by 8:30p at the latest.  (Mommy turns into a pumpkin at nine.  Don't come looking for her because she is not here!)

Here are some of the things that can heard while getting the kids ready for bed.

"Don't put your butt in his face."

"Only touch your own penis."

"If you want to hug your brother, hug him around his tummy, not his throat."

"Don't drink the tubby water."

"Let's keep the water in the tubby, not throw it out on the floor."

"Keep your diaper on."

"Put your underpants on."

"If you want to touch your own penis, you need to do that in private."

Ack!! All this talk about penises and they are just babies!  (Alright, they are 16mo and 3yrs, but still!  They are just little guys!)  I cannot even imagine when they get to be teenagers.  Jeff is going to have to handle that.  I am getting a migraine just thinking about it.

Boys and their penises.  What are you going to do?

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Some Fun Free Things You Can Do With Your Kids

Ever have those days when the kids are driving you crazy, they are bored with playing with the same things and you can't think of anything new for them to do? (Yeah, me neither.)  But, let's just say for arguments sake, that you have had days like this.

Here is a list of a few "aces up my sleeve" for those days when you need something for the kids to do and you are running out of ideas.  Some of these things are pretty basic, like the library and the park.  We are at the park when it is nice out and the library all the time.  (Because, you know, they have books.  Lots and lots of books. I love books...)  You may already do a lot of these, but some are unique, at least I think so.  The best part is that all of them are free (or really, really cheap).

  • The Bookstore.  Our local bookstore, Joseph Beth Booksellers, is a fantastic place.  (What can I say?  I am a book lover.  I go where the books lead me.)  They have a cafe, discount kids books area, and an enormous kids section, complete with a little arena.  They also have story time each week and have lots of toys the kids can play with.  If you are lucky to live close to a bookstore, chances are they offer the same kind of stuff.

  • Tape Town.  The picture at the top is of J playing with the Tape Town. (I got this idea from Baby Rabies blog.)  Take a roll of painter's tape and make some "streets" on your floor by intersecting lines and making random shapes.  The boys love playing with the town.  We will put buildings on the roads and drive to each one.  So much fun.  (If you don't have a roll of painter's tape, they just cost a few bucks. So not free but pretty cheap.)

  • Water Cups.  (I got this idea from Ain't No Mom Jeans blog.)  Take a cookie sheet and put it on your kitchen table.  Place a couple of different sized cups full of water on the sheet.  Viola!  Water cups.  Sounds simple but J will play for 20 or 30 minutes at a time.  (Oh happy day!  This is a lifetime in toddler speak.)

  • Skee Ball.  (Or for those of you old enough to remember, Bozo's Grand Prize Game.)  Take a couple of pots, pans or bowls and place them in ascending order in a straight line.  Get a couple of balls together so you can throw them in the pans.  Tape a straight line on the floor as the starting line.  Then, just toss the balls in the pans.  J really likes this game.  Here's a picture of him just after a toss.

  • Obstacle Course. I have mentioned this one before but it is worth mentioning again.  You can do this with anything.  Pile up pillows, crawl under tables, run in a circle.  The possibilities are endless!  This is a good one because it wears the kids out.  (It also wears me out but it's worth it.)

  • Airplanes.  We make paper airplanes and toss them from the upstairs to see how long they fly in the air.  (You can do this from up on your couch if you don't have a second floor.) J will usually say we need to have a home for the planes so we end up making a hanger for the planes.  Then, we have to do maintenance on the planes and eventually the planes can carry "passengers".  This is one I really enjoy because I like to see J's creativity in action.
  • Bake Something.  (This is fun for J and for me!)  He is at the age where he wants to help so I let him help me make cookies.  We usually make Outrageous Chocolate Chip Cookies.  He can help measure the dry ingredients and mix the batter.  And we both get to eat the finished product!  It's a win-win.
So, there you have it!  This is by no means an extensive list.  There are TONS of super cool things to do with your kids because there are TONS of super cool moms out there.

What are some things you do with your kids? Do you have any "aces up your sleeve" on those crazy days?

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The Tower of Terror

One recent wintry Saturday morning, the family is lounging around the house after a nice big breakfast as per usual.  Since it is the weekend, I decide to take advantage of the help and set myself to work on the kitchen.  I am busying myself in the kitchen attempting to make a dent in the dirty dishes while Jeff plays with the kids.

I am not really paying attention to what they are doing because I am focused on trying to reduce the filth a little and my ears are only tuned in to the "screaming in pain" alert level.  (If I ever woke up and my house was spotless, I would FOR SURE know I was in the Matrix.  But that's a whole other post.) Plus, Jeff is watching the boys so I know they are in excellent hands.

After a few minutes in the kitchen, J yells, "Mama, look at me!  Look at me!" So, I glance up from the sink and see the picture above.  (No joke.  I kid you not.)

My first reaction is "Oh cheese and biscuits!  That looks dangerous. I don't know about that slide."  Then I watch J slide down the slide smiling and laughing, then my second reaction is, "Look at my sweet boy having so much fun. I'll be sure to watch him so he doesn't get hurt."  (And my third reaction is, "Wow.  Jeff made another cool contraption for the kids to play with/on/under.")

Every parent has different ways of parenting.  From my observations, there seems to be a few prominent styles.  Some of the most prevelant styles appear to be laid back, helicopter, kamikaze (You know who you are!), or a mixture.

I freely admit that I am a helicopter parent.  I am a helicopter parent because I am a wigster.  (What is a wigster? A wigster is someone who "wigs out" on a frequent, daily basis over lots and lots of life happenings.)  I have always been a wigster (or a "worrier of sorts" if you will) but it seemed to intensify after having kids.  Even though, I will say I think I have mellowed out after having my second kid. (The people who know me are probably laughing hysterically right now.  But, I HAVE mellowed out, honestly, even if it's just a little.  You gotta give me that.)

Jeff and I have differenting parenting styles, thus we like to do different things with the kids.  When I am playing with the boys, we do things like color, paint, do puzzles, play trains, and ride bikes.  (Nice, safe quiet things.) When Jeff is playing with the boys, they do things like wrestle, run through obstacle courses, jump off chairs onto the bed, "see if you can knock me down while wearing a pillow" and the tower of terror (as pictured above).

Maybe it's our different parent styles.  Maybe it's because they are all boys and boys like to be active (very, very active).  Maybe it's because I am more of a worrier and Jeff is more laid back.  I'm really not sure.

But, that's okay.  I think it's great that J and L have Jeff and I who love them more than life itself.  It's doesn't really matter what your parenting style or how you spend time with your kids.  It just matters that you do.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Easiest Dinner You Will Ever Make

Ever find yourself at around 4:30 wondering what the heck you are going to do for dinner?  This pretty much sums up mu daily existence.  Now, cooking is not my favorite thing but I don't mind it if I have a recipe to follow.  It's coming up with the idea part that I hate.

Now, this meal is a great idea for moms with little kids, moms with big kids, or heck, you don't have to be a mom at all!  This is for anyone who feels like they don't have enough hours in the day and are too exhausted to spend an hour in the kitchen cooking dinner.

I am going to let you in on a secret. I have a secret weapon.  It is the rotisserie chicken. (What?! You were expecting something else?) It is such a HUGE time saver. It is fantastic!  It is magical! If you are not familiar with the rotisserie chicken, you must introduce yourself immediately!

You can find rotisserie chickens at your local grocery, usually on a table warmer in the deli section.  There are usually two sizes.  The smaller one is for one to two people and is usually around one pound.  The larger one is for three to four people and usually two pounds.

There are so many things you can do with a rotisserie chicken!  Some of my go to staples are chicken tacos, chicken fajitas, chicken nachos, and chicken and white bean chili.  But, as fast as these meals are to whip up, it does not even come close to the easiest meal you will ever make.

The easiest meal is Chicken Sloppy Joes with Coleslaw.  You just take the meat off the chicken, dice it up,  and mix with your favorite barbecue sauce.  Put it on a bun, and there's half your dinner.  Then, get a bag of coleslaw and mix it with some dressing.  And your laughing!  Done!  Super quick and super easy.  (I told you it is the easiest dinner you will ever make!)

You can use which ever barbecue sauce and coleslaw dressing you'd like. Personally, I like the Jack Daniels Honey Smokehouse for the sandwiches.  And for the coleslaw, I like the Marzetti Slaw Dressing. (FYI, it is gluten free and also comes in Lite and Low Fat.)

So, the next time, you are at your wits end and have no idea what to make for dinner, use this recipe!  Everybody will love it!  (And if they don't love it, there is always peanut butter and jelly sandwiches with applesauce.)

Thursday, March 1, 2012

It's On Like Donkey Kong

When Jeff and I get fired up and are about to go toe-to-toe over something, one of us usually says, "Oh, it's on like Donkey Kong!"  J is like a little sponge and he absorbs everything he hears.  So of course, he uses this saying too.  Sometimes, if we are getting ready to do something J really loves he will say, "It's on like Donkey Hong!"  (So stinking cute!)

When someone hurts my feelings or does something mean to me, I get upset.  I'll admit it.  I am quick to get angry but I also am quick to forgive.  I don't hold grudges.  I may pout or ignore you for an hour or two, but then I am over it.

However, if you mess with my main amigos, my top three, my sweet family, I will scissorkick you in the back of the head.  (Okay, I won't really scissorkick you.  But I will be thinking about it.)

Who are my top three you ask?  Well, let me tell you.
  1. My kids.
  2. My hubby
  3. My mom
If you hurt one of these people, "It is on like Donkey Kong!"  (Somebody hold my earrings! It's going to get ugly.)  It will take a long time for me to forgive you.  Even if they forgive you, it may take me a really long time, if ever.

I know it is not healthy to hold a grudge.  I know it hurts me more than the other person.  I'll admit I need to work on letting it go.  It's really difficult for me and I'm trying.

But see, here is the thing.  I love these people with all of my heart, all of my being.  If you are hurtful to one of these people, it is like you are stomping on my heart.  Literally jumping up and down on the old ticker.  (Just picture it. Someone jumping up and down on your chest.  It would be painful, no?)

Now, I am not talking about unitentional slights, accidentally popping someone in the nose or even "your mama" jokes.  (I know the "Your mama is so fat.." jokes.  But in my mama's case she is skinny. So you would have to say something like "Your mama is so skinny she runs around in the shower just to get wet."  Ha!  That's a good one.  Wait, I am really going off topic here...)  I am talking about intentional hurt, actively trying to physically or emotionally hurt one of these people.

So, the next time, you decide to be mean to my hubby, my kids or my mama, just know that I am going to come at you like a spider monkey.  You brought this on yourself.  It's on like Donkey Kong!