Category Archives: Parenting is FUN!

The Sleep of the Darned

Here we are. In that first few months with a new baby, when every waking moment (and almost all of them are waking) is an out-of-body experience and the house gets wrapped in a slipcover of prefolds, teeny t-shirts, socks, and blankets. And the washing machine is going nonstop yet all of your clothes still have spit-up or worse on them. And by “clothes” I mean the sweatpants with the paint on the ass and the Reverend tshirt you stole from your better half, because — let’s face it — nothing else fits and you’re sure as hell not going to wear maternity clothes.

But we’ve made it. It’s been almost 2 months and I think we’re finally getting the swing of life with 3 kids.

Oz is a sweet thing who loves sleeping, eating, and peeing all over hapless bystanders. While he definitely owns some crankypants and doesn’t like to be put down, I think it is safe to say he is colic-free (unlike certain other children I have made).

He gets a big crabby/marathon nursing session going in the evening that usually lasts until “bedtime.” And when I write “bedtime,” I mean the time at which my dear and lovely husband takes Oz for a drive so I can get a little baby-free real sleep. In a bed.

No, the baby isn’t sleeping through the night yet. At this point, no one in our house is sleeping through the night. K is plagued with allergies and growing pains (I’m not allowed to mention puberty. Nor the fact that he listens to his iPod at night and I have been awakened by his headphonesdeaf singing of the Shins and FoTC many, many times). Lu falls out of the bed due to the fact that she sleeps with no fewer than 36 “babies” and 536 books.

Oz will get at least one good 4 hour stretch in there, but he needs to eat — baby cheeks don’t enchubby themselves, you know. Until tonight, Mr. Hussy has been on Oz-watch from their male-bonding/Intro to Rock 101 drivetimes until the first waking. And then I take over on feeder alert until the birds, our next-door neighbor, and the sunlight return.

So yeah. Sleep? No. Not so much.

But tonight marks the beginning of a new era. Tonight, all 5 of us are tucked in our beds or at least
a bed. Well, we’re all in bedrooms, anyway. And most appear to be sleeping — I hear snoring (Mr. Hussy) and banging (Lu kicking books out of her bed) and the little goat sounds Oz makes when sort-of sleeping. K, however, is singing (DCFC, I believe).

But — and this is the important part — no one is crying.

And that’s *better* than sleep.

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Born to Rock

Quote of the Day: (Luli) “Don’t turn that off — you know it’s my favorite.”
re: AC/DC

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Happy Mothers’ Day!

…and a great big welcome to our newest creation, the Wee Baby Ozzy:

The Wee Baby Ozzy

It was a long and weird week, but we’re both doing fabulously.  Obvs I’m going to be blogging sporadically for a bit, but will share some of the the hilarity of hospitalized shenanigoats when I return.  Take care and don’t forget to hug a mother-like person today…xoxox – sdh

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Still Pregnant…

Yeah.  No baby yet.  It’s all good, though.

Last weekend, out of boredom and irritation, I decided that I absolutely could not stand to spend another second in maternity clothes.  They are scratchy and, like most things, not designed with my body in mind.  Last pregnancy, I had court appearances up until the day before I went into the hospital (and five weeks after).  So I spent most of my time in “business breeder” gear.  I refused to wear a maternity suit, though.  I have standards. But this time I had very few “lawyer” appearances while giantly pregnant. So, I packed up 98% of the Traveling Maternity Box of Goodness and Delight and will be sending it onward to the next lucky preggo recipient.  In doing so, I found The Pants.  The Magical Maternity Pants, that I think are actually pajama bottoms.  Does that stop me from wearing them ’til they are covered in chocolate and almond milk?  No.  I shall wear them FOREVER.

I’ve kept a couple of things out, but really my go-to pregnancy uniform these days is one of several stretched-out scoop-neck t-shirts, a cardigan, and one of a stack of yoga-waist skirts I got from Old Navy many years ago and The Pants.  At night I slip into my $5 velour yoga pants and whatever of my husband’s t-shirts looks the cleanest. None of these items are maternity.  Which means that all of them are soft, reasonably well-made, and not some tacky shade of puce.  None of them really fit either, but I figure if I can get most of my bits covered, I’m fine to go out in public.

And while last week I was a bit ragey and determined to be unpregnant; this week?  I’ve reached a zen place with it all.  After being head down and moving for weeks, the wee fetus Ozzy decided to get all transverse on me.  Which, by the way, feels really awesome.  And when I say ‘awesome,’ I mean pointy and gross. But on the happytimes side, there was cobbler AND I could eat it without getting sick.

And I did this for one glorious, quiet hour:

I'm Never Leaving...

Note that I am wearing The Pants.

Going out in public these days mainly consists of going to the doctorbs.  The “B” is for “bwhen am I going to have this baby?”  Apparently no one has any clue. The good news is the perinatologist has now downgraded Ozzy from GIANTMONSTERBABY to large-ish but still reasonably sized baby.  Ozzy measured 6 lbs, 14 oz yesterday.  Which, while still bigger than either of my other two at delivery, is not terrifying.  Anyhow, both docs were all ‘whatever’ as in I could have this baby tomorrow, or anytime over the next 4 weeks.

In the meantime, I think I will head back to the hammock…

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Super K!

For all my frustration over his inborn inability to do housework, I proudly admit that K is, without a doubt, the best human being to ever be created.  We have so many epic K-Stories — all true — that prove this hypothesis.  The most famous story is the Tale of Wal-Mart Sorrow.  You may have already heard it.

As careful as I try to be about not raising kids who simply parrot my opinions, it is inevitable that they will be exposed to my ranting at some point.  K picked up on and came to share my loathing of all things Wal-Mart at an early age.  Among other things, he knew that I did not shop there because I did not think that they were good employers (to put it mildly).

When he was about 5 or so, my mother dragged him to Wal-Mart.  K protested, but his pleas did not move my mother.  So, K goes into the store and walks up to the first employee he sees.  He gently tugged on her shirt to get her attention.  When she turned to see what he needed, K said “Hi.  Are they treating you okay here?”

I’m pretty sure my mom never took K to Wal-Mart again.  It wasn’t long after that incident that K tried to unionize the workers at Panera.

So anyhow, THAT is the essence of K. And is why, no matter what grossness I find under his bed, no matter how many times he has to get a new school i.d. (5 this year, for those keeping count), no matter what gets broken, lost, or covered in honey, I am STILL amazed that I mother to such an incredible, unique, brilliant, and sweet kid.

And if I ever needed any more proof, yesterday he sent the following list to me.  He has decided that he needs to “own” his obligations, and so is on a campaign to be more organized.  Without any further fluff, I give you:

A Day in the Life of K.

1. wake up (6:10 am)

2. pack lunch

3. wait for dad

4.make sure everything is signed

5. go to school

6. socailize until 7:35

7. go to locker

8. READING TIME!!!!!!!!!!!

9. sience-social studies

10. Write down hw

11. switch

12. 2nd period

13.LUNCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

14. end 2nd period

15. write down hw

16. switch

17.3rd period

18. lockers or detention-study hall

19.TEAM TIME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

20. go back in

21. orcastra- global perspective

22. pack up

23. BUSES, OH THE SWEARING{FACE PALM}

24. Drop off

25. walk home

26. hug mom!

27. do h.w

28. walk dog

29. make up bed

30. Interaction+violin

31. SIMSONS (DOH!)

32. dad comes home

33. hug him

34. go upstairs

35. pwning deh noobs

36.Pysch

37.Shower

38. bed time(also study on 27)

39. go 2 sleep

40. repeat

PS. I LIKE PIE 3.151592653

Old School K Earning His Keep

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When I Was Your Age…

At some point, we all turn into some version of the people who raised us.  I think it is inevitable.  And, in my case, not necessarily a bad thing.  That said, no matter how well we were raised or how happy our childhoods, there will always be things that we insist on doing differently; primarily because we’ve experienced the long-term effects of said action but also because no matter how much we might be like our parents, we are separate and distinct people.

But despite all our efforts to be “different,” the moment will come when we have that out-of-body experience and watch ourselves morphing into that irritating, unfair, mean person who was the Minchin to our Crewe.  And I am guessing 9 times out of 10 chores are involved.

I always had basic domestic tasks for which I was responsible, plus some extras on the weekend.  In my recollection, I began doing simple things like sweeping and dishes when I was 7 or 8, and moved on to the hardcore stuff like laundry and bathrooms when I was 10 or so.  I also helped watch my younger brothers and got to assist on ‘fun’ indoor and outdoor projects that involved tools, and paint, and, on at least one occasion, dousing icky bugs in gasoline.

It isn’t so much the work that I found objectionable as it was the being awoken at the crack of dawn to do it.  I have distinct memories of my parents hauling my tender ass out of bed at 4 a.m. on Saturday morning to do chores.  “Ride of the Valkyries” was blasting from the stereo and there was laughter and the tinkling of crystal as my parents gleefully toasted their child labor law violations. As I scrubbed the floor with a tiny brush in my tragic rags, I always swore angrily that I would never treat my children in such a cruel and callous way.

In reality, I am sure that I awoke up at a reasonable time, was fed a hot, delicious breakfast, watched some cartoons, and then was told to get off my lazy butt and get to work.  And they weren’t rags, but they certainly weren’t Garanimals — a slight that I would never forgive.  Nonetheless, I was certain that MY children would be draped in Garanimals while they frolicked about enjoying their Saturdays.

Oh sweet fancy Moses how that worm has turned.

You see, I would be DELIGHTED to drag my child out of bed by the ankles and laugh while I duct-tape a 17 page to-do list to his chest.  The reality, however, and the albacore around my parental neck is the fact that my wonderful, unique, and much beloved almost 12-year-old does NO house or yardwork.  Seriously. None.  And not for lack of trying.

To his credit, he is very good and sweet about keeping his little sister alive and relatively safe for a while I gather laundry or whatnot, and will play with her and keep her entertained without question or complaint whenever asked.  And he keeps the family going with his sense of humor, endearing affection, and concern for everyone’s well-being.  Really, his non-chore contributions are amazing.

I will also be the first person to acknowledge that I have issues with giving him work to do, because I know it will only end up giving me more work to do.  And yes, I have some control issues when it comes to housework.  Ideally, I would like things done exactly as I would have done them. But I would settle for an end result that looks comparable.  Just so long as I don’t have to watch it being done in a way I find fundamentally wrong.

The solution, then, seems to be to simply give an assignment and walk away, providing only nominal supervision.  And really, how much supervision should sweeping require?  I am thinking very little, but if you’ve ever seen K wield a broom, you would understand my reluctance.  He holds the broom like it is a toxin-coated pitchfork and stabs at the floor with intense, jabbing motions.  In fact, he is far more likely to dig a hole or set something on fire with the broom than he is to actually transfer a single crumb from the floor to the garbage.  I wish I were joking.  And any attempt at correction or instruction only sticks with him for about 1.9 seconds, and then he is back to his default stabby setting.  On the flip side, though, he can dig a hole like nobody’s business.  It’s extraordinary, really.

Getting him to clean his room has, over the years, been just about the most traumatic, frustrating, and horrifying thing I have experienced as a parent.  Traumatic for both of us because, for various reasons, K is incapable of actually “seeing” the mess and becomes utterly paralyzed when faced with the task of having to put things away.  Again, I’m not joking.  He cannot sort.  Despite the facts that there are labeled bins for all toys and lockers for all his clothes AND he really wants to do it right, he just can’t.  I like to think that he just doesn’t judge.

It’s frustrating, but I accepted years ago that I actually have to walk him through every minute step of cleaning if I actually want it clean.  You cannot simply tell him to clean up all the things off of the floor and put them away or you will end up with a single, tiny bin overflowing with lego, garbage, cats, socks, and books, while the floor remains littered with lego, dirty underwear, bbs, and chewing gum.  He and I clearly have very different ideas of what belongs on the floor.

So, if I want it to actually be clean in there, I have to stay in there with him, line up the bins and help him sort.  I have to guide him through the process every single time – it simply doesn’t stick.  It’s getting better in the sense that there are far less tears than there used to be, but that’s it.

My other option is to just shut the door and pretend he is getting it done.  Which works for a few months until I forget and actually take a critical look at the situation, pass out from horror at what I see, and then end up having to spend a weekend going all haz-mat in there.  I will inevitably find a possibly sentient giant mystery wad of candy, dirt, skidmarked underwear,batteries, magazine inserts, pokemon cards, string, dead bug parts, and something that might have been a sandwich at some point tucked inside his bed.  I worry he is constructing a changeling so that he can escape my Hannigan-like cruelty.

And then I begin to wonder if the changeling could run the vacuum…

 

That floor better SHINE...

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No Scurvy Here

One of my very favorite websites is the Kitchn. I get a lot of kitchen inspiration from their wonderful posts and recipes. A week or so ago, they put up a recipe for clementine sherbet and I have not been able to stop thinking about it. What a bright, sunny, unexpected winter treat. And yes, I’m slightly more crazy about food right now on account of being pregnant, but trust me when I say that I am exceedingly food-lusty even when not knocked up.

I love everything about food – from seed to compost, from grocery list making to knife sharpening, from menu planning to scrubbing dishes. I love the way food looks, smells, feels, sounds, and tastes. I love how it brings my family together whether it’s a full-on Sunday dinner, hot as hell cookies swiped off the cooling rack, or a store-bought pizza eaten on the floor of the living room as we watch Dr. Who.

So as I wait for K to get home and Luli to finish napping, I’m going to get everything ready to get our sherbet on. I will post the recipe with any tweaks and production pictures in a follow-up post.

Pre-Sherbet Clementines

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