Tuesday, December 28, 2010

True Joy

This morning, as every morning since Santa brought it, Sam had to grab her new pillowpet before venturing downstairs for breakfast. She always says she loves it, but this morning she said "Mom. I love my pillow pet--too much. I love it too much."
I totally know the feeling, kid, that's how I feel about you.

Even when she was running around the house naked before bathtime last night, I still felt like I loved her too much. Then, when I yelled "What are you doing!?" and she streaked by and she yelled back "I'm gonna make mischief!!!!" I was just confused. Where in the world did she learn that word? Still, I can't help it--I love her. Maybe too much. Even though she's completely crazy and it took me 10 minutes to chase her naked bum down, during which I wasn't feeling all that loving, I might add.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Christmas Confusion

As my last post illustrates, Christmas can be really confusing for a kid. Further evidence of this mixed up message has popped up around us constantly over the past few weeks...here is how Sam views/hears/understands the trappings of Christmas.

The other day, she came running in and jumped on the rocking recliner in Peyton's soon-to-be-room. She announced "Look, Mom! I'm rocking in a winter wonderland!"

Last week, we tried to get Sam to learn "Silent Night" (I figured we'd get some religion in her, since I overheard her singing "Santa Baby, hurry down the chimney tonight"). She watched us quizzically and when we got to "Sleep in Heavenly Peace," exclaimed "Oh! It's the song from the sleeping baby commercial!" Yeah, you know the Pampers commercial with all the sleeping infants? Yes, it makes me cry, but I cried for a whole different reason upon hearing my beautiful daughter know a great Christmas classic only by its affiliation with a product. We're working on learning about the true meaning of Christmas now. Diapers are good, but the Savior's birth is more important. Never thought I'd have to actually say that.

Sam gathered me around the tree and explained to me how she thinks Christmas morning works, but she managed to mix up most of our traditions in what turned out to be a hilarious and very detailed little plan of hers. I've included the "real" information in brackets for you. "On Kissmas morning, we open my chocolate calendar [the advent calendar is done by the 24th], and come to the tree to find the pickle [hey, that's true]! Mommy will hide it [not true, Santa hides the pickle ornament]. When I find the pickle, THEN I get to open this polka dot present [Not true, whoever finds the pickle gets a special present from Santa, but it is certainly not one wrapped already under the tree]! And then I will get a ladybug pillow pet [Let's hope she gets her wish--the only request Sam has made of Santa has been a ladybug pillow pet. It's a pillow. It's a pet. It's a pillow pet. My husband is appalled that she asked for what is essentially just a bed pillow (and that it happened to cost more than all the other actual TOYS we got her), but it's her Christmas wish. Never underestimate the power of a catchy jingle directly on the heels of a Dora the Explorer episode]" To further complicate matters, I finally looked at the tag for that darn polka dot present she's so excited about--turns out it's from my parents and to her little brother. Seeing as he doesn't exist outside the womb yet, I'm more than happy to let her do the opening, but I doubt she will be excited to find what is probably very small, very boyish clothing that she then has to hand over to Mommy for Peyton. This Christmas, Sam is getting her first dose of sibling rivalry--and the sibling doesn't even show up until February. Ho ho ho!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Holiday Worries

Ever since we put up the Christmas tree, Sam has greeted it after a long absence (ie: bedtime, or a nap, or even an extended shopping trip) with an exuberant "Mom! Look! The Christmas tree is still here!"
I really didn't know why she always seemed so surprised by that, but she did it several times.
Finally, the other night Daniel was gone and Sam was just sitting at the kitchen table talking to me while she made a mess out of her dinner. After thinking for a few minutes, she sighed and said "Mom? So, when does the Grinch come to take our stuff?"

We had watched the Grinch over Thanksgiving week. All of a sudden, I understood why she was so relieved and happy that the tree was still standing each time she came back. I quickly assured her that the Grinch was just pretend, and even in the story the Grinch became nice and gave the stuff back.
She hasn't been surprised to see the tree still standing since.
I just realized, it must be really hard and stressful to be two. I guess adults don't have a monopoly on holiday worries, imagine just sitting at home waiting for a green bad guy to come into your home uninvited and take your tree as if it were completely inevitable. Poor kid.
Now if I could just make the idea of Santa Claus sound less creepy for her...

Monday, November 29, 2010

Little Good Things

Lately it has seemed like all I ever hear about is bad stuff in the world. In everything from how people interact, to general courtesy, to politics, to how people relate to their children, it seems like there isn't a lot of good left in the world at large. To paraphrase one of my favorite Gilmore Girls quotes, when Rory asks Paris if she's met their neighbors at their new apartment, Paris replies, "Yes, and all I can say is build an ark, because we are overdue for a flood."
For the past several weeks and months, I've felt kind of inundated with the worst in humanity--not just with the bad behavior of others, but also the constant need to wallow in and spotlight and pinpoint said bad behavior on the "news", in blogs, pretty much all of Hollywood, etc. I really don't think it helps that there was recently an election, which tends to bring out the worst in both sides of the fence. Something about pregnancy also always seems to hone my negativity radar as well, making me even more observant of the crappier parts of the world around me--possibly because I'm so moody myself. In short, lately, if I'm being honest, I've thought more than once that we might be overdue for a flood.
All these factors coming together has made it the perfect time for me to undertake a project where I've actually made a conscious effort to notice the little acts of kindness happening around me. For nearly the past month I've paid special attention to the little things people do to make the world better for those around them. Of course, it was harder to find these acts than deplorable ones, as you usually do not see someone volunteering to babysit plastering the front page of the checkout line tabloids, but once I started looking at the actual people around me, instead of what the world so desperately tries to make me to notice, I was impressed by what I saw.
I saw people step forward and offer to help in the middle of a family emergency. I saw someone volunteer take an unruly toddler off the mother's hands without being asked because she was clearly in no position to calm her down herself. I saw people who are struggling themselves in this economy give generous donations to a shelter--especially touching at a time when so many requests seem to come in at once and resources are so strapped. I was even a recipient of some of these acts myself, I had people unexpectedly volunteer to babysit when I needed it most. I even found out that yes, there are still people on this planet who will see someone in a line with one item and invite them to go ahead of their full cart at the store.
It may not happen as much as my grandparents claim it did in the good old days, but...
People still hold open doors for the people behind them,
People will still smile back at you and wave if you say hello,
People will pick something up off the ground for you that you've dropped (particularly if you're pregnant and holding a two-year-old FYI),
People still say "thank you very much" and "Have a nice day", and
Drivers will usually stop to let you pass into the parking lot, although I admit I would never fault someone for not wanting to wait for a duckling parade of preschool children to meander across the street--I was surprised to see that one myself.

In short, there is a lot wrong with our world today. Seeing acts of kindness and quiet service does not change the abuse, neglect, dishonesty, greed, and immorality I see and know about in the world around me. However, there are still a lot of really good people out there who are just trying to do the best they can. I wasn't sure I believed it much a month ago, but there are still people who aren't always looking out for #1. Additionally, I realized that much of the good in the world does take place outside my sheltered, "safe" circle of friends and at church. This world may not be perfect, but after spending a month with my eyes open, I no longer think we are due for a flood. And since I'm still pregnant, and there's still political rancor in the world, that's really saying something.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Just a few minutes a day!

I'm not exactly sure when the transition happened, but recently I feel like my life has taken a serious turn from a nice pace, with just enough downtime to make me happy without making me lazy, to frantic and hectic. Honestly, I know several people who survive on hectic, but I've always been the kind of person who prefers a lot of downtime to spend with my kid, family, whatever. My husband, on the other hand, does not like any sort of downtime at all. In fact, while I try to spend some time on Saturday relaxing my aching back, feet, or abdomen, I can only usually get him to watch half of a half-hour tivoed show before he's back up and looking for something to clean or organize. The man can not sit still. It's a blessing and a curse.

Anyway, I think I've nailed down the problem to overcrowding my life. It's all the claims that friends, experts, magazines, etc., say I should be doing every day. Why do they say I should be doing these things? Because, every single one of them is billed as something vitally important that only takes "minutes a day!" So, I'm doing some math (and yes, my brain does hurt) to add up how much time I "should" be doing little things...now I obviously, don't do all these things, but I thought I'd just take a gander at why we're so dang busy. This is just stuff I thought of off the top of my head that I've recently been told I "should" be doing because it only takes a few minutes--this is by no means an exhaustive list, nor does it include most actually important life activities, like--if you have a job, or have to spend time with the basics--parenting, routine cleaning, cooking, eating, or using the bathroom. I figured in hygiene rules that have given a specific time frame in order to do it "right," but I'm not including time for basic necessities we do anyway, like showering. Also, I'm figuring this into the template that we also "should" be sleeping 8 hours a day.

Exercise--30-60 minutes a day of moderate exercise plus
15-20 minutes a day of stretching or strength training
Practicing an instrument (or skill or talent)--30-60 minutes a day
Talking to and bonding with my fetus--15-20 minutes (no I'm not making this up, and no, you're also not supposed to multi-task while doing it)
Reading my scriptures--15-30 minutes a day
Reading to my toddler--30 minutes a day
Practicing good oral hygiene (brushing properly, flossing everyday)--10 minutes a day
Lotioning and pampering my feet to prevent calloused skin--10 minutes a day
Mapping out calories and planning nutritionally correct meals--30 minutes a day
Organizing or cleaning one clutter "trouble-spot" in my house until my whole house looks like Jaime Lee Curtis's--20-30 minutes a day
Wiping down and dusting the bathrooms in my house to stall the need for deeper cleaning (5 minutes per bathroom)--20 minutes a day total
Using my sock to wipe down the baseboards in two rooms a day--10 minutes a day
Writing in a "gratitude journal" to promote personal happiness--10 minutes a day
Writing in an actual journal or blog to document my life--10 minutes a day

Hmmm, that makes 4 hrs (on the low side!) to 5 1/2 hours of stuff that I someone out there thinks I should be easily fitting in and doing every day, utterly separate from my job as a mom and wife, church responsibilities, grocery shopping, and interacting with others. No wonder we're all so tired! Yes, some of these are actually important, and I will continue to find the time to do them each day because they actually help me be a better person. That said, however, I think the next time my Good Housekeeping magazine tells me that I too can have spotless tile floors without the hard scrubbing if I only take 10 minutes a day to do the following, I will have to laugh. Yeah, 10 minutes a day sounds like nothing, but when you've been reduced to only 11.5 hours a day in which to do most of your living (or a measly 2.5 hours if you work full-time away from home--without a commute!), I think we can all agree that it's worth some hard scrubbing every so often, when it occurs to us. After all, it takes no minutes a day to ignore the floor for two weeks! That's 140 minutes I just saved you!
Ignoring other people's opinions and deciding for yourself what really truly deserves your precious "minutes a day" will save you so much more, and I for one, am taking back my spare minutes! As important as lowering my risk of breast cancer by a billion percent, or increasing my happiness by 532% (and how exactly do they measure that anyway?) sounds, I think it's more helpful to my well-being to not spend hours a day stressed out and being bossed around by a magazine or random statistic.
If you need me, I'll be on the sofa, playing tickle monster for an undisclosed number of minutes.

Friday, October 1, 2010

They Say Time Flies

One of my friends was wonderful and agreed to take Sam yesterday afternoon so I could do some Sam-not-allowed errands. She and Sam went to her daughter's dance class and while they were waiting for her to finish up, they were in a room with a huge climbing wall. Apparently, Sam was absolutely obsessed with the climbing wall, and kept asking if she could "PLEASE!" climb the wall. Finally, my friend explained that the rules are that you have to be at least 5 to use the climbing wall. At this point, Sam looked at her and said, "I'm six."
Now, I know they say time flies and you blink and your kids grow up, but I'm pretty sure I didn't miss four whole years.
I'm also totally torn, because I'm way impressed that Sam automatically knew that six was more than five without counting, and that for some reason, she seemed to realize that it would look shady if she claimed to be the exact age needed for the climbing wall and therefore went up a year. I'm not, however, proud of her seemingly casual relationship to honesty at this point. If she were only two, I'd probably excuse it, but for a six-year-old to lie, is simply unacceptable. :)

Monday, September 27, 2010

A Little Ironic

Because Google reads everyone's email and tries to target ads specifically for you (which I find irritating and creepy by the way), my gmail is now touting banner ads to vote no on a prop that would do away with secret ballots for elections. Up at the top it says "Keep your secret ballot private!"

So, let me get this straight--you paid Google to read my email and target ad me based on my location because you believe so strongly in privacy? I guess they only really claim to support privacy in the voting process, because privacy in personal correspondence is SOOOO passe. I might as well be wishing for the return of the 8-track.

If I didn't hate the whole "big brother" aspect of gmail in general, I'd be laughing harder.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Well, okay, then. Carry on.

On Tuesday, Sam and I were reading books on the couch. I was feeling cuddly, so I said "Sam, would you like to come sit on my lap while we read?"
Sam looked at me, thought for a moment, and said, "No danks, Mommy. I just sit on my own butt."

Hmmm, I had nothing to say to that at all. On the one hand, I was thrilled that she said "no thanks"--how polite! On the other hand, I didn't even know she knew the word butt. On the third hand, she did use it properly and wasn't trying to insult anyone and be rude and it's not like it's a word we don't use. Finally, I got myself to stop laughing and said "Well, okay then, let's read."

Sometimes I wonder if Sam is really 2 1/2, or if she's like a really small six year old. Despite being around for every day of her life, I still wonder.

Monday, September 20, 2010

There are worse parents...

So, the last little while, Sam has officially "discovered" Dora the Explorer. She's seen it before, but lately she's been asking to watch it, and singing the songs, and all around enjoying Dora. I knew this day would come, because Dora has more marketing dollars spent on her than Charlie Sheen does for damage control, and it was only a matter of time before the flood leaked into our house.

However, while I certainly have no desire to be one of those obnoxious helicopter parents who sleeps in their kids' dorms for the first three weeks of college because they just can't bear to leave them behind, I've been forced to come to the conclusion that Dora's parents are pretty darn negligent. I mean, really. They exist, because they show them on occasion, so this isn't one of those shows where they just don't mention her parents and we're supposed to assume Dora's world is in her imagination or something. She has a house, and both her parents live in it--presumably "raising" her twin baby siblings, although they seem to spend more time with Dora supervised by only a preschool-age monkey in red boots than they do at home. Lately, I've been imagining an episode taking place with Dora's parents while Dora is exploring. Here's a rough draft of the script.

A visitor comes to the "Explorer" house (for lack of a better last name).
Dora's Mom: "Hi there, come on in! We're watching TV."
Visitor: "Hi! So, uh, where are your kids?"
Dora's Mom: "Oh, I don't know. Dora put the twins in a wagon and said something about taking a baby crocodile over to his mother in the rainforest. I zoned out when I heard the word 'volcano.' That kid is always talking about something, you know. Do you want something to eat?"
Visitor: "No thanks. So, wow, your four-year-old just took the babies across the volcano? Isn't that really dangerous? Are they going to be ok?"
Dora's Dad: "Eh, don't worry. They do stuff like this all the time. Dora's got a little purple backpack filled with all sorts of random crap to keep her safe. You know, space suits and stuff. It probably weighs more than she does, but I didn't see a sign of a hump on her spine when she came home for an hour last Tuesday. She'll be fine."
Visitor: "Ok. I guess. So what about the babies? Will they be okay with a four-year-old babysitter going over a volcano!?"
Dora's Mom: "Geez, chill out. It's not just a four-year-old. Her little monkey friend is with her, and he's pretty responsible as monkeys go. Besides, the twins can fly, so it's not like they have no way to get over the volcano. Sheesh, what kind of mother do you take me for?"
Visitor: "Your babies can fly?"
Dora's Dad: "Yeah, they've got superpowers. We would keep them home more often, but what are you going to do? Infants gotta fly..."
Visitor: "Can Dora fly?"
Dora's Mom: "Oh, heavens, no. But she's always got random animal friends coming by driving various modes of transportation--planes, trains, cars. I've introduced her to everyone in the area, so it's not like she's in the car with strangers. And she always wears a seat belt. I guess I'm just kind of strict like that, but you've got to keep your kids safe."
At this point, Dora's Dad gets bored by the conversation, belches, and turns his full attention back to the TV.
Visitor: "Well, yeah. But isn't that evil fox always waiting to steal things from kids? What's his name, Swiper?"
Dora's Mom: "Hey, well, if you want to raise your kids that you'll always come to the rescue so they can never deal with bullies on their own, that's your prerogative. I prefer to let her learn how to take care of business. If she can't stand up for herself and keep her hands on her stuff, she's the one who can dig through the wilderness looking for it. Maybe it will teach her to be a little quicker on her 'Swiper, no swipings!' I don't know about you, but I don't want a whiny little preschooler, who can't even deal with a simple evil fox."
Visitor: "Alright, then. Well, it's been nice to see you, and if you'll excuse me, I have to make a call. (whispers)...to CPS."
Dora's Mom: "See ya later. Hey on your way out, will you grab me a beer? Or in Spanish...cerveza!"

I really doubt Nick will ever air my show, but for cross-promotion, I'm sure Diego's parents could swing by for a movie marathon or something on occasion. It's not like they're all that involved either...

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Dad is the Rainmaker

The last several nights, Sam has been stuffy and waking up with a cough in the night. The problem is, her throat hurts and she's still half asleep, so she just panics, runs into our room crying, and that makes the coughing worse until she starts to gag. It's a game we played 10 times the night before last. Finally, at 1 am today, Daniel thought to put the humidifier in her room so she would (hopefully) not have the sore throat and stop the cycle. We could really use the sleep, and I'm glad he thought of it, because seriously, between me getting up a million times a night this pregnancy and Sam's visits, I'm sleeping in 30 minute spurts that just aren't cutting it!

Not only did Sam sleep soundly from 1am until 8 this morning (a major miracle because she wakes up by 7 no matter how little sleep she gets!), but I had forgotten she was out cold in our bed while Daniel set up the humidifier in her room, and she stayed asleep when we put her back to bed. Sam woke me up this morning by running into my room and excitedly yelling "Mom!!! Mom!! There is a blanket, a machine, and CLOUDS in my room!!! Come look! Clouds!"
I tried to explain to her that the machine wasn't making actual clouds, but mist to help her throat, and Daddy put it in there--she seemed convinced some Santa-like figure had visited. Finally, she made this totally shocked face and then stood there grinning. Then I figured out why--she now thinks her Daddy makes the clouds.
Now, I know this girl already thought the sun rose and set with her Dad, but now, apparently, she also thinks he creates the weather with his "machine." Oh well, there's time enough for her to observe our mistakes and figure out we're both painfully human. In the meantime, I hope Daniel enjoys being the bringer of clouds.

He should be riding high today--not only is he the mightiest dad in the world to Sam, but we found out yesterday that the new baby is a boy--he's getting a son. Not a bad 24 hours, I'd say!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Miracles happen

For those who know me personally, but have totally given up on my private family blog, I have finally updated it with new pictures of Sam.
See, miracles happen.
Try not to get too excited, it's nothing special, I just know even the most faithful have pretty much given up checking for my bi-monthly updates. :)

Friday, September 3, 2010

Interesting Prayers

Lately, we have been letting Sam lead the way and say her own prayers with whatever she feels like praying for. The results have been some interesting prayers from Sam. Here are some of my favorite Samisms while addressing the Almighty. Frankly, I'm thrilled she's over the three month phase of saying "Heavenly Father. Danks Blessings. Amen." That got old fast.

"Please bless Daddy be safe of the freeway. Please bless me be safe on the freeway. Please bless Mommy to take me swimming." (Daniel's response: It would take divine intervention for me to put on a swimsuit and go in the pool these days. So true--my belly has outgrown the only swimsuit I've bought since I was in the 8th grade, and I have no desire to go shopping for a new swimsuit.)

"Danks for Super Why! And please bless me to watch Super Why tomorrow."

Every prayer, no matter how short, includes the line "Please bless Robby Stevie on der missions." Her twin uncles are serving in Argentina and Uruguay (or will be when they're done with language training), and lately, since Steve has been sick, she adds "Please bless Robby and Stevie at da doctor." Explaining to her that Robby hasn't needed to go to the doctor has done nothing for us.
Sometimes she also adds "Please bless me to go on a mission. To Home Depot and Sam's Club." Why she wants to serve a mission so badly, and further to those particular stores, we don't know. It's funny though and she has never ever wavered from listing those two stores as her goal.

"Please bless my Mack and G to come visit for Banksgiving."

"Dank you for my alphabet." (we put a new alphabet strip in her room that day) Then she added "Dank you for H...Dank you for I....Dank you for J, K, L, M, N, O, P."

"Please bless Mommy and da new baby. It comes out after Christmas." I like this because it's neither a request or a thanks, just some info the Lord might want, I guess?

"Bless Daddy at basketball."

"Danks for my toys. Danks for my house. Danks for my blankies. Bless me to stay in my bed. Amen."

Amen, indeed. Funny kid.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Well, I asked

Lately, I've been forgetting that Sam is getting really smart and starting to think about things in a different way--but that way is not the adult way. So sometimes I ask her questions that are really dumb, like "what are you doing?" and she'll look at me like I'm an idiot and say "I'm running around with dis hanger scatting (scratching) things."
Clearly, I could see that she was running around the house with a hanger scratching things. I could also see that she was "making a big mess," "wiping dis booger on da wall," "rolling on the floor," "throwing dis toy," and about a thousand other bizarre things she does on a daily basis. Which means I probably should have asked "Why are you doing that?" instead of "what are you doing?" It's a lesson I continue to learn the hard way every day. I can hardly blame her for answering my question so literally, though. The look on her face when I ask seems to say, "Geez, Mom, you ask a stupid question, you get a stupid answer."
Sometimes, however, she answers a question in a way I never expected that shows she is thinking about things but still doesn't actually understand how things work. Take today. While I got out of the shower and was getting ready Sam asked "where we going today?" It's been a very busy last couple of weeks, and every day she's gotten dragged to at least one long appointment.
I looked at her and said "You know what? We don't have anywhere we have to be! No appointments on our schedule! So, we can do whatever we want. Is there somewhere you would like to go today?"
Sam looked at me with a huge grin and yelled "Yeah! I want to go to UTAH! Let's go."
Huh, I didn't see that coming at all.
So now, instead of a super fun day where she got to pick the destination, she is very disappointed and upset that we can't drive 12 hours to visit her "Mack and G" in Utah. Welcome to parenthood: "disappointing children through our best intentions for thousands of years."
Moral of the story: I shouldn't have asked.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Bad Call

Why, oh why didn't I write my speech for tomorrow night before Mockingjay was released today? It would have taken me so little time, but I put it off, and now I not only have to do it last minute, but have to drag myself away from the final installment of the Hunger Games series to do so.
I'm a moron who didn't think ahead, that's why.

I'm also someone who is still procrastinating by taking time to post this on my blog instead of writing my speech...

I'm a terminal procrastinator!

Friday, August 13, 2010

There's probably a lot of factors at work here...

Maybe it's the heat (our AC was accidentally cranked up to our "vacation setting" so it was 84 and climbing in our house this morning).
Maybe it's the pregnancy exhaustion.
Maybe it's Sam waking up at 6am and wanting to "sleep" in my bed for an hour, that hour mainly consisting of her smacking me in the face repeatedly with her gloworm as she attempted to hand it to me and asking to "turn the music back on!" (We only let it play music during the day, lights only at night).
Maybe it's a lot of things...
but seriously, Calliou has to be the most annoying, whiny, obnoxious child ever to grace the TV universe. The fact that there has yet to be an episode where Mommy drops him off at Grandma's "Just to get a freakin' break from all the whining, before mommy has a break down!" is endlessly fascinating to me. Far be it for me to rag on a kid that probably has alopecia, but geez, he drives me nuts.

Then again, I acknowledge that I could just be having a stressful day. It doesn't help that Calliou is Sam's favorite show on PBS kids and she wakes up before seven every day, just to make sure she doesn't miss it at 7:30. We have had talks at our house however, and Sam knows that "I do not talk like Caillou. No whining!" So, at least he's telling her how NOT to be.
I'm going to take comfort in the fact that it's probably not just me, however.
The other day at the library some kid was looking at books with Sam and opened up a book with a bald kid in it. She yelled "Mommy, look--it's Caillou!" The mom said "It looks like him doesn't it?" and then turned to me and said under her breath "Holy crap. I hate that whiny Caillou. Drive me crazy!"
There's at least one other person out there who can't stand a fictional preschool character. Anyone else out there who can't stand Caillou, I'm thinking of creating a support group?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Not what she thought it would be

Sorry I haven't blogged in a while. I've had a lot of things going on around here, including my brother's wedding (Congrats to the Boy and Kiki!) and a two-week stay with my parents, just because Daniel and I finally realized that just because he has limited vacation time, doesn't mean I do. It only took us nearly 3 years to figure it out. We missed him for the week or so we were apart before he joined us, but it was nice for Sam to milk some serious grandparent time where she normally only gets a few days. Plus, having help with Sam in the form of my sister has been absolutely awesome. Everyone should have a teenager in the house that they trust, but don't have the responsibility of raising when they have a toddler. Adjusting back has been hard, but that's part of the joy of vacation, right?

So what's going on with us that has us so busy?
Lately, Sam has been very much into telling me she loves "cute babies." She yells "Ohhh, yook at da cute babies!" at Gerber commercials. She plays with her baby dolls. She also treats all the kids at church under three and a half feet (even the ones older than her) as "babies" and tries to feed them her goldfish--directly into their mouths, which is more than a little embarrassing, particularly when the "baby" in question is pushing age four.

Apparently, however, all this love is purely in the abstract. When we went to visit a friend with a new baby, she was so excited to see him she talked about it all morning, and made him a "card" that she slipped into our baby gift when I wasn't looking. He was all she could talk about--"I gonna see da baby! Cute babies!" When she ran in from playing outside to see me holding the baby, however, she changed her tune. Standing squarely in front of me and pointing at my arms she very loudly, very carefully, and very slowly said "Put. Da. Baby. Down. You hold me, Mom. You hold me!" I have never seen anyone turn on another person so fast. In Sam's eyes, babies are only cute when relegated to their swing, or their car seat, or the arms of anyone but her very own mom.

Uh...if she doesn't find a way to cope with this, I think Sam is going to have a really tough February.

Sunday, June 13, 2010


Okay, it seems only fitting that for my 100th post, I have an announcement that makes me very happy!!!
It clicked! Sam has officially been completely diaper free for two weeks as of tomorrow, and she now very rarely has an accident! No more cleaning up random puddles of pee around the house during the day!!!! She's started waking up at night before she goes in her sleep, and making a trip then going back to bed. We've even had great success on the road with public bathrooms--less success with Mommy, who still can not stand the idea of public potties and dances around nervously yelling "DON'T touch the seat! Please don't touch the seat! For the love of Pete, get that hand away from the seat!!!" the entire time...
I think I saw the Elmos on her undies breath a sigh of relief to not be peed on every single time they come out of the drawer.

Dare I say it? I think Sam is potty-trained.

If you're interested in my secret to successful potty training, it is only this...buy a huge box of wipes from Sam's club, and a brand new box of diapers from Wal-mart the day before your spouse decides he simply can not change another diaper and you decide to full-time underwear it. Something about all that wasted money must speed the process along...
Thankfully, the young women needed a bunch of wipes for girls' camp this week! They can thank our bizarre timing for their shiny clean hands.

Of course, like everything else I have ever learned from parenting, this too is a double-edged sword. If you want to know the downside, just ask anyone sitting in the pews around us at church this week--as Sam returned from a triumphant bathroom run, threw up both hands to her *percieved* adoring fans and announced "I pooped in the potty AT CHURCH! Hey!" Thank you for that display, Eva Peron. I'm proud of you too, now for the next training item: shutting up about it in public. I don't know who is going to teach her, however, since I just did my poop bragging on the INTERNET for crying out loud. Does it make it better if I'm bragging for someone else, and not of my own habits?

No more diapers--hip, hip, hooray!!!

Friday, May 28, 2010

Public Humiliation

So, Samantha has yet to "click" with potty training, although she does refuse to pee in her underwear now, she also refuses to pee in the potty, meaning she holds it all day long until we put a diaper on her which she fills until it bursts, or she pees a little at a time in her pants and then stops herself and yells "I have to go to potty!" We then rush like maniacs to put her on the toilet, and she chickens out and starts saying "all done!" before she even gets on the thing. Thankfully, due to her little leak, she has a little more room to repeat the cycle all again an hour later.

One thing she has completely figured out, however, is that other people expect parents to respond to a kid who has to go potty. Now, when we are at a store or public place that she finds boring, she starts yelling as loud as she can "Mommy! I need to go da bafroom! I've got to poop! Mommy! Da bafroom! PEEASE!"
I'm stuck standing there, whispering to her, "Sam, you do not use the potty, you will go in there, touch a bunch of public toilet seats (giving mommy a sick feeling in her germophobe stomach) and then say you are all done. You are wearing a diaper, and you are not potty trained!"

You should see the looks I get when I have a kid screaming "I need da bafroom! I've got to poop!" and I'm standing there refusing to drop everything and take her repeating, "but you won't use the potty!" I know she has no intention of using the potty, but she loves to explore public bathrooms. She is obsessed with going in the bathrooms at Wal-mart all the more because it is forbidden. I won't even use them, for crying out loud, I'm not going to take my little 2-year-old in there. It's a cesspool.

It's driving me crazy! How is it that she can figure out how to make Mommy look bad in public, and get an evil little kick out of it, but she can not figure out that it's not fun to sit in your own poop and it's better to use the potty!?

I don't even want to train her hard core yet, but I'm going to have to. I wanted to let her lead the way, but she's only using that power to screw with me.
At least if she's in underwear, when she yells "I have go bafroom," I'll have a reason to take her, and the remote possibility she'll actually go.
In the meantime, if you see me go by with a bruise on my forehead, it's only from banging my head against a wall.

Friday, May 14, 2010

A Letter

Dear Murphy, whoever you are,
Thank you so much for your concerted efforts to make your famous law known to me on several occasions today. I hope you realize your efforts did not go unnoticed--and I was appropriately intimidated. You may note proudly the tears you brought to my eyes at 4:34pm this afternoon, after what was your (approximately) 12th attempt to completely derail my day. I apologize that it took so long for me to crumble, perhaps if I had been more perceptive to the strength of your statute, Murphy, you would not have been forced to hurl your entire arsenal at me in the space of only six hours. I realize my mistake now.

However, for your future information, a phone call or letter is a much better way to announce your intended presence in a person's life. Perhaps if you decided to take this tactic, you would become known for something more positive and welcome than a bitter, broken, muttering of "Murphy's Law!" Perhaps your name would even be uttered in conjunction with markedly less profanity than it currently is worldwide--maybe even no swears (or near swears) at all. Just a thought.

Please enjoy your day. I hope it went better than mine did. Thanks for the memories, and nightmares.


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

My Two-Year-Old is Older Than Me!

So, today I realized that my daughter is older than me in a couple of ways. Hopefully it's just for this week, because after a crazy week last week, I have not felt like doing anything since Sunday night. It's all I can do to make myself put on real pants and start the day. I just want to nap and lay on the sofa! I'm hoping this will all blow over in the next day or so when my schedule goes from lazy back to crazy, but I digress. Back to Sam.
First, this morning she asked for "two waffles, peease!" for breakfast (since she was sick yesterday, and she didn't eat lunch or dinner, I'm sure she was starving). When she was done, she very carefully handed me her plastic fork (which I'm pretty sure was only actually used for the first bite), and said "Here you go, Mommy. Put it in da dishwasser!" Hmmm, I had every intention of either 1) leaving it there until I felt like cleaning, or 2) tossing it in the sink. I guess that makes me the kid (or husband *cough cough*) in this scenario? That has been the tip of the "responsible Sam" iceberg today.

Later, I was trying to get myself motivated to get moving, but mostly, I was wandering aimlessly around the kitchen, trying not to mindlessly eat sugar. I didn't really see the point in rushing around getting ready or cleaning, since Sam had a fever last night, I didn't want to take her anywhere today just in case, even though she seems fine. Facing a day of not leaving the house until 6pm is never motivating for me.
Sam came over to me and said "I play in the sambox." For the record, we have a sandbox, but Sam seems to think that because it belongs to her, it is also named after her and calls it her Sambox. It's just too cute to correct. I got her dressed and shoed (I guess if it works for horses...) and opened the back door so she could play (it's literally a foot away from the sliding door so I can see her and the TV from the sofa, which was of course, my plan for the whole day anyway). Sam grabbed my hand and said "Mommy comes too. Get mommy's shoes!" and led me to the shoe basket by the door. When I looked at her to object, she said calmly and not whiny at all, "Mommy come too. Mommy water the garden." It was true, my garden needed watering. Dang it.

An hour or so later, I was back to wandering the kitchen and trying to get motivated. I was whining out loud to Sam that I had to make some cookies for a church activity tonight, but I just didn't feel like doing anything at all--all day long. Why couldn't I make myself do something? Sam hopped up on the couch and turned around to lean on the back of it and look across the kitchen counter at me at almost eye level. Then she put on an excited voice said "Mommy--make some cookie dough, and THEN, drive to da tunnel!!!" Driving through a tunnel is what Sam considers to be the ultimate reward for anything at this time in her life. She asks if we can go through a tunnel anytime we get in the car. The irony here is that we have taken her "true da tunnel" exactly once in her whole life that she remembers. It was on our way to Peoria over a month ago, and apparently has changed her life forever. The fact that she was trying to get me to take her all the way to downtown Phoenix for one three second tunnel ride was not the point. What cracked me up was the way Sam was using all my favorite mom tricks to get me to get off my lazy butt and do stuff. Our roles are totally reversed today, and it seems like she is dragging me along! From the calm statement of "Mommy comes too." that I've used a million times when Sam has no choice but has decided to be difficult "i.e. Nope, you're coming to the store too. Get in the car," to the riduculously overemphasized "THEN" before bribing her with a more fun activity, the kid has gotten a hold of my playbook, and man, does she know how to work it.
It's funny and cute, but it's gone to her head. Over an hour after putting her down for a nap, I was still hearing her gabbing in there. I poked my head in, to find her reclining on her bed in a sitting position, "reading" a magazine. When she saw me, she put down the mag and said "Hi Mommy. I'm all done taking a nap!" Yeah, sure, nice try kid. I know that after this morning, she thinks she's pretty much running this show, but I'm still the mom (sometimes).
"Sam," I said as sweetly as possible "lay down and take a real nap, but THEN, we'll do something more fun."
I've attempted to reclaim my title, but maybe it's too late--I just heard her favorite potty book flush from in there. Well, okay. If we're going to switch roles, that's totally fine with me--she can go clean my bathroom while I take a two hour nap!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

5 Reasons I Suck at Facebook

If you're one of my "friends" on facebook, it's no big secret that I kind of suck at it. I don't remember the last time I signed in, and I'm pretty sure one of my last status updates said something like "If you need to get in touch with me, you'll have to contact me through Daniel, because I'm never on here." (By the way, kudos to Natalie, who did read my update and wished me a happy birthday on Daniel's page. I actually got the message! Thanks for listening!) My update wasn't meant to be snotty, it's just very true--Daniel checks his facebook quasi-religiously, and I never do. In fact, at some point in the distant or recent past, he saved his login so that our computer automatically pulls up his facebook page. At what point that happened, I have no clue. Could have been six months ago for all I know.
Am I on here pledging to be better? Uh, no. I just logged in to see just how behind I was, and after seeing how many requests I had waiting, and how many things I had to scroll through, I got overwhelmed all over again, and went back into hiding, possibly for another six months. I'm just here to explain why I no longer like Facebook. Here are five reasons I suck at Facebook, and feel very little remorse for it.
1. I don't number my friends. Honestly, I can't tell you how many "friends" I currently have (proof I'm not kidding--upon logging in today I realized they have moved the box that lists my number of friends, and I just didn't bother looking for it). I know it's not a ton, but I also know it's way more than I would ever think to count as friends if I were just listing my buds off the top of my head. I also know that some people live and die by the number of friends they have--and that's never been my style. I've never cared about popularity one bit (and not one person who knows me would disagree with that), I try to be nice to everyone, but I just don't get the hype around "friending" and comparing "friends" with other people. It drives me crazy. Be prepared--if you start a sentence with the phrase "So-and-so has more facebook friends than me..." I have no idea what followed it, because I officially tuned out.

2. I don't "friend" people I don't know, don't remember, or don't like. I have no freakin' clue what goes through people's heads when they send friend requests to people they tormented in High School--particularly without any sort of note explaining why they're doing it. Are you "friending" me because there are a few shots you didn't get in a decade ago? To apologize for years of rudeness? Because you honestly don't remember being a jerk and thought we were friends? Eh, come to think of it, none of those reasons entitles you to be able to view pictures of my kid whenever you feel like it, and jump back into my life. Just because I'm over your past behavior does not mean I'm going to welcome you back into my life with open digital arms. Hello, ignore button. I'm not curious enough to accept the request and see what happens. Also, if I can not remember you to save my life, and you don't include a clue as to who you are (like perhaps, a message telling me your maiden name), but facebook says we went to the same high school, I'm going to assume you are trying to bolster your numbers by trolling for "friends" and ignore you too. It's nothing personal, see #1.

3. Just because your friend request wasn't accepted yet, doesn't mean I don't like you. As I have just admitted, I check my Facebook account maybe two or three times a year, so it's highly likely that I would friend you back, if I see the request. But because I don't check it, people get all upset and worried that they've gotten the dreaded "ignore" button. Chances are, if I see you regularly, and talk to you in person, and am therefore a real, live, friend to you, I'm more than happy to "friend" you online as well. Please don't start being weird around me, or wondering what you did wrong because you sent a request two days ago and it hasn't been answered yet, it will probably be a lot longer before I get around to clicking accept. Until then, seeing as were actual friends, I will call you to find out a status update, ok? Or, if it bothers you that much, tell me about the request, and I will go in there and accept it. Although I don't know what you're banking on seeing, because I rarely update it!

4. I'm just not into details enough to enjoy reading the updates anymore (also known as, I like to keep a little mystery between us). I like knowing what people I know (or used to know) are up to. To a point. Facebook has allowed us to go way WAY beyond that point. Light years beyond that point. For instance, I want to know how many kids you have, how you're doing, where you live, what you do for a living, and maybe if you're having a good or bad day. If you get in a major accident, or suddenly need help/prayers/support, I want to know that too. I do not need to know at any given moment everything you ate that day, the exact amount of sleep you got last night, what you thought of every single TV show you watched today, or the price of everything you have ever purchased ("posted from my blackberry while still at the store!"). That last one particularly bothers me. I'll make all you shoppers out there a deal--if I concede the point that because of all your purchases, you must have more money than me, and therefore must also be my better, will you please stop posting what you have just bought? I doubt before facebook you would call 250 people with every mildly impressive purchase, and just because you can inform 250 people in one fail swoop, doesn't mean you should. Oh, and one last caveat--I'm glad you are able to capitalize on a rough financial time for the rest of us, really, I'm happy for you, but bragging repeatedly online about how much you are spending on a huge new house, while I'm paying my 2006 mortgage rates, makes me want to virtually punch you in the neck. (Forget "poking," can we get a button for that?) If it's tacky to talk about something in mixed company in person, it's equally tacky to blurt it out online.

5. It's gotten too political. From the friends you can't ignore, even if you don't want to exchange casual personal information with them (bosses, some family members, etc.), to the friends who believe that facebook is their own personal Glenn Beck (or Al Franken) hour, facebook has gotten too political for me. I have friends from all walks of life, from every spot on the political spectrum, different colors, religions, and creedos. I have zero problem with people who feel the need to occasionally speak out about a particular subject that hits close to home politically (that's why I blog, for crying out loud!). What I can't stand is the constant political grandstanding (you know who you are!) and all the "invitations" to "causes." My political, religious, and personal beliefs are extremely important to me, and they are also very complex. They can not be summed up by accepting or rejecting a blurb about a so-called "cause." I didn't get in touch with people from my past to constantly offend them politically, nor did I get in touch with them so they could offend me by constantly asking me to in essence "take sides" on complex and controversial political issues with one click. I do not need to virtually walk around wearing a coat of "cause buttons" to display what I believe. I display what I believe in the way I live, and vote, who I choose to associate with, and who I don't. I dislike the fact that because it is so easy to invite friends to take sides on a political issue, people think it is okay to do so. We would never walk up to someone we hadn't seen in 10 years and ask them to join our "No on 210" campaign first crack out of the box, but online, basic politeness seems to go out the window. If you want to join a cause on facebook, that is totally fine, but please do not send me endless requests to do the same, and judge me if I choose otherwise. The fact that I do not want to do lip service for a cause by wearing a virtual button for Greenpeace (because I disagree with some of their practices) does not mean that I'm all up for killing the whale population, and the fact that I think it is ridiculous (and frankly, a little sacrilegious) to become a "fan" of my religion on a website, does not mean I am not proud to be a member of my church. I show that by going, and participating, and living the standards I've set for myself, as opposed to, you know, making a single click. Similarly, if I do not want minute by minute updates on your wedding plans, it does not mean I'm not a fan of your relationship and don't want you to succeed. It means I don't want to be a "fan" in the facebook sense. I still love you.
Along the same lines, please do not make every status update a sales pitch for your pyramid scheme--because while I might not care enough to find the box that numbers my friends, I will search up, down, and sideways to find that "virtual neck punch" button I requested earlier. I will use it liberally on any and all "friends" who seem intent on using me only as a potential customer or political lackey.

In short, I think it may be time for me to take my facebook profile down.
There's keeping updated on people in your life, and then there's holding all your friends virtually hostage to minute details in the name of being a "friend" or a "fan." As it stands now in my life, I think the latter has overwhelmed the former. If you really need to get in touch, you'll know where to find me--on Daniel's facebook page.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Ignorance is Bliss vs. Knowledge is Power

After I got out of the shower and got dressed today, I couldn't find Sam in any of the usual places.
When I let out a loud "Where are you?" (Our family's equivalent to Marco Polo--guaranteed to garner a response from Sam) I heard a muffled "He I Yam!" from behind her bathroom door.

"Hey Sam, what are you doing in there?" I asked with a little bitty flinch.
"I cleaning da bafroom!" she yelled and poked her head out of the small crack that she could open the door, due to the piles of towels, toys, and of course, a few dirty clothes she had gathered behind it over the course of the last 20 minutes.

Then I was faced with the eternal question: Do I ask her to show me what that means (to her) and risk being entirely grossed out or confused further? Or, do I just let that one slide on the basis that the diaper genie is still closed and the toilet is shut (so there's a chance, however slight, that her "cleaning" does not involve the use of toilet water). Do I really want to know what made her decide the bathroom was in need of cleaning if there are no visible floods?

I figure sometimes ignorance is bliss. I'll throw that pile of towels in the washing machine as a preventative measure, and enjoy not knowing the rest of the details.

Besides, usually she tells me when something really gross happens. Like on Saturday, when she came running up to me and said "Help me, Mommy! I drop my milk! My sippy cup!"
"Where did you drop it, Sam?"
"In the potty!"
As I watched it float around in there, I finally understood the true meaning of the "toss" part of "Take and Toss sippy cups." The fact that she came right to me instead of fishing it out and putting it back in her mouth makes me proud, however. Sometimes, it's shocking how much parenting makes you reset your standards.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

I'm So Freakin' Zen!

So, if you're wondering what has happened to all the political outrages and well-worn soapboxes at my house...you are not alone. This blog has certainly take a turn toward the mild, and there is a reason why.

Several months ago, as I've mentioned before, I was diagnosed with migraines, and my most common migraine trigger is stress, especially accompanied by chaos. As an example, helping out in the nursery on Sunday is pretty much guaranteed to lay me out for at least a day afterward. Because of this, and because I would also like to limit the amount of narcotics I need to take to control the migraines once they strike, my doctor has wisely advised me to avoid stress. No, I am not kidding.
Where do doctors come up with this garbage? They're doctors for crying out loud, you'd think they of all people would understand that life comes with a gigantic amount of unavoidable stress, right? They just toss that out there like it's as simple as popping a pill every day. Oh, sure, no more stress, I'll just go live on the moon, but I'd better not stress about having enough oxygen up there...
Oh wait, is that stress rising? Chilling out now.

Anyway, since I am not able to quit being a mom, or wife, or you know, actual human being living in an world full of other actual human beings, and--oh goodness--other drivers, I have had to make some serious and rather minute decisions about where to eliminate my stress.
So I quit watching my favorite "scary" TV shows. No more "Law and Order: SVU" or "Criminal Minds." To my surprise, my recurring violent nightmares have almost entirely stopped (I am not being sarcastic here, because my nightmares were never about things I saw on these shows, I never assumed there was a connection. Seriously, now I look back and feel like a moron).
Next, I gave up the news. Honestly, I've never been more at peace. Sure, I might be a tad behind the eight-ball when something major happens, but Daniel will always call me and tell me to hop online and look it up when there's a major catastrophe (like a volcano in Iceland). What I don't miss, even a teeny bit, is the local news feeling the need to report every incident of child abuse, neglect, or molestation. I don't miss things like "There is a violent burglar terrorizing the valley, stay tuned at ten to see if he's near you, and what you can do to make sure your home isn't next!" I don't miss Fox reporting on American Idol results as if it is actual news. It's not news, it's what happened on your station five minutes ago--it's TV. Let it go. I don't miss political pundits on both sides making me feel like the earth is five minutes away from imploding if we don't all vote no on Prop. 428. Disclaimer: This was a made up prop, because as I've just said, I don't watch the news. If it turns out to be an actual number, please don't vote no just because I told you to. Do your research.
I feel so much better about life in general. I'm not saying I've totally checked out of life outside my home, but I'm finding ways to get my information without the yelling, the bias, the noise surrounding it. It's not for everyone, and the world most definitely needs people to stay checked in and fight the good fight on the issues, but for me, having to find a way to let some things go or be crippled by blinding pain--it's been nice to let go of this one. Getting fired up over every little thing is exhausting, and I have to pick my battles now. It's a bit of a shame that I had to develop an obnoxious, painful, and all around sucky medical condition to make that change, because I am really enjoying trying to find more zen in my life.
It's also made my blog a little boring. Sorry. I still do get all rankled up and preachy from time to time, but it's usually about unavoidable things that are also so personal I don't have the right to vent on the internet about them. Therefore, a little boring. Sorry again.
Please don't worry, I'm still me. When I can find a way to be better at getting all riled and stating my mind without having the issue follow me around and chew at my insides until my head is throbbing, I will be back and better than ever. Until then, try to enjoy my observations on Sam's exploits and maybe take a look at this adorable puppy.

Awe, so adorable, but I bet it pees on the carpet like crazy. Whoops. Well, like I said, still me.

Friday, April 9, 2010

A Few of Her Favorite Things

Sam and I went to Target today to pick up a few things. Namely, a birthday present for her cousin, and a few more I claimed were for her cousin that will actually appear on her birthday. I love having a kid young enough to shop in front of like that. Anyway, after picking out presents for her cousin (and her) we went over to find some more big girl underwear for Sam. I have recently discovered that when someone pees in every pair they wear, a seven pack does not last long at all.
*And before someone jumps all over me about the fact that if the kid is peeing in every pair they may not be ready for potty training, let me just say, I know, I KNOW. But--when you ask a kid if she wants to wear big kid pants instead of diapers and she says "Yes, PEEEEEASE, Mommy!" and promises "No pee pees on Elmo! I go potty," what are you really supposed to do? Tell her you don't believe a word and slap a diaper on her? So, we talk about not peeing on Elmo, or Abby, or Zoe, until I'm blue in the face, and she'll go quite happily dry for several hours while I ask repeatedly if she would like to sit on the potty seat and she says no, and then---puddle. It may not be "right" but it's how we roll right now. I just can't bear to say no big girl pants when she loves them so much. She loves the underwear, she hates sitting on the potty seat right now. C'est la vie.
Anyway, after looking for a ridiculously long time around Target for the big girl pants that weren't big enough for a school-age kid and finally finding them next to the burp rags and infant washcloths (seriously? Does that make any sense at all?), Sam completely glommed on to a package of underwear featuring Brobee from Yo Gabba Gabba. "Mommy, I want deese." That would have been great--except for the fact that they were for boys. I'm for gender equality and all, but it seems to me that boy underpants are structurally very different and would just cause even more confusion. After trying to pitch Dora, Princess, or Minnie Mouse undies all of which were made for girls, and to no avail, I finally discovered a package of Yo Gabba Gabba underwear for girls! Only one packet left in her size--was this a post-Easter underpants miracle? Apparently, yes. Sam fell in love with her new "big girl pants."
Of course, I live in toddler world, and in toddler world, even a good thing, like finding a quality pair of underpants, has a major downside. Like a kid so attached to her packet of undergarments that she doesn't want to hand it out at the checkout counter. And when she finally does, announcing to the check-out person "Hurry up. I buy them!" repeatedly (luckily, the check out person only communicated via writing or ASL, so I didn't translate Sam's rude prodding). Then she insisted on removing them from the bag and carrying them out to the car, staring lovingly at them and saying very loud things to make me happy like "I no pee pees on Todee, mommy!" Of course, she also would periodically wave them over her head and announce "I pee in da potty!"
She insisted on eating her snack with her underwear perched on the table next to her (classy!). And when I told her that if she was going to wear them, I would have to wash them, she snuck away with a pair after begrudingly handing me two of them. She then proceeded to have a tantrum/vigil weeping in front of the washing machine crying "I want my gabbas back! Wash fast, Mommy! My Gabbas! I wear dem!"
So, my daughter's new best friend in the world is an item of clothing. An embarrassing item of clothing to be seen with in public at that.
Parenthood is an absolute blast. Really and truly, because while this loud and obsessive love of underwear is embarrassing for me now, just think how embarrassing it will be for her in a few years when I bring it back up. Sweet, sweet revenge for all the puddles I've cleaned this week.
Muah ha ha.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

She Doesn't Run the Show

When returning from a test drive at a car dealership, Sam embarrassingly announced to the salesman "I want to buy dis big car! I wuv it! I buy it!"

You should have seen the guys eyes light up--like the sale was in the bag. You could see his mind thinking "I can so use their daughter's desires against these vulnerable parents."

Too bad for him, we're utterly heartless. Sam may love that "big car," and as suckery as we might be when it comes to small toys and cute shoes, we absolutely refuse to make a major purchase like a car, because a two year old tells us to. Seriously, who would? Anything involving financing, and Sam's opinion goes out the window.

Bummer for the car guy, I guess. We did end up getting a car, just not from him. Not for a lack of trying on Sam's part. To be fair, she "wuvs" riding in anything other than our car, and always asks "I buy it? I ride it!" so she can ride them whenever she wants. This goes for tricycles, bikes, rolling toys, other people's cars, and yes, even shopping carts. Particularly the flat ones at Home Depot. Maybe if he sold those instead...

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Be Careful What You Wish For

Lately, Sam has been talking our ears off. By our, I pretty much mean Daniel and me, because if anyone new so much as asks her name, she will burrow in my shoulder and occasionally shoot them confused glances. I know all kids do this at some point, but I get tired of the "oh really?" looks I get if I tell someone what Sam has said lately. I can't blame them for thinking I'm exaggerating or making it up while she stares up at them, slug-like. So, I've been wishing that she would pipe up on occasion. I don't expect her to have a full-blown conversation with total strangers or anything, but just to answer some polite questions would be nice.
Be careful what you wish for.
On Monday night, I had an unfortunately timed world's worst migraine, and had to go to the doctor very first thing Tuesday morning, which conflicted with Daniel's unfortunately timed early morning jury duty. He couldn't find a way to call them since none of the phone lines opened until he was already supposed to report, so I ended up dragging myself and Sam to the doctor (luckily, it's a block away and the most severe pain had subsided so I wasn't a hazard on the road). What she saw there must have changed her life.
Now, she will tell absolutely anyone who will hold still long enough, "At da doctor...Mommy get a big shot. IN DA BUM! In da BUM!!!!" It's the most hilarious thing she can possibly thing of.
She told the entire extended family last night. She says it over and over in the car, and anytime we pass the doctor's office (which is luckily located right next to the main exit of our neighborhood so it happens a lot). She tells people on the phone. I'm straight up nervous to take her to the store, not wanting to have to talk to a cashier about the state of my health or bum.
Sheesh. Hey, Sam, remember when you didn't talk to anyone? Uh, can we go back to that? Just until you don't feel the need to tell strangers about the shot in my bum? Besides, the nurse said it was my hip...why can't you seem to remember that part?

Thursday, February 25, 2010

What My Days Consist Of

So, Daniel has been bugging me lately about never blogging. At which point I always point out that I'm am too busy to blog. Then, he says something along the lines of "You blogged more with a newborn and no sleep than you do now." This is a "clever" way of saying "So what do you do all day?" because it doesn't involve his face getting slapped, but is essentially the same question. I give him credit for trying really hard to be sweet, tactful, and avoid getting slapped. What a guy! As a side note, I have to point this out about newborns: although I thought I was so incredibly busy at the time, in reality, newborns sleep A LOT. Just not at night, or anytime you really want them too. So, yes, I had more time to blog as a sleep-deprived zombie mom than I do now. Figures that you never appreciate the stage you're in.
Anyway, all this has gotten me thinking about what I do actually do all day with a nearly two-year-old 24/7. Here is a brief index of where my time goes:

Answering the following questions: "what's that?" 1000 a day.
(not to be confused with) "what's that sound?" an additional 1000 times a day, and "Daddy at work?" 500 times a day. There's also always "Go to park?" and/or "Go outside?" and/or "Watch (Incredibles/Nemo/Yo Gabba Gabba/Up/Elmo)?" at least 500 times a day. Each. Additional random questions throughout the day?

"Essercising" as Sam calls it (or "physical and psychological torture", as I call it) 30-60 minutes a day.

Begging Sam to use her "indoor voice" as she greets people and objects at her favorite stores, 50 times per trip to "Ta-get!" or "Spouts!" (target and sprouts)

Saying goodbye to inanimate objects including but not limited to: the TV plus whatever shows/characters were most recently on it, bananas at the store (why???), every stuffed animal we own, keys, the bathroom and stepstool after washing hands, and leftover Halloween cardboard cut outs of Elmo, Big Bird, Cookie Monster, and Oscar the Grouch (each individually) when we pull out of the garage. Total time of goodbyes--uncertain, but we rival the Von Trapps. "So long, farewell..."

Cleaning up after the annoucement "I have pee-pees." I have since learned this does not always mean "pee-pees." Always bring the wipes or planning on a super-lighting dash back across the room. Total time: Too much of my day, but really, any time is too much. I hate diapers, and I wish she was totally ready for potty training, which brings me to...

Standing around awkwardly while Sam sits on her potty seat forever doing nothing but singing while unrolling and ripping tiny bits of toilet paper. Total time: Feels like infinity. Actual time: 5-10 minutes. I'm trying to let her lead the way, so if she asks to go potty, I'll let her sit. Unfortunately, she only seems to understand "the throne" in the way it applies to royalty (namely "will you fan me and peel me a grape whilst I sit?"), and not it's more practical uses.

Providing snacks: 30 minutes, including convincing Sam that the fruits and veggies are better (hah!) than Nemo fruit snacks again, muscling her into eating two apple slices and some jicama and then breaking down and getting out a pouch after 100 rounds of "Nemo now Mommy, PEEEEASE! I eat a apple!"

Trying to get her to stay in her "big girl bed" for naps: 1hr 30 min. Unfortunately, 2 days ago, Sam figured out that my "magical Mommy power" that will make her stay in her bed isn't, um, real. That sucks. She will try anything to stall her nap, from the standard, "Water, Mommy?" to the truly creative Samism, "I watch Crebidles first, Mommy?"(Crebidles is The Incredibles, and I've got to give her props for thinking she can make a deal like that, and gain nearly 2 hours with zero benefit to me.) Thank heaven she's afraid of the dark and will not get out at night, and keeps the barganing to a minimum. So far.

Ignoring begging and/or tantrums: 1hr.

Playing toys, puzzles, playdoh, painting, learning letters, numbers, colors, and being a horsey: Total time: several hours a day.

But that's not all. Every so often, I clean a few things, like other people's underwear and toilets. I prepare a couple meals a day. The fact that they are not tasty (and they aren't) is not the point. I also find time to write occasionally, just not always on the blog.

The funny thing is, other than the diapers (okay, and the exercising!), I really wouldn't want to spend my time any other way. Even if I have to say goodbye to Elmo every stinking time we leave the house, and people look at us funny when we talk to the bananas in the produce aisle!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

I Think My Torch Went Out

Those who were reading my family blog in 2008, might be surprised that I have not yet blogged about my excitement for the upcoming winter games. Nor have I decorated my home in the standard opening ceremonies red, white, and blue streamers and balloons. In fact, my pro-America cheering and trash-talking of late has been downright non-existent.
So what gives with the dousing of the Olympic torch I normally carry?
Frankly, I have no one to blame but myself, and it's a little embarrassing.
Starting when we got home from Utah after New Year's, I started my Olympic fever. Humming the Olympic theme to myself anytime I do anything remotely challenging, dreaming about Bob Costas, thinking up mean Canada jokes (which I was going to need more of than usual, seeing as the games are in Vancouver), and planning which events to Tivo so I could replay any figure skating falls over and over until it stopped being funny (oddly enough it never does). I was totally ready by the end of the first week of January.
Then I planned to get my DVR all set to try to record the opening ceremonies to make sure I didn't miss them in case some unforseen delay...but I couldn't find them in the program guide. I searched through all sorts of things looking for them, NBC, Vancouver, Ceremonies, Olympic Games...nothing. Finally, Daniel came down as I was getting super frustrated and yelling at the TV.
"I can't find the opening ceremonies anywhere!!! I want to make sure we record them!" I yelled.
Daniel looked at me like I was crazy and said "Well, yeah, the DVR only works for two weeks out."
"Yeah, and the 12th is only like four days away. They start on the 12th, right?" I asked, feeling pity that I had to explain that four is less than fourteen to my poor, ignorant husband.
"The 12th of February, honey. The Olympics aren't until February." He explained as nicely as possible, also probably feeling bad about the fact that he was married to a moron.
Whoops. I had missed the Olympics by a whole month!! How did I totally not realize that?
Embarrassed, I said "So all those commercials they've been running lately...?"
"...all say February. Yep. Every last one of them." Daniel finished for me.
Holy cow, I'm losing my mind.
So now that the Olympic Games are in fact approaching (for real this time), I find myself lacking my usual gusto, because, I've already done all that. I'm finding it very hard to work up the same level of excitement when last time my flame was doused by embarrassment.
Now that the Olympic torch is getting nearer the stadium, it's time to reignite my passion. Uh, anybody got a light?

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Tons of Fun

You know you're having a doozy of a day when going to the dentist and finding out you have to get a cavity filled (for the first time since you've had permanent teeth), is not the low point.

Yesterday sure was pleasant. In fact, I was actually looking forward to my dental appointment, because I knew I would get to lie down for at least 30 minutes. I'm not saying my standards have dropped or anything but...sheesh.

Sunday was fine, we didn't take Sam to nursery because she had a fever for a few hours on Saturday, but other than classic toddler sniffles she gets the week after nursery every time she does go, she was totally happy and playful. But that was Sunday, and yesterday was Monday. Sam has developed what we think is a sinus infection that only becomes horrifically awful if she lies down--when her nose drains into her throat and makes her cough until she gags and nearly barfs. This then causes a panicked overreaction (I know, someone in my family, overreact? Crazy!) where she whimpers and cries to be consoled from her near-puke experience. The beauty of the whole thing is, since it pretty much only effects her while lying down, the only sleep she gets is when I hold her upright in a chair while she flips and flops like some sort of sea creature out of water (we're wary of moving her into a big girl bed because she still covers some serious mileage scooting all over her crib while sleeping). Yesterday, we were running on less than 5 hours of sleep and a 20 minute nap. Of course, once she gets over the hump of being exhausted, she feels okay standing up, runs around in ridiculous circles yelling and screaming with nothing but a minor stuffy nose. Plus, we're stuck in the house, because in case its a cold and not a sinus infection or just teething sniffles as previously thought, we're trying to keep her away from people. She's so tired she's throwing weird tantrums (for example, yesterday she wouldn't eat anything but kept demanding a piece of cake), and just cried for hours if she wasn't in the middle of a manic episode.

So, when can I get back in that cozy dentist chair again? Bring on the drill, I'll probably sleep through it.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

I Don't Know Where She Gets It!

Over the past two or three weeks, Sam's vocabulary has absolutely exploded. She's even started to put together simple sentences, although for some odd reason instead of "I" she says "Ina" as a contraction for "I'm going to." Some examples are: "Ina need dis" "Ina want this" "Ina go poo poos." My favorite new trick of hers however, has to be that she has started trying to make us laugh by telling jokes and making funny comments on purpose. I have no idea where she gets it... (For the record I really do have no idea why she answers her play phone with "what?" instead of "hello." I really don't actually do that.)

Here are some of my favorite Samisms from the past few days.

We took Sam to Sweet Tomatoes the other day. She loves trying a million different foods and on top of that ate a ton of mac and cheese, followed by sharing some frozen yogurt. As we were getting into the car afterwards, Sam said "Mommy?" "What, Sam?" "Ina need snack!" Then she cracked up. We were all appalled and impressed that she was trying to mess with our heads.

After her nap, Sam had the hiccups, as I was carrying her down the stairs, her hiccups made her burp--in my face. It smelled like fruit snacks (aka. Foot Snackies!) and I said "That's pretty gross, Sam." Sam's response was to shake her head and say "Dane Bups!" (dang burps!)

Yesterday morning we were watching Sesame Street on my bed. It was about bugs, and the narrator sang "If you look, you'll find bugs everywhere." Sam (who isn't crazy about bugs) heaved a giant sigh and said "Oh. Great."

So Sam has become a comedian lately, and it's cracking me up. If you try to have her put on a show however, it will blow up in your face. The other day, I said "Sam, tell Grams one of your funny jokes!" Sam leaned into the phone and said "Fun-ny joke!" Not what I meant, but funny all the same. This child of mine is absolutely nuts, or as she'll say while running full tilt around the house "I NUTS!!!!"

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Great News

Apparently, the one-hit wonder show on VH1 Classic was not a special, but a series.

I know, I know. I thought Christmas was over and done too, but here comes this little gift to the world in mid-January.
What a way to cheer up a truly dismal day of being home with a migraine. Although, I must admit, that back to back episodes did not help with the nausea...or the crushing feeling that I really should be above this. Guilt aside, how awesome is that?

Monday, January 11, 2010

This is why I'm not allowed

...to watch TV late at night all alone.

Last night, Daniel came downstairs at 11:00pm, to find every light downstairs on, and me laying on the sofa in my pajamas watching VH1 Classic--it was a tribute to one hit wonders.

I was right in the middle of Taco's "Putting on the Ritz" when Daniel looked at the screen slightly confused.
Daniel: "What the heck are you watching?"
Me: "You know what, I may have peaked in the 80's, but for the rest of the country, it was a turbulent time."
Daniel: "Hmmm. Who is that?"
Me: (condescendingly) "That's Taco."
Daniel: "Uh huh."
Me: (still staring at the screen all glazed over) "Oh geez. There's a visual that will haunt my nightmares. I hate mannequins."
Daniel: "Uh, yeah, soooo...do you think you'll be coming to bed anytime soon?"
Me: "I don't know, I'm pretty involved here...sigh...a very turbulent and disturbing time..."
Daniel: "Oooookay." Deep self-pitying sigh. He proceed to vacuum the room while I didn't even remove my eyes from the screen and only moved enough to turn up the volume. When he was done, he left to go back upstairs.

Sure enough, I sat through like 6 more HORRIBLE music videos for songs I don't even like before Bobby McFerrin appeared onscreen and created a new low even I was unwilling to sink to and I finally got up.

I'm not proud of it, but after 4 years of marriage, Daniel should really know by now, to never ever, let me channel surf alone late at night when I'm bored. No good has ever come from it. Does he not remember the 3-month campaign I mounted for a Shark Steam Mop (unfulfilled, I might add)? Now I have nightmares about Taco and Buster Poindexter disco-ing the night away. No good at all. Someone should take my remote away after 10pm.