Friday, February 27, 2009

Stop complaining

The problem with taking a moment to complain about some annoying thing your kids do like I did in my last post, is that as soon as you do, something worse will happen. I guess that's Karma, huh?

While Harrison, our 4 year old, put me on the ledge by making me tired, Norah, our not-quite 2 year old, pushed me over. Does anyone else out there have a two year old who rejoices in nudity? Well, our Norah does. She can get naked in less time than I can hang up my coat and take off my shoes at the end of the day.

Now, nudity really isn't the problem for me. My problem lies in the fact that she now gets naked in her crib. I've found her naked and shivering on a couple of mornings, but two nights ago was the worst. About 2 hours after I put her to bed, Harry came downstairs to tell me that "Norah's naked, and she smells like poop."

My heart sunk, my stomach clenched, and I had a sinking feeling I knew what awaited me upstairs. Sure enough... naked Norah sitting in her crib and a very dirty diaper that had turned into a substitute for playdough and finger paint.

It's interesting to respond to a situation on so many levels; laughter, nausea, exasperation and exhaustion. But mostly, I was just peeved that it upped my cleaning chores.

Needless to say, she's wearing her PJ's that snap up the back now. She hates them, but they stay on.

I guess I need to start thinking about potty training.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Defensive Sleeping

Our four year old has the nasty habit of sneaking into bed with us in the early hours of the morning. Now, I'm grateful that he spends most of the night in his own bed. We've worked hard to get him to this point. But I have to spend a moment complaining about that little bugger's pointy-pokey knees and elbows. I find myself waking up in the morning in a defensive position, with my arms crossed across my chest, my hands in front of my face, and my knees pulled up so they form a blockade between his thrashing little body and my easily bruised limbs. Spending any amount of time trying to catch some "z's" with that kid in my bed is dangerous business. I watch my girls as they sleep, still and peaceful, and wonder why one of them can't be the one that worms their way into the parental bed.

Even when he's sleeping in his own bed, my boy is a menace!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Ah, guilty pleasures

I just love watching the Oscars. As much as I enjoy the movies and the acceptance speeches and all that, it's really all about the clothes. I hope that E! does their "shoe-cam" again.

We're ordering Chinese and making a night out of it. The poor kids are going to be neglected and bored off their rockers. Is anyone else shirking their responsibilities tonight?

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


1. Making school lunches for kids who go to a school with a "nut-free campus."

2. The sound of a vacuum cleaner. It gives me shivers and makes me throw temper tantrums. Such a shame, because I love the look of a freshly vacuumed carpet, but we live without that in our house.

3. The fact that my 23 month old has learned to open refrigerator. I keep finding apples with three bites taken out of them, and gnawed on string-cheeses still in their wrappers all over the house. She's fast, sneaky and unrepentant.

4. The smell of processed meat. Canned soups, sandwich meat, left-overs... anything with meat that has been previously been cooked makes me wanna barf. The remnant of three really hard pregnancies.

5. Mornings. I've always hated mornings. Somehow I ended up with a life that requires me to be at work, cheerful and ready for the day, at 8:00 am. Every morning is torture, no matter what I do.

6. Knowing that we're moving, and having to wait to start packing. I'm ready to throw things away and start selling the rest on craigslist, but we've got 4 months until I can start doing all that stuff.

7. Trying to convince a kid to take a nap all day, and then having them fall asleep 15 minutes before dinner time. I just know I'm in for an impossible night.

8. My eyebrows. I hate tweezing them, but I detest the way they look when I have them waxed in a salon. They always end up taking off too much and I look like I have tiny dashes on my forehead.

9. Cleaning the lint trap on my dryer. It's one of the badly designed ones that gets dust all over the top of the dryer when ever you pull it out. Makes me crazy.

10. Soccer on TV. I can appreciate a soccer game in real life, but on TV it's just a combination of annoying and boring (monotonous drumming, no scoring.) Sorry babe, but that's how I feel.

11. Picking up legos and playmobile. Why is every tiny piece so important that it must be saved, but not important enough to be taken care of properly? If I vacuumed, those little pieces of plastic would be toast.

12. The fact that it is so much easier to come up with a list of 12 things that I hate than it is to come up with 5 things I'm grateful for.

(Oh, and a kid who thinks that spitting is funny, it's not.)

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Grateful Sunday

A few things I'm grateful for on this February day.

1. Clear, soft Long Island sunshine. I know that light is light, but there is a strange thing that happens occasionally here. The sun shines and light streams down, all diffused and shimmery. You feel like you should be able to reach out and catch the glistening light in the palms of your hands. In the middle of our grey and dreary winter, it is miraculous.

2. Children with active imaginations. It sometimes means extra clean up, but their busy brains keep them happy and engaged. Who knew that a pile of blankets and pillows at the bottom of the stairs could be such fun?

3. Wonderful neighbors who invite our family over for dinner on a day when I really didn't want to cook.

4. My dishwasher. I was without one for a few weeks a while ago and it has made my appreciation all the more great. I will love that appliance until the day I die.

5. A lovely husband who stepped up and took over when I crawled back into bed this morning and fell asleep for two hours. It's his turn now.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Nerd Thrill

For those of you who like a little Sudoku from time to time, have you seen the puzzle called KenKen? It's a pretty simple concept, but man it can get tricky. I did my first puzzle yesterday when it appeared in the New York Times, and I think I'm hooked. So, if your mind needs a little mathematical stretching, go play KenKen!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

baby language

Sometimes it serves me well to take a step back and take a few minutes to observe the rapid pace my at which my children grow and change. It's particularly noticeable with my soon-to-be two year old daughter.

I've really been appreciating her blossoming language skills, among many other things. A few short months ago, I would stand at the stop of the stair with her and ask "do you want me to carry you?" and she would respond "carry you."

Then, a couple of weeks ago, she started responding to my question by answering "yes, carry me."

Today, as we stood looking down the stairs, I asked again" do you want me to carry you?" to which she firmly answered "No Mommy, I can do it myself."

Growing language skills, fierce independence and little bit of attitude all in one sentence. Check out my other blog to see her in action! Aren't kids fun?

Friday, February 6, 2009

Fighting Fatigue on a Friday Night

Sometimes, Friday afternoons roll around and I feel like I can't possibly contemplate doing one more single thing. I drag my sorry butt home, hide in my room for a while, and try to "gird up my loins" (my father's favorite expression) to head back into the reality that is living with 3 kids in a very small house. I'll admit that today, I was having a hard time leaving the confines of my bedroom. And then, a miracle happened.

My husband, saint that he is, stopped on his way home from work, and picked up Mexican food for dinner. Then, after dinner, he put all three kids to bed while I lounged on the couch in an enchilada stupor. To top it all off, he rented Mama Mia for me on DVD, even though he ran into people he knew at Blockbuster, who ribbed him for getting such a chick-flick. The guy just loves me, what can I say?

It's hard to indulge in crankiness when someone's being so nice to you.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Since I was doing this for Facebook....

25 Random Things About Me

1. I generally don’t do tags, but I’ve gotten this one enough that I’m hoping to put an end to it by actually doing it.

2. Having grown up in Indonesia, I HATE winter and don’t think I’ll ever get over it.

3. I spent yesterday singing and dancing to “Single Ladies” with my not-quite 2 year old. She can really shake it!

4. I love to fold laundry, but hate to wash it or put it away.

5. I’m the only girl in my family and as such am entitled to favored status. Sorry boys, that’s just the truth of the matter!

6. I’ve been married for that past 12 years (well, almost.) Time flies when you’re having fun!

7. I love Marian Keyes books too (shout out to Kristen), but my real guilty pleasure is trashy romance novels. Stephanie Laurens, Lisa Kleypas, Mary Balogh, Julia Quinn… please publish something new soon!

8. I have no idea what I want to be when I grow up.

9. I wish I had cool hair, but a ponytail is my reality.

10. I need to lose 30 pounds, but can’t figure out how to do it without having to diet and exercise.

11. I am a font of useless pop-culture information.

12. I waste money buying books instead of going to the library. My husband is an enabler.

13. Phineas and Ferb makes me laugh every time my kids watch it.

14. I have an unhealthy relationship with Diet Coke.

15. I adore Fred and Ginger movies, but haven’t seen one in 12 years (see #6).

16. I’ve been listening to Eva Cassidy a lot lately. She’s amazing.

17. The only thing that makes Sunday morning bearable for me is “The Puzzle Master Presents” on NPR.

18. I love to read Personal Finance Self Help books, but rarely take their advice.

19. I wish I played tennis. I’m a fan, but can’t find the time or free child-care needed to play.

20. I’m our Primary Music Leader at church. I can get 11 year-old boys to sing, which is pretty miraculous.

21. I’ve lived on Long Island for the past 8 years and have yet to be on a boat on the Sound. How on earth did that happen?

22. Friday night TV is my favorite. I can watch What Not to Wear and Battlestar Galactica on the same night. Two very different sides of my personality, satisfied on the same night.

23. I have the three cutest, smartest, funniest, most creative kids on the planet. No, I’m not biased. It’s just a fact.

24. I’m a sucker for a good pork chop, but chocolate is the food I couldn’t live without.

25. I have the best husband ever in the history of husbands. He loves all these crazy things about me, and many, many more.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Things I can't believe I said today...

... just don't stab your sister.

... you didn't eat any breakfast? Well, hurry up and grab some cookies and get in the car.

... I don't care what you are doing, as long as I'm not involved.

... fine don't wear your coat, you'll be freezing cold in two minutes. Don't come crying to me.

I think I need my darling husband to come home. We've been missing him, and I'm afraid the kids are going to be savages if he doesn't get back soon to balance things out here. Our "good cop/bad cop" routine doesn't work when the "good cop" is gone.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

February Goals

Well, I started my year off by making small goals to accomplish in January, knowing myself well enough to know how fool-hardy lofty resolutions are. Having completed my January goals, I sit here on the first day of February and reassess.

So, here are my goals for February...

1. Exercise 30 minutes a day, 5 times a week. I hesitate to even write that down because I find it so intimidating.

2. Create a plan to get all credit card debt paid off by the end of May. There's no way I can feel financial security with it looming (even if it isn't a lot.)

3. Finish Hot, Flat and Crowded and A Year in the World this month. I'm feeling the need for a little non-fiction.

4. Celebrate Valentine's Day. Not just say "we should do something for Valentine's Day" but actually do something.