Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Bad to Worse

I am sick. I admit it. I hardly ever get sick, but now I am and I have been miserable. Part of what has made it so bad is that I was the last to get sick after everyone else was sick. So after dealing with sickness in my kids all week, I now have no energy left to fight!

But such is life and I'm a mom and life goes on. I can't stay in bed or take a nap or curl up under a blanket on the couch like my kids can and should when they are sick. I just medicate and keep going (albeit with just a tad of grumpiness thrown in there...)

After being stuck in the house all week last week with sick kids, I just had to get away after dropping the boys off at school, even though I was feeling like death. So where did I go? The gym. I can see now that perhaps was not the best place to go, but it seemed logical at the time.

Knowing cardio was out of the question unless I wanted my throat to close up and suffocate me (which I did not), I chose squats - a lot of squats.

When I finished the number I set out to do, I put the bar back on the rack and just laid down flat on my back for a good ten minutes, willing my throat to open back up so I could at least breath, let alone cough up the phlegm blocking the way.

Now, today, on top of the aches and pains of being sick, my body is aching all over! It had been a whole week since I visited the gym prior to that last one, so I may have overdone it a bit. I can hardly move. I'd kick myself if I could lift my leg...


Jack is well-loved on the playground. This I have stated before. The moms love him and he's got a whole group of girls who follow him around, doing whatever he demands. If he wants them to chase him, they chase him. If he wants to walk WAY over to the rainbow on the wall, they dutifully walk over there with him. If he wants to make bark hamburgers and ice cream, they pretend to eat it with him.

Of course, sometimes, he has had enough of the girls and just wants something a little more real - like warmer hands, food not made of dirt or bark, a drink of water, a kiss after he's fallen down, or, in yesterday's case, a can of seltzer water.

My friend was just carrying this half-full can of fizzy water around, torturing poor Jack with it. As I was talking to her for some time, he had plenty of time to notice it, want it, and repeatedly ask for it. As it wasn't mine to give him, I told him I'd find him some water elsewhere, but she stepped in and offered the rest of the can to him. I let him have it, fully expecting him to dislike the bitter fizziness.

His reaction to it was priceless: He took a tentative sip, smacked his lips, sighed, and said, "Ahh... Exactly!"

He then wiggled to get down and carried the can around the area, taking tiny sips and savoring each one in a similar manner. Not quite ready to be done running around, he did keep leaving it with me with the instructions "Keep it safe, mommy! Don't drink it!" and would come running back to me later in a panic crying, "Where's my drink?!"

There are clearly some very simple ways into my youngest child's heart.


Mitchell has a tshirt that reads "BMOC" on the back and he has taken quite a liking to it. It is his favorite jammy shirt and often ends up sneaking back out of the laundry and back on him after I have already put something else on him. I am not sure why he likes it, other than it is soft and comfy, but he likes to have me remind him quite often what the letters stand for "Big Man On Campus." Who knows why Mitchell is what he is and likes what he likes. He just is :)

I have been thinking about his love of this shirt today as I reflect on the fact that he is almost five now! This doesn't shock me or make me wonder where the time has gone. In fact, he has seemed five for some time now to me. He just has an "oldness" and a "coolness" about him, I think. Five suits him well. It's a good age for him.

In true "cool" Mitchell style, he easily accepted and dealt with the fact that I would not be able to be here on his actual birthday. Perhaps it was so easy to accept because it meant he got to have his party a few days early.

Although we have all been battling sickness all week long, we went ahead with the party and everyone had fun. We made our own ice cream sundaes with more toppings than ice cream, painted robots (and the floor and the walls, and Jack's tummy, and dad's shoes...), and, of course, opened presents! He even got to get up early and go out with dad and pick out his own new bike!

Happy birthday, my Middle Boy! You bring humor and laughter and joy to my life every day! You are truly my "Dude-style" dude and I love you!

As cool as he was with me being gone on the real birthdate, I'm pretty sure he is holding out for some special "dude time" on his actual birthday. What that will consist of, I can only hazard a guess...

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Turn It Up!

It is winter break for my kids this week. Yes, we already had a Christmas break, but it was only a week long and now we are getting Christmas break, take 2, a couple months later. As I have all three boys home all day every day with me all week long, I think I will take this opportunity to share with you something that is driving me loony in my daily life.

Jack loves music. Jack loves to sing. He loves to dance. He wants music on no matter where we are or what we are doing. He will dance at home or in the car or in a store. He does a little boogy on the sidewalk when a car drives by with it's music blaring.

Jack also loves music LOUD. Listening to a song at a normal volume just isn't acceptable to him. This is most evident in the car. I take Jack everywhere with me and he spends some time running to and from things in the car with me every morning. That kid loves the radio and he knows many songs by name, and often it is cute. He will say "I like this song, mom!" or "turn it off! It's rubbish!" or "Don't like this one!" or "I know this song!" But no matter what his opinion of the quality of the song, he always has one constant command: "Turn it up! Loud! Louder! Super loud!"

I also love music and I like to listen to it in the car. I also have opinions on which songs are nice and which are rubbish. Jack and I often agree on such things. We DO NOT agree though, on how loud to listen to it! I hate loud music. I love all kinds of music, but I want it all at a volume that I can hear other things going on around me, or my kids trying to talk to me, or a car honking, or my husband trying to have a conversation, or my own mind thinking!

Jack, like his dad, wants to blast the music, then talk about something. I then turn the volume down so I can hear him, and he shouts/demands, "Hey! Turn it up! Need it loud!"

I have a fight over how loud is too loud in the car every single day and am daily left wondering why this little boy of mine is such a bossy-boots with insensitive ear drums. I am going crazy...

Friday, February 10, 2012

Seems To Still Be Working

Mitchell was having a bit of a rough time getting his imagination in gear the other day. He was disappointed that I wouldn't let him play with my Iphone while I showered and his attitude was just getting in the way of his creativity!

After showering and dressing, I went into his room to check on him and he was just laying on his beanbag and nothing else in his room had been touched! I asked him why he hadn't played with anything or done anything, and he said, "Mom, I just don't know how to play! I just couldn't think of anything to do! I just had to lay here! I think my imagination is broken..."

Bummer. What do you do when you are only 4 years old and already your imagination has stopped working? That is truly a travesty!

I told him he could come into my bathroom with me while I dried my hair, feeling sorry for my poor little boy who somehow broke his once fantastic imagination. I was actually giving the matter some serious thought and wondering if perhaps I had been letting him play on my Iphone too much, when I stopped to look and listen.

He had taken my three pairs of fingernail clippers, an overnight case, and a round brush and had made them into a family. The large nail clippers were the dad (Tim), the medium clippers were the mom (Leelah), and the small ones were the little girl (Little Leelah.) The lived in an overnight case (Narnia) and the round brush was the neighbor (Gloobah.)

As I put my make-up on, his little family had quite the adventure around my bathroom (that Gloobah was quite the trouble-maker...)

I didn't tell him, but I think I'll stop worrying. I'm pretty sure his imagination is still in good working condition.

I Tried To Warn You!

Did I ever mention that I finally rigged up a seat-belt situation to help train my older boys to sit properly in their chairs? After countless times reminding them to sit up, sit still, stop one-cheeking it, get off your knees, no you may not lay on your chair, no you may not sit backwards, stop rocking, stop tipping, JUST SIT ON YOUR BOTTOM AND SIT UP RIGHT!!! - I finally bought some handy bungee cords that do just the trick for wiggly bottoms. I strap them down to their chairs when they just seem to have springs instead of butt cheeks.

Well, even though he is far too big for it now, I have kept Jack in his high chair as long as possible just to keep him contained. But he knows he's too big and his poor thighs are just getting squished in there, so he has been asking for and sitting in regular chairs more and more often, which just means one more springy bottom to deal with.

This sort of shenanigans is bad enough at the breakfast table, but at the counter, it goes beyond teaching good table manners and ventures into dangerous waters. My chairs at the counter are very sturdy, very high, and very heavy. Knock one of those bad boys over while sitting in it and you could really hurt yourself.

I am CONSTANTLY warning Jack not to climb onto and off of them by himself. Surely he was listening to all the terrible things I patiently warned him could happen to him or my poor chairs, right?

Wrong. Tonight, as I was cleaning up dinner, Jack decided he was finished and immediately began the decent. Right as I was dropping what I was doing to halt his progress, the chair went over. How he managed to remain upright through this is beyond me, but he somehow landed on his feet - and so did the chair. We all thought he was crying because he was mostly scared until we noticed the blood seeping from his big toe. His entire toenail was hanging by a tiny bit of skin off the tip of his toe.

Man, that must have hurt. Somehow, saying "I told you so" to a sobbing and clearly in pain 2-year old isn't very satisfying so I just tried to clean it all up the best I could and comfort him in the process. Dare I hope he learned his lesson with the chairs now? Only time will tell...

To end on a more endearing note: I did get a good two hour snuggle from him after this incident, which anyone who knows Jack, knows that is unheard of. He's not a snuggler. As we lay cozy under a blanket watching a movie with the big boys, he kept checking on his bandaid covered toe, just to see it and then would give a deep sigh and say, "Remember my toe, mom?" or"Remember when I cried so long?" or "Remember when I knocked chair over?" It was pretty cute.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Interrupting Cow

Jack has quite the sophisticated sense of humor. I'm not sure who taught him his favorite joke, (I suspect Ben as Mitchell's jokes tend to be a bit more... well... made up) but he loves to shout this one out:

Knock Knock, mom!

who's there?

Interrupting cow!

Interrupting cow who?


I swear, he gets the word "interrupting" correct and even has the interrupting "moo" timed perfectly! The first time he pulled this one on me, I couldn't believe how perfect he got it! It was so funny!

He loves to tell this joke anywhere, but his favorite place is in a parking garage where his voice is amplified and echos so he can really get full acoustic sound out of his "MOO!"


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