Archive for the ‘Parenting’ Category

If I Have to Tell You ONE MORE TIME…

Filed under: Koren,Parenting — Amy @ 8:18 pm

You know that mom thing where you use the kid’s first AND middle name to signify that they are ABOUT TO CROSS THE LINE INTO SERIOUS POOPY?

I am totally guilty of that.

In fact, my son actually thinks his name is Korenjames.

Which is either a testament to how often I am THIS CLOSE to stringing him up by his feet, or a testament to how often he deserves it.

No No Bad Dog

The Day Begins

Filed under: Homer,Parenting — Amy @ 10:19 am

It was 27° when I dropped the kids off for school this morning.  And dark.  The sun rises at about 8:45am these days.

The forest is never quiet anymore.  I keep thinking I’m surrounded by rabbits or some other animal as I fumble my way through the dark to the frozen car, but really I think it’s just the constant noise of the dried leaves rustling and falling to the ground.  I do believe there was a moose or something wandering about two mornings ago, because as I made my usual noise on the way to the car, the rustling seemed to get further away.

It smells good outside.  It’s the smell of Fall, the smell that – in Texas, anyway, signals the approach of Christmas.  Here, we haven’t even made it to Halloween yet.

The weather has been cold, but lovely.  Lots of sun and clear skies.  The moment August turned into September, the weather went from “suck” to “it’s actually really beautiful here,” and has stayed nice ever since.

We have gotten used to the morning routine.  After 2+ years of fighting it, I have finally resigned myself to the fact that my son is a crappy sleeper and my day is just GOING to start at 6am for the foreseeable future.

He wakes up fitfully at odd hours in the night, and will cry and call for me until I come in to reassure him and pull his covers back on and help him find his boppy (paci).  I have no idea what wakes him up, but he is rendered completely unable to think, reason, or function when he wakes up like that.  He can’t be trained to find his boppy or to pull up his own blankets or even lay himself back to sleep.  He has to be told what to do.  It’s as if his brain won’t start up when his body wakes up.  Sometimes it’s enough just to hear my voice.  “Koren, lay back down and go to sleep, baby.”

But not usually.  Most of the time he needs my touch as well.

Fortunately, there are a lot of nights where he does his waking up before I actually fall asleep, and then we both get several uninterrupted hours of sleep.  Makes the whole 6:08 am “MAMA CAN I GET UP YET” wake-up call a little easier.  Also, I must admit that I prefer the toddler alarm better than that heinous clock beeping noise.

I have not had to set an alarm clock in 28 months.

Lately, MAMA CAN I GET UP YET has turned into MAMA CAN I COME SLEEP IN YOUR BED.  Make no mistake, he has no intention of doing any actual sleeping, but he’ll come crawl in bed and cuddle with me while I wake up enough to pull my lazy butt out of bed for good.  He usually crawls into the bed before I do, and is very intentional about leaving me a space as he curls up on my pillow.

“Here, Mama.  Your spot is RIGHT HERE.  There’s room for YOU.”

Then he realizes that he needs his water sippy from his bed.  So he runs back to his room to retrieve it and brings it to place on Jens’ night table.  Then, “Uh-oh, I almost forgot, have to shut the door.  Very quietly.”

He closes the door without slamming it, then makes his way back to my side of the bed, crawls in, and lays down.

There are approximately 3-8 minutes of silence.  Then the day begins.

Power Outage

Filed under: Homer,Kaelin,Koren,Oh the Cuteness,Parenting,Photos,Such is Life — Amy @ 12:03 pm

We lost power last night for about 4 hours. The entire city went dark, except for the Safeway and the gas station. They must have generators.

This is the first time since we’ve moved here that we’ve had a power outage, though I have heard it happens frequently during the winter for some reason. It made me realize a few things:

  • When there are no lights in evening, it gets really dark here. No seriously. REALLY dark.
  • You can never have too many tea lights.
  • When the power goes out is not a good time to discover that you don’t have a single working flashlight.
  • Desktop computers don’t handle sudden power outages as well as laptops with batteries.
  • You don’t realize how much you use electricity until you don’t have it. For instance, while trying to find the matches, Jens tried turning on the light so he could see better. And while sitting on the couch in the dark being totally bored, I thought, “Well, I should use this time to do laundry.” That didn’t work out for me.
  • All the candles in the world won’t make enough light to work on craft projects.
  • When the electricity comes back on for 10 minutes, and then stays off for another 2 hours, it’s way more frustrating than if it had just stayed off. Especially if you’re in the middle of, say, cooking a bunch of chicken when it goes off again.
  • My kids are silly.

Pope Hats

Korenisms: Like THIS Edition

Filed under: Kid Quotes,Koren,Parenting — Amy @ 9:15 am

“What happened to your toe, Koren?”
“I got an owie.  I fell down down like THIS!” …at which point, he suddenly sprawls on the floor with gusto.

“Koren, where is your sock?”
“I put it on floor like THIS!”  … at which point, he retrieves the sock off the floor and promptly throws it again.

Last night the kids were in the bath tub, when Kaelin starts calling,

“DAAAAAAAADDO!  DAAAAADDO!  DAAAAADDO!”
“WHAT, KAELIN?”
“Koren has something to tell you.”

Jens made his way into the bathroom, where both kids are sitting on opposite ends of the bath tub.  Koren is holding a plastic fishing rod and looking down quietly as though he’s just been sternly reprimanded.  Kaelin is pouting.

“Koren, did you have something to tell me?”
“Umm… yes.  Umm… Daddo, I have to tell Kaelin I’m sorry.”
“Why?”
“Because I hit her on the head with my fishing rod like THIS!”  **WHOMP**
“OOOOOWWWWW!!! DADDO HE DID IT AGAIN!”

And thus ended bath time.

Cute, Aren’t They?

Filed under: Jens,Koren,Parenting,Photos — Amy @ 4:06 pm

Reading

Indulgence

Filed under: Family,Parenting,Personal,Such is Life — Amy @ 5:30 pm

I got to stay up late.

I got many hours of uninterrupted sleep without having to make multiple trips to other people’s rooms in the middle of the night.

I got to sleep in as late as I wanted (which, as it turns out, is 8:30am).

I took a leisurely shower each morning and not once did anybody come running in the room to announce MAMA MAMA, HEY I CAN SEE YOUR BUTT!

I got caught up on work (well, mostly).

I cleaned the kitchen Friday and IT’S STILL CLEAN.

I cleaned the playroom yesterday and IT’S STILL CLEAN.

And most amazingly, I cleaned the living room 2 hours ago and IT’S STILL CLEAN.

I did laundry, dishes, photo editing, updating and worked on a few personal projects.  I even vacuumed the main floor and 3 flights of stairs.  All without interruption or fits of tears because the vacuum is too loud.

I took the dog on a 2-mile walk without anybody saying MAMA I’M TIRED, CARRY ME.

I have enjoyed 48 hours of QUIET.  Well, except for my music, which has been on constantly.

Despite the productivity, it was a weekend of indulgence.  And I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it.

In a few hours, my house will be a wreck again.  The decibel level will approach Intolerable approximately six times per hour.  And once again my life will be subject to the demands of two little people as the onslaught of our weekly routine begins.

But tonight I won’t have to go to bed alone.  And there will be no shortage of sweet cheeks to kiss and tummies to tickle.  And my heart will do that little jumpy thing each time I hear “Mama, I missed you!”

Yes, it’s time to have my family back.

Get Your Wiggles Out

Filed under: Kaelin,Koren,Parenting,Seldovia,Videos — Amy @ 9:42 pm

Random Little Things That Bug Me

Filed under: Parenting,Peaves — Amy @ 8:17 pm

*    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *

Is anyone else bothered by the opening sequence of Goldilocks and the Three Bears?  I mean, even if you can get past the fact that you have 3 bears living in a cottage and eating porridge, and that Goldilocks is obviously the product of delinquent parents if she a) is allowed to go wandering through the woods by herself, and b) doesn’t have enough home training to know that you don’t just open the door and go wandering into some stranger’s house.

Even if you take all that at face value, there’s still the porridge issue, and I find myself unable to get past the porridge issue.

If you make hot porridge and pour it at the same time into 3 different sized bowls, the porridge will cool in direct proportion to the volume of the bowl.  In other words, IT IS THERMODYNAMICALLY IMPOSSIBLE FOR MAMA BEAR’S MEDIUM SIZED PORRIDGE TO COOL FASTER THAN BABY BEAR’S “WEE” PORRIDGE.

The only rational explanation for this is that even though Mama Bear’s bowl was bigger than Baby Bear’s bowl, Mama Bear is anorexic and poured herself the least amount of porridge because she’s afraid of getting fat.

The underlying themes of this story just get better and better.

Because you have to assume that there’s some reason that Mama and Papa bear don’t share a bed.  And don’t say it’s because Papa Bear snores.  They all sleep in the same room, so separate beds wouldn’t really make a difference there. 

Maybe Goldilocks isn’t the first blonde bombshell to sneak into the cottage and “rearrange” Papa Bear’s bed sheets.  Just saying.

And this is a story we tell our kids?

First Day of School

Filed under: Kaelin,Koren,Milestones,Parenting,Photos — Amy @ 2:15 pm

I realize that a lot of mothers enjoy summer vacation and relish the time they can spend with their children.  And don’t get me wrong, my kids are awesome.  But I simply do not possess the ability to play toddler games for hours on end, and I don’t have the mental capacity to read the same 10-word book 2,378 times in a row without going completely bats__t.

Taking the kids to the mall play area wears me out and raises my blood pressure because they’re both running in opposite directions and weaving in and out of other people and Where’s Koren, he was just here, OMG SOMEBODY RAN OFF WITH MY BAAAAAAYBEEEEE OH WAIT THERE HE IS TRYING TO DO A BACK FLIP OFF THE TOP OF THE 5’ BUGS BUNNY.

Besides the mall, the summer entertainment options in Texas are basically swimming or playing at an indoor facility (which, I might add, always costs money).  Both tend to get old after about the 15th time.

So with that in mind, I was equally dreading the waiting period after we moved here, knowing that the kids would have no friends, no school, no babysitters, and no schedule until we could work our way up the wait-list for the local early learning center.

…The kids started school yesterday.  And it totally snuck* up on me.

First Day of School

It seems that we’re just so busy here that I didn’t even notice the 2 months of No! Schedule! going by.  That, and the kids have gotten surprisingly good at entertaining themselves for longer stretches of time.  Kaelin is always coming up with some creative pretend game and Koren is all too happy to play along.  He’s also been taking really good naps – 2½ to 3-hour naps are pretty normal.

The kids loved school.  Koren clung to me for a few minutes until they gave him a carrot and told him he could feed the guinea pigs.  Then Mama was old news.  I didn’t even get a goodbye.

Kaelin got to go down to the harbor on a field trip and tour a “big boat with a gun.”  Koren got to do some gardening, and earned himself the nickname “Mr. O.K.” (apparently he was very agreeable).  When I came to pick them up after lunch, Koren had the full attention of one of the teachers and was bringing her one book after another to read.  Kaelin was socializing with the other teachers and kids in the class.  She made two friends, named Hope and Elsa.  When they came home, both kids took really long naps.

I believe they are looking forward to going back tomorrow.

*Yes, I KNOW the grammatically correct term is “sneaked” but that sounds retarded and I refuse to use it.

The More The Merrier

Filed under: Kaelin,Kid Quotes,Parenting — Amy @ 6:20 pm

One of the things I’m learning about parenthood is that it’s a continual lesson in humility.  As a parent, you think you’re smarter, wiser, more sophisticated than your kids.  And they constantly prove you wrong about that.

Remember how clever we were about Vitamin Kitty?  We did the whole “Bath Time” fast-swap thing for Kaelin’s benefit, because of course she would be devastated if anything ever happened to VK, or – worse – she ever found out that her current VK wasn’t the ORIGINAL Vitamin Kitty.

A few weeks ago, VK got left in the Target shopping cart.  Kaelin was heartbroken at the thought, but after a bit of stealthy searching, TA-DA!  Mama and Daddo managed to find him!  We were unconcerned about pulling another VK out of “the box” because we were pretty certain we would not be seeing the return of the lost stuffed animal.

Or so we thought.

A few days later, Kaelin came down to breakfast with an announcement:  “Look, Mama, there are TWO VITAMIN KITTIES!  How did I get TWO VITAMIN KITTIES?”

Sure enough, there she was, holding two of them.  I stood there, my brain racing, trying to come up with some way to explain this obvious faux pas without crushing her delicate sense of VK Reality.

“Maybe one of them is Vitamin Kitty’s brother that came to visit,” I managed to say before too much time had elapsed.

“No, they’re both Vitamin Kitty.  I found this other one in my stool.  I forgot I put him there the other day.  But why do I have TWO Vitamin Kitties?”

I had nothing.  Nada.  No more clever explanations to shield her from the truth.  How on earth was I going to explain this to her?

“I don’t know, Kaelin.  That’s a mystery.”

“Maybe you thought I lost him, so you got me another one.”

Dude.  Did I just get schooled by my 4-year-old? 

YES.  YES I DID.

“You know, I think you’re right.”

I watched her for a few seconds, trying to gauge her reaction to this unpleasant truth.  To see if it was going to affect her bond with her Special Friend.  I gave up when she stood in the middle of the kitchen, held out both stuffed kitties, and exclaimed, “I have TWO Vitamin Kitties.  THIS IS SO EXCELLENT!”

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Sympathy

I find that my capacity for sympathy is inversely proportionate to the amount of energy my son drains from me throughout the day.

Today was a beating.

He’s teething and he’s got to be one of the worst teethers I’ve ever met.  He cried ALL. DAY.  He wanted to be held the entire day so that he could wail without ceasing DIRECTLY INTO MY EAR CANAL.  Nothing I did pacified him for more than 5 minutes.  He’s hungry, but apparently it hurts to eat because every time I give him something he refuses it and starts crying again.  I’ve given up on Baby Orajel because he’s not a fan of having his mouth numbed and it just makes him cry more.  I am officially WORN DOWN.

Consequently, I’m taking him to Mother’s Day Out tomorrow and letting his teachers deal with him until they call me to come pick him up because I NEED A BREAK, even if it’s only for an hour.

Jens appears to have developed an infection in his broken hand.  This was not a good evening for him to be running around filling prescriptions for antibiotics when the single thing that got me through the day was knowing that he could take Koren off my hands when he got off work.  So while I had enough self restraint and sense not to bitch about it, the level of fussing and pampering he received from me over his pain and injury was pretty low.

Koren has already woken up several times.  I can tell it’s going to be a tough night.  For him.  I’m turning off the baby monitor tonight.

About Me

Hi. I'm Amy. I started this website in 2005 as a place to deposit my journal and photos. It has gone through a few incarnations and masquerades as a family site, but since I'm the only one who contributes to it, it's really all about ME, ME, ME.

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