I should have finished pre-med

#2 son has an ear infection. Such is the life of a little guy in daycare with an older, germ carrying brother. He has handled it in true #2 son style; sleepless night and Crankenstein behavior. Nothing with #2 is remotely easy, ever. Except meal time, when Henry VIII rears his ravenous head and the little fat king eats, a lot. Which is quite the opposite of #1 son (even now) so at least #2 throws us a bone. But I digress.

So his ear infection is bad enough to warrant a dose of antibiotics, orange flavored. I tasted them and this picky eater thinks they are fine. #2 disagrees, strongly. He took them the first 2 times, then began the violent “NO!” head shake. So I started mixing them in apple sauce and he gobbled them up. Until tonight, when the apple sauce was no more.

TH is out at a hockey game, with my blessing, so he is not here to help with the medicine giving gymnastics. But #1 son is. I instructed him to stand in front of #2 and make funny faces (but not too funny, don’t want #2 to choke) while I administered the evil elixir in a syringe. Worked like a freaking charm. So there.

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Poor neglected blog

I have been a neglectful blogger. It was completely unanticipated, but my 9 to 5 took over for the month of December. January 1 is my busiest day of the year, so the month leading up to it is a flurry of meetings, reports, conference calls, etc. And what reward awaits me in the end? This year it was a series of panic attacks, a left eye twitch and finally a cold sore, oh yes I was quite the looker on December 31st. Luckily we stayed in with the kids for the night.

I have to think my physical ailments are a sign, that maybe I am not handling my stress so well. This is nothing new, I have always been a person whose stress manifests itself internally. But after the past hellish month of middle of the night wakings thinking, “Oh $%&%, did I send that e-mail/make that phone call/finish that report?” I realize something has to change. No one gets paid enough for this (well maybe there is someone who does, but it’s certainly not me) Part of the problem is that I care a lot about my clients, in fact way too much. In some cases, I think I care about their accounts more than they do. Clearly, this is out of whack.

I am not one for resolutions, they are too easy to break or toss aside before January makes its exit. Instead I intend to come up with a solution, so that this time next year, I will not have gone more than 30 days without posting.

What mess mom?

Times have changed. I admit to being an anal control freak, whose house will never be neat enough for my own liking. However, between the births of #1 and #2 something happened. I have chilled a wee bit. #1 and #2 sit amidst an enormous mess of rubber containers and lids in my kitchen. While I allowed #1 to empty this same cabinet as a little guy, I still maintained some control over the chaos. (only a few containers allowed at a time, only allowing the mess for about 5 minutes) Since #2 came along, the amount of minutes I can get by myself is much less, so short of chewing on an aluminum can from the recycling bin, whatever gets me those precious minutes is fair game. Especially when TH isn’t home from work yet, it’s dark outside at 5pm, a Pete’s Wicked Ale is whispering to me from the fridge, and new magazine arrived in today’s mail.

Nirvana

Today is a PJ day, or in #1’s words “pajammy” day. #1 and #2 are both in their PJs at 3:20pm EST. The only reason TH and I are clothed is because I ran on the treadmill (done early so I could justify some wine later in the day-and now is technically later) and remain in my leggings and t-shirt, and TH is out blowing leaves. So yeah, we’re all pretty gross. But 2 cases of strep (TH and me, not the germpits…errr kiddos), an upset tummy (#1, I am looking at you) and the ever cranky #2 (seriously, how bad can it be to have every single of your needs met on a daily basis) who needs to be “fancy” (another favored term by #1)?

And dinner has been cooking all day; I got my act together and put a black bean chili in the crockpot this morning, I’ll use leftovers for enchiladas tomorrow. (Are you there God? It’s me, Martha). Yum.

So Naive

Five years ago when #1 was born, TH and I naively (or maybe it was just me) thought we’d be less busy, at least while #1 was young and not involved in many activities. We were terribly wrong, and 5 years later #1 leads an enviable social life. Throw #2 into the mix and we don’t know where we’re supposed to be or when half the time. Enter Google Calendar. Knowing that a paper calendar only works if someone is home to look at it (and if you need such a calendar, you are probably not home anyway), TH decided we needed to go the electronic route. Thank God.

Even though it is somewhat depressing to see our time marked off in various colors practically everyday (downtime, what downtime?) it is great to be able to check our schedule anywhere we have computer access. TH gave everyone in the family a color and so we know blue means it’s a family activity, purple is me, sports is brown (doesn’t everyone know “sports” needs it own color?), etc.

The most prevalent item on the calendar is for #1’s birthday parties, he goes through periods where he has one a weekend several weekends in a row. We could say “no thank you” but when the entire class has been discussing the ins and outs of the celebration for weeks, it’s hard to decline, unless we already have something on the calendar (appropriately color coded of course). Running around for the kids’ schedules doesn’t start when they hit elementary school, like I believed five years ago, it practically starts in the womb.

Happy Birthday Beautiful Boy

So the actual birthday was yesterday, but I didn’t have the time to sit and write with all of the festivities. It was relatively low key, a year old really has no clue what is going on. Being the eater in the family, we fully expected #2 to dive into birthday cake. But with 8 people staring at him with cameras ready, he was more bewildered than anything, until I actually put a piece of cake in his mouth, then he started chowing down.

On the topic of cake, my original plan was to channel my inner Duff and make an Elmo cake. My inner cheapskate won out, by the time I purchased the special pan and frosting supplies, Elmo was going to cost about $50. Knowing my creative skills are lacking, I quickly nixed the Elmo cake. TH made a vanilla cake that was so moist it separated into three sections while being frosted. Horrified by his creation he ran to Safeway the morning of the party and grabbed a small cake to have in pictures. The crater cake tasted great, it just didn’t look so hot.

Sipping red wine later in the day, TH and I commented on how we couldn’t believe it had been a year. A year of sleepless nights, tears and stress (and that’s just me). It was also a year of laughs, chubby arms and legs, first smiles/steps/teeth. The first year is a trial no matter how easy the baby and #2 is/was no easy baby. But 12 months later we cannot imagine our household without him, and though he is only a year old, it seems like he has always been here. What was life like before the kids? I am starting to forget. But that may be the sleep deprivation talking.

Ahhh, my ears

#2 is finally teething, one week shy of his first birthday. With #1 we lucked out, he teethed late but was pretty laid back about the whole thing, every once in a while we would notice a new tooth in his collection. There was no fussing, no tears. I told TH months ago, based on #2’s personality there was no way he would be as relaxed about getting his teeth. I should have bet on that. With one tooth barely through the gum line, we have had 24 hours of “MAMAMAMAMAAAAA”, moaning, and general whining. It’s not even 10am and I already need a glass of an adult beverage.  One tooth down, only nineteen to go. I think I am the one who’s going to start whining now.

Less than 2 months to go

I bet I don’t even have to tell you to what I am referring in my title. Christmas of course. My heart has already begun racing at the thought of the cards, gifts, decorations, family, etc that goes into the holiday. Fortunately, no one in our family (immediate and otherwise) needs a darn thing. Unfortunately, they still want to exchange gifts. I started trying to convince (not very well according to the looks I get) different family members that it is more fun to plan an outing together than to buy things off of a list that the recipient doesn’t really need. No one is waiting for Christmas to roll around so they can finally have that three pack of underwear.

Halloween from the big box store

I should feel guilty, like a slacker mom. My kids’ Halloween costumes are from a store, not homemade. I never had a store bought costume as a child. My mom made our costumes and created elaborate faces with makeup, no masks allowed ever. I was Bugs Bunny, Cleopatra, a leprechaun, things that involved a wardrobe, accessories and makeup. They took time to create and time to remove once the trick or treating was done.

Not in this house. Both kids have their costumes on hand, and #1 is wearing a mask (the horror). I like to blame it on a dual working parent household, but honestly, even if I didn’t work, the costumes would be from the store. I am not creative and don’t have any desire to become so. I warn my kids early on that their mommy will not be sewing for the school play, or painstakingly paper macheing anything, ever. I will volunteer to help at school events, I will carpool, I will buy whatever fund raiser they’re hawking, but I will not do anything that requires a trip to Michael’s.

So on Halloween I will take pride in the fact that I had my act together enough to actually purchase costumes before everything sold out, and not lose sleep over the fact that I wasn’t up until midnight sewing #2’s devil horns onto a hat.

Pumping it Up

#1 turned 5 yesterday, and we decided to make this a BIG birthday. We celebrated at Pump it Up, PIU from here on out. I came away exhausted and with rug burns from zooming down the slides and obstacle courses alongside people less than half my size, which I am way too old to do. I am so, so glad we subbed out the party vs. having it at home. Fourteen five year olds in my house? The very idea makes me want to stab my eyes out. In fact I had a beer (or 2) after we got home from the party and I had done nothing but visit with guests and play the entire time. My dad asked me how many kids were there and when I said “Fourteen” he was shocked, he thought there were fifty.

The PIU employees had energy and smiles the entire two hours we were there, I was shocked. Until one revealed it was her first day. AHHH, that makes total sense. The first day I was a mom I was all smiles too. Five years later I am but a shadow of my former self, plus we added #2 to the mix.

I have spent my entire Sunday cleaning up from the gift opening we did with family post PIU. #1 needs NOTHING for Christmas, but we now we need to get him on board with this idea.

#2 turns 1 next month, his celebration will be more low key, the highlight being him smashing the cake. I am sure in a couple more years we will be “pumping it up” all over again for his celebration. Unfortunately, I will be even older then, and the rug burns will hurt more.

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