Thursday, February 25, 2010

Lessons learned.

The other day we had meat balls for supper.
This is a mistake, a very dreadful mistake, if you have a twelve year old boy in the house.
I think I must have heard the word "balls" at least seventy to one hundred times in that short span of twenty minutes that encompassed our meal that evening.
"I'm never making meatballs again!" I told my husband after wards as I scraped said balls into the garbage. The kids did not eat them. Just used every opportunity to use the word 'balls' in a salacious way.
And by 'kids' I mean Geoff and Gage.
Of course, the highlight of the evening was when Gage found a hair in his meatball. I was going to quote him, but well, you can imagine the kind of comments followed that.
So you live and learn. Never serve meatballs to a twelve year old.
Or a forty two year old, apparently.
So this has led me to reflect on other things I've learned. The hard way.

Never let your three year old pack her own bags for a camping trip. I thought, well, what could go wrong?? Throw in a few pairs of pants and a couple of shirts... we'll only be gone for a few days and in any event we can make do with what we've got. Here's what I ended up with when I opened her luggage to change her into her swim gear: three dolls, a make believe toaster, several changes of clothes for the dolls, blankets for the dolls, a velvet Christmas dress (perfect for the beach!), and seven pairs of Hello Kitty panties.
That actually worked out OK in the long term (but in the short term- not so much- she had to wear the clothes on her back the entire time) because now she knows how to pack better. She'll ask "how long are we going to be gone for" and I'll tell her "two days" and then she'll say "So I need two pairs of pyjamas, two pairs of shorts and two shirts, right?" So she thinks it out. But still I double check.

Lesson three. Never tell your husband "don't worry about my birthday" Here's what I meant: don't do anything crazy elaborate for my birthday. Here's what I got: literally NOTHING for my birthday. Not even a card or a freaking breakfast in bed, not even a piece of toast or a half baked birthday cake. Nada. And then when you complain he gets all defensive like "Well, you're the one who told me not to get you anything." Lesson learned. "Don't do anything crazy elaborate for my birthday" can simply go unsaid. I'm pretty sure I don't have to worry in any event.

Lesson 4. When your four year old starts crying when getting off the tire swing and says her stomach hurts really bad, do not pick them up and let them bury their head in your chest. My first instinct was to pick her up and comfort her. What I ended up with: a chest full of warm, chunky vomit, in the hot August sun. With no bathrooms anywhere in sight. Ew.

Lesson 5. Never trust a man named Sneaky Pete. This is a lesson that I've learned vicariously through a coworker. Long story short: litigation. Harassment charges.

Lesson 6. Never let your three year old do your fingernails or toenails. How bad could she botch it, I thought? The answer: Pretty bad. Ditto for you hair.
And your make up.

Lesson 7. Never leave your eighteen month old in a room alone with a box of Kleenex. Ditto for diaper rash ointment. That stuff actually does stain clothing and fabric, by the way.

Lesson 8. Never assume that your cat and the tomcat down the way are "just friends". There are no "just friends" when it comes to cats, apparently. You will end up with a storage room full of kittens and feline placental blood on your wedding dress you were storing back there. And then your dog will eat a kitten. And then you will have to keep a kitten. And then that kitten will run away. And then you will have to spend all your spare time looking for said kitten and making posters for it.

Anyways, that is all for now.
Hopefully this will help you avoid some of the pitfalls that I have encountered.
Peace out.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Hooked on a Feeling

Back from vacation and learning to deal.
Being at home is slightly different from being at a resort. For example: Biggest dilemna while you're on vacay: What should I drink next?? Sounds trivial, I know, but this actually takes a lot of time and effort to make a decision on. Often requiring consultation with other resort members. "What's in your drink?" "Oh, no, I don't want that. I'm pineappled out."(probably the only time you'll ever use 'pineapple' as a verb. Unless you're one of those people that likes to tell long drawn out sports stories using verbs no ones ever heard of before. For example: And then the guy pineappled the ball over my head, so I torked my body backwards, shredded my shoulder. It's like: O-K, first of all--I have no idea what you're talking about, I have no idea what pineappling the ball involves per se, nor torking or shredding, and second of all-I really don't care.)

Biggest dilemma at home: whether to pay the power bill or the water bill. Can I live without water? Or light?? Probably going to say light-- I mean, I can always use candles. And then the house will smell like apple as well, so win win. OK so things aren't quite that bad, but still. These are real problems, not like 'well, should go to the beach now, or have breakfast first, or just make smoothies for breakfast and have them at the beach??"

The biggest thrill in Mexico, watching your children play in the surf, shrieking in delight.
The biggest thrill at home: We got a new bounce dryer bar free trial offer.
Bedtime in Mexico: having Alex fall asleep in my arms sitting out on the deck, being lulled gently to sleep by the sound of the ocean in the not too far distance.
Bedtime at home: High pitched screaming, bribery attempts, bloody noses and a pig head on a stick, followed by Percocet for mom and a "Fuck you" to dad as he looks hopefully at me as I crash into bed.
OK that may be an exaggeration as well.
There is actually no pig head on a stick. Its not on a stick. The stick is broken, and like everything else in the house, awaiting repair from my husband. So it's more just perched by the door.
But you get the point.
So the point is that I'm hooked. I have spent nearly all my time since I've been home looking at vacation destinations for next year.
The question that people want to know: would I plan to bring the kids again??
Bringing the kids is either the most wonderful thing I've ever done, or the most idiotic, depending on your take on things. I'm really proud of the fact that my baby has his first stamp on his passport already. Although, certainly, I will admit: it wasn't always easy. Flashbacks of him writhing on my lap on the airplane, every meal I ever abandoned mid meal due to shrieking, whining, throwing of cutlery, or my personal favorite "I have to go to the bathroom"- never, ever when you're in the hotel in close proximity to a toilet does she have to go. It's only when you're finally settled down to a nice dinner and the bathroom is a half mile jaunt away that she suddenly has to go and go real bad.

In fact, the very first thing I said when I sat down in the lounge in our resort was "I'm not very anxious to do that again"-- referring to the two days of travel we had just survived, which encompassed two flights, seven hours of flight time and approximately ten hours in airports, all the while dragging three kids, five pieces of luggage, and three carry ons.

But the first time I took Payton to see the ocean and I stood before it, squeezing her hand and carrying Alex on my hip, it brought tears to my eyes to be able to share with my kids such wonder and beauty. And I knew then and there that I would travel again with them time and time again. To see Paytons cheeks take on a sun kissed glow as the days passed by, to see her giggling in the sun, to watch Alex play in the sand, to see Gage... well, eat cheeseburgers, frankly, was all I ever saw him do, less poetic I guess, but still. Good to see him enjoy himself. Whatever that entails.
Gotta go. The real world is calling me.
And FYI- the Bounce dryer bar is working out really, really well!! At first I wasn't happy about it, because I'm quite accustomed to using Gain because I really like the smell of it. But as it turns out, meausuring it and pouring it out into the chamber dealy was more laborious than I ever realized, because now laundry seems WAY easier without that step!! And it still smells pretty good.
So. That's good.