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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Sickie- Part one

You knew it was coming, the blog that unwraps the ugly and ridiculous details of our life.  Let’s start at the beginning, before everything really hit the fan. 

Last Monday, Myles abandoned left us to go to a training in Anchorage.  I’m a supportive wife and proud of his accomplishments so I was all for it.  Then it dawned me that I’d be doing the parenting thing all by my lonesome for the whole week.  Do you know how hard it is to bathe a sometimes moody toddler and a 7 month old at the same time, alone?  Forget soap and shampoo, if they end up wet and don’t crack their heads open on the tile, it’s a moderately successful bath.  We decided to take advantage of the opportunity and join Daddy for a couple nights.  We’d meet up with some friends, do some shopping and hit the children’s museum.  Perfect, right? Of course not.

Once the kids were in bed on Wednesday, I made lists, packed a ton of stuff, made sure to remember things like bathing suits, food, extra everything for the kids and Motrin, just in case.  I loaded up the Land Cruiser and proceeded on my way to a night of anxiety laced dreams of driving off the side of mountains, oncoming traffic coming into my lane, spinning out of control on icy roads, you know, the usual stuff in my mind.

Thursday morning Molli woke up, sniffed and said, “I’m sick.” I didn’t think much of it because she always assumes she’s sick if her nose is stuffy. The chorus of snoring vibrating through the back seat validated that both kids did, in fact, have stuffy noses.  I said a little prayer that whatever kind of sick was going on would stop there.  We’ve had enough of that around here, and certainly didn’t need more, especially considering I couldn’t find Molli’s inhaler before we left the house. 

We made it to the hotel and found that the pool was closed.  Fine, just one less bag to bring in. I did my best pack mule impression and hauled both kids and all our crap in just one impressive load.  I looked like a cross between a 31 bags advertisement and a “what not to do” on a chiropractic pamphlet.  The hotel room was a very standard one room, two queen beds sort of deal, with a little kitchenette area. I dumped everything just far enough in that the door would close and got right to settling in.  First things first, set up the pack-n-play.  He may be my second child, but I wasn’t about to let Gavin crawl around on that carpet. We got all moved in, made plans with friends for 9:30 the next morning and greeted Daddy with big hugs when he knocked on the door.  Hallelujah! The week solo is about to get easier!


Fast forward a few hours and you have the perfect storm for a super crummy night.  I’ll spare the details, but it went pretty much like this.  Bath/bedtime stuff, Gavin sleeping in the pack-n-play, Molli in bed 2, Myles and I in bed 1.  Molli cries out because she can’t breathe.  Gavin wakes up.  I suck the snot from Molli’s nose.  She lies back down while Myles rubs her back and I nurse Gavin to sleep.  Molli cries about being sick, wakes Gavin up, she agrees to sleep in the pack-n-play after a snot sucking fight.  Myles in bed 2, I nurse Gavin back to sleep in bed 1.  Molli cries etc.  This scenario repeats itself, rotating sleeping arrangements, from 7:45pm until 3:15am when I’ve had enough.  I’m still sending out apologetic vibes to everyone on the first or second floor at the Extended Stay.  I head out in search of medicine while Molli watches Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs. (It was an uncomfortable experience and in hindsight, I should have persuaded Myles to go.  I had no business going out in a town I don’t know. It was snowy, slick and all the freaks and drunks were out. My bad).  Benadryl and baby vapor rub did the trick well enough...phew!

After two and a half hours of sleep everyone was up at 7 (WHY???).  We canceled plans to meet up with friends and nixed our hopes and dreams for the weekend.  We drove home after lunch and, thankfully, the kids slept nearly the entire way. I don’t know how I was still functioning, but I do know that I was given the opportunity to spend ample time with the kids throughout the next night too. Molli was, in fact, quite sick.  Unfortunately, she wasn’t the only one.

Stay tuned for the rest of the saga. 

Friday, February 8, 2013


Naptime.  I always have these beautiful ideas of what it will look like, especially when it’s snowy and peaceful outside.  I imagine that I will lay my angels in their respective sleeping places, all cozy and yawning.  They will curl up on their side and yawn as I walk out of the room.  Gavin will sigh and Molli will mutter the words most precious to my heart, “I love you, Mommy.” I will admire their stillness and reflect on the love I have for my family as I complete a quiet chore or two.  Each piece of laundry I fold will be done with intention and memory of when it last adorned my child and what we did that day.  I will sweep the crumbs leftover from lunch and reflect on our blessings.  Afterwards I will prepare dinner and sit down for a cup of tea and read until the kids call for me.

I’m not sure that exact scenario has ever actually taken place.  Each of those things has occurred individually but rarely more than one per naptime.  More realistically, by the time I get one child to bed, the other is screaming, for one reason or another.  My big plans to clean the house and prepare dinner are a joke and in the end my tea is cold and my kindle is dead. I hastily clean up from lunch, switch the laundry and work to break my PR at speed folding, as though I’m training for the mom-Olympics.  One kid gives in and sleeps, the other decides it’s tantrum time and wakes the sleeper.  Are you kidding?! This time is spent undoing messes that continue unraveling.

Today, however, after some fights all around, both kids gave in at the same time and are sleeping.  The video monitors prove what I would otherwise doubt.  It’s beautiful. They are sleeping and I am not crossing a single thing off my list.  I don’t care about mopping, scrubbing toilets, or showering.  Today, I am sitting by a window with my tea still hot and I’m enjoying the quiet, the peacefulness of sleeping kids and admiring the soft snow outside.  

Monday, February 4, 2013

Monkey Drama

I don't know if I found favor with God, got lucky or if the stars aligned, whatever it was, I do know is that the timing of Gavin's morning nap and Molli's morning snack had a direct, positive correlation on both my personal hygiene and my alone time (both of which are a rare treat, as noted in my previous post). I jumped on the opportunity to shower alone by putting molli in her high chair with a couple of graham crackers and put Curious George on my laptop for her. We were both pleased with this set up because of my desire for a solo shower and her excitement to watch a show.  Molli is one of those deprived children who rarely gets to watch movies or tv shows. We have never paid for telivision so if we watch something, it is more intentional than just pushing a button to turn the tv on.  Anyway, this morning I was reminded to record a little bit of who my daughter is right now.  

Like I said, she doesn't have a whole lot of screen time, but when she does, she gets really into it. If you've ever met Molli, you know that she is a very interactive child.  She doesn't just sit back and watch anything, she gets involved, and does so enthusiastically. As I was finishing up my shower, 7 minutes of pure mommy bliss, I heard a shout from the other room. I put on my robe and glasses and hurried out to help, only to find that the problem was that George had made a mess, or something.   Molli had abandoned her snack and was utterly engrossed in the happenings of this monkey.  I stood out of sight and observed her as threads of wild exclamations poured from her mouth. She clapped and held her hands out in distress at all the appropriate times (according to her theatrical commentary). 
"Please, George! Clean it up, right now! Oh no, you made a big huge mess, that's not good!"
"Where is her mommy?! I need her mommy to PLEASE come and pick her up!"
"Oh no! You better get down off there, right now, George!"
"Oh please don't, you will get in trouble"
"Yay! You did it! Good job George!"

In the recent past I've observed her flip out at the rain storm in the little mermaid and yell at Mr. Noodle to get off the floating mailbox because it's too dangerous and he might fall down.  The most intense moment of all was during this pitiful scenario:

A couple weeks ago we were watching the movie "The Lorax" and she had a comical interaction with one particular scene.  The forest animals were upset that their trees were at risk of being chopped and they pulled the sleeping perpetrator out of the house on his bed and set him afloat down the river.  This was initially displeasing to molli because beds do not belong in the water. She was at about a 4  on her emotional scale.  Then some rapids came and he was still sleeping, escalating her to a 5 or 6.  At some point during the rapids the pillow went overboard,  sending molli through the roof! In tears she stood shouting at the tv, crying that that his jammies are wet, he NEEDS his pillow and various versions of "oh no, you need to go back inside your house. You can't be in the water!"  Occasionally she would look to Myles or me, for help, I suppose, but he and I were torn.  We wanted so badly to laugh at her utter hysteria, and simultaneously snuggle her. The poor girl was distraught over the whole thing and we just watched it happen.  Eventually she climbed up onto the couch with her dad and was fine, but man, what a dramatic little thing! 

I am so entertained by the new, sometimes ridiculous, developments of my little monkeys and I hope you are too!