Sunday, July 11, 2010

Making Life a Little Sweeter

It's amazing what a little time away will give a girl in terms of perspective. Yesterday I helped my parent's out with a wedding they were photographing, check them out here. I make some extra cash, they get some extra help. Everyone wins.
I came home to My Beloved reading How The Grinch Stole Christmas (we celebrate all year) to 3 happy, pajama'd children. So what if it was an hour or more past bedtime. Not sure if they were just glad that the day with dad was over or they were really happy to see me, but I'll take what I can get.
I kissed Norah goodnight, made promises that I would help her organize her jewelry in the morning (better get on that!), sang Baby Henry a few of my greatest hits, then listened patiently as Monica gave me a laundry list of all the things Daddy had done (or more specifically NOT done) while I was gone. Including not feeding them lunch until almost 3pm, and he took them to Burger King, when I had specifically said to eat at home! He also made them work all day in the yard and by the way did I want her to tell me what he got me as a birthday present?
I came downstairs to a handsome husband preparing a plate of crackers and Kaukana spreadable cheese (my favorite), a cool glass of generic Crystal Light with ice, but first I had to come outside and tour the yard to see all the hard work he and the kids had done all day, including pulling out several of the bushes I'd been complaining about. I guess my approval is stronger currency than I'd realized!
Life is Good. Today.

Thursday, July 8, 2010


So I am in a great mood today. Let me tell you. It is the height of summer, the weather is grand and I am ready to run. AWAY. Seriously. I've stayed away from blogging when I've been in a bad mood for fear of scaring you all, but today I've just had enough. I am ready to explode. Rather than let My Beloved have it (on his birthday, no less) I've opted to spew my dissatisfaction with the blogosphere.
I know I should be grateful for this stay at home mom gig I've got going, but while I love my kids, patience is not a virtue I possess in great quantities. I attempt to do things that seem fun and motherly, but those things generally end up with one or more children getting an angry look at least, and sternly talked to or arm squeezed at most. Luckily for them, I'm generally against spanking.
I've read the parenting books, I've tried to categorize my children so I can best parent them, to no avail, I've yet to read a book to give me advice on how to respond to a child who is stabbing her brother with the sharp end of a cucumber at the farmer's market (yes, cucumber's have a sharp end). I guess I should be thankful we weren't at a cutlery store! I'm trying people, really I am.
One of my dearest friends, the mother of 5 (with one more on the way) regularly takes her kids out in public to Trader Joe's and the like, and doesn't even break a sweat. I've seen her, she's that smooth.
I just don't get it. I take the kids to Target to buy a birthday cake for their dad, I even spring for frosting in a can, and Baby Henry bites into the box of cake mix so we had to have a super friendly (in a mocking, childless person sort of way) Target person get us a new box as we held up the line for everyone behind us, not to mention he was covered in cake mix. I know I shouldn't care, right? But I do, and I feel tremendous guilt.
Why when I take the kids to the pool do 2/3 of them refuse to swim? Norah marches over to a lawn chair lays out a towel and proceeds to spray sunscreen all over, it's only a matter of time before she realizes it's not sunscreen she wants. Baby Henry is content to sit on my lap in the hot sun, arms wrapped tightly around my neck as though the water might touch him. Meanwhile, my friends children are cannonballing off the sides of the pool, periodically needing their goggles adjusted and leaving their mothers in peace to gossip by the side of the pool. I could be so lucky.
What gives? It's hard to be happy and cheerful when I'm the one that waits all day for My Beloved to come home for some adult conversation and he tells me he can't wait to go to bed, to SLEEP! It's hard not to wonder what I'm doing wrong when other people seem happy and relaxed at the pool and I can barely remember swim diapers, let alone water bottles!
Someday I know the kids will be older and won't need me as much, I will miss my Baby Henry as an accessory, Norah's quirkiness will be part of her signature style and Monica will be my cautious adventurer. Someday My Beloved and I will have all the time in the world to talk and pursue our own interests...but until then, I just needed to bitch a little. Thanks.