Thursday, March 31, 2011

Crying it out

Warning: annoying venty post about the realities of screaming 2 year olds.
The car ride to work this morning was ripe with screams of two year old terror. Lots of it. Luke tried to help ease Ellie's frustration as best he could and nothing I did was anything she wanted. She wanted her dad and he was driving. She screamed and I yelled. I opened the window to try to muffle her and hoped the fresh air would bring her back to reality. It didn't work. The screaming was carried over from the night before and I had really reached my breaking point. The more she screamed the more I yelled and vice versa. Luke just looked at us both with eyes as wide as saucers in confusion as to what was unfolding before him. I told John to drop me off at the coffee shop rather than work, I needed to collect myself with a good cup of joe before my day really began. I looked at the kids and just said goodbye, I didn't blow them kisses or tell them I'd pick them up at the end of the day. I just slammed the door in their faces and walked away. John yelled, "I love you!" out his window and I just raised my hand in the air, barely acknowledging him.

Honestly I wanted to just run away. The previous night Luke threw up in the tub because the water wasn't warm enough. Seriously. And Ellie created this demand with John the second he got home that had both kids vying for his attention and both of them looking at me and yelling, "No mom, I want dad, not you. Go away mom." There were so many tears. Ellie went to bed without any books and cried herself to sleep, at one point she asked for her trains, and feeling guilty I brought them in to her but she threw them at me and yelled, "Get out Mom. I want Dad!" To be clear, this scenario has been happening day and night for the past week or so.

Tonight we came home to a toy riddled living room, do you know what it's like to walk into your house and be hit with nothing but visual chaos from the moment you cross the threshold? It stresses me out. I made them dinner, Luke asked that we turn the tv off so that we could talk during dinner, because he knows that I like that best. Swoon, score! He said grace as we held hands and I nearly melted, with him as my anchor. Bathtime went relatively smoothly and just as I was getting Ellie into her favorite pajamas John was home. She wanted him of course and was just done with me but we had a plan and we backed each other up. Normally he would come running in literally saying to her, "oh sweety darling, are you okay?" But tonight we put her in time out and then I wrestled her into her pjs, I felt as if I was going to break her arm she fought me tooth and nail, literally. I decided we were going for a walk. We left the house, she in only a pj top and a pull-up and me in a tshirt and sweatpants. She cried for her dad. I told her the more she cried the farther we were going to walk. Half way down the street (we were on the sidewalk obviously, just so you know) she pulled herself together and as a car came flying down the road she whimpered out, "please don't put me in street mom". Pretty melodramatic for a 2 year old, right? She said "sorry mom" through her hyperventilating tears of mass destruction and I felt a small piece of victory granted to myself and wondered why I had waited so long to take control. We walked back home, I finished dressing her and she just clung to me like a koala bear for the next 5 minutes.

I know this is normal two year old behavior. I know that we will be tested daily in some way or another as parents. I know that I am in control but there are a lot of times where I don't feel in control and feel overwhelmed with what is on my plate. I wonder, if we only had a bigger house with a play room that would solve the cluttered toy problem, or if we had two cars John would get home earlier, or if I worked part-time our weekends wouldn't be all about errands and cleaning, or if we had a mudroom all of the bags and coats and boots and shoes would have a better place to live...and maybe all of those things would help but those things aren't what make a family.

Also, we haven't had a vacation since last May and we're supposed to get 8-12 inches of snow tonight, cabin fever is at an all-time high. I am Debbie Downer in search of spring laughter.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Winter undoldrums

We started the weekend with Luke waking up Ellie from her Friday afternoon nap. Cuteness ensued.

Saturday we ventured to Target in the evening for a little fun. Luke fell asleep on the way there and Ellie wasn't far behind. It was a bit like the blind leading the blind.

On Sunday after an hour of grocery shopping I asked Luke some sort of Yes/No question as I put him in the car. His response to me was plain as day, "Mom, does a bear go potty in the woods?" Ummm, my mouth dropped open. Where did he hear this? He laughed at me and I just busted out laughing at him and then he said, "tonight is going to be a silly night Mama." Oh dear.

He was right, it was a silly night. He broke out the Wii and got into a down and dirty boxing match with John. They moved on to bowling after Luke's turtleneck wearing had him in a full body sweat. Ellie played at their feet with her dolls and B as John kept yelling to Luke to "press B" as in the button on the controller, which caused Ellie to yell at him, "I got B! I got B! I got B!"

Crazy, silly times.

Also, our real camera is on the fritz if you can't tell:)

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

40 days

Tomorrow begins the season of Lent. I'm kind of exhausted with the fakeness that is life sometimes and the judgements that are thrown around will-nilly as seemingly commonplace attitudes. I am not saying I am above that, because well, Lord knows (pun intended) I've done my share of bitching and judging.

For the next 40 days rather than just give up some ice cream I am going to do my best to better myself and my own attitude. I know we're all human and no one is perfect but rather than focus on the negative and the things that are just seriously out of my own control I am going to try my hardest to be a better person and rise above the noise.

Also mostly unrelated but still within the "what am I going to do for Lent thing" I selfishly vow to record more videos of Ellie and Luke. They are killing me with their cuteness and before we know it those moments will be distant memories like this one:

Do you see him on his tippy toes?! Seems like yesterday and forever ago all at the same time which makes this whole "live with intention and let go of whatever is beyond you" all the more powerful.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

B is her BFF

Ellie loves her B. It goes everywhere with her, just like the book. B has a life of her own, so far Ellie has told us the following about B: "B's catchin' butterflies", "B's sad", "shhhh! B takin a nap", "B awake!", "B NOT in the wash", "B happy". She reminds me often that B is NOT in the wash and looks at me like, "don't you even think about it woman." She puts B in her dolly stroller and walks her around the house, she eats her meals with B draped over the back of her chair, and of course they sleep together.

Tonight she threw B a birthday party with her dollhouse in attendance.

She sang songs with B.

She hugged B when the party ended.

The two are really tight. I swear she's installed a tracking device on B.

B kind of smells like wet dog. It's rank, and the emotional roller coaster of giving B a "bath" is enough to put us all on Xanax. I try to sneak B off to the basement for a wash without her knowledge and sometimes it works but lately she is not having it.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Thank you Facebook

But I like YOU mom

Random, non-sensical mom moment.

John and I have a double date tomorrow night with our best "couple" friends. The plan is to have my nephew babysit, he's pretty much a hero in Luke's eyes and so far we've yet to have any issues when he watches our kids. After school today I was telling Luke that Jake was going to come over tomorrow night and this ensued:

Luke: But Mawm, I want you and dad. I don't want you to go out.

Me: But Luke, you have so much fun with Jacob. I'll be home for dinner and then we'll have bathtime and get ready for bed. You like when he comes over to play.

Luke: But Mawm. I like YOU. I want you and dad to put me to bed.

Me: waxes euphoric on the need for mom and dad to have time away from home with our friends. Pretty much think he heard the lady from Peanuts. What wah wah wah.

Luke: Today in school we didn't go to the gym Mawm. And I didn't eat my snack. I need a drink Mawm. Where's my Matchbox car? Are we going to pick up dad? What's for dinner tonight? Can we have Panera Bread soup?

Game over.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Dear Dad,

A copy of this picture hangs in my office.

Ellie has been going around out of the blue telling people, "I have Papa's eyes." Luke asked if we could have Villa's bread with dinner tonight. Mom talks about you to the kids on Fridays, guess it's sinking in.

Your CBMU 202 coin lives on a little shelf in our kitchen. The kids call it "Papa's coin", they like to look at it at least once a week and give it a kiss. Did you know that Tom held it in his hand as he walked me down the aisle? See how tight his hand is? It felt as if we stood in the vestibule crying together for 5 minutes before we took that walk. I was strong and prepared to walk tall until I saw him and the tears and the coin in the palm of his hand.

Thanks for showing us how to be honorable people and to pursue our dreams through hard work and perseverance. You lived with integrity. You were first-rate. You clearly made it seem as though you were honored to be our father and her husband. Life with you included an air of positivity and pushing your limits to better yourself, ignoring the negativity of others and not letting "them" drag you down. Failure for you meant a time of growth. Thank you for instilling us with these values and the example of the give and take of a good marriage. Mom certainly gets the gold star medal of valor for being your wife and supporting all of your public roles. The two of you were dynamic.

And He will raise you up on eagles' wings
Bear you on the breath of dawn
Make you to shine like the sun
And hold you in the palm of His hand.