Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Frankenstorm: Part II

Well, I have two-day old iced coffee, three kids who haven't been outside since Sunday, and no power, but clearly it could have been worse.

Many thanks to our neighbors for the wine and distraction for the kids last night and thanks to all of you who have offered to take us in, not sure what will be worse for you--riding out Hurricane Sandy or the fury that is the Ladies and QT unchained after suffering from cabin fever.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Frankenstorm: Part I

Not sure if you have heard but there is a storm coming. . .

We are almost ready.

I spent yesterday trying to assess the situation and make a couple of last minute trips to the store, which wasn't necessarily the best idea.

I took the Ladies to Stop&Shop, and while it was busy, it wasn't crazy. The Lady, fresh off watching Annie sang "Tomorrow" at high volume throughout the store, we had the typical bathroom run mid-trip and then the Little Lady decided she wanted some turkey, so we hit the deli counter.

There was a ticket already in the machine and the Little Lady grabbed it. The Lady also felt it was necessary to have her own. So we stood there with two tickets in hand. The screen showed that it should be our turn, but there was a guy standing to our left who held the number before ours. There was one lady working the counter. She asked us what our number was. I told her and she said that there was someone else ahead of us. The man next to me flashed his ticket and I was fine with that but the man standing next to him didn't have a number but he had the balls to say:

"Um. . . where is ticket machine? This is my first time here?"

Really dude? This is America. You f'ing take a number. Ugh.

Later, I realized that we might need a few extra batteries, I also forgot one ingredient for a potato leek soup recipe I pinned. I headed out on my own to the grocery store around the corner from my house.

There is a reason that I don't shop there.

I know that I use the term "shit show" pretty liberally, but this was a spot-on physical manifestation of that term. People were just roaming the aisles, or just standing still in the middle of the store with no real sense of direction or any idea of what they may or may not need.

When I finally got out of there, I hit the liquor store. I stopped at Dunkies for the second time that day and got a medium iced coffee, black with no ice, so if the power went out or if we couldn't get out then at least I would have some caffeine.

Then I tried to get gas. Four gas stations later, I headed home, handed my husband (who had been pretty much lounging on the couch all day, with zero sense of urgency) the keys and told him to have at it.

I packed an emergency grab-and-run bag, got clothes ready for an extended evacuation because we are on the edge of a possible mandatory evacuation route, made a pretty kick ass potato leek soup, a batch of brownies and tried to keep the kids from playing with all the flashlights.

We decided that since the forecast called for heavy winds to start last night that the kids would sleep downstairs with us. I thought that would mean them in the living room and us in our bedroom. It turned out to be the five of us sleeping in one room. All went well until about 6:45 this morning when the Lady started crying that her Hello Kitty band-aid was stuck to her Dora the Explorer blanket and then we all got up.

We will see how the rest of the day pans out. QT is in rare form this morning and the Ladies are roaming around in their undies.

It isn't raining yet but it is getting a bit breezy.

I will be blogging until the power goes out. . .

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Halloween Party: Cousins, Cousins, Everywhere. . .

We headed up to the beach house this past weekend for our Annual Halloween Bash.

The weather was amazing, much better than the Snowtober storm we all drove home in last year.

I am hoping the the kids costumes stay relatively unscathed, we still have a Halloween Party and two Halloween parades before they will actually trick-or-treat this year.

Here are a couple of pics of all the cousins. Be prepared for Princesses and a half-dressed "dog-dog."

Two pretty little princesses

The Little Lady (with a ton of eye makup)

The Lady

QT as a "dog-dog." This is the only photo I have of him with the hat actually on.

Seriously, kids I am trying to take a photo, would it kill you to look in my general direction Wild Man?

All the cousins, minus two (and two more in-utero)

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Say Cheese! It's Photo Day

It's school photo time at our house.

Today, it is picture day for the Lady and tomorrow the Little Lady will have her time in front of the camera.

I am both excited to have an official photo of them from their schools and at the same time incredibly frightened by what the end result may be.

Both the Ladies are known for hamming it up in front of the camera. The Lady has perfected the over the shoulder pose and the Little Lady is nothing if not creative when it comes to posing with her hand on her hip. I am envisioning at least one head tilt in one of their photos.

We will see how it goes. This morning didn't go so smoothly. Everyone slept entirely too late because they went to bed entirely too late. The outfit that the Lady agreed to wear for pictures was apparently not to her liking this morning and I found myself ironing--yes ironing, something I never, ever do--a blue cotton shirt. On any other day that shirt would have gone on, wrinkles and all.

The Little Lady had some sort of meltdown and even though it was 50 degrees out this morning she went in the stroller to the bus stop wearing the purple dress with the stripes in the photo above (the one she was trying to describe to me by saying things like "like the Wild Woman has, and the Lady has, and I have and its purple" but I didn't know what she was talking about, so I had to find a photo of it on my phone because she mentioned wearing it apple picking) and a pair of Crocs. To be fair, she also had a baby blanket. Let's hope the sitter got her to put on some leggings before they headed to school.

The Lady also insisted on not putting her hair back. Usually her hair looks nice when she wears it down, but only after it is brushed, and only for about five minutes. I threw a small brush in her backpack with the hopes that her teacher will find it and take pity on me.

Do they still hand out those little black combs on picture day? I am a little out of the loop.

At least I was organized enough to have picked out the photo package in advance. At first I thought that there might be a reason for me to have three 8x10 photos of the Lady with a laser background and her name and grade stamped on the front. Cooler heads, however, did prevail and I stuck with the basic package.

I do have to appreciate the way they do photos at the Little Lady's school, where they take the pictures and then just send home the package and ask you to write a check. Like anyone is going to return the already printed photos and say "no thanks, I am not interested in writing a check for $26, for photos of my three-year-old making a cheese face with her hands on her hips." Kudos to them.

We will see how the final products comes out. As much as I do want the "official" photo to be something I might want to display in my home, I am well aware that some photos won't ever make it to the frame on the mantle.

I debated posting my fifth grade school photo here with the caption "Insert female golfer joke here," but I thought better of it.

Even though I have a sheet of those wallet size photos in the top drawer of my dresser and my husband and I like to take them out every once in a while for a good laugh, I am seriously concerned that it has the possibility of turning into some sort of Internet meme and I have enough going on that I don't need to be the next "Bad Luck Brian."

Friday, October 12, 2012

He Said/She Said: QT Needs a Haircut

Here is another He Said/She Said for your reading pleasure. Access our first "conversation" here.

As usual, I go first.

The mullet
She Said:

QT needs a haircut. He is almost 16 months old and he has what can only be described as a mullet. Granted, the mullet is comprised of fine, wispy baby curls, but the fact remains that the look is essentially a cross between Bowser from Sha-Na-Na and a hockey haircut.

Look, I love Grease and if QT wants to suit up and take the ice so be it (I just won’t be driving him to those super early morning practices) but it is time for a haircut.

The problem is my husband doesn’t want him to get one.
I know that I waited 4.5 years to cut the Lady’s hair, but she is a girl and her hair is long and straight. QT is now beginning to resemble those early 90’s kids who used to hang out on the patio behind our high school with their tight black jeans and white high-tops, while smoking nic-sticks and wearing leather jackets.

My husband wants to wait for all his hair to grown in on top before we cut it. This is, of course, ridiculous.

By the time the rest of his hair grows in the tail on the back of his head will be down to his mid back. I know that QT is the baby and maybe this first haircut will make him look too much like a “big boy,” but the truth of the matter is that even though he is the baby of our family we have to stop always treating him like he is still a newborn.

Trust me; I have shed tears over the fact that he will be my last child. My atrophied, uterus will never again grow another human being. I cherish the small moments I still have with my precious baby boy, but that kid needs to grow up a little.

By fifteen months both the Ladies were walking, talking, and drinking out of a cup.

QT is pointing at things and growling like he is E.T. before he finds the Speak&Spell, still drinking out of a bottle, still only walks when I am behind him--hunched over like Quasimodo--or if he receives a round of applause for his efforts, and just making as much noise as possible. The kid opens the doors to the laundry and just bangs on the washing machine like he is part of a Native American drum circle and he is on the lookout for his spirit guide.

I just think it wouldn’t hurt to have his hair reflect the fact that he is growing up. I mean, I can tie his hair back with a ribbon, send him off with a fife and have him join some local Minuteman reenactment group (what? we live in New England), or we can suck it up, send him off to Snip Snaps and get the kid a proper haircut.


He Said

So what if QT has what can, in some circles, be described as a "rat's tail," a hockey haircut or a mullet. These would be appropriate descriptions of his hairstyle if he was living in the 80's, Canada or if he wasn't a one year-old.  He's one and he's adorable.

I've never had one person tell me he needs a haircut; besides my wife of course. It's not like he looks like the kid from the Little Lady's 3rd birthday party, who could have been trying out for the role of Tarzan's son. He's just now getting a full head of hair up top, and genetically speaking, he might want to hold onto all he's got now. Because it doesn't look like he'll have much later in life. And, I guarantee you he's not going to want anything to do with that barber's chair.

Maybe it's because he's our baby, and I'm not quite ready to admit that he is in fact not a baby anymore. Lord knows I want him to start doing other "big boy" things, like walk and talk instead of grunting at everything he wants. But, I also don't want to start thinking about the fact that when he does walk or talk, it will be our last set of "first steps" or our last "first word."  I'm holding onto our "baby" as long as I can, and if that means he goes a little longer than usual before his first trip to the barber, so be it.

The minute somebody mistakenly thinks he's a girl, I'll give him a haircut myself, but until then, he's business in the front, party in the back.


Me Again

"Business in the front, party in the back?" Really? Really? You're better than that.

I don't want a Ryder Robinson on my hands here or even worse what Celine Dion's kid looked like for years. When I give QT a tub his hair is at mid-back. Even the Ladies have commented on its length.

There is a possibility that when you come home tonight his hair will be in a ponytail. We have already seen him in barrettes courtesy of his sisters, and although I am pretty sure it might be awhile before he is mistaken for a girl, it doesn't change the fact that he still needs a haircut.

Oh, and by the way, you are bringing him. There is no way I am going to try and control that kid while he gets his haircut.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Boy, That Escalated Quickly

Yesterday, I was reading an article about how you shouldn't yell at your kids. Apparently, it might not be beneficial to them in the long run.

I get it. I do. I have been trying to curb the amount of yelling that goes on in my house because I recognize that sometimes it is more about me than about what my kids may or may not have actually done.

But to paraphrase the great Ron Burgundy, things sometimes escalate quickly, and boy can they get out of hand fast.

Tuesday night my husband's flight was delayed getting home. Instead of arriving home at around the same time I would from work, he didn't make it in the door until about 11:30.

But the nighttime routine had to go on.

QT isn't much of a talker. I say things like "use your words" to him a lot. He likes to point at things and direct me to his intended target. After getting yet another update that the hubby would be delayed, QT heard me tell my husband on the phone that I had to give tubs. His little ears perked up, his pointer finger extended and I followed his directions to bring him to the bathroom. It is much easier to bathe him separately from his sisters who slide their bodies around the tub and think it is funny when he splashes the shit out of whomever is bathing him. Also, since I bathe him in $29 eczema relief bath and body shampoo, I want to make sure that his sisters aren't in there using it to clean the tiles above the tub or wash their Barbie's hair.

The problem with only having one kid in the tub is that the other two are out there unsupervised. Well, partially unsupervised. The Little Lady was curled up on the couch with the iPad watching the Electric Company and the Lady was in my room trying on my heels and whatever lingerie she could find that is still stuffed in my bottom drawer, a sad reminder of what once was.

So, QT is in the tub, splashing, smiling at his reflection in the fixtures, throwing a wet football at me and generally enjoying his evening soak. The Little Lady is watching the Electric Company at a volume so loud in the other room that she might as well be standing next to me, and the Lady walks in the bathroom wearing some costume jewelry, a white, silky nightgown, and a pair of heels. In her hand is a gold claddagh ring and on her finger is a toe ring that I think I wore in 2002. We talk about the rings, she does some modeling poses and leaves the room. All is under control.

In the middle of rinsing off QT, I hear the Lady say that my ring holder fell. Now this is a Waterford ring stand, which has both my wedding ring and engagement ring on it. I tell her to put it back. She then informs me that the second drawer to my jewelry box is not closing. I can only assume that this is because she has tried to jam everything back in at once. I tell her to clean up and get ready for her bath. 

I take QT out of the tub and attempt to lube this kid up with Aquaphor to offset the eczema. That is when I look over and see the Little Lady playing with a small ceramic heart that has come from my jewelery box. I start to get a little heated. Again, I tell them to start cleaning up because they both need a bath. Both Ladies go into my room and put on more heels. I attempt to wrangle on QT's pajamas over his cream covered body. It is a process that couldn't possibly take more time.

I finally put a pj'd QT on the floor and address the situation in my bedroom. My Waterford ring holder was teetering on top of an old college t-shirt and the edge of my dresser. I put it back in its rightful place when I realize that my engagement ring was no longer on it.

This is where things turn from heated to freak out. I start yelling. I am not proud of it, but WTF? it is my engagement ring. WHERE IS IT?

The Lady can't remember where the ring might have fallen, the Little Lady is still trying to put on three-inch boots, I am losing my mind.

In that moment, I should have stopped to take a breath. I should have realized that the ring had to be somewhere in the house, and that I would find it in either the top drawer or under the bed. I should have realized that the three kids standing before me, one in a negligee, one in undies and three-inch boots, and one so covered with skin ointment that his clothes were clinging to his body, were much better proof of the "love and fidelity" my husband and I committed to on that gorgeous June day than that ring.

Instead, I blew up. The kids scurried about and I lashed out at them over something that wasn't that big of a deal. Clearly, I had given the Lady permission to play with my stuff, ultimately the blame was on me.

The situation had escalated.

That is when I saw QT crawling on the floor out of my room. When I went to scoop him up, I realized that he was wearing my engagement ring on one of his fingers, while his hand was clasped around a dime and a wooden domino. I had to pry that ring off his finger and he wasn't happy about it. I returned everything to its sort of proper place and ordered the girls to the tub.

As I put QT in the living room to play with his trucks, I noticed the glint of gold peeking out from between the couch cushions. That gold claddagh ring the Lady had earlier had somehow made its way out to the couch. No one knew how this had happened.


The Ladies doth protested. Both of the girls have had a few minor scrapes lately. They are very concerned about not putting these "injuries" in water. I am pretty sure a 4-day-old scab is going to be fine in the bath, but they insist that I do not get water on the afflicted area. This actually works out OK for me. Instead of filling the tub and having them play in it for entirely too long, the Ladies will stand in the tub and I will basically shower them off with a Mickey Mouse cup and a washcloth, careful the whole time not to get anything near or around whatever minor injury they used 14 Disney Fairy band-aids to help heal.

The process is fairly quick. Not quick enough though. When I finally got the Little Lady out of the tub and went back into the living room to check on QT, this is what I found.

That is QT clapping. Those are dirty dishes. When I found him he was holding a steak knife. He was certainly proud.  

I will admit to letting out a bit of a roar before I removed anything dangerous and took a photo, but I tried to reign it in and remember that they are just kids. They don't care about schedules or getting the lunches packed in time. They just want to play and imagine and have fun and they want to do those things with a mother who isn't crazy. Since they are stuck with me, there might still be a few moments where I lose my mind, but I am making an effort to make sure those times are reserved for moments that warrant it, like when not yelling might mean a trip to the emergency room because someone thinks the changing table is a diving board and their bed is an Olympic pool.