Thursday, September 27, 2007

Hello? Is anybody in there?

There are days when I don’t feel like doing anything. There are days when I have too much to do. But mostly there are days when I would be satisfied with just being able to get a couple things done around the house without one million interruptions! It is probably a good thing that I enjoy puzzles. Oh, look! Here is a piece with laundry on it; and here is a piece with dirty dishes on it; another where someone needs to be fed; and another where I need to be fed; and is that a dirty diaper?

I traveled into the depths of the basement today to find that I had never put the load of wash from, like, Tuesday into the dryer. It wasn’t moldy, but it didn’t smell like roses either. I had to go back upstairs to find out why the baby was crying. After settling her down, I rewashed the clean clothes, then colored with my son for a bit, before going back downstairs to put the clothes into the dryer with not one, but three dryer sheets. It didn’t help. They still don’t smell like roses. In between I had to go outside and pick up after the garbage men, yell at the toddler for coloring on the window, change some diapers, do the dishes, give the boy a snack, nurse the baby, clean the bathroom… and then put the said laundry away, of course.

The idea is that once this puzzle is complete it will look like a clean, organized house with happy children. The reality is that is usually looks like Mommy just sat around all day drinking tea while the toddler ran around like a tornado tearing up the house and making a general mess of things. Not only that, but I think that some of my puzzle pieces are bent on the edges because they don’t even fit together properly most of the time.

Having the second child has really threatened my ability to remain sane. I forget everything! I have always believed that leaving oneself notes for future reference is a great tool. But my future for referencing those notes is getting shorter and shorter and shorter… apparently I need to write a note to remind myself to put the laundry in the dryer thirty minutes after I put it in the washer. If it weren’t for my husband running out of clean underwear I probably wouldn’t remember to wash the clothes in the first place!

Friday, September 21, 2007

The agony of alone time

I got some time to myself the other night. Translation: I went to the grocery store. Good times. It probably would have been much easier to just make it a girl’s night and take the baby with me, but I was determined to have some alone time. So after I put the baby down for the night, I got in the car and buckled in not three people but just myself. All the way to the store I kept glancing into the backseat out of habit to make sure everyone was okay back there.

Not being a really big fan of grocery shopping, I arrived at the store and immediately went into “quick” mode. As I rocketed through the produce section, I came to my senses and realized that, hey, I might not be sitting in the bookstore with a latte but I should slow down and smell the roses. Or in this case some nice fresh scallions. I said to myself, “Isn’t this great?! Nobody is shouting at, or climbing on, me!”

Even though I knew that my sweet little girl was tucked in for the night and that my husband is mostly capable of taking care of my little man for an hour (as long as there are not any poopy diapers involved) I felt a little anxiety that they were not within arm’s reach. How my husband can go out for hours in the evening after being gone all day at work, I do not know. From the cereal aisle all the way to the frozen foods I kept wondering, “what if someone needs me?” That thought was immediately followed by, “why do I do this to myself?” The whole time I was at the grocery store I just wanted to go home. What is wrong with me?

Yes, it is easier to complete the errand alone. There is no sitting my son in the shopping cart and squashing my daughter into the sling. No shouting at anyone to stop pulling cans off of the shelves and to keep their hands inside the cart at all times. But is it really worth it? As long as I don’t linger over the crackers comparing prices for too long and cause my son to go into convulsions at the lack of movement it probably isn’t. Although it is nice to pick out an ice cream flavor without having to consult the husband!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

The dance of death

It is with much confidence I say that God was in a particularly humorous mood the day he created my husband. While there are so many things that I can relate to reinforce my claim, today I will focus on just one.

The man loves the outdoors. He revels in hiking and camping. He enjoys working in the garden. As much as I love flowers and gardens, I am not one for the actual planting part unless I have gloves on. The reason being that there are so many frighteningly strange things that live in dirt. Living creatures that never see the light of day tend to look like something straight out of a Stephen King story. Not to mention the worms and beetles and stuff. None of this gets Sean ruffled (now if he sees a bee that’s another thing altogether as he was attacked by some wasps while fetching his ball from their nest as a child). Correct me if I’m wrong, but there are usually bugs involved when hiking or camping as well.

This morning while my son and I were at breakfast a rather stricken looking Sean appeared in the dining room to announce that a house centipede had made a wrong turn somewhere and had ended up in our bathroom. I can’t help but start to giggle at this bit of info because I know what’s going to happen. In my husband’s world bugs become a totally different entity once they cross the threshold into our home. Outside he can touch them, kill them, or pretty much ignore them; inside they become an instrument of extreme fear and loathing. And shrieking. Lots of shrieking. The difference between my husband and me is that I pretty much dislike bugs anywhere I find them. However, I am usually able to maintain my cool when dealing with them.

So off we go, into the bathroom where the scary bug is. The poor thing is huddled in the shadow of the doorframe because house centipedes are like allergic to light or something. As soon as he sees it, Sean turns into a nervous wreck; he starts to squirm and ask in a whiny voice what should be done to get rid of this disgusting invader. And then comes the aforementioned shrieking because he feels bugs crawling on him. Now, in all fairness to the poor man house centipedes are exceedingly horrid: they have what are the equivalent of knees joints because their legs are so long.

The tricky thing with these insects is that they are fast. So one can’t blink when the time comes to duel to the death. (Luckily Sean has yet to be killed by one of these monsters, although a few have escaped from his clutches). Not able to think of anything else, I suggest that he knock it onto the floor and smack it with a shoe (while I stand there and offer moral support). I hand him the shoe which he slips onto his right foot for extra accuracy. With a folded up napkin he swats at the enemy, knocks it onto the floor, and proceeds to stomp on it while screaming some sort of karate-sounding syllables. At this I can’t help but loose my composure and start to chortle uncontrollably.

Ah, yes. It is something to see a tall, muscular, brave sort of man lose his nerve at the sight of a bug indoors. Bring on the gross and graphic zombie movies, but leave the insects outside please. In the end, I believe it is the shrieking, screaming, and karate moves that really finishes off those bugs. I suppose that’s why my knight wears that shining armor- to keep the ants out of his pants. God love him: I know I do.