Saturday, February 21, 2009

Boxing Day in February

Well, so much for the dump, Virden and the toilets. Last night Mike found out about some fabulous deal on this toilet at McDiarmid Lumber in Brandon where he would get double the rebate, so he and his brother decided to go in early to town so that they could pick up five. Yes, you heard me, five. Two for us, three for his brother. I thought he was being a bit ridiculous going in for 8 a.m. After all, this was not Boxing Day. However, they did, so my plans of going to Virden with the family were dashed. I bugged Mike that they would probably carry a grand total of two of the toilets in stock, as they are not very famous for having much in their actual store. (It's a pretty small store in Brandon.) As it turns out, I was not far off. Apparently the toilets were all sold out when they got there. Sold out. I asked Mike what time they got there. He said 8:10 a.m. The store opened at 8 a.m. I asked how it was possible that they could have sold out when they had only been open for 10 minutes. He said that when they got there, there were already about 30 people lined up at the till, and about 20 more had arrived at the same time as they did.

So, who knew? Apparently toilets are worth their weight in gold in Brandon, Manitoba. They did get rain checks, so our precious toilets will arrive some time in about 8 weeks. My day was flushed down the toilet either way. There is more to the story, but I just don't feel like getting into the rest of it. That is all I have to say for now.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Of Clutter and Baked Potatoes

Okay, so in a rare moment, I actually watched part of Oprah yesterday. It was about her "Clean up your messy house tour". I didn't know whether to be inspired, or just downright depressed. Honestly, some of the homes they showed in there were pretty disgusting for mess, and I didn't find it all that shocking because I often find my house in a similar state. For some reason, I can never seem to get a grip on all my clutter. It is not just clutter either. There are dirty dishes, and other things that need to be actually cleaned, not just tidied up. How in the world does a person go about getting their house totally organized? I have been trying to get things improved since yesterday, and I have made some progress. The kitchen is looking much better, and I did some work on the master bedroom. Their clean-up expert guy said that the master bedroom basically sets the tone for the entire house. Hm. My bedroom is the LAST place I clean, because it is the least visible, and when it comes to prioritizing, I cannot justify spending a bunch of time cleaning my room but leaving the living room in total disarray. Okay, the living room is not a dump right now, but it is not what I would classify as really neat and tidy. How can it be? There are toys all over the place in here. If Oprah's crew showed up at my door I would be mortified. Not just because of the house either. I look worse than any room in this house on the best of days. Something is wrong here, and I just can't seem to fix it. How can I be home all day every day and still not get all the cleaning done? I think I'm having a contraction here. (Seriously, I seem to be getting these Braxton-Hicks things lately. They don't hurt, but feel quite weird. I hope it's okay to have a lot of them this early.)

Anyway, I am feeling very domestic either way because not only did I clean most of my kitchen today, I also am in the process of baking peanut butter cookies. Correction: I am in the process of eating peanut butter cookies. Mmm. It was a craving that I simply was unable to say no to. Peanut butter cookies are not common around here, and it's practically like eating something illegal for all the rules and regulations these days about peanut butter. Sometimes I get scared that if anyone entered my house with peanut allergies they would drop dead on the spot because Cody and most of my kitchen probably have a permanent film of peanut butter over them. I hope none of my kids develop nut allergies. Cody loves peanut butter. My baby seems to be appreciating the cookies. I just felt a little jump.

Well, at least the weekend is here. So far, our big plans consist of going to the dump tomorrow morning (always the highlight of our weekends) and as an extra special outing: buying a toilet in Virden. Yep. Not only do we get to travel all the way to the thriving metropolis of Virden, Manitoba, but we will be returning home with a special toilet. There is a one-day only rebate on these toilets tomorrow, and we need a toilet for our basement, so that settles that.

On that note, I must go and prepare the most fabulous baked potatoes in the universe. Haha. Seriously though, fabulous. I found this recipe online and it really is like no baked potato you have ever tasted. For me, that is a good thing because I hate baked potatoes. I will quickly tell you the secret.

Okay, this is the condensed version, but all you do is poke holes all around the potatoes with a fork, brush them with either olive oil or canola oil, then sprinkle salt all over them. Then, you cook them at 400 degrees F direcly on the oven rack. Just a hint: don't do this without putting something underneath them to catch the oil drips. I made that mistake the first time I tried this. I almost lit up my kitchen. Our house was VERY smoky, and I had to open windows and doors, even though it was freezing outside. (And I do mean freezing, like well below zero, for my non-Canadian readers.) I usually use an old cookie sheet that is too burnt or even rusty to put food on directly anymore. See? Maybe there is a good reason to hold onto things like that rather than throwing them out. Hm. Anyway, once you bring the potatoes out of the oven, you are supposed to cut them in half and then squeeze them a bit with tongs. I am not sure about the order of those two things. I squeezed them first, personally. This fluffs them up really good. Apparently these are supposed to taste so good that you will not want to load them up like you normally would. This concept is lost on me. I still load mine up, but seriously, these are WAY better than any other potatoes. They are supposed to put the kind you do in foil to shame because the foil holds the moisture inside of itself, whereas the oil and salt hold the moisture within the potato itself. So, there is my recipe for you. Don't get used to it...I am not really a fountain of amazing recipes. This one is easy and turns out delicious. It will make you feel like a gourmet chef if you are someone like me.

This is getting long, so I will sign off. Hope someone else tries the potatoes and loves them as much as my family does!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Mommy is Always Wrong

I'm having an interesting day here at home with my boys. Cody has been quite grumpy, so I put him down for half an hour this morning for a quiet time. That seemed to help him to calm down a bit. It's funny how he is in that stage where no matter what I say, he has to argue with me. It drives me crazy. I have to wonder whether it will be exactly the same about 12 years from now. I'm guessing...probably yes. So, after the quiet time, the morning improved and after lunch today, I had two very hyper boys. In fact, they jumped on the couch side by side for a long time. I pondered the fact that traditionally, as a parent I should be angered by this behavior, but in all truth it was pretty cute to watch them bouncing and laughing together. I did have to put a stop to it eventually though because Jamie is way too little to be up on the couch like that. He only got up because Cody had so much stuff on the floor in front of it that he was able to climb on.

Despite the cuteness, I eventually hit the point of sensory overload and I told them it was time for quiet time/nap time. Cody, of course, argued with me that he would be sleeping in the living room, not in his own room. At that point I had no energy to argue with him, because if you'll pardon my bluntness, I had to pee really badly. At this point in my pregnancy, I don't mess around with my bladder, so I told him that was fine and I'd see him later. I then headed to my bathroom without looking back. This triggered a tantrum. He followed me, hollering loudly about how he wanted to sleep in his own room, and then he burst into my bedroom and slammed the door open into the wall over and over again. I seriously thought he was going to bust a hole in the wall with the door knob it was so violent. By now I am really frustrated, and I shouted, "Can't I even go to the bathroom?!" His response was, "NO! I don't NEED you to go to the bathroom!!!" So. Cody does not need me to use the bathroom. Isn't that wonderful? I guess that means my bladder will be immune to water and for the rest of this pregnancy I will never have to pee again. I am so grateful that I have a two-year-old to dictate all of the mundane details of my life for me. What would I do if I had to decide for myself when I needed to use the bathroom???

Anyway, I just had to share that because it really summarizes my daily interactions with Cody. His opinion is right, mine is wrong. I hope he agrees with me when I go into labour!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Needles and Battles

I had to take Jamie for his one year old needles today. Blech. He is more sensitive than Cody ever was, so I was really dreading it. He did all right in the end, but I still feel bad pinning him down like that while they jab needles into each arm. Poor kid. He's such a sweet little guy. He is really restless though and I can hear him moving in his bed a lot. He just let out a little whimper. I hope he doesn't react badly to this needle. Cody did with this one, so I am feeling a bit paranoid.

Other than needles, this week has consisted of a three day long battle to get Cody to pick up his toys and put them away. It ended with a bang today when I finally allowed the time to run out and the hammer to drop. He has lost privileges every day so far, but nothing seemed to be incentive enough for him. I decided to ride out the battle long-term to hopefully teach him a more memorable lesson than if I stood over him and forced him to do it like a drill sergeant. I hope the battle does not commence again tomorrow, because I am exhausted. A pleasant day would be so welcome about now!!!

On a lighter note, Cody has informed me numerous times that the new baby is going to be a sister, not a brother. Yesterday I asked him, "What if it is a boy? What should we call him?" He said, "Jamie". I told him that we could not have another Jamie because we already have one. He then said, "We can throw Jamie away." I guess he has it all planned. I asked him if it is a girl what we should name her. He said "Oma", which I believe is German for "grandmother", or else "Lacey". Where the heck did he get those from??? He's crazy. Well, he will not be getting his way on either of those, let me tell you, but I do intend to tell Mike's grandma (whom Cody calls Oma) what he said and see what she thinks.

Anyway, I am desperate for sleep after an obscenely early morning this morning. I'm off.