Saturday, March 28, 2009

Off for a mini-holiday

This is the irony of motherhood. For months I have felt burnt out and desperate for a break. Tomorrow, Mike and I are actually going away and leaving the boys here with my parents, and I am nervous to leave my kids. I am dreading leaving because if Jamie cries I just know I will cry for a good portion of the drive. It seems silly. We are only going to be a 2 1/2 hour drive away, but to stay away for two nights is a world record for me. That is not for lack of willingness to leave either, but mostly for lack of opportunity. After Cody was weaned, I was working, so I couldn't really go anywhere. Then Jamie came along, so I was nursing again and was pretty much stuck at home, or at least he had to come with me wherever I went. Then I got pregnant again before I even weaned him, and now here I am. I guess I will be taking this baby with me, but that's cool. The only restrictions that places on me are the incessant bathroom breaks, but those are manageable. At least I'm not nine months along.

Anyway, it has been a long day of cleaning and preparations for our trip, and I am very tired. I might be taking my laptop along with me, so if anything really exciting happens, I might do a post from the hotel. (Is Chinese food considered exciting enough for a blog post? So far, I am probably the most excited about that...) So, I might be off for a few days, but I will be back. This will be a fun week with Cody's birthday and the fair, so I may have some writing material...if I have time.

Okay, and I hope it is not too personal to mention that my wardrobe has just suffered a devastating blow. I am currently doing laundry so that everything I need for the trip is available. To my dismay, I realized that I forgot to wash my most reliable bra because I was still wearing it. Oh well, I can still take it, even if it is not April fresh, right? As I sat in the lazy boy chair later I leaned over and reached for my laptop to do a blog entry when there was a sudden snap, and a tiny bit of a sting. That was that. Old Faithful bit it. The wire snapped in half. Now I hope I can find a good one that fits half decently for the trip. How ridiculous. I hope that was not too much information, but it was kind of a pivotal point in my day.

Anyway, I must sign off for now. Goodnight.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Later That Same Day...

In recent times in North America, the expression, "The Biggest Loser" has had good connotations due to the popular television show, rather than the traditional negative ones. I feel the need to clarify that when I say right now that I am officially the biggest loser, I am not referring to the new, more positive meaning of the expression. No, I'm talking about being a good, old-fashioned loser. I am still at home, though I should be in my doctor's appointment right now. My mother-in-law called me around lunch time to see whether I was still going in. She was concerned about road conditions because reports were showing visibility issues with blowing snow and whatnot. I had been planning on going, but then questioned whether I should or not. Truthfully, going to town was the very last thing I felt like doing, but it has to get done sooner or later. I decided that I would call Mike and get his opinion because he travelled in to town this morning for work. I did not reach him until after 12:30 p.m., but he told me it was really no big deal and that I should go. So, I continued packing and got everything ready, and then went outside with all my stuff to pack the van and start it before taking the boys down.

There was a LOT of snow on the deck, and I nearly slipped down the stairs (our staircase has about 10 stairs), and I confess I found myself feeling very annoyed by this entire situation. My shoes were full of snow. Yes, I chose to wear runners rather than boots because at my appointment I have to take off my footwear to get weighed, and I thought slip-on shoes would be easier than lace-up boots, hence my logical but foolish decision. Now my socks are cold and wet, and I am just generally angry that we are getting this much snow when we should already be wearing spring jackets, and I can't help but be a bit annoyed that Mike does not worry about me more. I know, not rational. I just wished he would have told me to stay home because with everything in me, that is all I really wanted to do. But, I hauled my butt and my stuff through the snow and loaded the van, and then started it. It was covered in snow, and wouldn't you know it, there was no scraper/brush to clear it off with. Mike took it in his car. I decided not to worry about it for the time being, and returned to the house to get Jamie out of his crib and get both boys dressed for the trip. It was almost 1 p.m. and Jamie was not going to have time to eat lunch before we left, but I figured he could just eat when he got to the farm. I finally got everyone loaded in and ready to go by 1:10 p.m. and I backed out of my parking spot, preparing for the Indiana Jones ride from Disneyland once again, minus the excitement and the fun of knowing that nothing can actually go wrong. Unfortunately, the hood was covered in deep snow and I was having a hard time seeing well ahead of me. Still, I could see the ruts, which were now running through another thick blanket of white snow, rather than just the frozen slush from earlier in the week. I proceeded ahead.

Cody asked whether we were going to get stuck, and I replied with confidence that no, we were not. After all, I had successfully navigated this driveway several times since the fiasco on Monday morning and I knew that though it would be a bumpy ride, it would not be a one-way ticket to nowhere like last time. Lately it feels like I lie to Cody a lot. I am forever telling him that we are going to the farm, or that his Auntie or cousins are coming to see him, and inevitably it ends up being false. Though it is no fault of my own, I still feel badly telling him that something is going to happen and then forever disappointing him when it does not. We navigated the first turn in the driveway without a significant problem, but then somehow we were no longer in the ruts and we were blazing a trail of our very own. We were still on the road, but our tires were making their own tracks and soon the van violently protested. It lurched diagonally straight for a tree and I hit the brakes to save the van, and there we were, across the driveway at an awkward angle about a foot and a half away from a skinny but significant tree. Phew. Missed that one. I had a bad feeling though, and with good reason. We were indeed stuck. There was no moving forward or backward more than an inch. I felt like a complete loser. How could I possibly have gotten stuck AGAIN? I don't remember the last winter when I ever got stuck anywhere with a car, and now this was the third time in about three weeks that I have been hopelessly stuck somewhere. I was reduced to tears and ranting, which Jamie was oblivious to, but Cody was clearly picking up on my stress. He whined over and over again that he didn't want to be stuck and that he wanted to go to Grandmama's house, but my nerves were shot and I finally shouted at him to stop it because we WERE stuck and there was not a darn thing I could do about it. So, I called and cancelled my appointment for the second time this week, and told Mike's mom that I would not be coming over, and then I surveyed the van to see what all I needed to haul back up the road to the house. Diaper bags? Nope, those could stay where they were. Food bag? Yep, have to bring that or Jamie's milk will freeze. My purse? Yep. There's pee in it, and we don't want that freezing. Yes, I said pee. This is the second time this week that I had to pee in a cup first thing in the morning before I can even see properly and then pour it in a tube with a lid, and then seal it in a plastic bag and pack it in my purse to transport to the doctor's office. I find it disgusting, and a little disconcerting, but that is how they do it at my clinic. So, I put my book inside of my purse, slung it over my shoulder and grabbed the plastic bag with Jamie's lunch in it, and then I released prisoner number one: Cody. I told him to start walking back towards the house and I would get Jamie. I trekked around to the other side of the van and hauled out my 24 pound one year old. We then made our way through the deep and narrow tracks back to the house. Radar was delighted with the whole situation and considered himself to be walked.

I was not delighted in the least. I am still very angry about the whole thing, and I can't help but feel like a huge loser. I'm sure if Mike was driving, he would not have gotten stuck. It just makes me hate myself for being so stupid. I know that is harsh, but I am pregnant, and there are no such things as mild emotions when you are pregnant...at least not for me. I figure that he must think I'm a ditzy space cadet air-headed girl to have gotten stuck again and my self-esteem was already suffering greatly these days. So, that is how my day has gone down.

Incidentally, I had plans this evening in town with the girls from work and I will now not be able to go through with those either, though perhaps it is just as well as I doubt I would be very good company in my present mood. So, my stressful plans were thwarted, but my fun ones also fell through. This is now just another day of staying at home and getting nothing done. What I wouldn't give for a nap right now, but both of my boys are awake and it looks like it will remain so for the rest of the day. I am hungry. I would like a Big Mac. Or a frosty. Or pizza. Maybe that would soothe my frazzled nerves. I must end this before it gets even worse. Bye for now.

Feeling Gross

I am not feeling well this morning, so I am once again not getting much done. I did a bunch of dishes before sitting down because it was necessary and I knew that sitting would be the end of productivity for the morning. I also managed to shower and do my hair, which is quite a feat because I have to dry my hair straight, then straighten it with a flat iron, and then curl it with a curling iron to give it some shape. This is why I don't often do my hair, but lately I am feeling quite ugly, so doing my hair helps me to feel just a little less hideous.

I have to go to the doctor today which means I will be leaving the boys with Mike's mom. I feel a little bad about it because they are both overtired. Last night was a wretched night with Cody, who did not go to sleep until 10 p.m. and then was up at 3 a.m. begging for water and it seems that was not the only time. It is all a bit foggy to me right now. I know I was up at 4:30 a.m. too, and then 6:30, but I don't remember all of the circumstances. How is this going to go when we have a newborn too, plus Jamie and Cody will be sharing a room? Will they ALL be up? I'm guessing probably yes. Jamie is also out of sorts and has been since yesterday, but I'm not sure what the problem is. He acts very overtired and cries over the smallest things, but when I put him in his crib this morning right after breakfast he played happily in there while I did my hair. As soon as I brought him out, he was grouchy again. I don't know...maybe he needs a break from me or something. He is laying on his back on a blanket on the floor right now, sucking his thumb. I hope he is not getting sick. I wish I knew what his problem is. He is normally happy all the time.

I attempted to clean the fridge yesterday while Mike made supper. I did four shelves and a drawer and then I started to feel faint and had to sit down. I have felt that way ever since. How in the world am I supposed to get anything done around here? I really want this place clean before we go away...especially for my Mom and Dad, who will be staying here. How can I get it clean if I can't even make it through cleaning a whole bathroom or fridge without having an overwhelming urge to sit down? I am only five months pregnant. How will I survive the rest of this?

Anyway, sorry to go on and on about it. I am a little bit discouraged this morning about my lack of energy and my terrible housekeeping skills. I hope this is pregnancy related and not just me being a pathetic human being. I don't even want to go to my appointment today because all I want to do is lay down and rest. Hopefully my appointment will not be humiliating or discouraging. Sometimes medical appointments can be that way. My last one was not so positive for me, and now I'm extra nervous about going back. That is all I have to say for today. No silly stories about things Cody has done or said, or bizarre incidents with my pets. Just another morning at home with the boys.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

I Have No Life

Okay, I am addicted to a website called www.babycenter.com. This is a great site for anyone who is pregnant, trying to get pregnant, a parent, or someone who has lost a baby. I have been chatting with other girls who are due in July of 2009 and it has been great. Unfortunately, I spend way too much time on this website. Last night, one of the girls posted a link to this game, and now I am hopelessly addicted to it, and Mike is even addicted to it. We have spent much of the day trying to conquer the many levels. This is somewhat sadistic of me, but I am going to put the link in here, and then if anyone wants to check it out, you will know what I am currently going through. However, if you do, don't say I did not warn you about the addictive power of this game! It is maddening! The site is called, www.levelgame.net.

The other exciting part of my day was when I saw a deer running just inside the bush around our front yard. I looked and there were two of them. We don't see many deer because of Radar, but he was in the house. So, yes, deer are beautiful and I get a thrill when I see them in my yard, but today was extra special. They kept looking back behind them, so I followed their gazes to the area close to our house by our driveway, and there was a big coyote just barely inside the trees following them. It was so cool. I have never been so close to one. I watched him for a while and he eventually followed the driveway inside the bush and then walked out onto the driveway and crossed over to the trees on the other side. I got it on video. It was pretty amazing, and in a way eerie. If there had been leaves on the trees I would never have seen him and he was right there. No wonder our dog is ALWAYS going psycho when he is outside!

Anyway, that is all for tonight. The weather has been weird, so Mike has been home the last few days. He worked yesterday morning, but that was it. Unfortunately, I had to cancel my doctor's appointment yesterday and it is now scheduled for tomorrow afternoon. It shouldn't be a big deal, but I am dreading it anyway for a number of reasons. I look forward to getting it over with. Hopefully I will not spend any more time tomorrow on this blasted game because I have so much to do before the weekend. On Sunday we go away for a couple of days and my parents will stay here with the boys. This will be a first for me. I am excited to get away, and also dreading it a little bit. Silly how I can feel so trapped but at the same time be so reluctant to leave my boys for such a "long" time. (As if two nights away is an eternity.)

Okay, so I am now signing off. Good night.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Talking About the Weather

It is a well-known fact that us Manitobans are somewhat obsessed with the weather. We can actually carry out an entire conversation based solely on the weather and it is not just a way of making small talk. No, it is actually a significant factor in our day to day lives. It might sound lame to others who live in more predictable climates, but here the weather provides us with endless adventure and excitement and a wide range of emotional responses. Here is an example of what I am talking about.

It is March. The end of March, to be precise. We have been getting milder weather recently, which has been a blessed relief after the long, very cold and very snowy winter that we have been through. On Saturday night (or technically Sunday VERY early in the morning) we were struck with a thunderstorm. That's right, we're talking torrential downpours, non-stop lightning, house-rattling thunder and even a few rounds of hail. It poured from that time all the way until the end of Sunday and when it was finished, we had what looked like a skating rink under about 3 inches of water in the plowed part of our yard. The rest was still a deep, thick blanket of snow. It was bizarre. I have never seen a storm like that in March.

Then yesterday I was supposed to go out in the morning. Mike's school was cancelled because the roads in the community were washed out from flooding from the storm, so the buses could not pick up the kids. I was happy that he would be home, so I left Jamie with him, and Cody and I made our way precariously to the van, amid the extreme ice. We got in and I backed out of my parking space to face the driveway. Our driveway, by the way, is a winding path through the bush. It is narrow and in the summer it just looks like two worn tire tracks going into the trees. I looked at the driveway and said to Cody, "Here we go, I hope we make it!" We drove onto the driveway and immediately I felt the van sink. Uh oh. So I sped up a bit and I was being pulled all over the place. It was about four or five inches of slush and it was like the Indiana Jones ride at Disneyland. We were bouncing all over and whipping from side to side as I frantically turned the wheel violently back and forth to avoid slamming into trees on either side of me. Painstakingly, we made it to the gate, which is always open, but I was afraid we'd hit one side or the other. Somehow, we did not, but then the real challenge presented itself. How to get up the small slope onto the gravel road. I put on as much more speed as I dared without risking sliding into the ditch on either side and gave it my best effort. We got stuck just about four feet short of the road. Oh boy. I tried backing up, and the tires just spun. I tried going forward...same thing. I had to call Mike from my cell phone and get him to walk down the driveway and come and rescue us. Jamie was in bed so, he was fine in the house alone during that time.

Mike had wrecked his knee last week, so I asked him when he got there which one of us was supposed to push? The pregnant lady, or the gimpy man? He said it was a good question. In the end, we both had turns pushing, including once together with the van in neutral. His knee only gave out once, and I did not have any contractions, so I figured we were doing quite well. After 15 minutes stuck in my own driveway I was finally liberated.

These are the types of adventures that are typical, if not frequent, for us Manitobans. A blizzard was forecast for today, but it looks like we will only be getting a little bit of snow after all. I have a doctor's appointment scheduled for this afternoon, and I am very nervous about how I am going to get out of our driveway. Mike is not home today, so if I get stuck it means I will have to leave the van there and walk back in deep slush and ice carrying a 24 pound one year old and holding Cody's hand. I am nervous.

Anyway, that was our adventure-filled weekend. The morning the storm hit I heard Cody saying, "Okay! Okay!" in his high-pitched, excited, talking-to-Radar voice. I opened blurry eyes and looked out my bedroom door and there was Radar at the end of the hall! Radar is NOT allowed out of the kitchen. I love my dog, but I can't stand the smell of dog, so in our house the rule is that he is allowed on linoleum only. That way the smell does not absorb into our furniture and our carpet. Cody took the liberty of inviting and coaxing Radar into his bedroom with him, and also for a game of chase around the coffee table in the living room. Great. I caught him at it again this morning. I can't do anything about it either, because if the dog is outside, Cody just takes the liberty of letting him in whenever he feels like it. One of these days I'll get up and find Radar sleeping on Cody's bed with him. Cute, but not a habit I want to allow.

Well, I think this is more than long enough and I need to end it here. Hopefully I will not need to update after my doctor's appointment. No news is good news. Bye for now.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Bored.

I guess this is the desperate part of the desperate house-mom life. I am home alone, as feels typical in this moment. I did not eat supper because there was nothing here that I could stand the thought of eating. I feel a bit barfy...hormones? Maybe. I am watching tv that I am not interested in while surfing sites that I'm bored of at the moment, but I don't want to go to bed because I feel like I didn't get to do anything enjoyable today. I fought with Cody to get him to go to bed tonight to the point where I was almost driven to tears. Perhaps there is no point in me staying up any longer. Nothing I am doing seems to be alleviating my boredom and it is getting to be depressing.

The good part of my evening has been that my baby has been kicking me quite vigorously, and quite frequently at that. At least that reminds me that I am not totally alone.

I guess I might as well sign off. I am hot from having this laptop on my legs all evening, and I am annoyed because I am hot. I apologize for the dull posts today.

Another Exciting Day in the Life of a Housewife

I should be feeding my boys lunch right now, but I am hiding in my room. Cody is watching a show on TV and Jamie is in bed, but Jamie is not sleeping. He is awake and talking, and probably wants to come out, but I just had to sneak a few minutes to myself.

Today is a hectic day...at least, it was supposed to be. Andrea, (my sister, for those who don't know), was supposed to be coming over this afternoon for a visit, so my plan was to do some cleaning this morning, and then during Jamie's nap and Cody's TV time right before lunch I was going to shower. I then found out first thing this morning that some friends of ours were going to be in town and we had told them a while back that we would do something with them tonight. We had both forgotten about that! Oops! So, then I thought, scrap the shower for now and I'll do as much cleaning as humanly possible and shower later. But then I found out that Andrea got called into work for a few hours. Our other plans also fell through. As I type this, I realize that this is a story that is not worth sharing in this blog. Let's sum it up as follows: I should be cleaning. I should be showering. I should be feeding my boys some lunch. I am not cleaning. I am not showering. I am not feeding my boys lunch.

The good news is, I have done a lot of laundry today. That means I have technically accomplished quite a bit of house work, rendering me an effective housewife at least for today. If that is not exciting to you, get this: I used a cloth diaper on Jamie today for the first time. I was extremely nervous about it, but we finally got our detergent yesterday, so I figured it was time to bite the bullet and give it a try. He has wet one so far, and I was amazed at how NOT a big deal it was. It was not gross either. That was before his nap. I then put him in our second and only other cloth diaper to try it out. I am in fear and trembling that he will poop. Haha. It has to happen eventually for me to know whether I really want to do this or not, but I am still hoping to avoid it as long as possible. I have a feeling that Mike would like to avoid that altogether!

Okay, I'm officially off the hook. Both cloth diapers are wet. No poop today. Phew! Well, on that riveting note, I will sign off and try to get some more work done. I saw Oprah's "Clean up your messy house tour" again yesterday, and I am feeling a bit inadequate! They say if you can set aside 10-15 minutes a day just to de-clutter, that should keep things under control. We shall see! I'm off to conquer the house and the boys!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Struggle to Save Money

So I have spent most of my day trying to assemble a grocery list. It doesn't sound that complicated, but for me, today, it is. The thing that is hard is that I am supposed to be buying things that we need, and I am not supposed to buy anything extra. I was not told what kinds of things are considered "extra". So, now I am blank on what I should buy. Most of my list is not even food-related at all. This is frustrating. Normally I would just go to the store, go up every aisle and pick the things that we need as I go. Well, I do take a list too, but I don't feel bad buying other things that we could use as I go along. Now I feel like I have to be really strict, and that leaves me unsure of how to proceed. I have this feeling like I am going to drive all the way in to town when Mike gets home and after spending a couple of hours running around buying stuff I will come home and we will still be short on food in this house.

I did manage to make supper today though, which is an accomplishment because it is one of my headache days. I am very tired and I woke up with a bad headache, which seems to be quite attached to me. It won't go away. So, I spent an hour or more preparing a casserole for tonight's supper, which I will not be eating. I won't be here to experience the glory of my beautiful casserole, but hopefully it will at least impress Mike. Right now I am very hungry, but there is not a darn thing in this house that I want to eat. This is why I am worried about the shopping list too. I can't think of anything to eat, so I can't think of anything to buy either. How pathetic.

My other adventure that is currently unfolding is my inexplicable desire and intention to use cloth diapers on my next baby. No, you did not read that wrong. What has possessed me to even consider this? Well, mostly the fact that cloth diapers are not what they used to be. They are now cute, cause less diaper rash than disposables, money-saving, and much better for the environment, though some would argue that point. I don't know why I am so serious about this, but I am. Chalk it up to pregnancy hormone insanity if you want. I just can't seem to let it go, even though I am getting so stressed about it that I even dream about diapers at night...if I can stop thinking about them long enough to fall asleep at all. It turns out that cloth diapering is a much more complicated endeavor than I would have thought. There are zillions of brands, and there are zillions of types of diapers, even within brands. That coupled with the fact that in Canada it is difficult to find a lot of them, plus they are far more expensive here than in the U.S., and it makes it hard to get started.

I did find a store in Brandon that sells them. They have three different types. One is a box of what they call "prefolds", which are essentially very similar to the old-style ones that my mom used when we were babies. They don't use pins anymore to close them, thank goodness. They have some kind of snap-like clips you can use. These require the plastic pants over them, because they do not have a water-proof outer layer. This just does not appeal to me, though they are by far the cheapest option. The next type are called Fuzzi Bunz, and are a "pocket diaper". This means that they have a similar design to a disposable, but they have a pocket inside of them that you stuff with an absorbent cloth insert. They do up with snaps and they are quite cute, but they are fairly expensive and you have to buy a bunch of each size so that they will fit your baby at each stage. The third kind are called Bumgenius, and they are one size fits 7-35 pounds. They are also a pocket diaper, with a cloth insert. They are also expensive, but the bonus is that I would only have to buy one set, and Jamie could even use them too. So, I bought one Fuzzi Bunz in Jamie's size and one BumGenius one size to try out. Then I found out you can't use normal detergent on them because if you do, they can build up a water-repelling layer and then they do not absorb liquid anymore. Not a good quality in a diaper. So today I also have to find an appropriate detergent, which is not sold in any regular stores. Hm. It turns out that Two Farm Kids sells some that should work, so I have to head there today. Once I have the detergent, I can give the diapers a try. That will be the truly scary part. Hehe...nervous laughter. If they work great on Jamie, I will buy a bunch and wean him off of disposables. Then when the baby is born, I'll buy another bunch and I'll know what colors to buy, depending on the baby's gender.

So, that is a very short version of my cloth diaper dilemma. I'll probably post about it again because it is so much on my mind. Makes for exciting reading too, don't you think?

Anyway, must throw my superb casserole in the oven now because Mike is on his way home. Then I will go to town and hopefully buy everything I need and nothing more. Bye for now.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Fight or Flight

I'm not entirely convinced I'm going to make it through this day. Cody seems to be in a terrible mood. He has already hit his brother in the head with toy cars, pushed him several times, and the winning moment had to be when he shoved an angel food cake pan over Jamie's head. You know, the kind that has a hole in the bottom, so it was around his neck and he couldn't get it off. I couldn't either. He was screaming and I was so mad, and I was starting to wonder whether I was going to have to take him somewhere to get it off, but when I got him to calm down a little I was finally able to get it back off of his head. So far, the day has been one emotionally charged battle after another, and I am already worn down at 10:30 a.m. They are now pretending to sleep under a blanket on the living room floor. It is pretty cute, as they keep giggling together. The silence is a welcome change. How in the world is it going to work when these two have to share a room? That's not going to be long from now. I have a feeling once that happens, sleep will be a thing of the past for everyone in this house. Today, I'm desperate for an escape. Even just to go to town for a few hours...without the boys. But, I have no one to leave them with today, so that is not an option. I might leave this evening as soon as Mike gets home, we'll see. I have no exciting stories to tell today. For my blog, that is a disappointment. For me and my sanity, it is probably a good thing. That's all for now.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

From Bad to Worse

Last night our house felt like that high security room out of Mission Impossible, as we tip-toed around between the kitchen, the living room and the hallway, trying (mostly unsuccessfully) to navigate a path between the Cheerios without hearing or feeling the dreaded crunch. I was gone for much of the day, so I did not vacuum the mess. Some warped part of me wanted Mike to see it in person and not just hear my description of it. He laughed. A lot. But, by the end of the day when I had planned to clean it up, I was so tired that I just left it with the intention of cleaning it this morning.

This morning was typical, in that Cody was up around 6 a.m., and he went after Oreo again. This proved to be life-threatening for the poor bunny because Cody did not bother ejecting the dog out of the house first. I heard a lot of frantic claws on the kitchen floor, and Cody laughing hysterically. He had put Oreo inside of the "shopping cart" (a laundry basket) and was chasing the dog around the kitchen, pushing the rabbit behind him. I guess in a way it was kind of poetic...a tiny little bunny hot on the heels of a big German Shepherd who was scrambling frantically to get out of the way. From Mike's eyewitness report, Radar had the distinct look of a wild animal about to devour his prey. We are going to have to put padlocks on Oreo's cage, or something equally dramatic. Mike rescued him, and I gave Cody a thorough tongue-lashing, to which he finally responded "oKAY, oKAY!".

So that was it, I was up for the day. I looked around me at the plethora of Cheerios that still occupied much of the floor right where the kitchen, living room, hallway and stairs meet, and I thought I would vacuum a path through them, so that I would not crunch any more. I did, and it was better, but I still wanted the deepest part of the pile to remain, for grazing purposes...particularly for Jamie. Martha Stewart I am not. I got Jamie out of his crib and strapped him into the high chair and got his breakfast ready. I don't know what is up with him these days, but he gets really mad in his high chair, and it seems like he doesn't want to eat. I gave him a bowl of hashbrown casserole and continued about my business in the kitchen. He was complaining, but I didn't think anything of it until I heard the loud crash and shattering sound. Horrified, I turned to see the bowl and the casserole in a million pieces (and pile of mush) on the floor. I guess I am naive, because I always thought Corelle was unbreakable. I guess I knew it was not completely unbreakable, but I have always used it for my kids so that if they threw it, it would not break. Well, I learned a lesson this morning. There were glass shards everywhere, so I had to restrain Cody on the carpet with nothing but words...a near impossible task. Then I had to pick up the casserole part in paper towels without cutting myself in the process. All in all, the cleanup was quite a task, and to my ultimate dismay, I was forced to vacuum up all the Cheerios. I could not risk him snacking on them when there was a chance that a tiny piece of glass may have found its way into the pile. So I have now vacuumed all the Cheerios and it looks much better in here. It is nice to be able to walk like a normal person too, and not have crumbs all over my socks all day. Of course there are a few strays here and there, but the vacuum will get them eventually. I even vacuumed up Cody's pajama bottoms this morning. Oops.

I guess it's pretty bad that it took a dangerous situation to force me to vacuum. I was sad to see all those Cheerios go, but I was not sorry to see my carpet once again.

All's quiet now, as the boys snack on goldfish (Eeewwww!) and Cody watches Dora. Jamie is mostly eating and dancing. I guess I should get some work done now that things are settled for the moment around here. Hopefully we can avoid catastrophe for a while. I'm off to change the laundry.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Headed For the Poor House

Apparently I do not learn quickly. I did not have the greatest sleep last night because Jamie had a party in his crib at 3 a.m. I finally got up at 3:19 a.m., convinced that he had pooped, but I was wrong. He really was just having a party - him and his yellow elephant and his blue dog. I was the party crasher. I was invited to stay, of course, but I promptly headed back to bed after changing a wet diaper. He continued to talk and laugh after that, but not for too long, fortunately. I guess somehow I felt that I was entitled to sleep in a bit this morning, after my middle-of-the-night party session with Jamie, but that was stupid of me. I did remain in bed, listening to Cody talking to Oreo, and in my half-conscious state I remember unwrapping a nutri-grain bar for him without getting out of bed or even sitting up. I had hoped that he would be all right for a while without me, though I was mildly concerned about the rabbit, as the dog was still in the house.

After a few episodes of Oreo escaping to the refuge under my bed I saw Cody haul him out and leave the room with Oreo hanging under one arm and a pair of tongs in the other hand. Hm. I didn't really like the look of that combination. Cody had requested assistance booting the dog outside because our door was frozen and he could not open it by himself, so I resigned myself to the fact that I would have to get out of bed. I did. I walked down the hallway and when I emerged at the other end I found ground zero. Something was wrong on the floor. The texture, the color...it was all wrong. Then it hit me. That is not my carpet, that is a sea of Cheerios. I let my gaze sweep the living room and the kitchen. Cheerios, as far as the eye could see. Off to the left, a forlorn yellow box, empty. Beside it, a plastic bag, empty. I gasped and covered my head with my hands. Surely this can't be the way we are going to save money on groceries?! That was a brand new box. A big one too, not one of those little skinny ones that only last a week. I have to admit, more than a few tears escaped my eyes. Don't get me wrong, the humor did not entirely escape me, but what I was seeing in front of me looked more like an image of a pile of money on fire, burning eternally like the bush that Moses saw.

Cody asked me why I was sad. Have you ever used the word "expensive" when explaining something to an almost three year old? It is not effective. I said, "Now we can't eat any of this!" He was taken aback and looked at me like I was the most dense mother out there. He said, "Yes, I can eat it!" I then knew what I needed to do. I got Jamie up. He is now happily sitting in a blanket of Cheerios, eating his way out. Every now and again, Cody eats a few of them, but I strongly suspect that Jamie is going to be a one-man cleaning crew for the rest of the morning. I am considering not feeding him breakfast. I wonder if I pour a couple of liters of milk into the mix if that would be considered a balanced breakfast. Hm. Food for thought.

Well, that's all for now. This is coming to you from before 9 a.m. I hope the rest of our groceries survive better. I am still considering that we may need a steel safe instead of a pantry.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Boys + Pets = Very Big Mess

It turns out that my almost three year old has found himself a new source of entertainment. He has developed over the last few days an Oreo obsession. No, not the cookies...our rabbit. He has taken it upon himself to put the dog outside whenever he feels like it, and then hauling Oreo out of his cage and dragging him around to do his bidding. Rabbits are a somewhat expressionless bunch, so it is very difficult to tell by looking at his face whether the attention is pure bliss to him, or whether he is on the verge of dropping dead from sheer terror. I have begun to assume that he mostly enjoys his times with Cody, as life-threatening as some of them are. He does not struggle when Cody carries him around, and somehow does not seem to run away when he has the opportunity.

This morning as I was laying in bed trying against all odds to sleep later than 7:20 a.m. (which actually feels like 6:20 a.m. because of the time change on the weekend), Cody kept asking me to help him let Radar out. I said to go ahead and do it, though I dreaded the barking that would doubtless occur as soon as Radar's nose hit the great outdoors. Still, Cody kept coming back and asking for help. I ignored him. A while later, he came back to my room carrying a whole package of Raisin Bran, minus the actual box, and asked me to open it, informing me that he and Oreo were hungry. Naively, I pictured him sitting outside of Oreo's cage, feeding cereal to him through the bars. I seem to have a slow learning curve. I got dressed and followed Cody to the living room, and took the cereal from him. He told me that he and Oreo wanted raisins, and then ran to the couch. I informed him that rabbits do not eat raisins, and then I became suspicious. It is not unusual for our couch to be in total disarray because Cody is forever hiding in the cushions, and removing them or otherwise rearranging them. However, the way he hopped in behind the cushions and looked down in the crevice beside him caused me to glance over at Oreo's cage. Empty. Well of course it was, what was I thinking??? I came closer to the couch, and Oreo's furry little black and white head poked over the top of the cushion beside Cody. I had to admit, it was very cute, but the couch was not as dark navy as normal and had a texture closer to angora than I would have liked. It looked almost as though Santa had spontaneously shaved his beard right in our living room.

So, I put Oreo back in his cage and got my boys settled at the table for breakfast. As they ate, I went to Cody's room to get his cup, and I stopped short when I saw his bed. Yes, it was messy, with the covers thrown all over the place, but that is to be expected, right? The problem was, as I approached closer, I saw clumps of fur, and little round rabbit turds distributed throughout his sheets. I then noticed a similar pattern on the floor. As I walked back to the living room I then noticed the details that had escaped me earlier when I was focused solely on the couch. Yep, there was rabbit evidence all over the place...hair, and turds. Just to clarify, Oreo IS litter-trained, so this evidence disproved my earlier theory about him not being scared out of his wits. Either way, I had a bit of a mess to clean up. Luckily, rabbit poop is extremely easy to clean up, and I got it all with the vacuum in a matter of minutes. I wish I could say the same for the two piles of cat barf I found, also in the living room.

Ah, life with pets. Well, pets and kids. The other day, Cody came flying into the living room making horrible retching sounds like he was on the verge of barfing, and when I asked him what was wrong he told me, "I licked Radar." How do I respond to that??

As for my other "wifely duties" around here, apparently I am failing quite thoroughly. I have been behind on cleaning the kitchen the last few days, but from Saturday through to the end of Monday I had horrible headaches, some of them migraines, so I was pretty much useless. Mike did some cleaning for me yesterday, and I apologized, saying that as far as kitchen cleaning goes, I had only been making my minimum payments lately. He smirked and informed me that he didn't think I had even made the minimum. I defended myself, pointing out that there was always a clean load in the dishwasher, so never had we run out of dishes and gone completely "bankrupt" in the kitchen. He conceded reluctantly. I am not proud of my house-cleaning skills, habits, or track record. The other day I pulled out the vacuum and told Cody, "I'm just going to vacuum for a minute here." He said enthusiastically, "Oh! Who's coming over?" That about sums it up for me.

So, I guess this desperate house-mom is signing out for now. Maybe I'll get it together one of these days.