Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Asian Adventures

So. My family and I are currently* on an amazing, once in a lifetime holiday in Asia. I normally don't like broadcasting when we're away from home because, you know, thieves and stuff. Mostly zombies. Though I think our elderly, deaf, arthritic cat can still hold her own- she's gotten pretty good with her cane fighting.

*(“Currently” applied to when I started this blog post. We are now safely at home and have recuperated from the events recorded here... about 3 months ago.So. Back off thieving zombies.) 



ANYwho...we are currently (unexpectedly) in Bangkok, Thailand, where our hastily booked hotel is conveniently located down the street from the local "protests" that are occurring here. Just how did we find ourselves in this predicament? Lack of birth control. Seriously. It's all the babies' faults. Ugh. Kids.

Let me backtrack just a bit.

Mid to late January, my Mister had a business trip back to the States. He left the warm, sunny summer of Australia (otherwise known as OHDEARGODI'MMELTING) for the arctic chill of Virginia, leaving me alone with the kids, all by myself and alone, for just under 2 weeks. We've had this trip planned for a while, so I knew that he would be able to make up for it via the many massages, facials, and yarn buying excursions I was going to enjoy while on holiday.

Our kids are already pretty seasoned travelers by now and Little Mister especially loves riding in vehicles he's not experienced before, but especially enjoys taxis, buses, trains, and, of course, airplanes. He also is a kid who needs sleep. Like, NEEDS sleep. A lot. He's extremely bright and funny and really loves his mama, but sometimes I need to remind myself that he's only two and I can't expect him to behave like an older child, especially when he's jet lagged, has missed naps, and is sleep deprived because his parents selfishly decided to enjoy an evening market in Chiang Mai instead of being holed up in the hotel by 6pm like every other night.

SweetPea also needs her sleep, but she's still small enough to fall asleep in the Ergo while walking around places, but I could tell that her interrupted naps were starting to take their toll. So, in a way this forced stop in Bangkok is a very good thing for them since we are holed up in our hotel for now and they've been napping uninterrupted for the past 2 hours. I probably should be napping, too, but I didn't realize how strong the coffee is here. I'm talking rapid eye blinking, heart pounding, grow-hair-on-your-chest strong coffee. I just had one cup and I'm already starting to be mistaken for an Italian man. Might be due in part to my large mustache, plumbers gear, and penchant for mushrooms, but I can't be sure. 


You should see what happens when we don't shave

But I'm getting ahead of myself. (Sorry in advance for the digressions- dear Lord that coffee was strong!)

The first part of our trip started out well. Due to the flight schedules, we spent one night in Adelaide before heading to our first stop, Phuket, Thailand with a short layover in Singapore. Phuket (pronounced "poo-ket," which I don't have to tell you makes me giggle) was great- tropical weather (I actually prefer humidity to dry heat), tropical vegetation, beautiful sandy beaches, and, my personal favorite, inexpensive massages. The people in Thailand love children. Or, at least my children because it has been scientifically proven that they are the cutest and bestest children ever in the whole world. SweetPea especially has been fawned over and loved on and passed around by just about every Thai woman alive. She learned how to wave just prior to our trip, but it was sporadic. Now, she's a waving virtuoso. She now has a compulsion to wave and smile any time she sees an Asian woman and is usually rewarded with smiles, hugs, laughs, and cooing. This has been a huge ego boost for this proud mama, but in hindsight may have contributed to our current predicament. 


OH COME ON! Just one bite of those Tootsie Roll arms!
For the first couple of days, we took it really easy, letting the kids take their naps in the hotel room and putting them to bed at their normal times. But, this is a once in a lifetime holiday for us and we didn't travel all the way to Asia just to spend time in the hotel. So, we started pushing them just a bit. It was good to get out of the hotel room, anyway, since there were so many mosquitoes there. Great googly moogly- we were being eaten alive! So we killed as many mosquitoes in our room as we could and then went out and about where we provided the rest of the mosquitoes in Thailand with a smorgasbord of American goodness. My Mister's legs look like he has some sort of skin disease and I am covered with swollen red welts that then turn into bruises because I'm blessed like that.

So when our kids started getting red bumps all over, we figured they were just doing their part to feed the local wildlife and didn't worry too much about it, especially since they weren't scratching like they were infested with fleas like their parents were.

After a few days in Phuket, we headed to our second destination- Chiang Mai, Thailand where the Sunday Night Market is legendary and part of the reason we wanted to visit Chiang Mai in the first place.

The day we arrived in Chiang Mai, Little Mister started acting unusual. He didn't want to eat much and didn't even finish his fruit which, if you know my little man, is a huge red flag that something is up. He's a bottomless pit and especially loves fruit and vegetables. He's a Nutritionist's dream son, to be quite honest.

Another indicator that he wasn't feeling well occurred later that afternoon when his eyes started looking glassy and his head felt like a heat lamp. Other than acting like he had a fever (tired and a little miserable), he wasn't acting like he was really sick, so we didn't worry too much about it and just decided to wait it out and let him sleep.

The next morning (Friday), I noticed that he got attacked pretty badly by mosquitoes throughout the night- his face and feet had quite a few red spots on them. Poor little man. By the end of the day, he was no longer feverish, but still wasn't eating much. But he seemed to be in good spirits since he was able to add a tuk tuk to his ever expanding list of vehicles he has risen in. And if you have not heard a two year old say, "Tuk tuk!" Then you do not know what cute is. It is currently his favorite mode of transportation.

By Sunday, he seemed like he was feeling better, which was great since we wanted to attend the Sunday Night Market. However, SweetPea seemed out of sorts and felt a little warm. Huh. Well, it could be because it's really hot and humid and she's been spending most of her time strapped to my chest in the Ergo. Yeah. That's why she's feeling warm. And not as hungry. And super clingy to me. Right? So we didn't get our kiddos to bed until waaaaay past their bedtime, but figured they could handle it this one night since we've been held hostage every other night by their early bedtimes.

We were almost delirious with the experience of being outdoors past 7pm for the first time in almost 3 years. It was like we were almost human again. It was glorious.

Monday morning we were getting ready to head out to our third destination- Siem Reap, Cambodia- with a 2 hour layover in Bangkok. As we were leaving the hotel, the super friendly women who had been fawning all over SweetPea were dismayed that she wasn't feeling well and wasn't her normal cheery, happy, lovable self.

Then they noticed the red bumps on one of her legs. I wasn't too worried about them....until those women showed worry about them. They even asked what time our flight was just in case we had time to go to the local hospital to get her checked out. Since we didn't have enough time, they told us there was a "hospital" at the Bangkok airport we could go to if she didn't seem well.

Great. I'm a pretty laid back mama. I was raised with a "You're ok! Rub some dirt in it!" type of mom. Granted, she usually fainted when we had to get shots and slammed the door in my face that one time I sliced open my hand and had blood spurting like a fountain (true story), but overall, she definitely didn't get worked up over every bump, scrape, cough or fever. Thus, I've also tended to take a "watch and see" stance the few times my kids have seemed ill.

Well. Except for this past Thanksgiving when we were in Adelaide and SweetPea got her first fever. It wasn't responding to Advil or Tylenol so I took her to the local hospital just to be on the safe side. After spending the majority of Thanksgiving day in the ER (Turkey Subway Sandwiches were our Thanksgiving meal this year), we were told that sometimes kids get fevers and all you can do is wait them out and rub some dirt in it. "Laid back" doesn't even begin to describe Aussie doctors. So, I really wasn't too worried about my kiddos this time since I didn't want to waste my whole vacation in an ER (AGAIN) just to be told, "Yup. That's a fever."

So we get on the plane and head to Bangkok. The kids and I were in the 3 seats on the right and My Mister was in the seat right across the aisle. We gave SweetPea some infant medicine earlier and she was no longer feverish and had fallen asleep on me in the Ergo which was what I was hoping for. And, since it was around lunchtime, which is right in the middle of Little Mister's normal nap time, I was hoping he would fall asleep on the plane, too. Because he was tired. TIRED tired. And he wanted to sleep. NOW. He tried putting down the window shade on the plane but was told to lift it back up until after take-off. He wanted to lay down on the seat but was told he couldn't until after take-off. He started whining. Then he started protesting about everything. Really really loudly. Then, as the plane was finally starting to taxi down the runway, he started slinking in his seat trying to get out of his seatbelt while screaming, "I WANT TO GO TO SLEEP! I WANT TO HOLD YOU, MOMMY! HOLD YOU UP THERE! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!"

I was trying my best to calm him down, stage whispering for him to be quiet and that we would be in the air soon so he could fall asleep and for him to please PLEASE be quiet since SweetPea was sleeping. I pleaded. I ordered him. I begged and cajoled and threatened. Nothing worked. We were THAT family. The one everyone hates and talks about and uses as an example of why kids shouldn't be on planes and the reason they will never have kids themselves because kids suck.

We were barely in the air- the seat belt sign was still on- and Little Mister was almost flopping on the floor while screaming his head off. I took off his seat belt and hoisted him on my lap- or at least what little of my lap was available since I still had a sleeping SweetPea strapped to my chest. He was inconsolable and starting to freak people out as his head spun around while pea soup spewed out of his mouth. I was shooting daggers with my eyes across the aisle at My Mister who was trying to be nonchalant, looking everywhere but at us as if to say, "Wow. Just my luck to be stuck across the aisle from *those* people. Ugh. Kids. Amirite?"

As Little Mister was doing his bucking bronco imitation, SweetPea was finally jolted out of sleep, which was exactly what I was hoping would happen. Because the only thing better than having one screaming kid on your lap in the middle of take-off is having TWO screaming kids on your lap. My only consolation was that we were still in the middle of ascending so there was still hope something would go horribly wrong and we would go down in a gigantic fiery crash.

I finally caught My Mister's eye and growled, "I could REALLY use your help right now!" He pointed to the seat belt sign as if to say, "There's nothing I can do!" Which prompted me to nearly take his head off, which is what I would have done if I wasn't wrestling Damien and his sister on my lap. Instead, I hissed "I REALLY DON'T CARE!" at which time he hopped across the aisle and helped me muzzle our sweet, adorable little angels.

Thankfully, we were able to lay Little Mister down and get him to finally fall asleep but our SweetPea did not appreciate being jolted out of her slumber and proceeded to let everyone know just how displeased she was for the entire flight. I tried nursing her, singing to her, jiggling her and playing peek-a-boo, but nothing worked. This was highly unusual for her- she's usually a happy baby and a great flier. Her leg rash also seemed like it was getting worse, so when we finally landed in Bangkok, we decided to get her checked out at the airport clinic, just in case. We had a two hour layover so we figured they'd smile and nod and give us some dirt to rub on her while sniggering behind our backs about the inadequacies of American parenting skills.

But no. Instead, they took one look at her rash and at Little Mister's "mosquito bites" and told us we had to go directly to the hospital. Would we like them to order us a taxi or would we prefer an ambulance?

What we had thought was an allergic reaction of some sort, due to my recent milk consumption (we think that SweetPea is also allergic to dairy), the airport clinic thought could be either chicken pox or Hand, Foot, Mouth Disease.

They may have just said leprosy with a side order of bubonic plague- either way it meant that we were not able to make our connecting flight to Cambodia that day. Or possibly ever. Good thing we like Thai food- we may be eating it for the rest of our lives.

The only problem with this scenario, other than having 2 very sick kiddos while being stranded in a foreign country, was that we had already cleared customs in Chiang Mai; thus, we were technically not in Thailand anymore. But we were. And My Mister was the lucky guy who got to prove it to the Thai passport/customs in the very “bowels of the Bangkok airport.” (Those were My Mister’s words. I’m the one in the family who tends to use “flowery” language. He does not. So when he described it like that, I could only imagine what sights he saw down there. Since it took TWO FLIPPING HOURS for him to return to me, I’m pretty sure it was unpleasant enough to make up for the airplane fiasco.)

So. After we got cleared to stay a while longer in Thailand, we had to pick up our luggage (which thankfully was not on its way to Cambodia) and, four hours after we stopped for our 2-hour layover, finally got to add “ambulance” to the top of the list of Little Mister’s favorite vehicles ever. Seeing his unbridled excitement and joy when they turned on the siren was almost enough for me to forget the growling and gnashing of teeth he displayed just a few hours previously on the plane. Almost. 


*shudder*

Once we got to the ER, we were promptly ushered into a private room- some may say “quarantine,” but I prefer “VIP treatment.” And since we were such VIPs, we didn’t have to wait long for the doctor like those other peasants out in the waiting room. The doctor quickly came in and, after consulting with another doctor, proclaimed that SweetPea had a skin infection and we were to give her antibiotics and should be free to fly out 24 hours later.

What the crap, Bangkok. Stopping us from flying out of your country due to a little skin infection and/or disease? She’s a baby for goodness sake! We could have just rubbed some dirt in it and have been on our merry way! Instead we were now stranded, without a hotel or transportation lined up, in a city that had been in the news most recently for having “demonstrations” that had resulted in a couple of bombings, which had unfortunately even claimed the lives of a few, innocent children.

The hospital very kindly called a local hotel and gave them a heads up that we were on our way and wrote down the name of the hotel for us so we could tell the taxi driver. However, they wrote it down in English which, unfortunately the Thai taxi driver did not read. Nor speak. Great googly moogly! Even New York taxi drivers can usually speak English! Get with it, Bangkok! Although, they do have New York taxi drivers beat when it comes to packing a family of 4 with their 6 pieces of luggage into a sedan. They must be Jenga masters.
 

A little bungee cord, a little duct tape, badabing badaboom.

After nearly an hour of driving around the same 4 blocks near the hospital trying to find this seemingly non-existent hotel, My Mister decided to look up a local Holiday Inn on his phone and gave it to the taxi driver so he could follow the map there. HOWEVER. Unfortunately, this taxi driver also could not read a map. He had no idea what the heck he was looking at and no idea how to get us there. So, we told him to take us back to the airport- something he thankfully did understand.

Once we got back to the airport- a half hour drive from the hospital- we got in queue for the taxis and hoped and prayed we would get one who spoke English. Thankfully, we did. We told him we wanted to go to the Holiday Inn and, after getting directions from the other drivers in the queue, we were finally on our way to settle into a comfy bed and sleep away this crazy day.

It wasn’t until we were almost to the hotel (My Mister was following along on his phone) that the true gravity of our situation started to dawn on us. We chose the Holiday Inn because it was something we could pronounce and we knew it would give us a bit of comfort and familiarity while we figured out our Bangkok detour. We just happened to choose the Holiday Inn that was located in the center of one of the largest protest areas in Bangkok. Right next door to a government building and just down the street from the aforementioned bombing. I hugged the kids tight as the taxi driver slowed to a stop and rolled down our windows. I truly did not know what to do as armed men shone their flashlights in our faces, but they thankfully seemed content to let us pass. Perhaps it was the leprosy on SweetPea or the sweet sleepy, “Ima gonna kill you!” look on Little Mister’s face; either way, we finally FINALLY made it to our hotel room. Where we are safe…..for now. 


Directly in front of our hotel






******************************************************************************

It’s now 3 months later and, I’m happy to report that we not only made it out of Bangkok safe and sound, but we also got to continue our planned travels by going to Singapore after our Bangkok detour. I’m a little bummed we never got to see Cambodia, but am actually glad that we were stuck in Bangkok with the sick kiddos. After a couple days of forcing antibiotics down SweetPea’s throat and seeing her legs get worse instead of better, we took her to the pediatric unit at Bumrungrad International Hospital, which was hands down the best hospital I have ever been to, ever. And, unfortunately, I've been to many all over the world. We were seen by the (best looking, most efficient) pediatrics center, without an appointment or referral for a specialist (we could have chosen to be seen by a dermatologist, too) and were planning on spending a few hours waiting in an urgent care setting. Instead, we were in, out, and done in less time than it took to drive there and it was less than 2 miles away. 



Targeted ads on the Bangkok Ferry- they knew we'd hit them all eventually


Turns out they did have Hand, Foot, Mouth Disease after all. After rubbing some cream on her legs, they started clearing up and we were finally given the all clear to leave Thailand.

Even after all we went through, I’d have to say that I absolutely loved Thailand. I loved the beaches of Phuket. I loved the markets and temples of Chiang Mai. 


SMILE!




I even loved Bangkok. 

 
Words cannot even explain how amazing this was.

Even though we were staying right in the middle of one of the biggest protest areas, it was "peaceful" while we were there. We heard chanting, groups applauding at speakers, concerts of some sort, and sirens throughout the day and night. If it wasn't for the knowledge of what was going on, I would have thought we were in the middle of a music festival or something. 


She's ready to ROCK




I’d definitely go back there when there is a little less social unrest and we had an actual plan of some sorts, but I still enjoyed our time there. After the excitement that was Bangkok, the perfection that was Singapore was almost a let down. Almost.


Indoor mountain, including several waterfalls. Because they can.



Thursday, November 21, 2013

Exodus to a Field of Dreams

I am working on a Bible Study on the book of Exodus- a Bible study I started over four years ago. It’s a great, in-depth study and has 20 chapters- one per week. For those who may be mathematically challenged, that means it has taken me more than twice the amount of time to do than it should have. (Maybe even three times more- I don’t have my scientific calculator with me at the moment.)

However, when I started it, it was during a really rough patch in my life (a rough patch that has lingered for far too long- at least 3 times longer than it should have) and I saw this study as a metaphor- I would study about the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt as I hoped for an Exodus from my rough patch so that I could also see the land flowing with (breast) milk and honey (colored poop).

So I worked on it a bit but, truth be told, I was having a really tough time focusing on anything and, though I have usually grown stronger in my faith when faced with trials, I must admit that I was having a difficult time seeing anything positive through the fog.

Since then, I’ve worked on this study off and on through the various ups and downs I’ve faced in the last four years. Each time I started, I was looking for my path through the desert, and each time some Canaanite, Jebusite, Parasite, and/or pregnancy derailed me.

Well, I have once again picked up where I left off and am committed to finishing it this time. I’d like to say that I’ll be finishing one chapter per week like I’m supposed to, but hey, by my calculations, taking the Israelites route means I still have 37 more years before I need to really worry about it.

It really has felt like I’ve been wandering around in a desert for a while- there have been various trials and tribulations, but there have also been a few oases along the way, as well. In the last 8 months I’ve had the most precious baby girl (who actually lets me sleep at night!!), had my amazingly smart boy turn two (he wakes up more during the night than the baby!), wrestled with PPD and PP anxiety....again, and passed the one year anniversary of my dad’s death while passing the mrfmrfmrf year anniversary of my birth. A few months ago, I started to see glimmers of the Promised Land (after a few trips to the doctor, truth be told) and have wanted to blog about oh so many things- recipes, patterns, funny stories- but still hadn’t found my voice. Where had my words gone?

And then, after watching a commercial for Field of Dreams, I had an epiphany: WRITE IT AND THEY WILL COME.

And so, that’s what I did.

I really doubt that Kevin Costner will ever again be thanked alongside Moses for assisting in an Exodus journey, but there you go. I’ve started a new crochet group (after laying low for a loooong time after my last one), found a new women’s Bible study to attend, and have made new friends which means that I *gasp shock horrors* have been social! With actual people! IN MY HOUSE, EVEN! And the best part? I’m actually enjoying it and looking forward to more. (!!)

So, even though I’m not in the Promised Land just yet (who is?), I am very happy to no longer be wandering in the desert. I don’t know if any of you have remained since I was lost for so long, but if so…. I’m back, baby.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Out of Practice

There are a few things that one should never do if one is to be accepted out in various social circles. A few rules that civilized people always follow because they are normal, well functioning members of society. For instance, one should never make rude, crude, or socially unacceptable bodily sounds in public. (But all bets are off if you’re home…or at least in my home.) It’s best to not discuss religion or politics to avoid potential awkwardness or violent beat downs. And, you should never, ever ask a woman if she is pregnant, unless of course, you are almost pretty sure that she is.

These are all rules I’ve lived by (well, mostly…no promises on that first one) because I’ve striven to appear as a normal, well functioning member of society for a good long while now. However, due to various difficulties with pregnancies, moves, and lack-of-sleep induced insanity, I’ve become a little bit rusty on this whole “behaving in public” thing. Particularly when it comes to the words that fly out of my mouth while completely bypassing my brain.

Case in point: I finally ventured out of my hovel for a social event today for the first time in about 3 months. It was actually for a crochet and knit group and I was excited to meet new people as well as hopefully see a few familiar faces. My Mister stayed home with Little Mister and I happily brought my little SweetPea with me to assist me with getting back in the game, socially. There is never a lack of conversation when you have a cute little baby adorned with various crochet items, ya know?

Anywho, when I arrived, the one person I did know ended up leaving as I was arriving, so I was thrown into the midst of quite a few women I had never met before (or at least, if I had met them, it was many, many moons ago because I haven’t left my cave house in about 10 years). Now, even in the best of times, when I have had plenty of practice being social and interacting with other adults, being around a bunch of people I don’t know gives me butterflies and I go into, “I hope they like me!” mode. This time, being around a bunch of people I didn’t know made me into a human puppy as my mind raced, “OOOOOH! People! There’s a person! A new friend? Will she like me? What yarn is she using? OOOOOH! She has kids! Can I smell her yarn? Will you be my friend? LOOK AT MY YARN!”

So. There was this lovely lady there who was about to leave as I was arriving. She had a child around Little Mister’s age so I thought, “YAY! New friend!” When she stood up to leave, I noticed that she seemed to be expecting another baby, as well, so I thought, “YAY! Another baby SweetPea’s age! This new lady and I are going to be BFFs! When can we get together? I hope she likes me! LOOK AT HER YARN!!”

I was getting back into the Social-Interaction saddle again as I tested the waters with my first question, “How old is your child?” When she affirmed my suspicion that he was around Little Mister’s age, I gained confidence with my abilities to socialize, and, since I figured we were going to have two kids around the same age, I asked, “And I assume you have another one on the way?”

I have the hugest smile on my face since I know I’m about to make a life-long friend and we will happily crochet together while discussing potty training our toddlers and breastfeeding our newborns and how we’ll always be BFFs FOREVER. I’m looking at all the other women around us thinking, “Tough cookies, ladies. You had your chance! I’m now taken!”

So imagine the absolute mortification I felt when my new BFF replied, “No. I just haven’t lost the weight yet.”

That sound you hear? Like the air flowing out of a balloon as it flies across the room? Yeah- that’s me as all the air was sucked out of me and I was left an empty shell who wanted to curl up and die. If I felt that way, I can just imagine how that lady felt being called out, not only by me, but also in front of all those other ladies.

There are so many ways to deal with this situation. You could say, “I’m sorry!” and then curl up and die. You could cause a diversion and pinch your baby really hard so she’ll start crying and everyone’s attention would then be on this new sound and wouldn’t notice you curling up and dying. You could say, “Oh look over there!” and then run away and curl up and die.

Any of these options are preferable to what I did.

You see, when she said, “No. I just haven’t lost the weight yet,” she said it with, what I interpreted to be, a smirk. So I thought she was replying the way you would if someone noticed you chopped off 14 inches of your hair and asked, “Did you get a hair cut?” and you said, “No- it’s just playing hide and seek! Haha! Kidding! Yes, I cut my hair you silly!”

So, instead of graciously getting myself out of this social faux pas, I did what any other socially retarded person would do. I asked, "Are you kidding?"

ARE YOU KIDDING???? Really???? It’s like I wasn’t happy just having my foot resting comfortably in my mouth. I had to shove it all the way down my gullet so that my pancreas could get in on the toe munching action.

Thinking before speaking has never been one of my strong suits, but this was bad even for me! I feel terrible!! Not only am I super embarrassed that I showed all these women what a socially inept turd head I am, but I also totally embarrassed that lady and, if she’s anything like me, I probably made her cry and I feel beyond terrible about that.

You guys. I just. I mean. UUUUGHHHHH!!!!

I don’t know if I should continue going out to other social events in hopes that “practice makes perfect” and I’ll gain some much needed social awareness, or if I should just lock myself in my house for another 10 years and only emerge if there is a huge piece of duct tape securely fastened over my mouth.

For now, I think I’m just going to go over there- under that rock in the distance- and then just curl up and die. Right after I point out that man’s bald spot while farting in church.

*Note: NEVER EVER EVER EVER ask a woman if she’s pregnant! EVER!!!!!

Friday, May 10, 2013

May Day! Mayday!

I was sooo looking forward to the first week of May. My Mister had a business trip back to the States, so it was a prime opportunity for us all to go back so the fam could meet little SweetPea. I would be able to go to the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival with Lyteyz and Regina. We would then go to the southwest to celebrate Mother’s Day with our mothers and then have them babysit so we could celebrate our anniversary, as well. All in all, a perfect plan for a perfect trip.

Alas. Life is not perfect. We’re still waiting for little SweetPea’s passport which means My Mister is back in the States all by himself, visiting our friends, enjoying a full night’s sleep (well, when he gets over the jetlag), in a bed all by himself and, most importantly, drinking free refills. All while completely squandering the prime wool buying opportunity I would have totally taken advantage of at MDSW.

As for me? I’m still Down Under all by my lonesome with a toddler and a newborn and, as of this posting, am still alive to tell the tale. And so are my kids. Woohoo! Go me!

I know he knows, but just so that I can declare it publically for the whole world to see, and just in case he’s even thinking about staying just a minute longer, I MISS MY MISTER! He is a phenomenal husband and daddy and I truly feel it in my bones when he’s gone because he helps with so much around the house and with taking care of the kids and me, especially in those early days postpartum. With him gone, I have to handle by myself all of the feedings and bath times, temper tantrums (our first real tantrum happened last week- terrible twos has come early!), and midnight diaper blowouts. I have to make all the big decisions by myself, as well. Decisions like, do I really need to change the baby’s diaper if it’s just a shart? (Answer: Depends on where it falls on the Shartyness Scale. Anything over “Enough to Butter a Bread” and you should probably change it.)

Well, after My Mister left on Friday, I decided that I was not going to just let the TV babysit my kids while I wept in the corner curled up in the fetal position. I mean, after spending Saturday and Sunday like that, of course. They don’t count since it’s the weekend and I remember reading in some parenting book that all parents get the weekend off and you can wait until the Shartyness Scale reaches, “Stop Deluding Yourself- It’s Poop” before you have to change the diaper.

So on Sunday, I made a plan for the week. I was going to attack the week like a Professional Mom would. Like my mom would.

Side note: I have two under two. So did my mom- I was 14 months younger than my older brother. I have no idea how my mom did the things she did and I often wonder how it can be that I am related to her. As I’m verbalizing how overwhelmed I’m feeling and voicing my insecurities and wondering to myself, “How did my mom do it??” My Mister asks me, “Well, your mom did a good job. How did she do it?”

Dude. It does not matter that I was thinking the same thing. If a husband does not want an epic, hormonal, postpartum meltdown that will be sung about by minstrels sitting around the fire as a way to instill fear and terror into their audience, he should never compare his wife to her mother. Besides. Having two under two is probably the reason my mom went crazy. (Haha! Kidding! Kinda…)

So my plan for the week started with ordering groceries for in-store pickup which I would retrieve Monday morning after dropping off the recyclables (Cash for Cans! Yay!) and picking up the cat food at the vet’s, followed by mailing a package to my cousin whose daughter is 10 days younger than SweetPea. This is actually really cool since I am 11 days older than my cousin. I’m not sure what the odds are of that happening but it must be a good omen that everything would go perfectly since the planets were aligned and I was sending her two cute crocheted dresses which means bonus points for the day.

ANYwho… I have to order the groceries by 11pm the previous night to pick up at 9am the next morning. Sunday night rolled around and I was still in the fetal position in the corner, so I did not order the groceries.

My plan was not off to a great start.

No worries. Monday morning rolls around and, if I order by 11am, I can pick them up by 3pm, so we would have actual food in our house and Little Mister wouldn’t have to go around picking up random blobs off the floor and scarfing them down like he hadn’t eaten in a week. (For reals- he kept saying, “MMMMMM! Good!” and refused to give me what was in his mouth. I really hope it was the popcorn we had the previous day and not cat litter or something worse- like a bug.)

I decided to treat Monday as if I was going to battle work so I pried my crusty pajamas off my body and threw them in the fire wash and actually got dressed in actual clothes and even put on makeup as a way of saying, “I am making over $10 for my recyclables so I’m going to look like I earned that money!” After getting all dolled up and then reassuring my frightened Little Mister that I was indeed his mom, I logged in and started my grocery order. I then had to choose the time I wanted to pick up our food. This is when I realized things were a little off today. There was no option to pick up groceries today- only tomorrow (Tuesday) morning.

Huh.

No worries- I still had other errands to run and Lord knows there were still plenty of blobs on the floor for Little Mister to eat, so it’s all good. (See? This is why I don’t vacuum all that often. Now you know.)

On the way to the recycle center, My Mister skyped me. As we were talking, I told him that I remember seeing something about a parade later on that morning. This is when I realized that there must be something really special about today. Good thing I curled my eyelashes.

He told me, “Oh yeah- it’s a holiday today.”

I was thinking of all the important holidays where there could be a parade in May and didn’t think they celebrated Memorial Day but could it really be Memorial Day already? I mean, I know I have been in a hormonal daze lately, but could I really have misplaced an entire month? That would explain how SweetPea got so huge so quickly…. (For reals- both my babies went from newborn to Baby Huey in no time flat. I think my boobies have butter on tap instead of breast milk.)

Then My Mister said “Mayday!” I thought he was asking for help in some silly World War Two way in order to make me laugh, but no, he said it was the holiday May Day. (??)

Since we don’t celebrate that holiday in the States (do we?), I truly have no idea what it’s about but it dawned on me that it was probably the reason why I couldn’t pick up my groceries that day.

Then the wheels slowly turned in my head and the pieces started to fit together when I realized that, if it was a special enough holiday to have a parade, and special enough to prevent me from picking up my groceries, then it most likely meant that it was special enough for EVERYTHING to be closed.

Yep. The recycle center. The post office. Even the vet. All closed.

What the crap, Australia. I got out of my pajamas and was even wearing deodorant and you pull this lame-o trick on me??

Well, I thought that it wasn’t a total bust since I had the double stroller in the back of the car so we could at least go to the parade.

But, no.

I had 4 bags of recyclables sitting on top of my stroller and the parade started in 15 minutes. Not enough time for me to go home, unload all the stupid recyclables and then head back out to the stupid parade on this stupid, made up holiday. And I didn’t even get my hard-earned $10, either.

So, I went home. Unloaded the kids. Plopped them in front of the TV, and went back to my corner to curl back up into the fetal position and wash my mascara off with my tears.

See? This is why I should never get out of my pajamas. Now you know.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Free As a Caged Bird

OhMyLanta, y'all. It's a miracle! I actually got both kiddiewinks down for a nap AT THE SAME TIME.  You have no idea how rare this is. It's almost as rare as a blog post from me. I KNOW, RIGHT??

Of course this means that I actually have some very coveted time all to myself. I could use it to nap, because heaven knows how much I love to sleep, but I decided to instead use this very rare free time and spend it on myself. What to do...what to do?? Paint my nails? Bush my teeth? Use the bathroom by myself??

Seriously- it was so cute when my cat was a kitten and she would stick her tiny little paw under the bathroom door when it was closed and gently mewl letting me know she was all alone out in the big mean world. It's not so cute when it's the hand of your toddler who is crying, "MOMMY MOMMY MOMMY! DOOR CLOSED! MOOOOMMMY!" I mean, I rarely close the door since I want him to see us use "the potty" so he will learn how it's done (he's actually doing well with the whole potty thing- when he farts, or he hears a fart, he'll scream, "POOP!!" and grab his butt. That's m'boy!), but sometimes mommy just needs a few minutes all to herself or she is going to go all the way to CrazyTown this time and there is no turning back. Like the old adage says, the good thing about having kids is that you'll never be alone....the bad thing about having kids is that YOU WILL NEVER BE ALONE.

Anywho, I decided to use this rare time instead to give a little update since I've not really been responding to texts, emails, FB messages, or phone calls and I think some of my loved ones are wondering if I'm still alive. Yes, I'm alive and doing relatively well. However, I don't have much time to respond to people who are either not under the age of two, or who require a diaper change or a breastfeed (or both at the same time- although I needed Big Mister's help for that, but it worked! Yes, seriously.)

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HA! So, as I was typing that, Sweet Pea decided that I've had far too much free time (20 minutes) and I needed to attend to her right away. Considering she had spit up all over her hair and clothes, and subsequently my bed, I figured she was right. And then I noticed a yellow spot on her pajamas. It's pretty bad when you are not sure if it's a fresh yellow stain or if it's from the last time she wore them. And then you hope that you had washed them since the last time she wore them.

Anywho, my free time is now up. I'm still tired, my nails are still unpolished, I still need to use the bathroom, and I'm poorly groomed, so please don't knock on my door because I'm not going to answer. I don't care if you know that I'm home. CrazyTown is not for the faint of heart....or those with a working sense of smell.

Peace out, yo.