Posts Tagged ‘momstuff’

Surprise visit from The Cat

May 3, 2010

The Cat was home for six very unexpected days. Unfortunately, it was for tragic reasons. There was a death on the submarine, and they came back for a memorial — and probably a morale boost. It was great to see him, even under such grisly circumstances.

In some ways we’re lucky, the deployments on his current sub are short (generally 8-10 weeks), and there is an off-crew break in between patrols. But that doesn’t make them easy. When he came home last week, I hadn’t received an email from him in 3 weeks due to mission-related communication blackouts. That’s hard. Even a couple of sentences every few days keeps me sane — well, at least a little more sane. I can make it about two weeks before the blackouts start to make me a little buggy. I’m sure people around me notice I’m a little more irritable and a lot more verbal than normal, just trying to reach out to another adult. Yes, navy life effects a lot more than just the service member and their family; all of my co-workers and teammates have to put up with the challenges and mood swings it brings on.

I’m sure this post had a point when I started, but it dissolved into a pity party and Thing 1 is up now talking to me. (Who knew four year old’s had so much to say?!) I had some notes on mortality I was going to share and how I was going to pressure The Cat on finishing our wills and other paperwork; a little on how our house will never be ready for a potential visit from my in-laws this summer; and, I thought I’d share a little love I feel for The Cat. (It really was nice to have him home.) But, any eloquent points are now lost in the mommy-netherworld, or wherever it is that all of our intelligent thoughts are chased off to.

Thing 1 is now taunting me by jumping off the furniture and commanding me to do her bidding. I guess it’s time for me to parent. I do do it occasionally; it just seems as if I put it off as much as possible. If only it could stay on the back burner for a whole day…

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When feminism rears its young, sassy head

March 10, 2010

I have cute kids. I may have mentioned it before (once or twice), but I try not to be a bore about it. Occasionally though, I just have to break out an anecdote, because it tickles me.

Thing 1, my daughter, is 4-1/2 years old, or will be in a few weeks anyway. She’s a fun-loving but moody — and very smart — girl. Just like me in other words. Well, in some ways.

Tonight, the kids were going over rhymes; rhymes about catching, being caught, being missed — it’s a recurrent theme in their play these days. I dredged up “Run, run as fast as you can. You can’t catch me I’m the gingerbread man” from somewhere in my memory. Thing 1 immediately wanted to learn it, but couldn’t quite get it. After a few attempts, I slowly repeated the first half for her.

“Run…run…as fast…as you can”

“You can’t catch me I’m the gingerbread…woman” she finished. A budding feminist. I’m so proud.

A second anecdote, for purely selfish reasons: I’d like to remember some snapshots of the little smart alec. She was having problems going to sleep tonight, and I could hear her moving around upstairs. I went up and found her in bed, with covers obviously just pulled over her head.

“Go to sleep,” I told her.
“I was,” came her far-too-sassy-not-at-all-sleepy reply.
“I love you. Stay in bed.”
“I love you too. And Mom, please don’t wake me up again.”

Sassy feminist. Gotta love her.

Food Friday: Just for you – Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate

January 29, 2010

Okay, I tried the Starbucks Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate last winter and thought it was pretty good. (Except the time they put too much chocolate in it.) I must’ve been in the minority since they pulled it. 😦

Fortunately, enterprising souls can still have their chocolate sweet, hot and salty. Savory Sweet Life has a post on this with some yummy-nummy photos. It looks good, but I’m kind of lazy, so here’s my take on it when you just don’t have time to do it up right.

I start with the Swiss Miss Indulgent Collection Dark Chocolate Sensations. Mix with a bit of Coffee Mate Toffee Nut creamer. Add caramel sauce (anything you like in a squeeze bottle is easy). Then add boiling water. Stir well. Top with whipped cream and a bit of sea salt. And, just to make pretty (and that much sweeter), add a little drizzle of caramel on the whipped cream.

To make it perfect, find somewhere to hide from your children and enjoy. Or make them some hot chocolate with marshmallows and spend some time together. Good times!

Memory

July 21, 2008

So, it turns out Thing 1 really was checking up on me. Every night now she asks me what I’m going to do downstairs while she’s sleeping. Usually I give her one to three things on my to-do list: cleaning, relaxing, sewing, whatever. She repeats them back to me, perfectly. Then, the next morning, she asks me if I did each of them. She’s too little to see the dishes in the sink, so I can say yes. After all, in my world when The Cat’s gone getting the dishes to the sink counts as cleaning.

She’s not yet three, but I can’t believe how good her memory is. In fact, I try to avoid playing Memory with her anymore and stick to Candyland. I was tired of getting beat. It was so sad to see my four pairs to her eight game after game. I suppose I could’ve put more pairs out, but somehow I don’t think it would work out in my favor.

The thing is, I used to have a good memory. It’s the mommy thing that killed it. But I feel like I’m being a sore loser when I point out that she’s the reason I lose. Plus, the guilt trips don’t work that well at this age. Maybe in a few years…

I miss my memory, and I’d like it back, but at least I can take comfort in my daughter’s good memory. In fact, I plan on taking more than comfort, I’ll be taking advantage of it soon. I’m going to start giving her my to do list every morning. Then she can remind me what it was I was supposed to be doing. It’s not all bad for her either. I’ll have to get her a cell phone. That’s what every three year old wants, right? I just hope the preschool teachers don’t turn it off. I might forget to pick her up.

You cleaning, Mom?

July 15, 2008

As I leave Thing 1’s room at bedtime, this is how our exchange goes these days:

T1: “Will you leave my door open a crack, Mom?”

Momma: “Yes, dear.”

T1: “Where will you be? Will you be downstairs, Mom?”

Momma: “Yes, honey.”

T1: “What will you be doing? You cleaning, Mom?”

Momma: “Yes, sweetie. Good night.”

I really was planning on it. After all, the movers come in 2 weeks, the Cat is out to sea, and naps and bedtime is the only time I get to go through things without little paws pawing at my clean and dirty piles. But yet, somehow, I come across this:

http://grosgrainfabulous.blogspot.com/2008/07/piata-pinafore-giveaway.html

Don’t ask how. Just know that I got on the internet with the best of intentions to look up something move related. The time I spent looking at this blog, however, was not move related. In fact, it made me want to unpack my sewing machines (ha, as if they’re packed yet!) and work from an inspired place. Her stuff (and her daughter) is beautiful and makes me feel…slow. I couldn’t sew one dress in a weekend, much less three. Plus, my attempt at making a dress for Thing 1 without a pattern didn’t turn out as well as I would’ve liked:

blue dress

blue dress

Not bad, but rather boring. Plus, I was aiming for size 2 and it’s about a size 4 with a 18 month neckhole. We’ll see what happens with it. Perhaps if I keep checking back and being inspired by Kathleen’s blog maybe I’ll learn something. After all, my next dress attempt turned out a little better, even though I started with (and then deviated from) a pattern.

Spring dress

  (It looks better in person. Really.)

Of course, with the move it’s going to be awhile before I get time for that. Maybe I’ll just win some of the dresses she gives away on her blog. I think that’s the best solution. Especially since, for now, I’ve got to get back to cleaning. Because tonight Thing 1 asked me what cleaning I was going to do. I think she might be planning on checking up on me.

There’s a reason military families get health care

June 23, 2008

Last week was not good for me. It started going downhill Monday around lunch, with a sore throat. By Wednesday I was in the doctor’s office with a strep throat infection with so much pus on my tonsils everyone wanted to come in and look at them. Then the cough started. And runny nose. By Friday night I had pinkeye in both eyes. And on Saturday, I went to the doctor’s with laryngitis. The laryngitis was probably the most difficult to deal with, since Thing 1 is in her “Why?” phase and Thing 2 is just learning what the word “no” means. At least I’d like to thing he’s learning.

It’s a good thing all of these doctor’s visits are covered by our military health care, because I blame the military for my current condition. Yes, I believe stress and anxiety brought all of this on. After all, I’m not one to get sick too often, but the last few weeks of military life have been more stress-inducing than normal. I’m used to the military treating The Cat however they want, but at the moment they are messing with my family and our future, and the fact that there is nothing I can do about it has me lying awake at night steaming. We’re supposed to leave here in 6-8 weeks, but we can’t get anything in writing so we can make our plans. I have no idea if The Cat will be around to help with the move or have time on the other end to help shop around for a house. (We’re planning on buying our first house, another stress factor.) So here I am, feeling crappy, with a trans-Pacific move upcoming at an undetermined time that I may be doing with just me and the two kids. I’m not ready for this.

The Cat, bless his heart, has been trying to get this taken care of for months, to no avail, because others just aren’t doing their jobs like they should. And now, since there’s no official word on when we’re supposed to go, The Cat’s boat will probably take him out to sea and keep him here longer. Ugh. I really don’t like to complain about the military, after all, it is our bread and butter, plus I’m as patriotic as the next guy, but I also hate it when my life gets screwed up because some paper pusher hasn’t done what they should’ve done months ago. Okay, rant done. I’m going to take all my meds now. At least they didn’t cost me anything.

The Cat came back

May 18, 2008

It has been two months since my last post. If that seems pathetic, it’s only because it is. TCITH was gone for 2-1/2 months and it was a very tough deployment for me. So bad that I tried to get an AMC flight home. You know it’s bad when I’m willing to go to the bother of trying jump through the hoops to get on a military flight with two small children by myself.

TCITH came home at the end of April. For 5 days before he came home, we (Thing 1, Thing 2 and I) were dealing with the flu. Then pink eye, a plugged milk duct that become infected, flu (TCITH this time) and pink eye again. Oh, and a yeast infection from the antibiotics for the milk duct infection. Yeah, it was a fun three weeks. But at least he’s home. I’ve been able to get some work done, to get out without kids for an hour or two, and even consider making social plans. Not feeling quite so pathetic now. It’s good to have the Cat back.

Trading guilts

March 18, 2008

It’s after 10 a.m., and I’m still in my pajamas. Thing 1 is too. Thing 2 isn’t, but that’s because he had a diaper blowout on his pajamas. I need a shower. The dishwasher is waiting to be emptied. And my office/craft room is a disaster area. And all I’d really like to do is go back to bed and get some sleep.

I was up until after 2 a.m. last night. These things happen when The Cat in the Hat isn’t here to drag me to bed. Actually, I usually drag him to bed, because he’s fallen asleep on the couch waiting for me. He looks so uncomfortable sleeping there, I give up on what I’m doing and head to bed with him in tow. But when he’s gone, the need-to-get-things-done guilt calls stronger than the must-rest-to-take-care-of-babies guilt. So, I was up late last night, but I didn’t get much done. Instead, I was researching cloth diapering.

Yes, you heard that right. I’m thinking about incorporating some cloth diapers into our routine. Why? Oh, because the piles of laundry (clean and dirty) distributed throughout my house like large gopher holes simply aren’t enough for me. I’d like to add piles that are wet and poopy.

Actually, that’s not it. It will probably be a consequence, but it’s not the force driving me to try this. Instead, it’s so I can trade big lifetime guilt and worry for small day-to-day guilt and worry.

Last night I was up worrying about landfills, poo in the groundwater, covering my kids’ bodies with chemicals, slight bottom rashes that never fully go away, and the legacy I’m leaving for my kids. Physically and psychologically. When my kids are grown, I never want to hear them say, “My parents were alright, but so backwards. They filled a landfill with my dirty diapers.” Okay, so I’ll never actually hear this, but I don’t even want to worry about hearing this. So, I’m trading in worries. I’m trading in one long lasting parenting guilt that will keep me up many nights over the next few years for a guilt that will keep me up late a few nights here and there to get the laundry done. I don’t care if it gets folded and put away. And, in the event that I take TCITH to bed because he looks uncomfortable, and the laundry doesn’t get done, I won’t sweat it. I’ll slap a disposable diaper on whoever can’t be bothered to go on the potty yet. And I’ll try not to feel too guilty about it. Why? Because I’m a middle of the road mom who doesn’t feel compelled to pick a lane and stick with it forever, consequences and inconveniences be damned. And because I think I’ll be a better mom with some sleep. And clothes. And a shower.

I’m going to go work on those last two now.