Thursday, January 31, 2008

indians and cowboys

Several of my plastic clothes hangers are in my backyard. The Indians needed them to use as bows and arrows. Because of "the bad cowboys". (me: Why are the cowboys bad?) "Because they have (whisper) bad guns and they take the Indians' land."


We have new neighbors! The family with the teenaged girl (who had no interest in babysitting and was therefore of no use to me) has moved out and a family with three little boys ages four, six and eight moved in. They are fabulous children too. I thought the only thing worse than having no little boys to play with nearby might be having little boys I didn't like living nearby. My kids are outdoors all the time now. The boys have already learned my no-shoes-in-the-house policy and Boy-Youngest just came in to use the bathroom, removed his shoes, walked eight feet to the bathroom, came out, put his shoes back on and went outdoors again.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

I am so old

I sent a text message. And received one. My 17yo babysitter showed me how. I guess I thought you had to have a fancier phone to type words. What do I know? I'm old. I was working before she was even born. Anyway, I bumped into her mom when I was at the YMCA a week ago, and asked her when to try to call for babysitting gigs. Seems like if I wait until the teens are home from school then it's 4-5pm and the last thing I can do is organize my calendar and make calls. That is when I police little boys. At least two of them, sometimes more. Then I forget. I called one girl at about 10:01pm and her father refused to give her the phone. She gave me her cell number and apologized. He was probably already in bed. The time that I'm thinking of babysitters is usually when Bug is napping, or when they're both in school, MWF mornings. And babysitters are in school. So sometimes I call and leave a message. I figure they'll check their messages as soon as school is out. Well, according to my babysitter's mom, I should text her. She says her daughter is so good at texting that she can reach in her purse and type without looking. During school of course. I used to teach. The kids were a lot younger, and cell phones weren't even popular yet, but I still know that that is a big No No for teachers. But, I did it. And she responded. And I have a babystiter. And I feel cool.


I went to Kroger today-- my Kroger, not the one that might be closer but used to be a Harris Teeter and isn't organized like a Kroger and so I can't find anything there. My Kroger, where I know the people who work there. Like the woman in the meat department who once marked off $7 from a roast because I said I only bought meat on sale. Like Lem in the produce department who won't let me give Pook and Bug brown bananas to keep them happy while I shop, but insists on throwing out the spotted ones and getting them fresh new bananas instead. Like Gloria, who noticed that Bug started school this fall and didn't shop with me much anymore. And Kenny. Who just died of a massive heart attack at age 50. He knew everyone. There were signs and handouts all over the store for information about his service. I suspect it'll be full. I signed a guest book, but I'm feeling really down about this. I probably talk to these folks at Kroger more than I talk to the people I refer to as my friends. "Who are the people in your neighborhood, the people that you meet when you're walking down the street, the people that you meet each day?"

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

clean laundry, wet laundry

My kids think I live for laundry. The skater fashion has hit the youngest of ages. This means that both boys want to wear a short sleeved shirt (covering the torso and catching most spills) over a long sleeved shirt (allowing maximum elbow and cuff to be in contact with the plate of food, the muddy ground, the whatever-little-boys-get-into). Then, because winter coats are so uninteresting, they want a sweatshirt on top of it all... after they've already spilled on the short sleeved shirt and put the arm of the long sleeved shirt in food. I can't seem to influence this. So, I was doing kid laundry today. I decided it works best to only bring part of the laundry downstairs at a time. The little socks don't get lost in the sheets or adult pants, and the sorting is simpler. I got three loads washed, dried and even folded! before Bug woke from his nap. Wet. Wet sheets. Wet pillow (don't ask me how kids do things like that) Wet underpants. Wet pants. Wet long sleeved shirt. Wet short sleeved shirt. Wet sweatshirt. Dry socks! Red, khaki, white... one load of laundry. I haven't looked yet to see if that red sweatshirt bled all over the flannel sheets.

Monday, January 28, 2008

birdseed is for the birds

Greetings. I've been wanting to share the groans and chuckles of my life for a while, and now is as good as ever. I'll gradually add background to our family, but for now I'm just going to jump right in and share.

Today was Bug's Occupational Therapy evaluation. We hadn't even started when the teenage-looking therapist got beeped by her son's daycare, saying she had to come pick him up with Pink Eye. Not a good start since she was hurried after that. The only thing she had time to suggest to me while we were there (she'll call with more) was some deep pressure activities at various times of day. The handout seems to include a lot of heavy lifting, so when I came home and saw that I still hadn't filled the bird feeders, I decided to let him help me after preschool.

He carried the new 10 lb. bag of birdseed to the backyard. He carried another 10 lb. bag of birdseed to the backyard, and then the empty tub. He cut open the bags with his scissors and we carefully poured together. "I can do it." (ok... let him do it... he's doing's just birdseed.)

The tub is full, he scoops and pours into the feeders. They overflow. I try to scoop it off the patio. (It's just birdseed... let him do it...) We get the feeders hung. He wants to play ball. I insist that he help clean up the mess. I get the plastic bags to throw out and walk to the garage. "Uh oh! Mama!" (Crap, what happened?) I come back and see ten pounds of birdseed spilled out of the tub, into the plants. (take a deep breath... he didn't mean to do it... it's just birdseed.) I get a broom and dustpan. He gets a toy sand shovel. His shoveling sends seeds flying across the patio. (take a deep breath... maybe he'll get distracted and leave...) Seeds are everywhere and all I can see is me cleaning up what I can and me pulling out ten thousand sunflower plants in a month. So I ask him to leave, to stop helping. "Mama is feeling angry now and doesn't want to yell at you." I am no longer the patient, calm, life lesson teaching, therapy providing mom. I lasted about twenty minutes. Maybe that's a start.