Conversation in the Car

New Year’s Eve

In the car on the way home from my parent’s house:

“Mom. Mom!” Bradley yelled from the backseat.

“What?” I called back.

“Can you turn the music down, please?”

“Why?! I love this song! It’s mommy’s jam,” I said, singing along.

“Please, Mom. I’m trying to watch a movie in my head,” Bradley said.

I was surprised by this response. I don’t know where this kid comes up with this stuff. So I asked the obvious questions, “What movie are you watching?”

“A vampire movie,” he said.

Hmmm…wouldn’t have guessed that one.

A couple of minutes later:

“Mom, I can’t wait to be a Dad,” Bradley said. He says this all the time. I’m pretty sure it’s because he idolizes his dad. He’s six, of course he does. He always wants to be just like his dad.

So I played along. “What would you do if you were a dad?” I ask.

He thinks for a minute.

“Mom, I would do the dishes.”

I can’t help but laugh, his dad hardly ever helps me with the dishes. So I am thrilled with this response. He is such a good kid. “That would make me so happy,” I tell him.

“I would wash the walls and make them shiny and sparkly,” he continues.

“That sounds good,” I say.

His list goes on…

I would play video games and watch tv.

I would work at John Deere, where my dad works.

I would take my kid, Collin’s age (2), to Sunny Side Day Care (that’s cute, the daycare from Toy Story 3). And I would let him sleep where ever he wants to. I would even let him sleep on the floor.”

“Wow. You’re gonna be busy,” I say. “But be a kid and have fun,” I tell him. “I’ll let you play games on the computer when you get home.”

“Okay. But, Mom. I also wish I could be Santa Claus.”

xxx

Bubbling Zombie Brains and First Steps

I read Bradley the list of Dr. Dreadfuls experiments he could make, “Bubbling brains, zombie barf, skin, or a zombie bug mixture. Which one do you want to make?”

He picked the bubbling brains.

He measured, poured, mixed, and stirred the crazy concoction. It started to fuzz and fizzle over the edges. 

“It’s ready to eat,” I told him and passed out the spoons.

“Ewww…It’s sour!”

Bradley was a little worried at first. “No, it’s not real brains. It’s just candy.”

Collin loved it.

It’s been a crazy busy day. Up early because Collin wakes up too early. Work. Visiting with family. Chasing babies. Dinner. Dishes. Laundry. It’s been a very busy day.

Now, late at night, I feel like my brain is starting to fuzz and fizzle over just like Bradley’s experiment. I’m tired. I really wanted to do his Zombie lab another night, but he has been looking forward to it since he first opened it up Christmas morning. So we had to at least do one experiment. It was fun.

AND! AND! AND!

Terri, who watches the babies during the day, called me at work.

“Elsie walked! She just took off like she has always been walking. She walked from the living room to the dining room.”

I was so excited all day. I couldn’t wait to get home to see her walk.

I bragged all day about her walking at work…and also mentioned, “Watch, when I get home, she wont do it.”

And she didn’t. It wasn’t until right before bed that she started walking. She just took off. It was so cute. (And soon I will catch her on video.)

I hope she starts walking more. She will be able to keep up with Mallie and Collin. And I have really been worried about her knees. She walks on her knees almost all of the time. She’s fast on her knees, but we have all hardwood floors. Her poor little knees are like elephant knees, all calloused and red. You know that’s got to hurt. Every night I put Aquaphor on her raw little knees.

So hopefully, she will start walking on her feet more often.

Keeping my fingers crossed. (I know she will do it eventually, I have never seen a two or three year old walking only on his or her knees. She does things when she wants.)

xxx

Mom, I Wanna Be 64

As we were sitting around the table eating an after school snack, Bradley says, “Mom, I wanna be 64.”

“64!” I replied, sounding amazed.

“Yea. You wanna know why?”

“Why?” I asked, now intrigued.

“When I’m 64 I will be tall.”

***

Later that evening.

“Mom, I wanna be 88. You wanna know why?”

“88! That’s a lot! Why do you want to be 88?” I asked.

“Because then I will be old.”

“But when you are 88, I will be really old. I probably wont even be around.”

“Where will you be?” Bradley asked very innocently. “Will you be in the Navy?”

***

Bradley’s Thanksgiving Present

Bradley came across the playground wearing his coat and stocking cap. He also had a necklace made of  noodles around his neck. He was spinning the noodle beads and I noticed his hands had blue smudges on them from the dye. 

“Mom! I made this today in school.”

I told him how nice it was and that he did a good job. He was still messing with one flowered looking noodle. “But Chris (a boy in his class, name has been changed to protect the hungry), ate part of my noodle,” Bradley pointed out.

“It’s okay. I think it is a wonderful necklace.”

“I know, Mom. Chris also eats wood chicks (a.k.a. wood chips) off the playground though, Mom.”

I never know what to say about these stories. I always get a good laugh at the things he tells me…and I wonder how his teacher does it every day, she must have a wonderful sense of humor to be in a room of twenty something kindergartners all day. I’ve been there, it’s a blast, but I have always been exhausted by the end of the day.

“Well, hunny,” I explained to Bradley, “I think he is still learning that you don’t eat those things.”

He continued playing with his necklace and we headed for home.

When we got home he took off his necklace. “This is for you, Mom. Happy Thanksgiving!” He was so happy to give me the present. And every Mom loves a noodle necklace!

And Bradley must have been in the giving mood because he also gave Terri, who watches the babies all day, a picture he made of an owl and told her Happy Thanksgiving also. What a sweetie!

As I was tucking Bradley into bed that evening he asked, “Mom, where is your necklace?”

“I had to take it off because I’m getting ready to go to bed. I put it by my purse. I will put it on tomorrow. And you know what, I’m going to wear it ALL day tomorrow.” He started to smile and I continued…

“I’m going to wear it to work. And I know everybody at work is going to love my new necklace and they are going to ask, ‘Where did you get that awesome necklace?’ and I am going to say ‘My son, Bradley, made it for me.'” His smile was getting bigger and I continued…

 “They are going to LOVE my necklace so much and say that I am the luckiest Mom in the world because you made me such a beautiful necklace.” His smile was so big and he was so proud of his present he gave me.

“I love you, Mom.” We said our good nights and I gave him hugs and kisses.

“See you in the morning.”

I was starting to turn off the light and walk out the door when he said, “Mom! Wait!”

“What?”

“When are we going to break bread?”

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

xxx

Just Go Back to Sleep!

Seriously, I want to sleep past 4 a.m. in the morning.

Why doesn’t he do this more often? (pic below) Or at least just until 6 a.m.! I don’t think that is too much to ask.

And don’t tell me to put him to bed later. Tried that. No matter what time this kid goes to bed, he is awake whenever he pleases and terrorizing everything. Can’t wait until he outgrows this stage.

Just stay asleep, kid!

****

I flew up in bed, startled by a presence in the room. It was still dark and I could hear the wind howling outside the windows, making them rattle and whistle; reminding me of how badly we need new windows. I looked around the bedroom as my eyes adjusted to the dark.

There was Collin. My pale little toddler standing by the tv, trying not to make a sound as he sorted through Brad’s change on the nightstand. He realized I was awake and stood as still as a statue, like maybe I wouldn’t see or notice him if he didn’t move or look at me.

Geesh, kid! Just go to sleep! (this is usually what goes through my head when I just don’t want to be awake at 4 a.m.)

I reached for my phone. What the heck time is it anyway? It glowed 4 a.m. When I turned back a split second later he was trying to escape, as if he was never there. Sneaky little guy.

Brad was starting to wake up a little bit. “Grab him,” I said.

He swooped down and wrapped his arms around him like a slippery fish. He knew he was caught so he snuggled in with us.

I know his tricks though. That kid will lay there, still as can be, until you doze back off. Then he will make his escape. One time he was petting my eyebrows to test if I was still asleep or not.

Brad rolled over and handed me something. “Take this.” he said.

I held something round in my hand. It was a perfect circle on the top. It was kind of sticky and moist. It looked like it might glow as I held it up to the moonlight. “What the hell is this?” I complained, still half asleep and wondering why he handed it to me.

I squinted. “Oh, it’s a corn muffin,” I mumbled and placed it on my nightstand next to my glasses and phone, like this was a normal thing to do. 

Obviously, Collin must have snuck downstairs sometime in those early hours of the morning to help himself to a snack. This kid is gonna be my gray hair; I just know it.

I slept with one eye open and alert ears the rest of the night, so if Collin did get up again, I would be able to hear him and get up with him. Just never expected him to be up at 4…but you never know with this one.

xxx

Just a Few More Bits & Pieces

I watch the kids play and they are getting so big. Bradley has a birthday in four days! I can’t believe he is going to be six. The girls will be one in less than a month! And Collin just turned two, and you can tell, he is perfecting the art of toddler temper tantrums lately.

Oh, my dear Collin. He is so cute and sweet…and ornery. He  does love helping. though. The other day at my sister’s house Elsie was crying. Collin jumped down from his chair at the dinner table and swiped Mallie’s pacifier from her mouth and stuck it in Elsie’s. He then got back up and finished eating. One less baby crying. Poor Mallie, but she didn’t seem to mind.

Collin also loves fighting with his brother. Oh, they torment each other so much. Sticking their tongues out at each other or making faces. Collin will steal Bradley’s markers when he is doing homework and take off running. It can be a regular zoo around here sometimes.

My sister and I were talking:

“Where do these boys get this orneryness? I mean, Jonas did those same things when he was little,” my sister said.

“I know, and so did Bradley,” I say. “Couldn’t be from us! They must get it from each of their Dad’s side,” and I can’t help but laugh.

“Remember that time Bradley got so mad at you for eating that cookie?”

“It was one of the greatest temper tantrums I have ever seen.”

And sweet Mallie, I can already tell she is going to be his partner in crime, like stealing pacifiers and chasing her sister. You can read more at this previous post and watch a video. It’s too funny.

The girls are starting to get too big for the sink. I’m going to start having to give them baths in the tub. But they are so cute in the sink.

Mallie’s bubble beard. She tried to eat the wash rag full of bubbles.

Mallie finally has two bottom teeth AND she took her first little baby step the other day. She holds on and walks around the furniture like a pro. It will be no time before she is walking and chasing Collin.

Below is Elsie waiting for her bath.

She is finally crawling and working on pulling herself up and standing by things. AND she is finally starting to pick up her own food with her fingers and eat. Mallie shovels it in. Elsie will sit there with her mouth open and screams until you feed her. I finally just walked away and left her with her favorite treat. She started picking it up and eating. FINALLY! I think sometimes she would prefer to have you do it. She was the same way with her bottle. She wouldn’t hold it either until I just left it on her chest. She finally quit crying and started holding her own bottle.

Elsie is also really into clapping right now. She claps when she is happy…and she claps when she is mad. Check out the video below.

They get big so quick. I just try to remember to slow down and enjoy the  little moments in this crazy, beautiful, busy life.

xxx

Maybe I’m Hearing Things

The other day I was sitting on my basement steps, where I hide out if I really need a break or a mommy time-out (every mom with small children does this, just depends if she admits it or not. Do you really think it takes that long to switch the laundry over?).  I was reading my Erma Bombeck book (she just cracks me up) and I hear a baby crying.

I thought to myself: Really?! I just put them to bed. She doesn’t normally cry this early. It sort of sounded like Elsie, who is always waking up in the night and I have no idea why…probably habit.

I waited for a few minutes. I didn’t hear Brad get up to go check, he was in his recliner watching tv. I listened for the baby to stop, but it was a persistent cry. 

Ugh. I put my book down in mid sentence and got up , annoyed because Brad didn’t get up and go check. Why is this always my job? Even if he is closer?

When I went to go upstairs, I didn’t hear a thing. I stopped at the bottom of the steps and listened. Nothing.

I could have sworn I heard a baby crying. It wasn’t the tv. It was real.

I was telling this story at work and Donna asked, “Did Brad hear it?”

“No! He doesn’t even act like he hears the REAL babies crying,” I laughed.

I have heard this before, this baby crying, which actually doesn’t sound like one of mine, but when I hear the crying I have to go check.

It’s not the neighbors, they are old and you hardly ever see them or anyone coming or going.

So where the hell is this cry coming from?!

It is just the strangest thing. Sometimes I just think I hear one of the twins crying. I’ll ask Brad to mute the tv to see if I really have to get my butt off the couch or not, because sometimes you just think you hear your kids crying.

But this cry, I know I hear it. It is persistent. Plain as day.

I’m not hearing things, but maybe I’m losing it.

I would actually believe that last statement a couple of months ago when I was sleep deprived. But I have had this happen several times before, that same cry. Drives me crazy that I can’t figure out where it is coming from. It is not very often, every couple of months or so. Strangest thing.

MAYBE I’m hearing things… MAYBE I am loosing it…  Or MAYBE there is something strange about this house…

MAYBE… 

Now it is time to turn the imagination off, because I think of too many crazy things of why I hear a strange ghost baby cry in this house.

xxx

 

 

A Sh*tty Morning

Saturday morning…

I shoved my foot in my shoe. “I really appreciate all your help this morning,” I said to Brad with a chuckle (Yes, I chuckled. It was for the sarcasm). “We make a great team.”

“I was sleeping,” he said.

***

It was a shitty morning, literally. My alarm went off and I hit the snooze button. The babies started crying in the other room. I wish they had a snooze button. I had already given them their bottles and there was nothing else to buy me ten more minutes in bed. So I dragged my butt out of bed.

I could smell it as soon as I walked into the hallway. It was so bad I was afraid to go in. I opened the door; Mallie was hanging on to the crib rails with red eyes from crying. She had brown smears on her cheeks. Her hands were covered in brown goo, and it wasn’t chocolate. Yes, my friends, it was poo.

“Oh crap!”

Collin stood next to her. “Ewww, Mum,” he held up his hand and was studying his fingers. He was covered in poo, too. He stood there with a bare butt and a diaper at his feet.

“I know, sweetie. Just don’t touch anything else. Stand still,” I said, trying to buy some time.

Elsie sat behind them. She was laughing and crying. She was covered in it also, but not as bad as the other two.

“Awww, shit,” I muttered to myself while simultaneously thinking, How am I going to get this all cleaned up?

I wish I could have seen the look on my face when I entered the room. My eyes must have been bulging and big as round as a toilet stool, which I wished the poo was in.

I ran downstairs. Brad was asleep on the couch.

“Wake up! There is shit everywhere,” I said. You could hear the kids fussing upstairs.

“I’m sleeping,” he mumbled and tried to roll over.

Nag mode set in.

“Brad, c’mon! Get up and help me. There are 3 kids up there in the crib covered in head to toe shit! Let’s double team this and get them in the tub.”

“You should have got up earlier,” he said.

Really?! You’re gonna blame me?

“You could have got up, too,” I bitched as I headed upstairs.

I looked at the clock. 6:55 a.m.

“I can’t be late for work,” I yelled over my shoulder. “And I still have to get in the shower.”

There was no time to waste. I wasn’t sure how I was going to conquer this mess, so I just dove in.

I grabbed Mallie first because she had the most crap on her. I reached for a blanket and stripped her down. There was poop on my arm. Ugh! I know I’m not going to stay clean with this job.

First off, get the crap off her face, so disgusting. And the only thing I kept worrying about is e-coli and whatever else a horrible mess like this might bring. I scrubbed hands, fingernails, toes, and everything in between.

The water was running, I didn’t want to wash her with shitty bath water, so I just let the water run and go down the drain. She was still crying and mad. She looked up at me with those big blue eyes with red rings around them and a little tear.

Finally I remembered this was probably scary for her; your mom races in, yanks you out of bed and throws you in the tub first thing in the morning.

“It’s okay, baby,” I say to her, remembering I should talk to her and sooth her. It’s not like rushing to get the dishes done, for crying out loud.

I can still hear Collin in the room, “Mum. Mum. Ewww, Mum. Ewww.”

I wrapped Mallie in a towel and delivered her to her dad. “I have two more to go,” I said and ran back upstairs. I guess I had given up on him coming upstairs to help. The least he could do is take care of them after I clean ’em up.

Elsie next. The smell was so gross. Washing off caked and smeared on poop that is starting to dry is one of the hardest thing to get clean, as most moms know, because a mess like this usually happens at least once during the baby stages… and moms always seem to get the dirty jobs. Oh, well. We get the best jobs, too, like carrying them, nursing them…

I ran the game plan in my head over and over again at a hundred miles an hour. Collin next, clean the crib. Where’s the disinfectant? Rinse the clothes, stain stick and get them in the washer. Throw me in the shower. I’ll probably have to re-stainstick the clothes when I get home.

I wrapped Elsie in a towel, tucked her under my arm like a football, and ran downstairs for the pass. Brad was still laying on the couch with Mallie in a towel. Really?! I hope she pees on you, I thought.

“C’mon! Here’s the other one. Just help me!” I stood there dumbfounded, looking for an open spot in his arms to tuck her in and take off. I’m in a hurry here.

“I can’t hold them both,” he said.

“All you have to do is get them dressed!” I sat Elsie on the floor and ran back upstairs for the next poopy monster.

Just let me get this done!

I felt guilty for leaving Elsie on the floor crying. But I had another covered in shit upstairs, and besides, her dad was right there.

Priorities. Get the shit cleaned up first. I ran to get Collin clean.

“Arms up,” I flipped the shirt up over his head.

“Eww, Mum. Eww,” is all Collin could say.

 I pictured the clock in my head, must be at least 7:20. I just may make it to work on time. I was getting good at this…and super fast. I threw Collin in the tub and scrubbed.

Ugh! How did all of this happen? What a shitty morning.

I am assuming sometime after I made the twins’ bottles Collin got up and snuck quietly out of his room. I can tell by the path of destruction that he was at the bookshelf, I had to step over “The Joy Luck Club” and an old Stephen King paperback when I was in the hallway. Then he must have went into the girls’ room and decided to hop in the crib and play with them. He was probably jumping in the crib, which he gets in trouble for… even though it is funny because the girls bounce around and laugh their pretty little heads off. I’m assuming that when he was jumping with a full morning diaper that it  was so heavy it just fell off.

The rest is the mess from there.

I made it to work on time…with a few minutes to spare!

Damn, I’m good. And it’s a good thing they are so darn cute!

Even though it is darn near impossible to get a good picture of all of them together. Next time I will bribe them with marshmallows.

xxx

p.s. See what motherhood does to you? I can write a whole blog post about cleaning up shit. I really need to get out a little bit.

Happenings Around the House

Bradley got glasses.

Haha! Not those. The ones down below.

These. He is so cute in glasses. Of course, I’m partial because I’m his mother and think he looks cute even at his scariest moments.

Collin is sitting in a big boy chair, sort of. He is sitting half the time, the other half of the time he is on the table. “Collin, get off the table! Sit in your big boy seat,” I say every day at every meal. He will eventually catch on.

He had to give the high chair up to the babies.

And the girls enjoy their baths in the sink.

Elsie has two teeth on the top and bottom. Mallie has no teeth yet, but she has all the hair.

Time flies by so fast. They are all getting so big!

xxx

bits & pieces

This post is just “bits & pieces” of our day. It is seconds of our day that I have captured with a picture or video. It is nothing major or big…but sometimes it is the little moments that are the most precious. Special little snapshots of time that I just don’t want to forget, like how Collin puckers up for a kiss or how cute the boys look sitting on the couch together (which ends up actually not being so cute because they are pestering the poor dog…and each other). But these are the things I want to remember, the cute, the goofy, the good, and the bad…and the driving me crazy.

The first little part I want to share is my gorgeous view. I couldn’t have done it without the sun, and…

Finally! the sun is here. It has been too dark and dreary for too long.

This is my view from my front porch. I love this tree. One day it just turned hot pink…poof!

I don’t even know what type of tree this is (not that I’m very good at naming any of them). It is pretty though.

We also had alot of fun playing with our shadows and making all kinds of crazy shapes.

We did an outside art project/experiment, which I will share our results with you at a later date.

I will leave you with a couple of videos, more “bits & pieces” of our day.

Oh, the things I put up with too early in the morning. Wouldn’t trade it for anything though. 🙂

Bradley idolizes his dad, like most 5 year old boys do. He is always asking if he can be daddy or telling me over and over again, “My dad is more awesome than the Miz.” Which means alot to his little wrestling mind, which is something they watch together on Monday nights.

And I also crack myself up. Please remember, after you watch this next video, that I am home with the kids all day long with no adult conversation. So sometimes I get a little goofy. lol

I really do crack myself up.

Just remember to enjoy all the lil’ “bits & pieces.” Time goes by way to fast.

xxx