Thank you so much for speeding by my van today. I particularly like how you hung out the window with your middle finger extended. I can definitely say it sparked an interesting discussion in our car.
For instance, my lovely little five year old boy wondered why you were so angry while singing the Where is Thumbkin? song. And, rightfully so. How could you be so angry when you obviously were singing about the Tall Man? We concluded that you were probably just emphasizing your love for the song.
Why else would you extend your middle finger like that?
P.S. Because of your generous spirit, I was treated to Where is Thumbkin? approximately 27 times later this afternoon. So, thanks once again!
There are days that life as a stay at home mom are rather, well, lonely.
Don't get me wrong. I am busy. Busy. Busy. Busy. From the moment that my eyes open slowly in the morning, until those same sleepy eyes drop dead in the evening (sometimes even during dinner), I am on the go.
I follow a carefully choreographed routine that pulls me through each and every day.
breakfast. dressing for school. drop off. load 1 of laundry. straighten kitchen. play. gym workout. preschool pick-up. prepare lunch. eat? load 2 of laundry. naptime for el? play. straighten a room I pick at random. shower? prepare dinner before the witching hour. prepare lessons for tutoring. elementary school pickup. tutoring session. hubby to the rescue. maybe. finish dinner. eat? homework. playtime. bathtime. bed.
In around that order. Every day. Week after week.
Seriously folks. Stay at home momdom is a wonderful blessing. And a curse.
The monotony and the loneliness of stay at home mom life is sometimes overwhelming. And yes, I do have other mommy friends that are in the same boat, and we do support and commiserate with each other, but the fact remains that they too are in the same boat. And, because of that, neither they, nor I, are able to foster a blossoming friendship. I am surviving. They are surviving. Occasionally we share the same life raft and a few laughs.
That's about it.
And, it frequently makes me wonder. Are other moms out there just as isolated? Just as all encompassing busy that just the thought of one more relationship (even if it is with someone that can relate to) puts a strain on the delicate balance of their lives? Are working moms lonely too? Do they stress about all of the things that I do, plus, a full time job?
It's enough to make you want to chop off your hair, run away to bermuda, and hope that no one recognizes you on the way.
Instead, I trudge through. I eat chocolate. I light candles. I drink a glass of wine. And I lock the door to the bathroom, and attempt a bubble bath. I call friends and remember what it feels like to be Annie. Not mom. Or wifey.
I smile at my kiddies and laugh with their laughs. I try to remember that this walking dead tired feeling is a fleeting feeling. That someday my babies will be gone, my washer will get a break, my floors will be sans any stray goldfish. And my heart will ache.
Then, I will know a different loneliness.
So, I will take each and every one of these lonely stay at home mom days.
Even though my kiddies are little, I know I don't have that many left.
I love everything about fall. The colorful crunchy leaves, the crisp evenings that require an extra blanket on my bed, and of course, all the yummy soups and stews that comfort me on a cool day make fall a particularly lovely time of the year. If I could just adjust to getting up and moving in the dark, all would be well in my world. Well, not all. (Ellerie is still potty training.) But, a lot would be well.
Alas, I digress.
So, in order to spruce up my front entry, I devised a pumpkin house number. Now, I can not take all of the credit for this. I spied one of these adorable pumpkin house numbers on another friend's porch, and then I brazenly copied it, and added my own twist. (Please forgive the picture quality. I used my cell.)
This was seriously simple, and cheap. Two fabulous qualities for an Annie craft. I used three styrofoam pumpkins that I got on after Halloween clearance last year. I painted my house numbers on the front and then used a wooden dowel (is that the right word??) to put them one on top of another. ( Currently, they are listing a little to the right, so today I may tweak the dowel rod a bit to make it a bit more stable. ) The flowers are from stems that I purchased at the Dollar Store. I took the blooms and leaves apart, rearranged them and then stuck them into some floral foam. Finally, I placed them all into the ceramic witch's feet and pumpkin that I bought at Target for 90% off last year. The result?
****** This photo was taken by a friend, Carmen, of Blink of An Eye Photography. It was a candid that captured that all encompassing, full of love feeling that I have for Ab. I also like that I was very pregnant with my other favorite girl, Ellerie. It is a favorite photo of mine. Recently, Carmen was asked by Chic Mom magazine to use the photo for its online cover. I was flattered and of course said yes! So, hop on by Blink of An Eye Photography or Chic Mom Magazine and check them out!
******My apologies to any male readers on this one. I have a feeling that you can not relate. This may be too much information for you and may cause unnecessary emotional scarring. Be warned!
I had my yearly OB appointment today.
Yes. That one.
And here is what gets me.
First, you are ushered back to the exam room, where inevitably a perky nurse takes your weight. Not fun! And this year, not accurate! I have proof. Both my scale and the gym scale TODAY read exactly the same weight. The OB's? 4 pounds heavier. Are they trying to induce panic attacks in the hopes of sending some poor pregnant lady into labor early? Next year, I am just making a conscious decision to not look. My whole day will be better.
Next, you are made to wait for the doc for for-ev-er. This though is not the bad part. The bad part is that you are made to wait for the doc sans bottoms. Yes, ladies. You know I am right. You sit. And, you wait. And your bottom is just naked and flapping in the wind. (If there were wind, but there is not, so I guess I digress.) The only covering the nurse gives you is a flimsy paper blanket about the thickness of a poor coffee filter. If my kids were there (Which they weren't. Thank you lord!), I wouldn't even have let them color on that blanket with markers, because it was so thin, inevitably a rainbow of color would bleed through it.
Finally, during the exam, when you are positioned precariously in stirrups with your nether areas exposed for the world (ok. ok. - the doctor! Forgive my exaggeration.) to see, the said happy doc begins to shoot the breeze. Yes, that's right. Doc makes small talk and asks about your vacation and your summer and, well, whatever. Now, don't get me wrong. I am all about a caring and concerned physician, but talking while your legs are spread and your privates are on show? That is just something that I can not do.
After the insanity of Ellerie and the epi-pen last week, kitchen remodeling, and hubby's football schedule, I am pooped.
And it's Monday.
Not a good combination.
I need a real coffee ( Did I mention that hubby broke the coffee pot? I loved, loved, loved that coffee pot. I am currently in mourning sipping my instant coffee. Yuck!), a dose of therapy, and maybe a chocolate donut or four to get me through.
Onto my Not Me! therapy . . .
It is not me that is wearing a pair of noticeably crooked glasses. I would care about my appearance and realize that my outside reflects my inside. No way would I wear a pair of glasses that Ellerie twisted. When she popped the left lens out of the frame, I would have headed straight to the optometrist's office for a new pair. No way would I be so cheap as to try to manipulate the lens back into the frame and twist the frame back into submission so as to gain a few more months with glasses that make me look like one of my eyebrows is permanently raised.
It is not me that has dried macaroni and cheese, two dried green beans, and shriveled apple pieces on my dining room area rug from yesterday's meals. Iwould have trudged through my tiredness and clean up that mess no matter what. I would not have chose to snuggle with my kiddies before their bedtime instead of cleaning up the mess.
And, it was certainly not me that redirected Ellerie and her smelly diaper toward hubby instead of changing it myself. Ridiculous!
It was also not me that consumed mounds of cheese, loads of salt, and enormous portions of chocolate this weekend in order to manage my stress.
Consequently, it couldn't be me that is as bloated as say . . . a house this morning. I certainly didn't have to opt to wear my fat pants to bring the kiddies to school. Nope! Not me!
So there you have it.
It's Monday. I am drinking instant coffee, wearing broken glasses and donning fat pants.
Pretty picture? No?!
I hope this is not foreshadowing for my week to come.
********Hop on over to MckMama's to read more not me drama.
Ellerie apparently was a bit lonesome today in the gym nursery. So, when I arrived to get her, she was munching on something that a staff member had given her to calm her down.
"What are you eating you silly girl?" I asked her playfully as I picked her up.
And then I smelled it.
Ellerie is allergic to peanuts.
My heart sank and I went into mommy adrenaline mode. And, I am happy to report that with epi-pen, doctors, and much monitoring, Ellerie is just fine.
I can not say the same for her mom, however.
How can I explain how shaken I am?
In the heat of the moment, I did all the right things. I watched her vitals and when she appeared to go south, I got out that nasty needle, and I shot her beautiful, unmarred, chubby little leg. I didn't even hesitate.
So why, hours later, am I a mess?
Why as I gaze upon her sleeping little body, her curls matted against her sweaty forehead, why am I now frozen with fear? I keep repeating to myself, "She is OK," in the hopes that repeating it will help me believe it.
But, I don't believe it. Not really. I keep thinking about the what if's. Like, what if I hadn't arrived as she was chewing that cookie. What if I had been five minutes later? What if I wasn't able to administer her epi-pen? What if I didn't get her the proper medical attention in time?
It's enough to drive me insane.
For now, I will hold her close as she sleeps contentedly away. I will love all of her impish and devilish ways. And, I will appreciate that God has forever blessed me when he entrusted Ellerie to me.
An Open Letter to the Folks in Section B at Friday Night's Football Game
I heartily apologize.
Exactly what was I thinking bringing my almost 2 year old to the high school football game? I know. I know. My hubby is the coach, and we do live in the community. Naturally, we like to support him and the team, but I did not factor in the Ellerie effect.
And for that, I am sorry.
I am sorry that your view of the game was obstructed by Ellerie climbing up and down the bleacher stairs. (And me chasing her for that matter!) I am sorry that you heard, "Ellerie!" instead of some spirited game chants. I am sorry that our polite conversations were interrupted by me having to chase after my 2 year old devil. I am sure that you had some very interesting things to say, but, for the life of me, I could not concentrate. Forgive me.
Mostly though, I am sorry for the 2nd quarter incident. I am sorry that when I went after Ellerie for the 37th time, she decided that she had had enough. I am sorry that as El arched her back and grabbed my shirt in protest, I did not react quickly enough.
So it follows that I am truly sorry that I exposed my left breast to you, the fans, in Section B.
Yes, it was covered with a bra. Yes, it was an accident. Yes, I am embarrassed.
And, I am sorry, sorry, sorry.
P.S. I will not be bringing Ellerie back next week.
Looking at the clock and thinking about his impending bedtime, I answered, "Nope. Not tonight buddy. I don't want you wild and crazy at bedtime."
He instantly frowned, but then switched to a new tactic. "Well, OK, " he agreed. "But what about just a nipple?"
"A what?" I immediately replied.
"You know mom," he exaggerated as if he was stating the obvious, " . . . a nipple."
As I choked on my laugh, my mind referenced the Seinfeld episode where Elaine inadvertently sent out Christmas card pictures where she exposed her nipple. Surely, Ethan was not, in fact, referring to an actual nipple, on an actual breast? What did that have to do with chocolate (except maybe on a wild night in the confines of your bedroom)?
"E? Mommy doesn't know exactly what you mean, so could you show me?" I handed him a bit of a Hershey bar and watched for his reaction.
He grabbed the piece, said, "Sure Mom!" and then very carefully took the teeniest, tiniest bite of the edge. A nibble, if you will.
I laughed, relieved that he wasn't talking about a nipple.
I am sooooo not ready for that conversation. But, I will have to clear up the nipple/ nibble controversy before he starts school tomorrow.
Stage 3 . . . still a dream. At this rate, we will probably be complete right about the time the
kids start high school. In spite of this, I thought I would give you guys a peek and an update.
This is Stage 1 . . . BEFORE.
This area was a breakfast nook off the back of my kitchen. Hubby recessed the refrigerator into the space, framed out around it, dry-walled, and created a walk-in pantry.
This is Stage 1 . . . DURING.
This is a look into the newly painted, walk-in pantry. (The fridge is to the left, out of the picture.) Notice the specs of drywall dust floating in the picture. Seriously, construction dust is terrible!!
Another DURING . . .
This is the same view as before, but with the shelving installed by my loving hubby.
And, here's the newly formed pantry AFTER . . .
I can't believe how much storage I have now!
This is the window to the backyard within the pantry and a partial view of the back shelf.
And, a final shot of the back pantry shelf.
I love, love, love it!
So, onto Stage 2. Wall removal. Island installation. Insanity daily. Fall is coming. I am feeling like nesting. And, this is what the beginning of Stage 2 looks like.
I split my time between my super hubby and ultimate sports guy, Paul, my 3 kiddies and the rest of my daily insanity. I am a former teacher, full time mom, part time tutor to 7-12 graders, and once upon a time personal trainer. I love bacon, krispy kreme doughnuts, and cold beer (but not all at the same time). I use a sharpie marker on my grey hairs, and I paint only my first two toes when I am wearing peep toe pumps. What can I say? My life is crazy every single day, but every single day, I am blessed.
My fashionista oldest daughter, Ab, is a joy! At 10, she loves to do crafts, read, and create her own designs. We love to watch Project Runway and What Not to Wear together. She loves to put together outfits for me (and for herself), and she got a sewing machine for Christmas.
My Ethan, at 7, is a ball of energy. In his short life, he has destroyed cell phones, toilets, and a TV. He loves all sports, like his Daddy, but specifically likes the Steelers. He plays T-ball and soccer, and in the morning, he snuggles up to me and tells me that he loves me more than bacon. What could be better than that?
My curly haired devil, Ellerie, is 4 years old, and full of personality. She loves to strip down to her birthday suit and run outside in the backyard. She makes lovely artwork all over herself and my walls, and she likes to tell us that we are acting like ogres, a la Shrek. She brings constant smiles and love to our crazy crew with her sloppy wet kisses. She is a love!