Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Truth be Told

I sprayed some foaming carpet cleaner on the carpet this morning which had to soak in for 3 minutes, per the instructions. I certainly wasn't going to waste a good 3 minutes of my day standing there watching it so I headed into the kitchen to sweep.

On my way out of the room, I spied Tate curiously eyeing this fun white foam that Mommy just sprayed on the carpet so I firmly told him, "Stay. Out. Of. The. Cleaner."

I set the microwave timer for 3 minutes because everytime I try to multitask household chores, something gets forgotten. A load of laundry may stay in the washer for a day or so (then need to be rewashed because it stinks), the chicken I meant to set out for supper is still frozen solid in the freezer at 5:30pm, or I misplace my phone because I can't remember which room I was last in when I was trying to text and clean at the same time.

As I was sweeping the kitchen, Tate came through and went straight for the towel that hangs on the stove door handle. Out of the corner of my eye I could see him wiping something very carefully and thoroughly.

"What ya wipin'?", I asked the child, whom I'm convinced will show up at his wedding with spaghetti sauce smeared all over his face because that is his signature look.

"I'm tryin' to wipe this cleaner off my monster truck", he said truthfully.

Which struck me as odd. He is one of my sneakiest children. Didn't he know he had just incriminated himself? He could have easily gone into another room to wipe it off. Or he could have said he spilled his water on it or something. (No, I'm not condoning either of those scenarios but they sound more like Tate).

"Mommy told you to stay out of the cleaner Tate," I reminded him, thinking of an appropriate consequence to his disobedience.

These were his exact words (including the extra "you"), "Well, my monster truck didn't hear you...what you said. He just got in there!"

Tuesday, April 27, 2010


The girls have taken to having "sleepovers" with each other and sharing one of their twin beds...

...I have taken to capturing some of these moments forever.
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Monday, April 26, 2010

Do as they Preach, Not as they Do

Last Sunday I had all 3 kids with me in big church. (David teaches the 3rd Grade boys Sunday school class, lest you think he's a heathen and just wasn't at church with us).

I am still programmed to sit on an aisle close to an exit door, just in case. The girls were sitting on either side of me and Tate was in my lap. He is programmed to fall asleep during big church.

During the course of the pastor's message, he quoted something with the word "stupid" in it. All three kids turned to me wide eyed and whispered, "We don't say stupid!".

Wednesday night, Tate and I were waiting for the girls to finish up at choir practice. Usually I will use this time to run to Target with him real quick, but this night I just wanted to sit.

He had brought along a few books for me to read while we waited and he really was behaving himself quite well. At one point, he kind of hollered out a little bit so I reminded him that we don't holler out in church. "Just like we don't run in church", I went on to explain.

"Why?" he asked.

"Because this is God's house and we shouldn't holler out or run...unless you're playing a game outside or in the gym", I added, so he wouldn't get too confused.

Next thing I know there went our Middle School pastor....running by us down the hall to go speak to his waiting students.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Injury (For Lack of a More Creative Title)

The kids (mainly the girls) will resort to almost anything to postpone their nighttime slumber. Tate sneaks out of his room as well, but he just isn't as creative with his reasons.

The girls come find us to tell us about spiders/bugs in their room. They want to give us just one more kiss. They are scared that a stranger will scale the 2 story wall outside their window and climb in. And, of course, they have somehow injured themselves and need immediate attention. This mainly consists of a tiny scratch invisible to the naked eye.

The injuries, severe or mild, annoy me the most I think. For the simple fact of how in the world does one injure themselves if they are lying down in their bed, under the covers like they are supposed to be? Obviously, there is horsing around going on for one of them to get injured.

Last night I had them all in bed before 8:00pm. I started the dishwasher, then settled into my bed with my book. David was out of town so I had at least a couple hours of uninterrupted reading. Blissful.

I had already been in the girls' room a couple times to tell them to settle down and quit jumping from bed to bed.

As I started reading, I remembered that Reese hadn't prayed for her missionaries yet. She has to pray for a set of missionaries everyday for a week to get signed off on that particular step in her AWANA book. So I called her into my room to say her prayer. Drue followed.

After she finished she lingered for a few seconds longer and Drue ran on ahead back to their room. I heard a loud crash then crying. I didn't jump up immediately because my first thought was, "I told them to stop jumping from bed to bed." Isn't that terrible?

Her crying came closer as Drue made her way into my room. I expected to see a big, purple goose egg forming on her noggin but instead, she was holding her mouth with both hands. "This isn't going to be pretty," I thought.

I gently pulled her hands away and saw her little mouth filled with blood. I told Reese to go back to her room, but not before her curiosity got the best of her and she peeked around and saw the blood. She immediately started crying too and ran off. Great. I hadn't wanted her to freak Drue out more.

I ended up calling her back in to bring us a rag for Drue to spit all her blood out onto. She came right away. I also asked her to go grab some ice for us, forgetting that I had already turned all the downstairs lights off. She ran down there anyway, turning on the lights as she went.

After I got her cleaned up and iced up, I surveyed the damage a little more closely. At first, I thought her tooth had gone straight through her top lip. Turns out, she did have a fat lip that was mangled from the inside, however just a small cut on the outside, most likely from the bed frame.

Oh yeah, and she wasn't jumping from bed to bed. She ran into the room before Reese so she could hide under Reese's bed and scare her. But on her way down to the ground, she smashed her face instead.

I wanted to cheer Drue up post haste, so we gave David a quick call so she could tell him good night. After I explained to him what happened he said, "I know something that would be good for that...a popsicle". Drue's eyes lit up at that idea and she smiled. Of course, Reese got one two and they ate them in my bed. After they finished Reese pled her case of why she felt they both needed to sleep in my bed with me.

I was reluctant about that. "If I let you sleep in my bed tonight you two are going to be banging your heads against the wall every night to get to sleep in here!". They promised, in all seriousness that they wouldn't.

So they settled in for the night. And yes, I Googled "tooth through lip" to ease my mind. Reese was still crying about it long after Drue had stopped. She said, "Whenever I see blood I cover that part on me because I think I am going to bleed."

Monday, April 19, 2010

Makes Sense

Before we headed out to take the girls to school this morning I asked Tate, "Do you need to go tee tee before we go?".

"No", was his automatic reply.

"Why not?" I asked him, expecting him to say, "Because I just went downstairs" or something to that effect.

Instead he said, "Because I'm not wiggly."

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Overheard Conversation

I was in our bedroom folding laundry (where I spend 87% of my time) and I heard this exchange take place across the hall in the girls room.

Drue: "I have some good news and some bad news. Which do you want to hear first?".

Reese: "The bad news".


Drue: "Well...there really isn't any bad news...only good news. I found your zhu zhu pet!".

Friday, April 16, 2010

The Meeting

I consider myself friendly, neighborly, etc, but still ridiculously shy at meeting new people. I made one welcome basket for the folks who moved in across the street about 7 years ago. I remember bundling up Reese in her snowsuit and walking it over there. I was completely nervous but I got the job done. We have been friendly with them ever since. We have each delivered baby gifts to each other several times now.

But I've always dreamed of being close with my neighbors. Heading over for coffee and a little chit chat. Grilling out in our backyards. Other than wave and offer a friendly, "Hi. Wwow! Little (fill in child's name) is getting so big!" we don't have a lot of contact with any of our neighbors.

We did have some neighbors move in right next door 4 years ago. I was pregnant with Tate. It was right after Christmas. I just never got over there. So in the Springtime when we all emerged from the seclusion of our homes, it was awkward seeing them out and about since I didn't go introduce myself when they first arrived. I have always felt guilty about that. And they just moved away this week. It was a weird feeling for me. We weren't close, but it felt weird to watch them pack up all their stuff and move to Oregon.

Fresh slate. I planned to start off on the right foot with the new neighbors this time. They know nothing about me. They don't know that I was rude and unwelcoming to the prior owners of their home. Thoughts of what I wanted to include in their basket occupied my mind. But I could already feel myself getting nervous. When do I take it over there? They haven't moved in yet. We've just seen a car or two in the driveway occasionally.

One day on the way home from picking up Reese, we saw a car, and an older gentleman sitting out on the front steps. The kids started shrieking halfway down the street, "The new neighbors are here!". Something told me he wasn't the homeowner. Thankfully, he was on his cell phone which was automatically excused us from ambling up the driveway and greet him.

Everyday the kids (and I) have been looking out the window to see if we can see anyone. Their excitement has gotten me excited! But I was hoping the family would wait a few more days to make their appearance since David is out of town and he is the outgoing one. And the one who doesn't sound like a complete idiot when he makes conversation with someone for the first time.

I was in the bathroom this evening when all the kids came running up and said, "The neighbors are outside! They're in their backyard! They like our dogs!".

"WHAT?!" I screeched. "Don't go out there! Wait for me!".

I could just envision them all barreling out the backyard to greet them. I couldn't even tell you if Tate was fully clothed. The first thought our neighbors would have of us is that we let our children run around outdoors half naked with no adult supervision. And I'm sure one of my kids would outright tell them, "My mommy is on the potty.".

We were late for soccer practice so I shooed them all out the front door and we made our escape. It as a teensy bit chilly tonight so I was glad I'd thought to grab my hoodie and one for Drue & Tate.

The younger two got a little restless waiting for practice to be over. Nevermind that there were three playgrounds surrounding us because practice is held in the field by Reese's school. After a few minutes, they got tired of the playground and came back to hang all over me and fight amongst themselves. They must have seen me engaging in adult conversation with one of the fellow moms and felt the need to disrupt that.

To amuse themselves, they decided to turn their hoodies backwards and have me zip them up. And run around with their hoods covering their faces.

Tate has allergies, we've just discovered this week, and has been coughing, sneezing, and rubbing his watery eyes until his meds kick in or when they wear off. The cool night air made his nose all the more runny.

As I headed back home with my sweaty, dirty, runny nosed kids, who should be sweeping out their new garage?!

There was no avoiding them this time. They kind of glanced up at us when we started up our driveway so it would have just been plain rude to keep going. I herded the kids across the yard verbalizing the following warning, "We're very dirty...." but managed to say it with a smile.

The neighbor mom smiled back and assured me, "That's ok". That is when I saw her own herd. Three tiny little girls I was about to find out were ages 4 and under. I exhaled a sigh of relief. Because surely she knew a little something about dirty, sweaty, runny nosed kids.

We made our introductions. Then departed with, "If you need anything, let us know".

And I led my 3 back across our yard by their hoods. We haven't encountered the neighbors again yet. They probably won't recognize us when we're all cleaned up. I am contemplating acting like this is our first meeting and telling them we recently had house sitters...dirty, sweaty, runny nosed house sitters.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Happy Easter



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Saturday, April 03, 2010

Dear Target:

You must know small children love erasers.

You must also know they love bunnies, chicks, and all things Springy.

So of course you would combine the two during the Easter season.

What a genius idea!

I grabbed a small satchel full and tossed it merrily into my cart. Knowing that I would be filling at least 12 of our plastic eggs with them and picturing the delight on my childrens faces as they opened each one and squealed with delight. They would fondly show each other their different erasers and trade as they saw fit.

Sure, they would lose a few along the way. But they would also store some in their craft drawer. One special one may even make it's way into their treasure box, neatly tucked away under their bed. To be pulled out on a rainy day in the future drumming up sweet memories of Easters gone by.

It was almost 11pm when I poured out all the loot onto the living room floor and began to lovingly fill their precious baskets with the things I had carefully picked out. I painstakingly peeled the Target labeled sticker off the large clear kaleidoscope bouncy balls and arranged them just so in their baskets.

Gumballs are a favorite around here these days, so I filled up 12 eggs with gumballs and set them aside.

I had saved the best for last. The Easter erasers.

I pulled them from the bag and my hands froze. A gasp escaped my lips. As I inspected them more closely, I could not believe my eyes.

Printed in bold black letters on each individual eraser was TARGET. Followed by some numbers and a reference to China.

China we can get away with. In fact, it tends to help our case at times. "Oh the Easter Bunny must have picked that up all the way in China! How special!".

But T-A-R-G-E-T?

My girls are both reading! And my little boy could probably even recognize TARGET. Being that all the letters of his entire first name are within that one word.


Are you trying to shatter the imaginations of small children across the globe? Are you also planning on outing the Tooth Fairy or airing commercials this winter showing parents stuffing the stockings hung with care?

Needless to say, I swiftly hid the erasers away for the time being. My plan in a few days is to produce the erasers after one of my many ventures to your store and present them to my offspring. Simply saying I saw them while I was out running errands and thought they might enjoy them.

Please be more careful in the future.

A disappointed loyal customer

Friday, April 02, 2010

Order Up

I'm not sure what it is about me starting supper, but all of a sudden, the kids are all starving and can't wait one minute longer to eat. They all come running even if they have been in separate rooms of the house. (Well, they are not usually in separate rooms very often, they usually follow each other from room to room in a little herd--unless two are ganging up on one and trying to keep him/her out of the room they are occupying).

It must be some sort of conditioned Pavlovian response. They hear cabinets being opened, and pans clattering, and they start salivating.

They usually come bursting into the kitchen and fling open the pantry door or start rooting through the fridge for something to eat. "Mommy what can I have?".

"Ummmmm, nothing. Perhaps supper when I'm finished making it."

"No, what can I have right now?", they continue.

"Air. Or water."

Sometimes a fit is thrown (usually from Tate who is still so skinny you can count each and every rib 30 yards away and I kind of feel bad denying him any sort of food whatsoever). Sometimes a sulky pout in defeat. Rarely do I get, "You're right Mom. I'm going to wait for the delicious meal you are preparing. Thank you for your contribution to the family".

I'm not expecting to ever get that last response. But at times I would like to dump the whole pot of noodles atop their sweet little heads and say, "If you're that you go!".

Tonight I wasn't making anything fancy. But I was putting something together nonetheless. In came the whole clan scrounging around for something to tide them over for the next unbearable 15 minutes of food prep I was going to need.

"Can I have some cereal?" Reese asked, seemingly oblivious to the chicken patties laid out on the baking sheet on the counter.

I launched into all the reasons she most certainly could not have cereal at this given time, which included literally turning her around and pointing out said patties that were about to go into the oven.

Trying to outsmart me, she tried a different angle, "Then, may I have an appetizer?".

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