Wednesday, December 13, 2017

On the Precipice

Benjamin Button.


A nickname that - I can't even remember when it first emerged - but it fits you.  You're only 4 (and a half!) but we've been told that you speak like a little adult, holding conversations about matters above and beyond (like the flight patterns when we flew to California in July, explaining to Gigi that we were "over HERE (NJ) on the map, we flew to HERE (CA), and you live  HERE (TX)!"  It's because we speak to you like an adult.  When you ask (the millionth question of the day) why, say - plants need good dirt and sunshine to grow, we give you an elementary explanation of photosynthesis.

I mean - the other night at dinner, you asked what the difference was between an illustrator and an author, both words perfectly pronounced!



"HEY MOM!  HOW COME BIRDS CAN
LIVE OUTSIDE IN THE RAIN?"


"HEY MOM!  WHY DO CARS NEED GAS
TO GO?"


HEY MOM!  WHAT'S A REFLECTION?"




"HEY MOM!   WHAT'S THE
SQUARE ROOT OF 64??"







You're tenacious in your pursuit of knowledge, and some days I can see your future so clearly.

As you build and create with blocks and legos, telling me at daycare pickup that "this is a crane, and it carries this car over here, and when the car is released (yes, "RELEASED") it will roll over this bridge, here," and I just know that you're going to be an engineer.

Sometimes your affinity for "cutting" makes me think you'll be a surgeon.  (And by cutting - I mean scissors. and ANY PAPER you can get your hands on.... We have to watch where we leave important mail around the house!)
THRILLED being able to wield a (little) pumpkin saw!

But then I think you're going to be a rockstar or musician, when you jam and rock out in the car (EVERY TIME requesting "Jon Jovi" and Creedance) and singing into the late hour while in bed - anything from Justin Timberlake's Trolls hit to that catchy tune that Dwayne Johnson, demi god from Moana, belts out. (Oh yea? It's stuck in your head now? You're welcome  ;) )

Or then I know for sure, you're going to be a scientist who travels the world researching the earth's crust and all its volcanoes (because that's one of your favorite themes for questions lately.... "Is there a volcano that just ALWAYS keeps blowing up?"   .... "What happens if every volcano blows up at the same time?"   ....   "Did you know Mommy that way way way down, there's LAVA and it comes up and blows out of volcanoes?!")

Maybe - maybe one day, we'll be going to one of your NHL hockey games at Madison Square Garden!  
Because let's be honest - this will be the LAST TIME you wear a NJ Devils Jersey...
Let's Go Rangers!!!

But really, you're going to be in politics.  You've been dubbed The Mayor ever since pre-school last year at daycare, and everyone knows your name, loves you and thinks you're the funniest and funnest kid ever.

They must not have seen your tantrum this morning.... which then leads me to believe you're going to be a lawyer.  You like to rebuttal when Daddy or I give you deals or negotiations - what pants you have to wear to daycare (not sleep-pajama pants) or how much more dinner you need to eat before dessert. Your solution? "Mommy - how about I eat just one bite of THIS BREAD, and then I can have a GOOD dessert, like a yogurt pop."
just one more mango, mooooom!!


You are definitely a funny kid, and I do my best to jot down the things that make your Daddy and I just double over in laughter.  Last week when Grandma was visiting, she came downstairs after checking on you and Ms. Mack (who was crying) at bedtime.  You said to her, rolling her eyes at your sister, "Grandma. Can you imagine having to listen to this all night??"


Holy hell, child, you can test my patience as well.  But if you didn't, then you wouldn't be your mother's son - stubborn AS ALL HECK!  That stubbornness will be both detrimental and beneficial for you in life (trust me, I can attest) - as long as you know when to curb it and when to let loose, it should serve you well.

Same for those mischievous grins, you little devil - they'll probably get you out of so much future trouble.


This is your last year before kindergarten, before "Big Kid School." (During one recent ride as we took a friend, 'Tommy,' along with us to daycare, your enthusiasm for beginning your academic career was, well:
Tommy: "There's the big school!"
Button: "no. no - that's the school for big KIDS. And after that school, we go to HI-EEE SCHOOOL! and after that, we go to college! and THEN we go to work, and we make a lot of money, and we can buy whatever we want!"

(But first. You still need a few more naps!)


Next September won't be as drastic a change as for some kids (and parents), since you've been going to all-day daycare for almost four years, but it feels to me like a precipice - the real beginning of who you will become.


And I cannot wait to see!

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

What's In My Bag??

Yea, just like your favorite magazine's peek into celebrity purses...

What's in MY bag right now?!

(I mean, I laughed a few years ago that you could tell my purse belonged to a woman pregnant with number TWO: kid toys and cars along with extra clean underwear! lol)


I spy..... a rogue diaper and wipes
You know... in case you ever get stuck out somewhere and the littlest one shits herself??




I also spy.... 
a random tupperware bowl (no top!) and a crab bath squeezer.
pretty self-explanatory, no??


I spy...wipes sponsored by Saturday's grocery-store-food-sample-givers. 
mmmm..... sausage wipes...
We also want to apologize to Premio, we basically negated any profit you may have made by eating or spilling every single one of your sample cups of sweet&spicy and fetaMushroom sausage...


I spy.... 
breakfast (and raisins which stay in the purse as emergency stash against low-blood-sugar and oops-we were out shopping too long and now it's lunchtime and everyone's starving...)
and the free samples we get from the pediatrician's office that I now use as hand cream...


Mix in some half-used crumpled tissues, a random lip gloss (that I've never used), an old check stub or three... and of course my electronic extensions - cell phone and nook... 

and that's what's in my bag. 

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Love. No Matter What

so yesterday, I walked into Button's room at daycare to see him sitting next to one of the teachers - and not in a "Teacher's Pet - I'm so good" kind of way, more like, "I'm being punished, pout pout."

And when I shot a questioning look to the teacher, she tells me, "we're having a little bit of 'sad time' right now, because he hit Mya on the head with a book..."

so I squatted down in front of him, of course conscious of trying not to undermine the discipline the teacher was in the midst of administering, and said, "Button - did you tell her you were sorry?"

And he whispered, no, so I said, "ok why don't you go apologize?" and when he hesitated, I offered to go with him - strength in numbers.

But on the stroll to the "library station" (four feet away) he broke down into tears, eventually stuttering out an apology to Mya (who said, "It's ok [Button] - it didn't even hurt!")

And for some reason, I found tears threatening to pool in my eyes at Button's angst, and had to clear my throat before speaking again to him or the teacher. 

Then I realized, and said to one teacher as Button was off getting his coat from his cook, 'I think Button was embarrassed/ashamed that I was witness to him misbehaving!'


And I flashed on those articles I've read over the past few years - stories of teenage sons/daughters out partying, but brave enough to call home for a safe ride when they knew things were getting out of control, secure in their parents' love, no matter what.

And on the drive home, I was all - OMG I CAN'T WAIT TO DO THIS! YES, A PARENTING MOMENT THAT I TOTALLY FEEL PREPARED FOR AND READY TO KNOCK OUT OF THE PARK! (you take 'em where you can get 'em!)


So we got home, unpacked, took the dogs out, etc and once settled in I squatted down to his level and said, "Button - I don't like that you hit Mya with the book, and I'm upset that you didn't apologize sooner, but I still love you.  No matter what you do or say, even if I don't like what you've done or said - I will always love you."

And he said, "Ok, Mom," and gave me a hug. And then when E got home from work, Button decided to tell his dad about what happened, secure in his parents' love that while there may be times he upsets or disappoints us, we will always love him.

No matter what.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

RIGHT NOW: halfway thru November

Reading:  A Thousand Letters by Staci Hart. It was a free download and/or something suggested by BookBub.  It's ok, I just refuse to ever really give up on books. I've only done that once (mmmmmaybe twice). I'm only 40 pages from finishing this one now, then on to better books! (I've also SMASHED my GoodReads 2017 Reading Challenge of 50 books - about to finish book number 77!)

Watching: Outlander (which is about to be next on my Reading list... season three is on Starz now, I've read through book 5 - but I may start to go back and re-read... these are 1,000-page sagas that require re-reading once or twice ;)
Also, when I can get to my DVR : This Is Us (I haven't started on the current season...), Outdaughtered, and Rattled

Listening: soundtrack to La La Land... I also sing The Audition to Ms. Mack at bedtime...

Drinking: Coffee

Eating: (finished my breakfast - dunkin' sandwich - 20/30 minutes ago... snack pack - granola, cheese and apples - in about 30 minutes...)

Wearing: my can't-find-anything-to-wear go-to work uniform: skinny slacks (burgundy), collared shirt (floral) underneath a V-neck sweater (cream) and flats (brown Tory Burch)

Loving: APPLE CIDER. I had three mugs on Sunday...

Anticipating: a slew of deadlines at the end of this month at work...

Following: a first-stranger-now-friend's secondary infertility journey. She is in the midst of her first round of IVF - had 8 eggs retrieved Saturday, embabies (4!) are on day 4 and 'look great' so far!

Wondering: what the next year or so holds - E finally made up his mind (re: expansion vs move) and it looks like we'll be moving. so the search has very sloooowly started.
He'd rather spend weeks/months/years researching every little facet, finding THE PERFECT house in THE PERFECT town with THE PERFECT schools - all for THE PERFECT price. (does that exist?!?!)
and I am feeling in a little bit more of a rush - Ms. Mack and Button still share a room, and Button is very close to needing a twin (he's still in a toddler bed!) and it will get pretty crowded in there, and by the time next summer rolls around - I'd LOVE to have the backyard/land to let the kids go play in the backyard while I watch them from the kitchen and cook dinner...

Trying: to find/maintain balance... I have so many balls up in the air (plates spinning? insert your favorite euphemism here...) and I keep adding more... my book I've been writing (gave myself a 12/31/17 deadline!) and the clothes I've bought patterns for to sew (kids' christmas PJs, dress and cardigan for myself) and crochet projects (like LittleHatsBigHearts - if you crochet or knit, check it out!) and the singing mom group, and the online clothing boutique, and Thanksgiving is coming - my sister is coming down with her girls - can I get off work? And then the week after is her 30th birthday and so my mom is flying up and we'll drive to Massachusetts for the weekend...
And the week AFTER that is Ms. Mack's 2nd birthday party, must buy Minnie Mouse theme things...
yea, so.
balance...

Worrying:  about the violence and hatred in the world, and hearing of another shooting, and being out in public places and worrying at every one of them (movie theaters, places of worship, restaurants, elementary schools) about how I would escape or hide, how I would grab my kids, which way I would go, and evaluating people, judging their 'dangerousness' based on their looks...

Planning:  the Social  part of my balancing - I need this weight on my scales: a play date this Saturday, a Friendsgiving next Wednesday night, a visit from my sister and nieces, a visit and birthday celebration with my mom and sister

Contemplating: a job change... the solvency of my current job is a scary prospect, and has been for some time... I'm pretty 'high up' and would (theoretically) be one of the last ones out the door if the shit hit the fan, but it's getting cumbersome and tiring to be constantly worrying about if the next payroll or mortgage payment is covered.
2018 may hold a LOT of change for me!



Monday, November 6, 2017

As I Say, Not As I Do...

quickly, before I launch a fun "Right Now" episode - apparently now E is more set on moving than expanding our current house.

(looooong story shorter: we moved into town knowing the high school was NOT GREAT, but figured it was down the road / the town would succeed in pulling out of the NotGreatRegional high school / we weren't even PG yet, we'd worry about it later! 
But then we fell more in love with our street - a dead-end off of a dead-end! - and the neighbors, and the town, and the daycare (which is so conveniently in town!)
So then it was, ok if we can solve the high school issue - private? hope to send out of district? - then let's just expand these levels in this way, it'll add 2 bedrooms and a larger kitchen! DONE!)

But now, apparently E is leaning back solidly toward just moving... we're so envious of our friends with a huge FLAT backyard (I know, we redid part of our backyard a few years ago... but still...) and that's probably the only thing we can't really change about our house - the back is only walk-out-accessible from the basement... 

(oh wow, this is totally not quick.... anyways)
so I pulled up a house on Zillow yesterday, joking, "Hunnie I FOUND THE ONE!" for comparable price, given the area. (but it was pretty nice!)
and the first two things E says when I show him:
   1. "man, look - this kitchen has even less counter space than we do now..." (but it had an island!)
   2. "pretty small backyard" (not really, it's bigger than the section of yard we're using now!)

ANYWAYS - not that they may not have been true, but I simply said - "well how come the first things you say to a house have to be negative?"

and then he DRAMATICALLY shut my phone off (where he was looking at pictures of the house) and said, "oh god - no, we will NOT BE ABLE TO DO THIS (house hunt) if you're like THAT!"



like what?! DAFUQ?! I asked simply why he had all negative things to say, and then he flipped out - AND THEN CALLED ME IRRATIONAL/EMOTIONAL.

yea, no - eff that.   And what bugged me most about it - if the situation were reverse (if E had found a  house, and I picked it apart first thing) he would have said the same thing/had the same reaction... but I AM 'THE EMOTIONAL ONE.'


(so yesterday I skipped Button's hockey sesh and went to Joann Fabrics, got fabric to make myself a cardigan, the kids Xmas PJs, and some slouchy beanies. oh yea, I started sewing! LOL)



ANYWAYS. (Maybe I'll post the RightNow tomorrow..... this got out of hand.... lol)

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Getting loaded

and not the good-at-the-time-SO-BAD-IN-THE-MORNING kind of Saturday-night-loaded.

It's the mental load, and it's more precarious than


I read this article recently, titled The Mental Workload of a Mother and I can't help but think of it nearly every morning as I go through the load:

Ok, this project at work is due next Tuesday, which is also when the tax returns need to be filed with the State and Federal agencies.  
And the big annual cost report needs to be turned in pretty soon, crap - gotta ask coworker for the bad debt log...

Oh, and this Thursday is the first meeting of that singing group (of moms that miss music and singing) that I created, so I need to print sheet music, probably get it to them before Thursday, and get some wine and snacks....

And this Saturday is that Trunk-or-Treat with cousins, and then afterwards - was E doing his (like 4th) annual Gore-Fest with the guys? (and I wonder what movie(s) will top last year's choice - The Human Centipede... blech) And are we (me and kids) sleeping at cousin's house? 

I still need to go through all of the photos from the baby shower I photographed last Sunday... I already pared 985 pictures down to 181, but now it's time to cut more and lay out the book the customer wants...

And shit, speaking of the Trunk-or-Treat on Saturday, I need to finish the kids' costumes... Amazon prime is the key, but it's getting close to even the 2-day shipping cutoff! and I still need to actually ASSEMBLE / sew Button's costume....

and I have to remember I booked a mini-photo-session for family pictures on November 5th... after Button's ice hockey clinic that morning at 9:45, we'll have to be sure to get home and get Ms. Mack down for a nap so everyone's smiling later for the camera.... and outfits?!?!?

and I just went through those bins of 2T girl clothes, must remember there were 2 or 3 GREAT christmas dresses, so DO NOT BUY ANY MORE! 

and I need to figure out holiday pictures of the kids since I'll be doing them myself, and GOOD GOD it's November next Wednesday, so I need to GET ON THAT before I can order christmas cards and get them mailed out before New Year's Day, because I will blink and it will be 2018...

oh and my sister's 30th birthday! Mom is flying in from TX and we were going to drive up (to MA) and surprise her the first weekend in December! Except now she's kicked out her boyfriend (good news) but he was our contact for the surprise, so now what do I do??





All of that in my brain, but if I ask E when his next hockey game is, I get a blank stare, and a response of "I'm not sure, I'll have to check the schedule..."



Friday, October 20, 2017

recharging? or depleting?

an extroverted introvert?

or an introverted extrovert?


(whuck!?)



There are some nights I want to just cuddle up on the couch with the latest episode of Rattled, my most recent crochet project and a glass of Rose (or honey whiskey, as fall is supposedly around the corner...)

And then there are some nights that I just want to put on a pair of heels and go out with the girls and hold slender-stemmed martini glasses.

And usually those days and feelings don't cross - like, if I have dinner plans that night I don't feel pulled to sweats and messy hair. 


Tonight I have dinner plans with the girls, and I've spent the last three work days catching up (still not done) after a nice stretch in Texas (lakeside! drankin' berrrr and hanging with my family!) and this morning, the second morning in a row I felt the sore throat and aches, I wasn't sure I was up to a girls' night.


But sometimes I need charging - and while occasionally that charging is being alone (LOVE the nights E goes to play hockey. ha!) doing whatever I want (ok, mixed in with some laundry and organizing) sometimes I need a social charge.

You'd think I got enough of that with family in Texas - and maybe I did.

But I know this - I've never gone to a girls' night and then regretted it afterwards! (Only regretted the next morning how much we drank!)



Happy Friday!