Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Oh, yeah. I rock.

I have a few things to report today. All involving last night's bath time assembly line. ...
It was a-maz-ing. serious. Absolutely stunning. All of them have their quirks but once you figure out which one has to have what, and get everything just right... perfection. It is possible that taking my benedryl early and being utterly calm had something to do with it being fabulous. but whatever.

First was Goofy. He totally rocked the bath. He has have the whole treatment so he can be "beautiful". yeah. his words. Shampoo, conditioner, exfoliating, manly soap and tons of compliments to boost his already immense ego. Then I was drying him off and pulled out the lotion. I had to reassure him yet again that it was NOT the hot one. (still giggling over that one) Once he was sure I wasn't lying I was directed to which limbs needed more lotion to get rid of the itchies.

Second was the Little Dementor. He was great. ALL of the toys have to be in the tub, then if I have a wash rag to put over his eyes I can wash his hair but i have to wash it, then wring the rag out, wipe his face, wipe his face again, get another rag, wipe his face, then I can wash it the second time. Once his hair is clean I can have "*sigh* just one more minute" to wash his body but then he has to have "a long time" to play with the toys. When it was time for the Tiniest Supervillain to get her bath, I got the Little Dementor out and was told very firmly that his Dad would get him dressed (lol, as if it has ever been different.) I sent him on his way so I could get the tub ready and as soon as I turned my back he fell running out of the bathroom. When I told him he was ok, he actually believed me!! woo.

The Tiniest Supervillain was my biggest accomplishment of the night. The hardest part has always been washing her hair. normally she screams and screams until I give up on working with her and just get it over with. Not last night. We had a pretty good talk (well, as good as an 18 month old is capable of) about the wash rag and covering her eyes. She wasn't catching on so we tried "look up". We got it done with NO crying!! true story. Not one whimper. because I. am. awesome. I wasn't brave enough to try to wash it a second time, lol, I'm happy I got it once. Then she wanted to sink the boat again and again so I showed her how to fill a cup up and dump it on the boat. She loved it. Until she pooped in the tub. I made promises about playing in the tub tomorrow and passed her off to her Grandma so I could disinfect the tub. She proceeded to tell her Grandma that I pooped in the tub and blamed it on her.

That ended the string of baths which was totally beyond fine with me. I wasn't looking forward to a bath with offensive misfit wannabe rubber ducks. The morning shower will be just fine, thank you.

Teenage Ridiculousness and New Parent Superiority

We have a new combo today!! Well, not new for me but new for the sharing. This new and uber-fascinating combo shall be called "Teenage Ridiculousness and New Parent Superiority".

If you have teenagers, I am sure you already know that anything you do is never right, du-uh *eye roll*. Now let us throw in the new parent superiority. You know, the list of stuff you've been working on since childhood called "I'll never...".

Ahhh, yeah. I remember that list. And coincidentally, my list (you know, the one I threw out the window after my first child?) follows Thing 1's list pretty closely. Let's see... there's the I will never yell at my kids. Hahahaha, yeah, that's because she's 5 months old. Just wait. One day she will be the one filling the house with smoke from the jar of creamer she decided would be such fun to microwave. Or, she could be the one shooting bb guns at a street sign... while there is traffic behind it. Or, she could be the one setting a fire in the park drawing fire trucks and police cars by the dozen. Or, she could be the one caught stealing at the mall leading to a very embarrassing phone call for the parent. (talk about walk of shame... try being the parent walking your kid out of the store knowing everyone looking at you knows you are "that parent".) Or, she could be suspended from school for fighting. Who knows exactly what she'll be dumb enough to do? But I tell you what, she is going to do something that will make you say- what the hell were you thinking!?

My car will never be this messy. Yeah, until your car turns into a drivable diaper bag with toys and extra diapers and wipes and left over extra crunchy french fries from the time she was STARVING and HAD to stop and get drive-thru while running errands.

My house will never look like this. Woo, buddy! This one has me doubled over, clutching my side in laughter!! To understand why, you may need to see his room, I'm not sure there are words to describe it->

 Now, right now, the house is a mess and like most teenagers who really, really know how to get under their parent's skin Thing 1 actually hits a sore spot every now and then. The messy house remarks has Big Daddy looking around, freaking out and has me wanting to explain myself. But there's really nothing to explain. The house is clean except for the kitchen, and I'm working on it. Considering I have Thing 1, his girl and their baby, Thing 2 plus 2 guests, Walter, Alexander the Great, and Goofy in addition to it being Thanksgiving weekend... I think I'm doing pretty damned well.

As with all weekends, I will straighten up but I will not go all out. I need some time to relax too, I want to spend time with my children and my husband and with everyone constantly messing and not cleaning up after themselves, why should I go overboard? It's called prioritizing. So what? During the week we have a strict schedule and strict routines which include the house being "homework ready" before the kids get home. The weekend, I would much rather spend more time loving my family and re-booting for the week than cleaning (which does get done, just at a much slower pace). This is just one more "I'll never" that I hope he figures out before it's too late.

Then when his "I'll never..." list fails to achieve the desired result (because, we've all had our own list and can laugh it off) we move on to family. More specifically, my brother and his kids being here every other weekend. and... drum roll... *desired results on a platter*. Family is everything. You don't go there. I love my brother and I love his kids. I love to see them and I don't mind the extra chaos it brings, besides that, they are here every OTHER weekend. Your family is here EVERY weekend. What's the difference? Want to cut out one? Cut out both. Talk over. Then I walk into Alex's room to find poo. everywhere.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Desperate Search for Rubber Ducky

***Breaking News: At the tender age of 9, Alex is beginning to learn some hard truths.
As inconceivable as it may seem, we are in a rubber ducky recession, possibly headed to the biggest lack of rubber duckies in the history of Alex. Unfortunately, we cannot blame banks, politicians or the failing economy for this particular recession. The blame falls squarely on the shoulders of the Rubber Ducky Bandit. Now, you guys may not be aware of this dangerous criminal, but let me tell you he's there. Oh, yeah. He follows Alex around like a shadow in the night just waiting for him to be distracted so he can steal the unsuspecting Rubber Ducky and do unspeakable things such as hide him forever, never to be seen again.

Now, this is what happens in a Rubber Ducky recession, but first let me warn you that it is not pretty. This post may contain violent material not suitable for all audiences. Proceed with caution. First, what happens in a Rubber Ducky recession is shoes no longer stay on throughout the bus ride. Shoes are fun toys, ya know, suitable to replace the MIA Rubber Ducky. Then you have nothing to plop into your plate when you get done eating so you have to throw food to express your desire to leave the table(bonus if you hit someone). Bath time ceases to be awesome, it is way more fun to pull the plug over and over and over than it is to play with alternate non-rubberduckyish toys. Then, when Mama gets up in the morning expecting a lazy morning and calls the doc at 9am and gets a surprise 10 am apt, she'd much rather spend the next 30 minutes desperately searching for a duck, ANY freakin duck, and ending up with the ones hiding in corners (you know, the ones that belong on the Island of Misfit Toys) then praying just as desperately that they are good enough (HA! she knows better. but still, a girl can dream), than to get dressed herself. So then you leave for the doctor's office in your jammies, mama looking a mess in yesterday's clothes, yesterday's make up and unwashed hair (because, trust me, ducks are WAY more important.) The first thing you do when you get buckled in, child safety lock checked and door closed is wait for mom to get in her seat and settled in and hesitantly thinking this may go well then you take the offensive misfit rubber ducky wannabe and throw it at mom while she is trying to figure out how in the heck to get out of the driveway with road work crews everywhere. Then you start with the door lock- click,click,click,click all the way to the doc's office so mom's a nervous mess hoping you don't accidentally open the door and fall out. Then when she hands you a second, but no less offensive, misfit rubber duck wannabe, wait until you get to the waiting room and mom starts to chill then throw it across the room and bolt for the Christmas tree. Waiting done, you get to the exam room with a third hopeful prospect in your hand, when the nurse tries to examine you- throw it at her. Then ask for it back so you can throw it at mom.

For all these reasons and more, I am offering a $.10 reward (found a dime cleaning the living room. gotta love my brother.) for the capture of the reprehensible and elusive Rubber Ducky Bandit and the return of hundreds of missing Rubber Duckies. Ok, I'd settle for just one.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

This has been the best Thanksgiving ever. Several hours ago, I may not have said so. The way the morning began, someone could have shouted "LET THE WILD RUMPUS START!!!" with comparable results. There was chaos in the kitchen and mayhem in the basement. Woo, buddy, we had a mutiny on our hands.

Then once we (*Big Daddy*) got the kitchen under control we captured the heathens and sat down for a movie. Where The Wild Things Are. Fitting, huh? That was the turning point in the whole day. During the movie I got a lovely surprise- my brother (Prince Charming) and sister (Baby Girl) came to visit!!! While I didn't get to spend much time with my brother i did get some very nice quality time with my sister. *love you, baby girl*

During dinner I started thinking about how things have changed from year to year and how the kids are growing. Goofy decided he was a big boy this year and he could eat the corn ON the cob because he's big like that. A few minutes of watching him "eat" the corn Big Daddy asked Goofy if he wanted him to cut the corn off the cob for him. Goofy says "no, see? I'm big. See my tooth mark?" Daddy started laughing and said "you ate ONE kernel!" Then Alex, my picky one, decided this year he so does too like cranberry sauce and kept stealing it off my plate. He ended up eating like 4 helpings and that's not counting what the other kids snuck onto his plate. Walter seems more interested in traditions and the true meaning of holidays this year.

After a wonderful dinner, we watched another movie together- 17 again. Another lovely movie that got me thinking of all the things I am thankful for. In Where the Wild Things Are, I could see each one of my amazing children and was reminded yet again why I adore each and every one of them. Then with 17 again, I started remembering the day I met my husband. Ahhh, I love that man. But we'll save that story for another day. The point here is I have been blessed and I am thankful and today, though not fancy or Norman Rockwell worthy, was the perfect Thanksgiving.

Count Your Blessings: Act 2

Since this is Thanksgiving week, and tomorrow is Thanksgiving, I am going to continue to count my blessings.

1. I am thankful for my husband, because, well, just because I love him.

2. I am thankful for marriage because that means he's stuck with me for life. "til death do us part," ya know. (Which he is smart enough to never mention again after I told him how it could be arranged.)

3. I am thankful for our children because thanks to them, we will never get divorced because neither one of us want full custody. Of any of them. Except Alex. Alex is mine. Big Daddy wants Goofy. As for the rest...

4. I am thankful for my mother in law because she does dishes and takes the trash out- both of which I hate. (I use the i'm-a-girl-card for all things involving bugs and taking trash outside)

5. I am thankful I have all boys because it allows me to use the I'm-a-girl-card with no guilt.

6. I am thankful for because she taught me I could clean my shower in the time it takes my conditioner to work it's magic. (Anything that will give me more time to goof off with my brats and still *look* like housewife of the year... heck, yeah!)

7. I am thankful for equate extra strength medicated body lotion *compare to Gold Bond extra strength medicated body lotion* because of it's multiplicity of functions. Not only does it moisturize, soothe, protect... it ALSO... sends me rolling on the floor laughing over the flappity, flaptastic comedy my youngest puts on the the music of "it burns, it burns!", it can also clear your sinuses, melt your skin (or feel like it, anyway), perform the same role as icy hot and the smell can repel cats *especially beneficial when you are trying to read or type*, children, and husbands*for when you're just too tired*. (Thanks stark. raving. mad. mommy. for the suggestion. although, she recommended aquafor which was $9 more than this one and promised the same results... maybe I should pay the extra $9... wonder if I can smell it before I buy it...?)

8. I am thankful for that little red button on my cell phone. And the cell phone's reputation for losing service due to it's high mobility. *oops, disconnected. idk what happened* um, related question... am I the only person who gets ridiculous calls from ridiculous people at ridiculous hours?

9. I am thankful for the silence feature on my phone :) anti-social, I know. it's ok, I like being anti-social.

10. I am thankful for late dark mornings and early dark nights in the winter because I can trick most of my kids into going to bed a little earlier and sleeping a lot later. (as for the rest of them, why does the school think it's such a great idea to teach them to tell time? not cool, school. not cool.)

Count Your Blessings

Ok, this has been a rough morning because, well, it's Monday. Mondays are always rough. Especially following the monthly Sunday night WWE PPV, because Mama didn't get ANYTHING done the night before. Of course getting a phone call from other parents at 6:47 AM does not help. Seriously, why would anyone, especially anyone who has known me for 9+ years, think it would be a good idea to call before 9:30? I'm either sleeping or on the edge of a meltdown from getting kids ready for school. PLUS you run the risk that I haven't had my coffee yet and that almost never has a favorable outcome. To call me that early someone better be broken, bleeding, missing, in danger or involved in some sort of property damage. But anyway, that's not the point, exactly. The point is, I am determined that the circumstances of my morning will not set the tone for the day. I am going to count my blessings, and what better time for it? It's THANKSGIVING week!!! I'm pretty sure it's this week. Yes. yes, it is. OK and so....
  • I am thankful for my calendar because it tells me what's going on.
  • I am thankful for my cell phone because among many, many other functions it tells me what today is.
  • I am thankful that God blessed us with coffee, because honestly, how else would we survive our days?
  • I am thankful for concerta because even though it doesn't do crap for helping in the morning, by afternoon I have a somewhat good kid.
  • I am thankful for Power Rangers Samurai because it gives me computer time.
  • I am thankful for my computer because it gives me someone other than my delightful 5 year old to talk to.
  • I am thankful God gave my 5 year old the ability to speak, otherwise I would miss out on conversations such as this one; "___ and ___ are MARRIED!? does that mean they kiss on the mouth!? ew!" followed by the same child eating his boogers. (like he's doing now. uhg.)
  • I am thankful for the thermostat because it gives *someone* the ability to sneak the heat up a few degrees. (come on, who ever thought 70 was an acceptable setting?)
  • I am, again, thankful for my cell phone because it allows me to never miss a status update from my children such as "bored. hmu.". lol, bored? really? well... but that answer has gotten me deleted from said child's friend's list on more than one occasion. But don't worry, he forgets to log out pretty regularly so I always friend myself back. until the next "bored".

  • I am thankful that my kids have facebook because their friends have facebook and so I friend alot of their friends and keep up on what's going on with who. Oh, and by the way, did you know they start talking about "bi-sexual" in 5th grade!? or that most teens don't care that other teens' parents read their stats and will post some really outrageous things that you never believed they'd ever in their lives think about doing!? they do. really.
  • And finally, I am thankful for Mickey Mouse Club House because I get a shower :)

Listen Up.

Do you ever just want to punch your kids (or pseudo-offspring that somehow find your house and keep coming back) in the face for not listening? (Not that I'm advocating for child abuse, but I think I might be getting there if it works.) I'm not talking about- "Goofy, get dressed. Goofy, get your clothes on. Goofy, why can't you listen!?" or "ALEX!! STOP LICKING ME!!!" -type listening problems. I'm talking, "Yes, you do need school. No, it's not stupid. You WILL need it, it is not irrelevant." and "You do not need to be having sex right now. Babies may look fun, but they so are not. They have a dark side. Seriously." and "Are you stupid!? Why would you ever think it would EVER be ok to drive under the influence!? No, you were NOT "fine", dummy." and "Smoking is bad for you." and "They have a legal age limit for alcohol FOR A REASON!" Then no matter how many times you say, "I've been there, you don't want to go down that road," they refuse to listen and go and do it anyway. Just for it to end up being a road they didn't want to take, or even worse, they don't even see how their decisions got them to where they are.

As far as the smoking, which got me started today, I am not allowing this particular child to smoke anywhere around me or in my yard- go across the street and "enjoy" your smoke in the cold rain. And heck, no, i'm not giving you a cigarette. Get out of here. You want a cigarette, go ask your mama. If she gives it to you, that's her business but you still will not be smoking here. But, sigh, I remember people trying to warn me. Uncle Tom warning me I'd get a smoker's cough, Dad giving me the same speech I just gave this child, Grandma not allowing me to smoke in front of her until I was almost of age (would have been of age if I hadn't freaked over what I thought was a spider bite. Now, that was scary.) And school, my cousin warning me about where dropping out of school would lead... on and on... but did I listen? Nooooo. Should I have? Of course. But can I tell these kids that and get them to LISTEN? Apparently not. Seems no matter where I've been and what I've learned on the journey, they need to see for themselves. In the mean time... do it, I dare you, I WILL find out- I always do, then see what happens.

Rule #2: Think First

You know, it really sucks that as special needs mommies, or mommies in general, we have to think about the consequences of our actions before we react. We cannot be angry and just let the blinding rage choose the course of action for us, because we are not the only ones to pay for our rash actions. Every decision affects our kids to some extent. Not that the consequences altered my intentions of beating Alex's teacher's @$$ in any way, just meant I had to think of ways to minimize the consequences for my children instead of letting the rage reign. Making mental notes of who I was going to call to get which kids, who was fixing what for supper, how long I had to make phone calls before I was arrested and 12 hr hold vs spending money on bail (can you say ... vacay!), and how long it would take to get Alex re-enrolled at his old school. Which totally changes my intent from a "rash action" to a "decisive action".
Please, do.

Luckily, even though I had the plan figured out, they had a logical explanation in the form of a science experiment gone alex-wrong for why Alex came home smelling like vinegar. in case you don't know why the smell of vinegar on my autistic son would send me into a vicious rapage I will include a link to stark. raving. mad. mommy.'s story on special needs kids and vinegar. right here

Mornings are Awesome

Ok, so, last night I lay down to read my awesome book before watching NCIS after Big Daddy went to sleep (gave up the remote) and re-set my alarm for 5:30 because I wanted a shower to start my day right. And I so am not getting a shower after 6 because everyone wants to use the clean bathroom. and trash it. Well, anyway, then The Pretty, Pretty Princess showed up w/Cruella to get the kids all riled up KNOWING IT'S A SCHOOL NIGHT!!! So the Goofy One ended up being woken up after a good nap. Perfect. Love it. Not. Finally, get him back to sleep and go to bed late. Then at 3am, Big Daddy gets up to get ready for work and hears Goofy breathing funky all the way from the living room. Me, being the "fat girl" that I am, thinks he's waking me up for food only to realize, he did not work his second job last night. Sad, I know. What's even sadder is he put the Goofy Child with the funky breathing in bed next to me to wake me up every few minutes to wake him up to breathe out his mouth and reposition him for a more unobstructed airway.

Snooze, Mama's best friend? Or worst enemy?
Then comes 5:30. Shower forgotten, I hit snooze until like 7:10. Dangit! Walter's "bouncing off the walls again oh-oh, acting like a fool again oh-oh" and decides to wake the entire house. Thanks, Walter, 'ppreciate it. Goofy Child with the funky breathing can be heard all throughout the house so I break out the only cold medicine I have- nyquil :) which unfortunately, does not have the same ingredients as adult nyquil and is, therefore, non-drowsy. Bastards. So, being half asleep Goofy spills half of it all over my best ever blanket. But whatevs. clean it up.

Then I get Alex dressed and cannot. find. his. danged. shoes. New bed, new hiding places. Then... duh! he took them off on the bus and Walter carried them in. (because the bus aide obviously does not know that Alex takes his shoes off every. single. day. or that his bus stop is in the same exact place every. single. day.) But, anyway, where could Walter have put them? Search the entire house high and low and finally find them where they USE to belong before i got a shoe rack. Of course. Because the shoe rack hasn't been there for months. *sarcasm*

****riddle me this, batman... dirty clothes go beside the laundry basket, backpacks go in the floor beside the backpack shelf, shoes go beside the shoe rack and pee goes beside the toliet... hmmm. I do not see sports scholorships in my children's future.

Rubber duck, The alpha of all decoys
Then we get out to the car, which is not as easy as it sounds considering I was trying to juggle a backpack, a coat, a rubber duck, my coffee and a greased pig. Good news- I did not spill my coffee and did not lose the slippery oinker. Woo for that, right? Until I get in the car myself, breathe a sigh of relief, say a prayer of thanksgiving for getting us that far and start the car. I have lights on... that I have no clue what they mean. So i take a pic and send it to Big Daddy then go searching for a book to explain the meanings of various lights. This car did not come with a book. sucky. So I call Big Daddy. On 2 different phones. With no answer. And i'm going through dirty word withdrawal. At this point, I NEED MY EFF WORD. Why have a work cell phone and a personal cell phone if you don't answer either? Finally get Big Daddy who's like um, what's a cauldron? It's a thing witches cook in... over a fire... a gigantic pot...? uhg! I sent a picture. He says ok, let me look at the picture. We go through all this just to find out the makers of this particular car seem to think printing the words "1 tire low pressure" is not sufficient to indicate a low tire, you need 2 lights to express the need for air. **or to confuse women drivers who have no clue what their stupid symbols have to do with the actual problem.** Who knows their motivation for ridiculousness?

Anyway, take Alex to school to come home and find the tiniest super-villain brushing her teeth with Goofy's toothbrush. in the same bathroom she dumped an entire bottle of hair gel over every surface of yesterday. including the toilet. after I cleaned it. and so I banish her forever from the bathroom *must remember to put Goofy's toothbrush in the dishwasher* and am now in hiding. I refuse to move from this exact spot until I finish my coffee and harvest my animals. So ha! check-mate, miniature power rangers from the dark dimension. Then, the rest of the day will be sunshine and roses and clean house.

My Haphazard Family

Today's post, I suppose, should describe my family so you have a little basic information to give you an idea of what the heck I'm talking about. There are tons of people here on a regular basis so it may be a little difficult to keep up at times unless I explain.

First of all, and most important, is my husband Big Daddy. Thankfully, he is not a blog reader so his already over-sized ego won't get bigger from my description. He is in a word- awesome. I love that man. He is my biggest support and my toughest critic. He pushes me to do the best I can in everything and is there when I need a shoulder or sounding board.

Next is our oldest Thing 1. He is 17, bi-polar, He works 2 jobs to support his new family- his girl and their baby while continuing his high school career online. Something I was against from the start, and sadly, have to admit I was wrong. He is keeping up on his school work with more than passing grades while working and taking care of a baby, so- rock on, Thing 1. (who I am also thankful is not a blog reader also because of the fact that he got his air of superiority from his father as well as his own teenage-know-it-all attitude, lol) His family is here every weekend plus some until they can get a place of their own this summer after graduation.

Thing 2 is 16, ADHD. He is our biggest (and cheapest) help with the smaller kids. He is willing to babysit at a moment's notice for the price of a 32oz sprite and a bag of hot fries. Thing 2 is the sweet one. Or, more accurately, is- as long as the teenage attitude doesn't rear it's ugly head. which, luckily *knock on wood* is not often. :)

Walter, 11, is the biggest help with house work. *not always voluntarily, but whatever, it counts* He is in the 6th grade. This year is a lot of firsts for him; first year in middle school, first year in band, first year with a room of his own, first year with limited independence... so he's a happy camper most of the time. Unless I forget to give him his ADHD meds or run out. Then it sucks.

Alex, 9, is my wild one. He has ADHD/severe autism, and is therefore, totally uninhibited (love that about him). He has a few interests- TV, rubber ducks and horses. He is going to a separate school this year and seems to be adjusting well.

Ahh, then, my goofy child, 5, ADHD. He has a wild imagination (well, he IS my child, what did you expect?) and does not have a filter of any kind on his mouth. He's also bossy, stern, suspected OCD (just my thoughts. no medical involvement here.) and wildly inappropriate. (I did tell you he was my child, right?).

My mother in law also lives here (from here on out shall be re-named Mom because it's so much easier) She is a wonderful woman and great help/company (whatever I need) but comes with her own problems (AKA the little dementor(4) and the tiniest super villain(2)) every other week. ahhhh, I love those demons. And I love the fact that these particular spawns of evil attract my knight in shining armor, the prince charming of the real world- my amazing, one of a kind brother. (the little dementor and the tiniest super villain  call him "Dad"). As well as my husband's nieces; the Pretty, Pretty Princess(18) and our own slightly smaller version of Cruella de Vil(10, ADHD) who drop in whenever they feel the urge.