Thursday, May 28, 2009

I like friends

You never know what life will bring, you know? Just the other night we were lying in bed and I said to Ryan, "Did you ever think when we were dating that six years from then we'd be living in Miami with a whole bunch of kids? And yeah, how did we suddenly get three kids anyway?" And as random as that is to me, I never thought we'd be living in Miami and have a huge group of amazing friends. I actually still wonder why all these people live in Miami, ready to fall off the United States and be blown away by a hurricaine, but whatever; I'm just happy they do. This picture was a goodbye party for some friends who are moving to go start residency (and buy a house - no fair!), and it was just amazing to me to realize how many great people just show up for a random day at the park.

And it makes me realize how much I love friends. And how it's so weird that all of you that are my friends from all the different times and places of my life don't all know each other. And while I'm pretty good at keeping up friendships, I still always have this feeling that I wish I could carry you all around from place to place in my pocket and keep you with me. And you could all be friends with all the other awesome people I know. I could think of nothing better than just sitting around for days with all of my friends accumulated over the years, maybe renting a bunch of cabins somewhere, just talking, laughing, reminiscing, playing games. Perfect.

I think moving around so much has taught me how much I love friends. And living far away from family how much I've had to depend on friends and be our own little family-away-from-family. We've had amazing friends everywhere we've lived. I love friends that send me random emails. I love friends that mail me a package with plastic pink flamingos for no reason other than they thought about me. I love friends that have taught me how heartwarming it is to have other people love and take a vested interest in your kids. I love friends from growing up, from the probably 17 different places I lived during college, from a summer working in Glacier National Park, from Africa, from different places I've worked, from New York, from Wisconsin, from Miami, and from all the places in between.

You all make my life happy.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Random happenings of the week

So the "electrician" came the other day. Well, actually he was supposed to come Wednesday at 10:30. Hours later he called and said it would be 3pm...then 6pm...then it's just not going to work out tonight. So then it was scheduled for 10:30am Thursday. At 10:50 he called and said he was on his way...and showed up at 2pm. Well, after all that waiting, here's the grand result:

(Excuse all the junk.)
Yep. He came, looked at it for a while, tried to figure it out, and then finally asked if I had an extension cord and just plugged the dishwasher in to another outlet. Guess that's what they're paying you the big bucks for. In a way I'm ticked off that we didn't do that ourselves 5 weeks ago, but then I'm mostly just ticked off that he didn't fix it. And he left saying he'd have to send over an electrician with equipment and stuff, which made me go then what the heck are you? And he kept saying, "At least I got your dishwasher working for you." Whatever. So Miami.

In other highlights, one night this week Ryan came home from work and mentioned that his friend and coworker, Justin wanted to go see the new Star Trek movie that night but Ryan told him he didn't think I would let him. I was a little surprised he said that, but I was like, "You can do whatever the heck you want if you help me get the kids to bed."

A few minutes later, Justin came over to bring something else for Ryan and Ryan told him, "She said I can go to the movie! I just have to help get the kids in bed first." And Justin gave sort of a surprised, "Oh! Great." as if he were just as surprised as Ryan.

I was laughing so hard! In a way I was a little embarrassed, like sheesh, I'm not your mother! You sound like a kid who has to finish his chores before he can go out and play! What are you making me out to be that even your friends seem surprised that I "let" you go do something? But then, I started feeling proud. Really proud that I actually have that kind of power over my man. And that he's so well trained. What a good little husband to check with his wife before going out with the boys! Then I actually sort of realized (and I know it sounds kind of harsh but I'm thinking more factually), I actually don't think we've ever had that experience since we've been married - Ryan asking me to go out with friends. Um, he actually hasn't really had friends to go out with since we've been married. And if he ever has done something, it's because I've arranged it. Really, he just hasn't had time. And it makes me glad that what little spare time he has had he's been home with us.

But I'll just put that little note aside and just relish the fact that I feel somewhat powerful and have such a well-trained man. :)

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Mom will be mom

My mom left early this morning, but not to be forgotten, she left us with an amusing memory last night. For those of you who know my mom and some of her nutty antics, it may be funny to you. If you don't know her, it may not be as funny. But to give you some history, here's one story that comes to mind to give you some idea about her....

Back in college I was dating this guy and he was coming with me to some family thing - the first time he was meeting my family. We were talking with a few people when my aunt mentioned that she'd almost missed her flight there because it had taken her so long to get through security. She kept setting off the metal detector and finally had to be hand-wanded by some male security guard. "And think of how embarrassed I was when he finally figured out it was the underwire in my bra that was setting it off!" she said.

"Huh," says my mom, somewhat absentmindedly, "I wonder what he would have thought of this?" as she pulls a wad of keys (and I mean a wad - like 25 keys, trinkets, rings, etc) out of her bra. My boyfriend did a huge turn-the-head-away, woah, I did not just see that move.

Yeah, I've heard of keeping a couple dollar bills in your bra before, but um....???? Maybe there are reasons that relationship didn't work out.

Or I could mention all the letters she's sent me in her life. Like on my mission, I remember opening envelopes with no writing, no explanation, just something totally random (or totally inapplicable while you're on a mission) like a newspaper article entitled, "Raw egg yolk cures acne," or "Low iron levels lead to poor math scores." Or having handwritten on the outside of an envelope as an afterthought or something, "80% of Botswana has AIDS. Don't share needles."

So, anyway, back to last night. Ryan had just returned home with a new baby:

Yes, a new 46" Sony Bravia. Our old tube tv finally totally and completely bit the dust. I told him he had until Monday night to get me a new tv before my mom left town so I could at least take a shower or something when all the kids were up. So, being the dutiful husband that he is, he obviously did not disappoint (although now I'm having - um, I think this is too big, and it's actually just going to be playing Sesame Street all day issues - so you could show some support in his favor if you want to let him keep his new toy). It was quite late though by the time he got the whole tv in and set up and what with getting over this sickness and being up fairly late for various reasons the past few nights, we were all a little exhausted. But we turned it on and the initial setup started. And then it starts scanning for channels. So we sit and wait because of course we can't go to bed until we at least see some picture on this thing.

And we wait.

And we wait some more. I guess the signal is scanning the whole universe because it ticks up about one number every 30 seconds or so while we sit and wait. And just watch the numbers go up one at a time. I'm not sure why we didn't move or go do something else while we were waiting. I guess we didn't really realize how long it would take and we were partly too excited that we might see something any second and partly too tired to move. Finally after about 20 minutes, my mom gets up and starts puttering a little. She goes over and adjusts the shutters behind the tv. She starts looking at the side of the tv a little. And then. She pushes a button. And turns the tv off.

Stunned silence. Mouths gape open slightly in disbelief. Did she just... ??what was she...??? Confused stares turn to my mother.

"Oh," she says, ever-so-innocently, " That probably wasn't very good, was it?"

Um, what????

That probably wasn't very good. Ryan turns the tv back on and of course, the setup process starts all over again. Now about 11:30 at night. And we have to wait another half hour for it to go through and find all the channels so we can see some dang picture! But we're finally letting some exasperated giggles escape as I ask, "What are you??? Two??? You just couldn't resist those shiny silver buttons???"

She really had no explanation as to what she was thinking or what came over her. I'm a little bleary-eyed today after the late night and the 5am airport run and have pulled out the diet Cokes, but oh well. At least I know she's still, um, normal.


I'm feeling a little sheepish. Today a repairman finally came to fix our dishwasher that has been broken for five weeks. (I know, it shouldn't be a big deal after almost five years of not having one before we moved here. But dang all those baby items have a lot of small parts.) Anyway, he comes in, unscrews the dishwasher, plugs something else in the outlet and says, "This outlet isn't working," then plugs the dishwasher in elsewhere to show that it works.


I felt a little silly calling the landlord and being like, "Um, here can you give this guy your credit card so he can charge you $75 to tell us the dishwasher is fine?" And by the way, now can you pay for an electrician to come...uh, sooner than later, ok? Because it's already been 5 weeks here....

Of course we'd tried all the breaker switches and everything and Ryan had even pulled the whole face off the dishwasher, looked at everything, cleaned the drains, tinkered around, and even did it a second time when a friend was over here but somehow we didn't think to just take the whole thing out and check the outlet.

I hate stuff like that.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Doom and gloom

I am sick.

I'm not sure how it's possible to have slept as much as I have over the last day and still be completely wiped out.

I'm extremely lucky my mom is around to take care of me. Well, take care of my kids, really, while I neglect everything and everyone.

I'm not sure what I'm going to do in three days when she leaves, nor can I remember how I ever did it before she came.

I'm feeling a little overwhelmed. And I'm not even the one doing all the work around here right now. I was really looking forward to when the twins were a year old. Cash seemed so content when he turned a year old, and could get around on his own and understood more of what was going on. Not these kids. They were rotten getting their molars in. They were rotten last week when they were sick. Now.... well, I've run out of excuses. They're not terrible, but they're definitely not the most content, easy-going children. Maybe they're just at the scream when we don't get what we want phase (and they want everything). And the scream every time we go to sleep phase. And scream when we wake up phase. I don't know. I would be a little more happy if there were two of them with Cash's temperament. Although, even he doesn't have an easy-going temperament anymore. Unless we're around other people. Otherwise, it's disobedient, steal everything from the babies, run away from mom stubbornness I get.

We just tried to go down to a little cafe for lunch on the street level of our building. Trendy, chic, outdoor tables, fashionable people. I was already hesitant feeling as sick as I do, and looking even more deathly. Especially knowing that all eyes are always on our group and everyone would be sure to see me blowing my nose every 5 seconds and looking like a frayed, ragged mom with too many kids. And of course, what was more was the complete messes the babies were. Someone was crying or screaming the whole time. Eating garbage off the floor, trying to attack large dogs, falling into bushes, trying to pull people's food off their tables, choking from putting too much food in their mouths, screaming and throwing tantrums when withheld from doing all of the above. And I watch other kids their age. They don't all act that way. They don't all still have the everything-must-go-in-my-mouth obsession. They can be content just watching all the people and activity. They don't all go limp and throw screaming tantrums in the middle of the sidewalk.

I know, everyone else's children probably just always seem better than your own. It just seems so out of control. And I really don't know how I ever handled these kids on my own before, so I'm starting to panic.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Momma's boys

I've been trying to capture a few pictures of these lovely little heads of hair.

And this one is me as a baby. The predecessor of the curls. And yes, it makes me pretty happy to finally have some genetic claim on my offspring. And even happier because I got my blond curls from my dad:

(Although as you can see it didn't stay that way when he was older. This is with me again as a baby.)

And mine eventually turned into this:

Then this...

And even though I love long hair, I guess I won't let theirs get quite to that point.

And on one other note, I'm realizing that besides having to plan in a little extra time everywhere for all the comments we get, it actually is really fun watching how many smiles you bring to people's faces pushing these two around:

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Still pretty sure it's not for me

Our building recently has started having a few exercise classes available. Since my mom is in town, and can help watch the kids when I go, I signed up for a month to see what I think. The first time I went the class started and I realized I'd mistakenly gone to kickboxing (I was trying to start with something more gentle since I haven't done aerobics since, oh, college??) So after surviving that, last night I tried the yoga class. I have never been a yoga person. I love pilates, but I've never been able to get into the slowness of yoga, and I've just never really done it. I think I tried a class maybe once about ten years ago and, as it all came back to me last night, I seemed to remember then, too thinking the poses were uncomfortable and having a hard time with the serious meditation part of it.

So as I made my way in last night I decided I had to be on the very edge of the group and try to hopefully make myself a little inconspicuous. I ended up next to a guy, who, luckily, looked like he'd never really done yoga before either, so we were both just lame and uncoordinated the whole way through together.

Well, then we come to the relaxation/meditation part at the end. After looking like an idiot doing all the poses, I realized - yeah, I kind of like this part where you just lay on the floor. Well, the instructor (who is some sort of foreign and has a very thick accent and really not very good english) has everyone lay on their backs and relax. She tells us to close our eyes and visualize something that makes us the most happy and to see that picture right inbetween our eyebrows. And even with our eyes closed to turn our eyes in to that picture. Then she says, "Now put your thumb to the roof of your mouth." So I oblige, but I'm thinking, hmm, that's kind of weird but, well the whole thing is kind of weird to me and what the heck do I know about yoga? And of course, I always look at everyone else the whole class to make sure I'm doing things right. So I open my eyes and look at the guy next to me, and sure enough, he also has his thumb in his mouth. But then I look over further and realize - um, how come this guy and I are the only ones in the room just laying on our backs, sucking our thumbs? So I take mine out while I'm still sort of confused looking around but try to just continue whatever we're doing.

About a minute later it dawns on me: oh my gosh, I think she said tongue. That teacher I can't understand for the life of me said "put your tongue to the roof of your mouth, not thumb! I look over at the poor guy next to me who is laying there happily sucking on his thumb in a room full of non thumb-sucking, yoga savvy women. I am busting up. That was both of us a minute ago! I wonder what everyone else was thinking? Thank heavens I had the sense to at least open my eyes and check it out! But now I'm about to burst becasue I am laughing so hard in the middle of a room in complete silence. I have the giggles so so bad, just dying that you can't understand this teacher but why in the world would we have been sucking our thumbs?! So I'm trying so hard to roll on my side so the rest of the people can't see me as tears are just rolling down my eyes... and the more I try to stop the more I'm just laughing and I can't leave because that would be even more noisy and disruptive right in the middle of meditation. So I'll think I'm getting myself under control, but then I can't help glance over at the guy still with his thumb in his mouth and the whole thing starts over again! Just then the teacher came over to put some meditation potion on my head and neck or whatever, so I really had to try hard to pull it together and hope she thought the tears were emotion from the spiritual connection I was having with my being....

Oh man. See? I never really thought yoga was for me. And if you haven't done it, you really should take it from someone who speaks english.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

You always want what you can't have

Such a strange mix of emotions in this family about this one thing:

I can't get this kid to go near it.

I can't keep these kids away from it.

And I can't get 30 seconds to myself to enjoy it.
(My mom captured this picture after she heard them banging on the door yelling trying to get in when I'd gone in to go to the bathroom. By the time she'd gotten there at least they'd taken to trying to problem solve and crawl their way in under the door.)

Honestly, I swear I'll hold it all day just to not have to deal with the mess it is just trying to go to the bathroom. If I leave the door open, I have two little babies crawling all over me, sitting on my lap, playing with the plunger, toilet brush, or whatever else they can find that that shouldn't be playing with. Then when I try to get up, I try to keep a hold of my pants with one hand while grabbing one baby and trying to shove them out the door, hoping I'll be fast enough that #2 won't realize the toilet is now open for playing (and full now, mind you because flushing at this point will undoubtedly draw more attention to it and make it look even more inviting to play with). Chances are, I still couldn't do it fast enough and #2 has noticed and is now playing in the toilet, so while I grab him and wash him off, #1 has made his way back.... You see how it goes. So I may try to close the door and listen to them bang and scream at the door and melt down into total tears. When I try to open the door after this scenario, inevitably someone sneaks past me and rushes to the toilet while I'm grabbing after the other one, and the previous scenario ensues. Or I have to physically knock them both down to get out without them managing to get in and someone hits his head or in some other way gets hurt in the process. Or alternatively, all the banging on the door and screaming draws Cash's attention, so he comes and opens the door and the same thing happens all over again.

I'm having such issues with being tired of being touched, tugged, pulled, jumped on, or grabbed at all the time, that really, is 2 minutes to myself in the bathroom too much to ask for? (Sometimes lately I've had to shove everyone off me and yell "Nobody touch me for like 5 minutes!" and go hide off in a corner by myself. Not like it actually works though.)

As a side note, the drink and pee doll is on it's way,
I read my potty book, now all that's missing is some serious motivation on my part. Neither of us is really all that bugged with diapers, can't I just deal with it before he starts kindergarten? And do you see my hesitation to actually try to increase toilet time in this house? Because of course when I attempt to potty train it's going to end up all 4 of us cramped into the bathroom and the twins trying every way they know how to get at that splashy irresistible toilet water.

Now you can see why I bought the water table.