The Bryan Kids 2014

The Bryan Kids 2014

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

I Am a Domestic Goddess...

   As a review, I stay at home with my kiddos Monday-Friday.  On the weekends, I have the pleasure of working as a labor and delivery nurse at one of the largest delivering hospitals in the country.  You know, my "break" from staying at home...Oddly enough, I am still dealing with partially dressed people, frequently whining and asking for my help to the bathroom.  In fact, by the time I clocked in on Saturday, I was more than a little concerned that if I got assigned a whiny patient,  I might threaten to put her in time out.  Somehow, I think that might be frowned upon, even if it felt right at the time.  Luckily, I can usually keep these crazy ideas of mine inside my head.  I mean, at least the women in labor have a reason to whine, unlike my children.

   So needless to say, I try to make the best of the time I have before I leave for the hospital every Saturday and Sunday.  On average, I have at least two loads of laundry and a load of dishes every single day.  If I don't stay on top of that before I leave, it makes my sleep deprived Mondays that much more fun.  I mean, who doesn't want 4 hours of sleep followed by four to five loads of laundry and two to three loads of dishes??  This past Saturday, My husband was off playing with his friends for the day.  I was up at 7 with the kids.  I had two choices...Lay in a partial coma while they watched TV, or get up and ingest large quantities of coffee and keep moving forward.  I chose the latter.

    Around 10 am, I sent this text to my husband...
Me "For your reference...I have stripped our bed, remade it, done three loads of laundry, two loads of dishes, cleaned the kitchen, sunroom, and dining room, made chicken pesto tortellini, been told by our daughter that it tastes like dog food, given our daughter breathing treatments, squeezed in a shower for myself, drawn a map of both Florida and Georgia...and all of this before noon.  You can say "Thank you for all you do for our family, you are a domestic goddess..." at any time now.
Mike "Thank You!!  You are a domestic Goddess."
Me "And of course, I still have two car seats to put together all before I can go in and do my actual "job" at the hospital for ten hours, only to get home at midnight and wake up to do it all over again.  Oh, and did I mention, all of this was completed while growing your child in my womb..." maybe I was sending him on a bit of a guilt trip.  But you know, I think they need to be reminded every now and then that the simple things they take for granted like clean sheets and underwear actually take a lot of work and effort.  I was flooded with texts from all of our friends that morning thanking me for all I do.  I think every mom deserves some recognition for the normal stuff occasionally.  Even if the recognition only comes after a guilt trip text :)  Sadly, the house still needed so much work when I left for the night.  These people that live with me sure can make a lot of extra work.

Molly and the Boy Baby...

  You know, I knew Molly wanted a sister and Colin wanted a brother.  This was no huge surprise at all.  I knew that only 50% of my children would be happy after the gender reveal, but I really had no idea how hard Molly would actually take the news.

   So the day of the ultrasound rolls around, and we discover that it is indeed a little boy that I am growing inside my uterus.  I leave my appointment, pick up Molly from school, and share the news with my sweet girl.  The conversation went something like this...

Me "Molly, guess what??  Mommy and Daddy went to the doctor today, and the doctor looked inside my tummy, and they figured out you are having a little brother."
Molly (uncontrollable sobbing, immediate onset)
Me "Awww, Molly, it's not that bad.  A little brother will be awesome.  He will be lot's of fun."
Molly (still crying)
Me "Here Molly, let's look at the pictures from the doctor.  See, here is his little face, here are his feet, and this, this is his little pee pee."
Molly (through tears)"No Mommy, that is a girl baby.  I promise.  The doctor is wrong."
Me "Actually, they are pretty sure it is a boy Molly..."
Molly (more sobbing, new onset)
Me (unsure of what to do at this point) "I'm sorry Molly, would a chocolate cupcake make things better?"
Molly (sniffling)"OK Mommy..."

   After a quick stop for a cupcake, Molly was able to continue on with her play date at the park.  I was very careful not to mention the gender again for the rest of the evening.  Well, at least until we picked up Colin.  Colin was ecstatic.  He was cheering...cue Molly crying, again.

  This pattern actually continued for a few days.  Molly in a constant state of denial, listening to my belly, and saying, "Nope Mommy, that sounds like a girl baby.  I promise."  At this point, I am grateful for the 18 + weeks we have to try and get this little girl to warm up to the idea.

     About three or four days after the ultrasound appointment, Molly and I were in Target for some errands.  As we pass the baby department, she says...
Molly "I guess we should get your baby a present Mommy..."
Me "OK Molly, what should we get for him??"
Molly "I guess he needs an outfit...and a toy..."
Me "That is very sweet of you to think of your little brother."
Molly "Your baby..."
Me "Ok, my baby...I guess we are making progress."

   She picked out a very sweet little blue and green outfit with a raccoon hat and a tiny stuffed monkey.  I was impressed, and thanked her.

Me "This is a cute little outfit.  Thank you for picking it out for the baby."
Molly (looking down at her feet) "It would be cuter if it were pink..."

   OK, so baby steps in the right direction.  I couldn't help but snicker at her response.  This little girl is hilarious.  She seems to be coming around to the idea now.  In fact, she told me she wants to help take care of my baby boy when he comes out.  I know that with time, that novelty will also wear off, but maybe it can stick around for a little while.  Her new solution is that I should have a boy baby and a girl baby...little does she know that twins might actually be enough to send me over the edge. I have tried to really sell the idea of her being the "only girl" now.  You know, tons of mommy/daughter time, of princess dress up and ballet, no boys allowed.  She is warming to the idea.  Honestly, I think this is the best she could hope for.  If she has to be dethroned as "The Baby,"  she may as well get to be the only girl.  The princess in the middle, shall we say. Of course, all of her denial has left me with just a tiny little worry in the back of my mind...I mean, what if they were wrong??  What if it actually is a girl?  I think I am going to ask for a quick check during my ultrasound tomorrow.  You never know, maybe she knows something I don't know??  I want another look myself...before I strip the nursery that is already completely pink :)

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

5 Minute Warning...

   The five minute warning...I have seen many parents execute this with success.   You know what I am talking about.  The kids are playing somewhere, and the parent issues the five minute warning.  "OK guys, we are leaving in five minutes..."  Shortly after this warning, I get to observe this family leave, children in tow.  Of course I have seen it fail.  In fact, I have seen it end in tears, but the vast majority of the time, this seems to bring desired results.  I am never above watching and learning from other parents, so I have tried this simple technique with my kids for years.  I am about 50% successful...and by that, I mean I can usually convince one child to follow me out, not that I leave with both children peacefully 50% of the time.  Not the kind of odds that work in my favor.

    You see, tonight was Kindergarten Appreciation night at our local Chick-fil-A.  The decision to head there for dinner was what most people would refer to as a "no brainer."  It helps my child's school since it is a fundraiser, and Mommy doesn't have to cook.  Win/Win situation.  This is of course if you leave out the fact that the fast food restaurant is going to be FULL of families with kids exactly your child's age.  Ok, again, bonus.  Colin gets to play with his school friends, and Mommy gets fried chicken goodness, and no dishes for the evening.  What I am failing to mention, or even see for myself until I was stuck in the situation, is that this proves to be a very difficult situation to escape.

   Challenge number one of the evening...getting the children to eat the food that you have just purchased.  Bribery and bargaining commences.  "How many chicken nuggets do I have to eat before I can play?"  "Can I play now??  Maybe now??" The overwhelming temptation of the playground is almost more than the children can stand.  "But Mommy, my friend is over there, can I go play with him?"  After negotiations are complete, and the children eat at least half of their kid's meal, they both bolt to the play ground with glee.  Every now and then, returning to the table to have a drink or  eat another french fry.  So far, so good.

   Then out comes the giant cow with balloons following closely behind.  They both request a balloon, and then quickly leave them with me so they can continue playing.  I stick my head in the play ground every now and then to listen out for screaming or crying.  The noise of that many children in a small enclosed play space is deafening.  I decide that despite feeling that it is getting a little akin to Hunger Games inside the play area, that I would sit down and patiently wait.  I am sure everything will be fine.  Molly has set up camp at the top of the play ground...

    When the princess finally graces me with her presence at the table,  I offer ice cream as a treat, and I mention that we should be going soon.  I suppose that was my mistake.  You see, as I stated earlier, this seems to work for most parents.  In fact, it works on one of my children.  Molly sees the five minute warning as an opportunity.  An opportunity that she simply can't resist...An opportunity to hide thoroughly and out of Mommy's reach.  Yet another opportunity to prove to me that she is always looking for a chance to make me look like an ass in public...I swear, I think it has been their mission since day one on this planet.  Make Mommy look like a crazy woman every chance they can.  For a little while, the ice cream was enough to keep her coming back.  Then, both children abandoned their cones, and left the melting, sticky messes with me.  I start to eat the cones not only to prevent the waste and clean up the mess, but, well also because of the obvious.  I wanted the ice cream.

    Eventually, I was able to tempt Colin out of the play area, and put on his shoes.  Molly remained far out of reach in the very top part of the play ground.  I called her name, I reminded her about the ice cream, I started counting...But she is smart.  She knew I had no way to get her out of the play ground, and I think she knew I hardly wanted to make a scene in front of the other kindergarten mommies.  I knew what she was thinking..."I'd like to see you try and get me down..."  She knew there was no way for this pregnant mommy to scale the tall, enclosed play space.  I was at her mercy.  I sent a few of the older kids with messages that she needed to come down.  I tried to send her brother, and he simply shook his head and told me, "No Way."  Still no Molly...

    I have no idea what eventually changed her mind.  Maybe she knew she was pushing her luck.  Maybe she knew she was in trouble.  Or maybe she simply wanted to finish her ice cream.  I may never know, but I have been reminded yet again, that no matter how long you have been a mother, no matter how many tricks of the trade you learn, that you are still often at the mercy of these crazy little people you have created...And I was also reminded that giving Molly a five minute warning is more like issuing a challenge to my daughter.  A challenge that she accepts readily to simply prove me wrong...We will leave when she is ready, not in the five minutes I have in mind.  Perhaps a sneak attack is the only way to go with my children.  While it sounds good in theory, the five minute warning simply gives Molly time to plot her grand plan...Thank God she is so cute, and that I was able to leave another Chick fil A stand down with my pride still intact instead of with a screaming child under each arm.

  PS...I wound up eating the majority of both cones and my nuggets...Between my lactose intolerance and the horrible reflux I have been having, I will be hating life for the rest of the night.  Awesome.