Tuesday, May 25, 2010

TV and other musings

Hi there. Several topics for today.

First, the almighty TV. What a whirlwind couple of TV days. First the epic series finale of 'Lost', and then the end of '24'?? Whatever will I do? Thank God for Netflix is all I have to say. Okay, so 'Lost.' I am still trying to make sense of it all, and I'm sure I'll never come up with the answers. But my biggest question is this: what was the point of the Dharma Initiative? And The Others? I mean, yeah, we got some of the big questions sorta answered (Smokey, Jacob's origins, etc), but there is so much that's still unaccounted for. Argh. Damn writers.

And '24'. Oh, sadness. I was kind of disappointed in the ending (spoiler alert!). I mean, I know it might feel contrived, but couldn't Jack have just gone to LA to life a nice, quiet life with his family? I guess we should have known as soon as they killed off his FBI girlfriend that a tidy ending just wasn't gonna happen. And, I know it wasn't feasible. I mean, this is JACK BAUER we're talking about. A life of leisure just isn't in the cards for him.

So, this brings me to my next topic, the DVR. It seems that I have to explain all my recordings to my husband, while he gets to record whatever he wants and not have to answer to anyone about it. Case in point: last night, the DVR was just about full, and we needed to record '24' and 'The Bachelorette." So the husband says to me, "Um, did you mean to record this 'Oprah'?" I was like, "YES! Please do not erase my shows!" And the he says, "why do you want to watch this one with Julia Roberts anyway?" Seriously, dear. I do not ask you to explain why you feel the need to watch 'Cops' or NASCAR, so just give me my 'Oprah', 'k? (And my 'Real Housewives' for that matter. But only of NY and NJ. Orange County and Atlanta aren't for me.)

So, with the TV season running out, here's what I plan to watch via Netflix this summer:

-True Blood
-Dexter (seasons 3 & 4)
-The Tudors
-Mad Men (season 3)
-Entourage (not sure what the last season I saw was)

And I think that' it.

I got myself out of bed for a 3 mile run this morning and boy was it humid. It was only about 67 degrees, but holy perspiration, Batman! And then, a la George Costanza, my shower didn't take.(I was trying to find a clip to post, but no luck). I think I have finally cooled off now, but sheesh. Oh, I will mention that I noticed all these food/health bloggers have been drinking Green Monsters lately. Basically, that's a spinach smoothie. Sounds gross, no? Well, I was curious so I made one yesterday, and actually found it quite pleasant. It was:

3 cups raw spinach
1 cup vanilla soy milk
1 TSP ground flax seed
1 banana
1 scoop soy protein powder

And I have a new blender that does a fancy-pants job of crushing ice (and also has the ability to wake the dead with it's volume), so I just put it all together and hit "frozen drink." Well, it all comes out quite nicely. I'll try to remember to take a picture tomorrow. Lots of green. The husband tried it and did not like it. Ava wouldn't go near it. Not sure about Davis.

Ta -ta for now, kids!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Supernanny, wherefore art thou?

Oh, Jo-whatever-your-last-name is. Yes, you with the purple skirt-suit you wear in every episode of your show. You know, this one:

I could really use you in my house right about now. You and your British-ness are needed badly. You see, it turns out that I do not actually have a preschooler. No. She is actually a moody 17-year-old merely trapped in the BODY of a preschooler. That is the only way I can explain the talking back (I think ol' Jo refers to this as "backchat), the defiance, and the incessant need to have the last word. (Hmm, come to think of it, maybe she's a member of the U.S. Senate disguised as a preschooler).
Things have gone from bad to worse on the tantrum/defiance front, and it is not fun, my friends. Not fun at all. Now, the lucky thing for me is that we do not engage in public tantrums. So, most of the activity in question is relegated to our warm, happy home. But really. It is BAD. Take yesterday, for example. We decided to take a nice family stroll around the lake. Ava said she wanted to take her scooter, and promised she would not get tired. Why I believed this, I will never know. So, we loaded up the SINGLE jogging stroller and drove on our way. I think we made it about oh, 3/4 mile before her little legs began to get tired. At this point, I should mention that the husband really thought we should bring the double jogger, but I insisted that it was too bulky and didn't want to have to remove stuff from my car (which also prompted me to start whining about needing a bigger car). He was nice and just loaded up the single. Okay, so the whining begins 3/4 mile in. And guess how long the trail is? Yes, that's right. Two-and-a-quarter miles. So, we trekked on, with the promise that we would stop to feed the ducks. so, we did. At this point, the whining/crying was escalating in volume, and the skies were darkening with an approaching storm. It was time to hightail it outta there. The solution was great for Ava, bad for the rest of us. We took Davis out of the stroller, put her in it, along with her scooter and helmet, and I CARRIED Davis for the remaining mile. Have I mentioned that he's 23 lbs? Yeah, that was a lot of work. Not so much fun. But we made it before the storm.

Now, Sunday night is Family Dinner night. (Yes, I know that all nights SHOULD be, but we do not live in a perfect world). Post-lake walk, I made some shrimp fajitas (thanks to Gina for this recipe ). It only took Ava about 5 minutes to finish her 2 bites of dinner, and she very politely (seriously) asked to be excused. Well, kids, we all love polite, but it still doesn't always get you what you want. We told her we'd like for her to stay at the table with us while we finished. That did it. She went on to cry, yell, whine, complain, kvetch, etc. about how badly she did not want to sit there, how bored she was, etc. We didn't give in. We just ignored and talked to each other. But the damage was done, and there was no amending the night. Her antics got her no reading time, and as soon as I cleaned up the kitchen, I sent her to bed. She was asleep before 7pm.

Now, here's the other thing that's going on (and seriously, if there are any of you reading this that would like to offer up advice, I welcome opinions and comments). She is back to having infant-like separation anxiety. I mean, I can't even go out for a run without her bursting into tears. It's bad. And again, this is something that only goes on at home. She happily goes to school, to dance, to friends' houses. It's like she just can't fathom the idea of being at our house without me. And she's also waking up at night saying she's scared and wanting me to sleep in her bed. I'm exhausted today from last night's bout of musical beds. I started out in mine, and then she came in my room around 1:30am saying, "Mommy, I had a really, really, really, really, really scary dream." I said I'd lie down with her for 2 minutes but then was going back to my room. Well, as soon as I started to leave, she freaked. So, back into her bed I went, where I dozed off. Woke up a bit later and went back to my own room. She was back to get me an hour or so later. And then again at 6am, when she was begging to get into my bed. I mean, the EASY solution is for me to just sleep in her room. But that's not what I want to do, and she needs to know that her Daddy and I sleep in the same bed and that's that.

Argh. We're actually going to talk with her ped on Thursday about all this. Did I mention that she pushed over a table a few weeks ago? Oh yeah. Total Real Housewives of New Jersey-style.

To ease my strife, I bought a pretty new Lilly Pulitzer dress this morning.

Made me feel better. :-) Especially since I got to be the person in the dressing room who said, "Actually, can I try this in a 2? The 4 is a little big." Mad love to the clothing manufacturers who cater to our egos and skew their sizing.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Oh, sweet sleep.

In the last 6 months, or maybe it's more like 3, I have lost my mind and become a morning exerciser. It is the only time of day I can count on to be my own, so I claim the early hour with pride. However it does often take GREAT effort to pry me from the comfort of my loving bed, and every morning, I have multiple conversations with myself regarding reasons NOT to get up. Now that  it's actually light and warm at 6am, getting up is not as much of a chore. And do you know what my biggest motivation is? Cocktail hour. You see, the husband does not usually arrive home until sometime around 7pm, so an evening run would not be over until around 8. And that? Means wine would not be feasible until that time. And frankly, I don't like a glass of wine after a run. I think that's what distinguishes me from someone with a REAL drinking problem. (Hi Mom). Seriously, though. I mean, if I had an actual problem, I would be like, "hey, just finished a 4 mile run, so that means I can have a few extra glasses of Chardonnay!" Not the case here. I guess post-exercise, I get in some stupid let's-be-healthy frame of mind and just sip on water the rest of the night.

Speaking of the rest of the night, I would like to mention that I need about 3 more hours of wakeful time during the evening/night, when the kids are asleep. I mean, I have lots of TV to watch, lots of laundry to fold, lots and lots of books to read ( a huge source of stress for me - there are way too many good books out there and I fear that I will never get through all of them! Or that I will miss the best of them!!). But these two little people (and one big person) that live with me take up all my daytime hours, leaving only a few precious me hours at night. Sometimes I find myself wanting to pull an all-nighter just to get stuff done, but the fear of extreme tiredness the next day keeps me from actually going through with it. I may or may not have had a small meltdown this morning, the theme of which was, "I am a failure as a wife and mother and a constant disappointment to those around me." (And I wonder where my daughter gets her flair for the dramatic.) I also may or may not have mumbled loud enough for my husband to hear, "sometimes it's like I have THREE children to take care of." Of course, my eldest heard me and quickly said, "Mommy, you only have two children." Oh, right. Thanks for the clarification, oh wise one.

Anyway, we're all good here now. Had a good day, didn't get much done, but did go out to lunch AND purchased a blender, so that's all good news. Plus, my husband is having a colonoscopy tomorrow, which means I don't have to cook dinner tonight. Yay for medical procedures that make you have to fast and spend the night in the bathroom!!


Tuesday, May 4, 2010

4 Going on 14....

Wow. I am living in the House o' Crazy today. Woke up with the 4 year old in my bed. Daddy is out of town, so she snuck in during the wee hours of the night. She likes to snuggle in the morning. Awww. Super sweet, right? And how can a morning that starts with snuggles from your baby girl go awry? Oh, not to worry, my friends. Not to worry. Tantrums ensued mere moments after we go out of bed. The first one came because I initially told her she could get into Davis' crib with him. Then it was apparent he was ready to be sprung from the prison of his crib, so I had to renege on that one. Well, that did it. Here's what I heard:


So, after some ignoring, some more crying, and finally some breakfast, things were fine. A bit later, I was drying my hair bangs. (Yes, just bangs. Because? That's all I washed today. Time is of the essence, you know.). So, in comes my diva, asking me to help her draw something. Here's how that went:

Me: "Honey, I'm getting ready so we can get you to school on time, but I can help you with that after school."


Me: "I'm sorry to hear that, but I'm not helping you now. Especially since you're talking to me in such an ugly way."


So, some screams come out of her, the baby brother gets upset, and what do I do? The only reasonable thing I can think of: carry her out of my bedroom, close the door, and lock it. Yes, I locked my child out of my room.  And? I didn't even feel bad about it.

After that, the morning went fine. The drive to school was pleasant, the dropoff was REALLY pleasant (kidding. sort of), and I'm hoping for a sane rest of the day. Hoping against hope.

My girl has ALWAYS been a bit, shall we say, tantrum-prone. She is also the sweetest, most loving, sensitive little girl I know. I am filled with love and frustration all at the same time. At least I can take solace in the fact that she only acts up with family, and is a perfect angel at school, on playdates, and generally in public. I have created the illusion that I am raising a perfect child, and hey, perception is reality, right?

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Margarita playdate

Ah, North Carolina. I do love you. Except for one little thing: humidity. Geez. Here we were, rolling along through a nice spring, when BAM! All of a sudden, the signature of Southern summer arrived. Let me just tell you - I am not a fan of hot. I'm also not a fan of cold, and frankly, I'd rather be hot than cold, but really, I would just like for the feeling of sauna to wait a little longer to get here. I ran this morning and I'm pretty sure I almost died. 3.5 miles in, I threw in the towel and walked the 1/2 back to my car.

Anyway. One good thing does come with hot summer days: popcicles! Here are my kids, enjoying the first of the season. Little D had his very firs one ever. Not surprisingly, it was a hit. Of cousre, his sister kep offering to finish it for him. So altruistic.

All done, and just happy. That's Gran in he background.....the maternal grandmother. My own Mom (Bunny!) arrived a mere moments later.
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Ava and I went over to a margarita playdate after that. No, we did not give our kids margaritas. Although, if it would make my daughter sleep until 7 again, I might consider it. Kidding. Sort of. This mom friend of ours invited a bunch of us over. Playdate for the kids. Gossip and drinks for the moms. Now, this mom had a blender that has inspired some serious blend-envy in me. It's a Blendtec. You can see it here. (PS - that was my first-ever clickable link. I am now a computer/blogging GENIUS).

This thing is A-MAZING. It made frozen margaritas with the consistency of an Icee. Perfection. Apparently, you can make all sorts of wonderfulness in this thing. I must have one. The $400 price tag is a little prohibitive, so if any of you just want to send one my way, I will be eternally grateful. Thanks.

Well, I'm going to cut this short. I have the 4-year-old at a birthday party, and the 13-month old seems to be waking (grumpily) from his (too short) nap. The job calls. Ta-ta.

Oh, but PS. If anyone is reading this and can offer up any advice on sibling rivalry, please let me know. The 4 year old is not so pleased with the baby brother these days.