Quality Time

photo 2-3

This picture could be the catalyst for one of two posts.

The first option is one where I write about how life is so busy and it’s important to let things like basic housekeeping slide sometimes in order to spend more quality time with your kids. It’s all about priorities. They are only young once, you’ll never get this time back. Really, what’s more important: a clean living room or playing Lego with your boys? We moms have to sacrifice our own pride in our homes in order to nurture these little people placed in our care.

This is not that post.

I’m going with the second option, or what I call “The Truth”.

It was Friday night, I had some shows to catch up on the PVR. Chips were consumed. M&Ms may or may not have been involved. I did a lot of socializing via my phone. It was too late to wake up the boys to get them to do it (something I intend to remedy today).

It really is all about priorities.

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5 Minute Misconduct

5 Minute Misconduct

Oh, so sweet. Look at that little toddler sitting there. Adorable.

Do not be deceived.

Sure, he looks so innocent with his chubby little hands in his lap. But behind those wide eyes lies a cunning little mind hatching all kinds of plans for mayhem.

Don’t be silly, I know he isn’t saying full sentences yet, but I know. Trust me.

In less than two years, he has learned the “I’m not touching you” manoeuvre. A recent addition to his repertoire is the tried and true “I didn’t actually knock your block tower down, but the block I am holding might have been involved” technique.

What has that got to do with this picture, you ask?

On this particular morning, he was irritated with his 5 year old brother’s redirection and threw his plastic bridge across the room.

“No throwing,” I said.

“No,” he replied and promptly put himself on the step for a penalty. Misbehaved AND removed sibling’s chance at retribution all in one move. That kid is an evil genius.

The Manual

There are many well-meaning parenting books to be found. I thought I might try my hand at a book that really helps new parents know what to expect in the toddler and preschool years. Here’s my rough outline so far.

Kids: The Owner’s Manual

Chapter 1 – Favourite Preschooler Games

  • Are the Lights On or Off?
  • I’m done on the toilet. Wait, no, I’m not
  • Guess What I’d Like On My Sandwich?

Chapter 2 – Clothing Issues

  • Zip my Coat, But Not Too High
  • My Sock Feels Weird
  • If It’s Not Blue I’m Not Wearing It
  • Snow Doesn’t Mean I Can’t Wear Crocs

Chapter 3 – Psychological Warfare

  • I Know I Ate that Yesterday, So What?
  • It’s Your Fault You Can’t Understand What I’m Saying

Chapter 4 – The Hidden Enemy

  • Marker Lids
  • Stickers
  • Juice Boxes – I’ll Squeeze Them If I Like

Chapter 5 – Personal Space: Why You Don’t Need It

What other chapters would you recommend?

Code Brown

If I had known 8 years ago what I know now….I’d still have four boys, but I’d be much more prepared.

When you’re expecting a baby you hear the stories from friends and sisters of spit-ups, leaks, and explosions. You think you are prepared. YOU HAVE NO IDEA.

A brand new baby poops and it’s cause for celebration. You call your husband into the nursery to usher in the highly anticipated “grainy, yellowish stool.” Oh, joyous day! Get the camera!

When a newborn burps and a bit extra comes along with it, you smile and think it’s cute. “Oops! Did you have a little too much there, sweetie? There, there.”

Dear me! Did junior start to pee right when you took his diaper off? No problem, it’s really just water after all, isn’t it?

Ha! This is just the beginning. It’s easy to laugh off these mishaps when they are little.

How about having a poo explode on you as you reach for a clean diaper at 3am? EXPLODE – you read that right.

Just wait for toddlerhood. We were two-thirds through a 2 hour drive to my parents’ house. The squawky baby finally nodded off when all signs point to the toddler having done some serious business in his diaper. There is no way we are stopping and risk waking the baby. We open the window a crack and carry on. Upon arrival the toddler thoughtfully shakes out a huge deposit from his pant leg onto the driveway. My dad really cares about the condition of his driveway. It did not end well. For me.

Apparently, if you run out of toilet paper, the logical choice is to use the hand towel. No, don’t call for help, wouldn’t want to inconvenience anyone.

You’re in the tub and have to go? Don’t bother saying anything, just do it there. What parent doesn’t enjoy a rousing game of Bobbing for Poo Pellets?

Oh, dear, did you get something on your hand? By all means, smear it on the wall. Wouldn’t want your hands to be dirty.

If you happen to plop something on the floor, don’t say anything, just go back to bed and let it be a surprise.

If I’d known this 8 years ago, forget bibs and sleepers, I would have registered for a HazMat suit.

The Origin

A monumental day arrived recently. I knew it was coming, but not so soon. A day that confirmed my long-standing suspicions.

I am, indeed, turning into my mom.

Now, this is not a complete transformation. I look eerily similar to my dad and have some striking personality traits in common with him. However, I am most definitely taking on many things “Mom”. 

Unbeknownst to me, this transformation has been underway for years. It wasn’t sudden or obvious, like when we brought our firstborn home. Nope. It snuck up on me gradually as the toddler years hit.

Perhaps it was the day I realized just how many times I had swept the kitchen floor and I heard her whispering from my teen years, “You think helping me clean on Saturday is rough? When you were young I had to vacuum every other day to keep up with the mess!”  “Chin over your plate” took on a whole new meaning that day. 

As we began toilet training our second born, I couldn’t really recall what we did with the firstborn and her words from two years earlier came rushing back, “Toilet training? I don’t know, you just learned.” Oh, so true.

I snap my fingers for the boys to be quiet when I’m on the phone. Mom

I tell them to make their beds because “we take pride in our home”. Mom

I threaten to keep all the unclaimed stuff lying around the house. Mom

Several months ago, one of the boys was complaining about some injustice or injury and felt he was quite hard done by. Without missing a beat, I ushered in my most Mom-inspired moment to date when I uttered these two words:

“Tough Bananas”.

Thanks, Mom.