March 19: Power Day! No, roller coaster day….

This was an AWESOME day. It just all sortof came together – very busy, but very smoothe. Update: no, it ended on a really sour note. Blech.

Highlights of the Morning and Commute:

  • Twin Crazy was excited about bringing her bouncy, laughing, jumping doll to daycare. She was also excited about bringing her new backpack (thank you Nana!).
  • All kids ate quickly, and got dressed AOK. No problems. No issues. No crying over socks. No crying over shirts. Their clothes were out, their favorites were clean.
  • Even though Big Bro lost his bike riding privelege this AM, he did not put up a fuss. He knew that he wasn’t able to ride and just dealt with it. There was no whining about it, which I was grateful for.
  • We all got ready so quickly that we all took the same van together for drop offs. We dropped of Twin Crazy and Twin Husky first, then Big Bro, then daddy off at the ferry station, and then I dropped off Red, solo. We looked at the rainbow that her class painted and I had to take turns with her to get a picture of her with it.
  • I got back home and started my working day – ate breakfast, cleaned up a bit, and got my computer and phones out. I was ready to begin.
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    Highlights of the Working Day:

  • I reviewed a client presentation that we gave today. There were a few changes that needed to be made before we could present it to the client.
  • I must have reached out to 20+ people to confirm partipation, speaking spots, etc. I confirmed topic and focus areas with the clients of one forum.
  • There were lots of emails to trouble-shoot today.
  • I started to get ready for my client presentation. Hair dry, make up, suit. I got my lunch ready – 2 cheesesticks and a Pepsi. I got my car phone charger and also my ear bud microphone. I listened to Metallica on the car ride until I had to turn it off to get ready for a conference call.
  • I had a conference call on my drive to the client as a status check for one meeting in April we are spear-heading. I finished the call in the parking lot of the client office building.
  • We had our interim review with the client and they seriously love us. I presented the work and it was very much “work together” – bringing the boss up to speed on the analysis, discussing highlights from interviews, and working with them to think through initial scenarios to run with our market sizing model. We mapped out what we will be able to deliver by next Tuesday’s status meeting and I believe that we continue to impress them with the analysis, thinking, and teaming along the way.
  • I drove back home and blasted heavy metal. Scorpions. Tesla. I felt alive.
  • I got home right at 5 PM and had time to switch to the mini-van. I went to pick up all the kids and start my 2nd shift.
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    Dinner and Bedtime:

  • All pick ups were great; I gave them a snack while I cooked dinner. Dinner was ready shortly after 6 PM and they ate really well. I made a trip with them to the mailbox while dinner was finishing up. Red ate 6 pieces of broccoli.
  • Afterwards the kids played, I folded laundry, got the Twins changed.
  • Twin Husky now points to the part of his head where he wants me to kiss him. So cute.
  • Twin Crazy started wearing my shoes around; Twin Husky started wearing Red’s summer flip flops.
  • I talked with Big Bro about numbers and infinity and how there is no last number. I can’t believe I’m getting into these discussions with him already. He’s not even 6 years old.
  • Big Bro also wanted to talk about dolphins. How he knew why they jump in the air… to play, and to breathe. He’s right. I asked him where he learned that. He said he just was thinking about it.
  • He also wrote a note to a leprachaun telling him to come in for some gold and a surprise. He said that he was going to catch him and laughed.
  • Red wanted airplane rides but wanted my pajama bottoms to be pulled to my ankles since I didn’t shave my legs. They all hate the stubble on my legs when I rough-house with them.
  • I did bedtime routine with Twins – Twin Crazy has gotten into a routine of wanting to kiss her brother. I first would dangle her over his crib, and then put her inside his crib where they lay together and laugh and blow kisses. So cute. When I put her in her own crib she was really upset, calling for her brother. So sweet.
  • Big Bro was hiding in the Twin’s room, not wanting to start bedtime routine.
  • Red had a hard time with bedtime routine tonight. It’s almost 9 PM and its still not over….
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    [Note; 8:30 PM: OMG Red is screaming right now and daddy is on night-time routine. He just lets her scream and come downstairs to me. He just ignores her and reads to Big Bro and lets her come down here to me… what happens when I am not here? Are these kids going to be screaming and ignored? She keeps running down here. OMG it is now 9:08 and she is screaming for me. I couldn’t take it anymore. I went up at 9:10 and talked to her and settled her in bed. I talked to her about her breathing and how I sometimes have a hard time going to sleep. I talked to her about relaxing her arms, shoulders, fingers, elbows, legs, etc. I said I would come back in 2 minutes to check back on her and I did. Now I’m in the middle of a “4” minute check in and writing this. I’m listening to her sighing in the monitor – knowing that he will never have the patience for this and that these kids will need me now more than ever.]

    So this is the roller coaster I live. Seriously. I spent 95% of the daytime feeling on top of the world. Kids were cooperative, playful, intelligent, ebbing and flowing with me. Work was great. I was jamming on things that needed to get done, multi-tasking, getting revved up for a client presentation, and knocking their socks off. I felt alive on the drive home and happy. I ran to get my kids to embrace the balance that I need. They were happy, jumping, playing with me and playing with each other. They were engaging and I felt proud of them….

    … and then bedtime. And Red. And screaming. And prying her off of me.

    I can’t wait to get out of this house – I can’t stand to hear it anymore. I need to know that we are doing the right thing by these kids given this situation and this does not feel right to me. This is sink or swim. And I can’t stand to see my kids sinking, and flailing, and standing by without doing anything. This is the worst possible situation to be in. Force the separation for what you think is best in the long run, but I don’t believe in that long run scenario. And she was happy today but in pieces tonight. And I was pumped all day today, and feel defeated tonight.

    The end of the school year cannot come fast enough for me. We just have a lot of ground to cover between now and then. I am ready for it and ready to be there for my kids and fight for them along the way.

    Til tomorrow,
    – Mama K

    December 28: Working with Big Bro

    Wednesday – a work from home day. Big Bro’s school is closed so I decided to keep him home with me instead of pay for “camp” – especially since I am home, and only working 4 hours today. He was looking forward to the day. Red – well, not so much. I think she was jealous.

    Highlights of the Morning and “Commute”:

  • I got up extra early, showered, started a big pot of coffee. I did not get much sleep last night. So I needed the extra caffeine and would be home to drink it. I got Twin Crazy and Twin Husky up – they are always already up, but just hanging out in their cribs at 7 AM. So I went to their room, they jumped up and were excited about starting their day. I did quick changes for them while they were in the room so they were contained and that task would be done with.
  • Red was up, Big Bro was still slumbering. I let him sleep. There was no need to get him up; as long as he was up by 8 AM for us to drop folks off.
  • Twin Crazy, Twin Husky, and Red were busy eating cereal and oatmeal. Twins are talking and repeating words non-stop. I love it. Absolutely love it.
  • The morning went smoothly. Except for when Red heard that Big Bro was staying home and she was not. That threw her into a fit, I rocked her, and then asked her if she wanted to help me with my coffee. That worked. She put sugar and cream in my cup – and all kids looked at it. Then I poured the coffee and talked about how the coffee was first dark, but when you put cream in it, it turns light. Of course the Twins were repeating all of this in their own way.
  • We headed out; I dropped off Hubby at the ferry and we talked about the boat. I dropped off Twin Crazy and Twin Husky, and then we dropped off Red. She was pretending to be mad at me, but just couldn’t play the part consistently. She kept laughing at me – couldn’t hold it back.
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    Highlights of the Working Day:
    Remember… I’m working from home, for 4 hours, and I have my son with me. And its a slow week. During the holidays…

  • While back at home, Big Bro and I ate pancakes and the cutest thing was said: “Mommy, can you eat these pancakes with me because I have a TON of whipped cream on this plate.” How cute. He is a guy that feels loved by doing things together – and this comes out so strongly now that I am aware of it.
  • I filled out administrative forms and benefits while Big Bro played with his new LeapPad and watched some Dora. He got anxious and played a bit outside.
  • In the middle of work I decided to use the leftover ham from Christmas and made split pea soup. In typical fashion for me, I overdid it. I just wanted to use all of the dried split peas we had. So I wound up making I think 2 gallons of split pea soup. It’s actually a bit ridiculous. I don’t think I have enough containers to hold it all to freeze. I may have to give some away to neighbors. Too funny. Some people give cookies, I may give soup. Note: My holiday cards are STILL not sent out.
  • I finished up the forms and needed to fax them in. So me and Big Bro head out to Office Max to fax and FedEx. It took a lot longer than expected. Poor Big Bro. While going to the store he said he was too tired to put his shoes on (jokingly). He was doing and saying a lot today to make me laugh. He is becoming a simple and funny guy – with a smart sense of humor – one that makes me laugh at a drop of a hat (OK, I’m biased. Maybe he’s not that funny after all).
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    The Rest of the Day:

  • We went to lunch together. We talked. I blogged a bit while he LeapPaded. He made a comment that we were both doing computers together. Again, his mention of togetherness. It means so much to him.
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  • We got some food from Trader Joe’s. Again, he was my buddy. We talked during the shopping trip about the stuff we needed or would like to get. He was great company and sooooo well behaved.
  • We made it home and I packaged up the soup – ridiculous, I know.
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  • I cleaned up and got ready for the arrival of the rest of the kids. In doing so, I sat with Big Bro and together we completed his Lego space shuttle together. I had fun doing that with him. I’m amazed at how quickly he has mastered this thing. He follows all of the pages and puts this thing together effortlessly. I think his request for “help” again was a ploy for together, Mommy time. I happily caved.
  • Pick up for Red was fine; on the way to pick up the twins, Red asked if she could stay home tomorrow with me, all by herself. I reminded her that NEXT Wednesday would be her day. I reminded her that I have Twin Crazy, Twin Husky, and Big Bro tomorrow at home, and asked her if she would want to stay home too. She immediately said “YES!!!” and then they both started talking about how everyone wants to stay home with mommy tomorrow. It melted my heart. I asked if they liked it better with extra time with me and less time for me at work and they agreed – they like it better. I know, this was a “leading” question, but hey, I needed an emotional boost. 🙂
  • Getting everyone home was fine. We saw an amazing sunset and I pulled over with them to talk about it and the colors. The kids still saw lots of lights on the houses so we drove around talking about lights. By the way, I don’t know if I mentioned Twin Crazy’s new skill – buckles. She MUST buckle her top buckle on her car seat. I love her intensity and the fact that we can communicate with each other.
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  • While at home, I cooked Tandoori Chicken with yogurt sauce (Amazing!!! Thanks again Mama S!) while the kids went a little bit nuts I must confess. They were VERY loud and VERY physical and teasing each other and being bratty kids. Poor Twin Husky was being battered on. He spent most of this time crying, or being held by me while resting his head on my shoulder and sucking his thumb.
  • Dinner was amazing; half the kids ate well. Red was tired and pouty. The rest were running around the house at least not thrashing each other. I’m OK with running around the big circle of our house as long as they are keeping their hands to themselves and not screaming. Tonight after dinner they were cracking up and I loved to see Big Bro interact with Twin Crazy and Twin Husky (a four year difference). Big Bro asked me to see how fast he could run and of course I applauded him and then Twin Crazy the rest of the night asked me to see how fast she could run. How cute. Each time they ran around they stopped where I was and laughed, rested, or I tickled them. It was fun and they had me laughing.
  • Then suddenly one of the kids mentioned chocolate ice-cream and then ALL of them started whining for chocolate ice-cream. I couldn’t take it. It was early but I sent everyone upstairs to bed. The older ones were really putting up a fuss about the ice-cream thing which just ticked me off. Big Bro and Red were both hysterical about it; Red was being carried up by Hubby and she was kicking and screaming. I rarely see anything like this from her. We talked about how they felt, and how sad/mad/unhappy/disappointed they must feel. And I said how I used to feel the same way when I was a kid and my parents didn’t give me dessert when I thought I was going to get some… how I would be thinking about it and expecting it and then my mom or dad wouldn’t let me have it, how it made me mad/sad/disappointed. And how it is OK to have those feelings. THEY SETTLED DOWN SO QUICKLY I COULD NOT BELIEVE IT. I then commended them on how they pulled themselves together and how they moved on. How they calmed their bodies down and started to accept it – they still feel mad, but at least they are calm about it. I love connecting with them this way – I find though that you really need to be patient with them; it is easier for me to do this when I have days like today – versus days when I am stressed and/or tired from long or complex day at work. Or, even after a long day with all of the kids. I really only had Big Bro today and he was a breeze, solo.
  • Big Bro and Red and I wrote down a list of things we are DEFINITELY going to do tomorrow (e.g., eat breakfast, vitamins, etc.) and some fun things we COULD do (beach, museum, library, etc.). I’m looking forward with my time with all of them tomorrow but hope I get more sleep tonight!!!
  • I had a bizarre work day, and do not feel so good about my productivity, but I toss it up to the week between the holidays…. right??!?! Am I the only one out there?

    I’m feeling happy and much more comfortable in my own skin today – thanks for those who reached out to me yesterday and today to send me cyber-strength. It means so much, seriously.

    Til tomorrow –
    – Mama K

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