September 7: Boogies, bottles, and boats

Fridays are fun.  I get to be a stay at home mom.  But this morning was absolutely RIDICULOUS.   I mean, seriously, seriously ridiculous.   I am getting sick and I slept through my alarm.   All hell broke loose this AM as I was trying to get four kids out of the house and drive on two highways to get Big Bro to school on time….  the rest of the day made up for it.

Highlights of the Morning:

  • Woke up at 6:55 AM to Red, Twin Crazy, and Cocoa.  Realized what time it was.  Sprang out of bed like a bat out of hell.
  • There were no clothes set out the night before… and loads of laundry that still needed to be organized, dried.  I grabbed clean clothes from the dryer onto the floor so I could put the wet stuff in – otherwise Big Bro would have a problem with shorts.
  • I tried to make myself coffee to get through this.
  • Twin Crazy was hungry.  There was no way I could put her off.  I try to do breakfast in the car but only when we leave at 7 AM.   Oh shit.  I had to make breakfast now too for everyone or else there would be meltdowns.  I made 3 oatmeals pronto.
  • Big Bro came out quietly, fingering two bills (a $5, a $1).  The tooth fairy came last night, for the first time ever.  I tried to make a REALLY big deal about this but it was more rushed than I would have liked.  Big Bro was silent but smiling.
  • Twin Crazy was having issues with her nose.  Sneezing and snot all over the place.
  • Red was having breakdowns over pants, …. or then over socks…. , but then she figured it out and was OK when I checked on her.
  • I was running around trying to get kids clothes together.  Never, never, never will I ever have them go to sleep the night before without picking out their clothes.  Ever.  I promise myself now.  EVER.
  • Big Bro was hungry and wanting to eat; he requested bread and butter.  I softened some butter for him in the microwave and asked him to spread it himself.  He did great.
  • Then the kids said they wanted toast.  F!!!    I threw in some bread in the toaster to take in the car.
  • Twin Husky is throwing a fit because he’s trying to get socks on by himself and is getting stuck.  I help him through it.
  • Oh shit.  I have to do Big Bro’s lunch.  F!!!   You know this again is something that could be done the night before damn it.  I cursed myself.  Soft foods for his teeth.  OK.  Leftover pasta, yogurt.   He also packed up two slices of bread and butter.   This is good.  He’s helping to pack his lunch.  Awesome.
  • Twin Crazy sneezes again all over the place.
  • I finally got my coffee together.   Kids with shoes on.   I remembered to pee.   Twin Crazy is screaming for her blanket.    Twin Husky is having problems putting two Tigers into his little backpack.  OK, out the door.
  • Twin Husky falls down a step because his shoes are on backwards.   He is screaming outside but OK after 1 minute.  He told me that he was OK but it was “scary”
  • Once we got into the car it was great.  I dished out the toast.  We talked about the colors of cars and trucks.  It was actually relaxing.  I actually enjoy this time with the kids.   We are able to talk about things, they joke with each other and me, and it honestly is fun.  I keep the radio off so we can talk and hang out.
  • Drop off for Big Bro happened right on time.  He left the van like a big kid and made his way to his class.  I told him again how proud I was of him and his behavior at the Dentist yesterday.  He had his two teeth taped up in a tooth-shaped container with him.
  • Drop off for Red was great.  We were laughing with her friends about the rules: 1) Learn; 2) Laugh; 3) Exercise your body.    Her teacher said she is doing great with her letters, doing Upper and lower case letters and writing extremely well.  My god do I love this kid.
  • On the way out I again bought some things at the “everything must go” sale… some Jenga and wood blocks, and a bingo game with little words in the grid.   Big Bro and I can play this together.
  • The ride home was uneventful.  We stopped for gas, then I stopped at Walgreens to get a nose plunger for Twin Crazy.  Twin Husky looked a bit out of it.

Highlights of the Afternoon:

  • Twin Husky was in a foul mood.   I decided to feed them.  That worked a bit, but not really.   I looked at his face… his eyes were bloodshoot.  He said he wanted to take his Tigers into his room and go to sleep.   He put himself to bed after I gave him some Motrin.  Something is going around with these kids and I’m not sure if he’s getting something.  I thought it was so cute how he put himself to bed.  He slept for 3 hours.
  • In the meantime, me and Twin Crazy had some time to ourselves.  I plunged out her nose and she gladly let me.  It didn’t really work.  I taught her how to blow her nose.  We had fun with that.  That worked a little.  I gave her a haircut and cut her hair into bangs and angled the sides so she could see better with her “long hair”.  I watched her play castle and use her imagination with the dolls.  I took movies of her doing this.
  • We napped.   I felt like crap too.
  • We all got up, snacked, and I packed for the rest of the day.   The kids were excited and looking great.   I packed some bags, but this time much more leisurely.
  • The ride was completely traffic-free.  We talked about the water in the distance.  We got to Big Bro’s in plenty of time.   We picked up Red no problems.    We were off on our afternoon adventure – I had three hours with them before transition time to co-parent’s.
  • We were missing two waterbottles so we went to CVS.  The list was:  2 waterbottles, and a bottle of water.  The kids know about my lists.   That means we cannot get ANYTHING else.   They stopped me several times in the store from buying other items (it backfires on me but I can live with that).
  • We headed to a playground that I’ve never been to with the kids.  They had a blast.  Twins were sliding down slides and catching each other.  Red was running around.  Big Bro was talking on the phone (Nana, co-parent I think), taking pictures, and taking movies.   We snacked.  I enjoyed relaxing, eating fruit, watching the kids, and running after them.  It was a great afternoon.
  • Then the real adventure:  “Ferry-ride to nowhere”.  I took them on the commuter ferry and we headed to the city.  Stayed on the boat and then headed back.   A one-hour trip in total.  Kids were great.   We talked about boats, the bridge, the pelicans and how their beaks are big enough for an entire fish to go in there, the sound of the boat, the feeling of the waves… the kids ate graham crackers and drank from their water bottles.  They shared water and shared seats.   Big Bro and Twin Crazy were the best behaved so I gave them the tickets to give to the operators.  This made Red mad at me.
  • Drop off to co-parent’s was great.  We had a lot of information to exchange – dentists, teeth, who is sick and with what and at what time their last medicine was given, Red’s letters, Twin Crazy’s haircut, how great Big Bro was at the Dentist, the tooth fairy…
  • I made sure that Red was not mad at me anymore.  I talked with her at my car.  I said it was OK for her to feel mad at me.  I said I knew she still loved me.  But she needs to talk about it… get it out of her body.  I asked her a question, “Are you mad at me because I did not give you a ticket?”   and then I nodded her head for her up and down to say “Yes”.   She started to laugh.   She decided to get out of the car and asked for a piggy-back ride.   She was all smiles.   I told her how important it is for her to talk about her feelings and I asked her if we were “OK” with each other now.   She was all smiles.   Whew.   Last week I had a bad day with the kids because they were not listening to me and I swear those next few days were brutal for me.   I promised myself never to leave any of the kids with either me being mad at them or them being mad at me.   Never.  Ever.

I’m feeling like shit physically – sore throat and headache.  But I honestly am so full inside – little by little I am making my way at having one-on-one time with each of the kids; maybe not EVERY day, but at least weekly I am able to carve out good, quality time with each of them.   I’ve had them since Tuesday night and this morning was a nightmare.  So I’m ready for a night to myself.   I will see them tomorrow afternoon at 4 PM.   I’m looking forward to a good night’s sleep, hopefully getting rid of whatever germ is inside of me, and seeing them tomorrow afternoon.

Have a great weekend all –

– Mama K

March 8: Skinned knees

I wasn’t working today and stayed home with my Munchkins. I decided to give Red the option if she wanted to stay home with us; she said yes, which REALLY pissed Big Bro off as I drove him to school.

Highlights of the Morning:

  • Red woke up at 1 AM screaming. It woke me up without the monitor. I go upstairs and Daddy says from his room that “he’s not doing it”. I shake my head but go downstairs since the plan is for me to be “off” when he is “on”. This is what the kids are going to have to get used to. I turn the monitor on downstairs and hear him say something about having to go to work tomorrow. But Red is still screaming. I wait 15 minutes. Now Big Bro is calling through the monitor for me to come up and help. I find Red in the corner of her bed screaming. I hold her to calm her down. I tell her it’s OK to feel scared. That sometimes people feel scared and its OK. I offer suggestion to clap the scary things away and I do this several times. She is calm. I put her in bed. I say that it’s OK. She wants to hold my hand and I do briefly then pull away. She reaches out to me but I say its OK. She drifts to sleep without my hand, and me farther away in room, almost out of sight. She sleeps through the rest of the night.
  • I wake up to Red at 7 AM in my room, making my bed while I am still in it. She is laughing. She is telling me that it’s time to get up.
  • Twin Husky eats like a teenager – must be a growth spurt.
  • Twin Husky follows around Big Bro and then Big Bro starts acting silly, dancing around, and Twin Husky is following in his footsteps to a T. Twin Husky looks up to him so much. Wants to do everything like him. So cute.
  • We get into the car to drop of Big Bro. He is still mad at me for taking him to school.
  • On the way home we pull into the ferry parking lot to look at the ferry drive away. We talk about the boat and the people and say bye-bye to the ferry as it travels to the city.
  • At home, we play with play-dough. The kids make me “food” since it is a kitchen set too. Red makes me pizza, and then Twin Husky makes me pizza, and Twin Crazy is busy cooking with the play-dough stove.
  • We head outside since it is beautiful out. They all have scooters. Twin Crazy falls and skins a knee. We also start playing with balls.
  • I brown a cut of beef and put it in the slow cooker. I clean up a bit and even wipe down the fridge. The kids are all playing outside and it feels good for me to do this while I have energy.
  • We play outside; we eat lunch; kids take naps. I straighten up and take care of emails.
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    Highlights of the Afternoon and Evening:

  • Twins wake up from their naps; we go outside on scooters again. Twin Crazy falls and skins her other knee. I give her band-aids for both knees.
  • Red wakes up; Twin Crazy shows her the bandaids on her knees. We eat Oreos and head off to get Big Bro from school. We save him a fist-full of Oreos.
  • At home all kids are outside. We are having too much fun with scooters, strollers, and balls. Big Bro and I are kicking balls back and forth. They are bouncing off of the house, slamming into the bushes, and several went over fences. We laughed. Big Bro has great coordination and is a natural athlete. I would say “whoa” to one of his kicks and Twin Husky would parrot it afterwards. It was a lot of fun laughing and playing ball. Kicking for real with my son. I know in a few short years it will be Big Bro and Twin Husky doing this and they won’t want me around kicking balls to them. So I take this in now while I can.
  • Twin Husky falls several times because of those damn boots that he insists on wearing.
  • Red falls and skins a knee. All kids want to look at it.
  • Big Bro is busy with a stool trying to look over the fence to see where the balls are. He can’t see a thing because of all the trees. Twin Crazy and Twin Husky are scaling a trelice and it breaks away from the wooden fence.
  • Twin Crazy starts to fill up water cups from the refrigerator and gets herself soaked.
  • I cook the rest of dinner. Red rests on the couch from her skinned knee.
  • All the food goes. Kids think they deserve dessert. Big Bro goes into the freezer for ice-cream. I swiftly take it away since it is MINE. We decide to do movie-night instead, with popcorn, since they will be leaving tomorrow afternoon and therefore missing our standard Friday movie nights.
  • I had Big Bro and Red for bedtime tonight. They were great. He set out his bike helmet right next to his pile of clothes so that he could be ready very fast tomorrow AM (he gets his bike privilege back tomorrow).
  • Big Bro asked me: “Why did the cow cross the road?” I reply, “Why?”. He responds: “Because it wanted to get hit by a car.” I started cracking up so loudly I just couldn’t believe the humor and how he told the joke and how goofy he is. Red was laughing at both of us. I had to reach out and hug him.
  • Red had a hard time going to sleep. I calmed her down and sat with her for a bit. She drifted off to sleep (NOT holding my hand) and I thought to myself that she might be the most beautiful child in the world….
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    I’m pretty tired and am looking forward to sleep. I ache for the kids and I miss them already. I know they will have fun but I do not trust what will be said to them while they are away. They’ve been put in the middle in the past and that was pre-separation; I can’t even imagine what will be said now that the situation has changed so much for the worse. I honestly hope that they are reasonable enough to keep the kids out of it.

    I had a really good day today. I feel like I had a chance to be a parent and also a kid myself today. I had some great belly-laughs and saw sides of the kids that are new to me. I feel a bit lonely already for the weekend without them but at the same time am excited about my plans. The pain from a skinned knee is sharp at first but then fades as you get used to it and your body heals. That is all I can hope for myself for this weekend and in the future during the times without the kids.

    Til tomorrow –
    – Mama K

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