Staying Sane: Couch monster


This past week involved a lot of shifting around my little living room.   This was to make room for the Christmas tree.  I bought the cheapest, fake tree I could find.  So, it is actually quite long and skinny.  Which is AOK by me, since my little living room can’t really hold a lot of tree.   Anyway, dealing with the small space and trying to free up room by the windows to make room for a gorgeous, decorated, tall skinny tree was in order.  And guess what we found while moving the couch sectionals around the space…

  • 1 remote control
  • 1 piece of art from the kids – a picture of a hand-drawn fire truck that was beautifully drawn and colored
  • 5 bouncy balls, 1 golf ball, 1 other random ball
  • an assortment of Lego pieces
  • 1 pair of rabbit ears
  • the equivalent of a bowl full of popcorn and unpopped popcorn seeds
  • a hair clip
  • countless bits of crayons
  • some plastic toy bugs
  • about 5 marker caps
  • 1 empty bottle of children’s play nail-polish
  • some kids books
  • a few puzzle pieces
  • massive amounts of fuzz
  • likewise, lots of hardened coal-like guinea pig poop

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So, if you are driving yourself crazy trying to find that little “do-dad” that either you are missing, or worse yet, your child is missing (and thus throwing a tantrum and falling to pieces), there could be a possibility that the couch monster that was at my place is now at yours.   It might be worth a look under the couch to see what kind of gold could be lurking…

Have a great week everyone –

– Mama K

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July 25: Reuniting with the artists


Wednesday is the only day of the week that I am truly a “working mother”, where I actually have chunks of my day devoted to both roles.   Let me tell you.  It started out good, really good.  Then sucked.  Really sucked.   Then OK.  And then I got the kids and my day turned completely around.

Highlights of the Morning:

  • I woke up and immediately started organizing and taking out the trash bins.   I got home late last night, in the dark, so couldn’t get to this last night.  So there I was in my PJs walking my grounds grabbing gardening clippings and old sprinkler hoses and looking at the morning sun and breathing the crisp air while dodging the chickens.   I also packed down boxes from the IKEA office that is being assembled.
  • I got through a LOT of emails since I worked late last night to organize these upcoming meetings in Fall.  I received a speaker confirmation from a big industry player so am thrilled – and had a great conversation with him on the phone.  I love the fact that these people call me.  They call me back!   And I can sell the opportunity on-the-fly and convince this industry leader that it makes sense for him to come to MY meeting!   I love it.  I was pumped.
  • And then I had to leave for a mediation appointment.   I just can’t go there.   I completely do not trust this man.   And now our agreement on an improved daycare situation for Twin Crazy and Twin Husky is in jeopardy because of cost.  No kidding it’s expensive to live out here with daycare with four kids.  NOW HE GETS IT???!?!?!?!??!?!?    I sat there and all of the arguments that I was trying to convince him of about the unaffordability of this place were thrown back at me during this meeting.  By him AND our mediator.   Our mediator was shocked at the amount of money we spend in daycare.  No kidding.    It’s again like throwing salt in the wounds that are trying to heal.  I know this already.  I was pleading for years.   And here we are.   No resolutions so we may be in court next week.
  • Afterwards, I drove to the kids neighborhood but I worked in a local Starbucks.  I love that place.  I got a TON of stuff done.  Lots of coordination and follow up that I needed to attack and I really was so productive.   I then went to pick up the kids.

The Rest of the Day:

  • I showed up at Big Bro and Red’s daycare and was a bit shocked at their art fair.  I didn’t know it was happening.  But the classes each created art for auction to raise money for the school.  Big Bro’s class did photography.  He took a picture of ducks swimming.   Red’s class did pasta painting.  She created a colorful flower out of colored pasta.  They were more interested in eating the food (grapes and goldfish) but they also were proud of their art.  So was I.
  • Pick up with the Twins was hysterical.  Both were screaming Mommy Mommy Mommy!!!!!!   Twin Husky was so excited that he kept throwing his Tiger up in the air.  He kept doing it over and over again and his little body was catapaulting the stuffed Tigers all over the place.  So cute.  Twin Crazy was also excited and giving lots of hugs and kisses.  Twin Husky is using more of his words and he said “Mommy come over here” and he wanted to show me a bug.  It was a rolly-polly.  I told them that if they touch it, it will turn into a ball.  So I did and we were all laughing.  And then Twin Husky, clueless as usual, tried it as well but wound up smashing it all over the sidewalk.  Poor thing.
  • On the ride home we did not have any music but all talked.  Twin Crazy is amazingly verbal.  She was having full blown conversations about the guinea pig and the animals at the house and how we lock the doors to stay safe and how foxes eat chickens and on and on and on….   We talked about the motorcycles and how they weave along lanes of cars in traffic and how that can be dangerous.  We talked about the commuter train.  We talked about motorcyclists who were driving more safe than others.  We talked about how I saw deer on the road the other day.  We talked about the fog.  We talked a lot but I think Twin Crazy honestly did most of the talking.
  • At home I started on dinner and the kids went with me to get the mail.   We met neighbors walking their dog Rocco – a huge friendly dog that scared Twin Husky but thrilled Twin Crazy.   Red kept wanting to “do something” with me; we settled on Legos and I was going back and forth with Big Bro and Red while the Twins were outside talking and raking chicken poop.
  • Kids ate well.   We had smoothies for dessert.
  • Afterwards we did more Legos, and also drew.  Twin Husky and Twin Crazy were very proud of their art.  We hung everything on an “art wall” that I have in the kitchen and they were excited.  Red was coloring and I handed her the colors for her work.
  • Bedtime went really well.  They all listened with brushing teeth.  Twin Crazy and Twin Husky can now “spit” so I guess I can start them on real toothpaste tomorrow night.   All kids were good with books and all kids settled into bed reasonably fast.   It was a good night.

One thing that I’m really struck by is the difference in the Twins each Wednesday when I see them.  Only 3 days have gone by, but they are different.  Honestly.  I can’t believe how talkative Twin Crazy was tonight.  

I got soooooo much attention from all the kids.  I love Wednesdays.   I felt super productive at work – even though it was only a 1/2 day for me – and was reunited with the kids.   I can go to sleep happy tonight despite the mediation morning, which sucked royally.

Til tomorrow –

– Mama K

July 18: Teeth


Wednesday, working 1/2 day from home, then I get the kids.  We had a big day today.

Highlights of My Working Day:

  • I woke up super early.  Did some laundry.  Set up for work.  It was chilly so I put the fire on.   I love this house.
  • I was very productive today.  I arranged speakers for two forums and talked with an ex-colleague.   Sent out some emails regarding a media interview.  I may be interviewed on Monday; I’ll find out over the next day or two.
  • I wrapped up at 12:30 to get the kids.

Highlights of the Rest of the Day:

  • Picked up all kids; went to the Dentist!  All kids were great.  Red got x-rays.   Kids played before hand.  Big kids were amazingly still and calm during their checkup so Twin Crazy and Twin Husky were completely OK with their check up.  They all did great.  Big Bro picked mint toothpaste, Red picked Orange, Twin Husky picked Grape, and Twin Crazy picked Strawberry.
  • We went to Home Depot to return some dead plants and I picked up some others that will thrive around the house.  I pulled the divorced mom of four kids story and got 50% of my new plants, after returning the dead ones with tags still on them (but no receipt).   I was pumped.
  • Got back to the house and the Legos arrived from Amazon.  All kids were busy with their Legos.
  • We ate fast – Twin Husky cut up his hot dog.  
  • The grandkids next door (other next door – the house with the chickens) came over to play.  We played ball in the backyard.  So I had 7 kids on my hands.
  • I picked some weeds and fed the chickens.
  • Bedtime was rough.  The kids are taking a long time to get used to this transition at this house.  I talked with the girls for awhile.   Twin Crazy is a parrot to Red.  She repeats EVERYTHING.  Questions and all.   “Do foxes walk on two or four legs?  Do foxes eat chickens?  Do foxes eat guinnea pigs?  Do foxes eat fish?   What do dogs eat?  How do dogs eat?  I love the sound of crickets.   Is the guinnea pig safe because he’s in his cage?”
  • I told Twin Crazy that I loved her and kissed her forehead.  She said I love you right back.  I did the same for Red.  I told them that I’m so happy that they are here.

I had a great day.  I felt super-productive at work, and had a really long and diverse time with the kids.  Dentists, plant shopping, Legos, playing ball…. it was great.

July 13: Great day because of a dead car??!!?!


It’s Friday.   My car is still dead.  Battery.   This was a sweet blessing.  I couldn’t drive Big Bro and Red to daycare.  So instead, we had  a day at my house.  I usually take them out on activities while I have them all, but today we were stranded.  So it was a bit unusual but still so sweet.

Highlights of the Morning:

  • I woke up to Twin Husky, Twin Crazy, and Red all at the same time.
  • I checked the car.  Yes, it was dead.  YES!
  • I decided it would be a long breakfast day.  Pancakes.  Shit.  I only had a tiny bit of the instant stuff.  The other stuff requires milk and egg.  I had no eggs.  SHIT.  Big Bro and Red offered to go next door to our neighbor’s house to sweet talk some fresh eggs.  It worked.  They said they must be for breakfast.  Big Bro and Red replied “Pancakes”.   They each came back with one egg.  One orange, one blue.   Fresh from the chickens.  I love this place.
  • The kids made a maze for Cocoa which included his house, his new toy tunnel, and a huge blanket.   There were some fights over who could go into the “girls room”.   For some reason Twin Husky is always the kid that is left out.  He is sometimes backed up by his twin Twin Crazy, but oftentimes not when in front of big sister and big brother.  I had to enter the room and bring Twin Husky with me, and remind him to be well behaved, not throw anything, and not put anything in his pockets.
  • Afterwards some of us fed weeds to the chickens and also rotated the compost bin while we were out there.  
  • I was checking and responding to emails.  I conference call that I had scheduled at 10 AM was cancelled.  Thank goodness since I took the call originally thinking I would be on the highway.  Now that I was home with all four a call with a client would not have been possible.  I’m glad it was cancelled on me.
  • The kids were enthralled by the sewer guys doing routine maintenance cleaning out the roots and debris from the underground sewer system.  The workers had to use the backyard to get to a sewer cover in the back.  They commented on the work that was done in the backyard, and that the other neighbors did not have the tiered patio the way that I do.  They complimented the look of the house and congratulated all of us.  The kids just wanted to know if there was too much poop that clogged up the sewer or not.
  • Big Bro saved pages in his Star Wars Lego encyclopedia for the different sets that he is interested in “building”.  He must have had 20 pages flagged.  I asked him to narrow it down to 1 or 2.  He seriously got so excited at the thought of a new set that he anxiously ran into the house to start culling the possibilities down.
  • I did some laundry and the kids loved it.
  • Then we just did some relaxing.  I was making lunch and turned around to see Red reading a book, the boys playing quietly with Cocoa, and Twin Crazy getting set up to read.   So sweet.  I love hanging out in the house with them, just being ourselves.
  • There were a lot of flies in the house so Big Bro went hunting for them with a fly swatter and then I carried the dead ones over to our venus flytrap.  I showed the kids how the flytrap works by putting flies into the leaves and they would quickly close.  How cool.   There’s no shortage of flies in this house so we’ll probably gather them faster than the plant can consume them.
  • The twins went down for their naps.

 

 

 

Highlights of the Afternoon:

  • Red and Big Bro were playing with chickens.  Red was picking them all day long.  She is really good at it.  The chickens just let her swoop them up.  There were a few times I caught Twin Husky chasing them with a rubber mallet and I’m glad the chickens are as fast as they are.
  • Big Bro and Red went shopping with me on my iPad for Lego sets.  I got one set for each kid.  Big Bro and Red helped me to pick out sets they thought that Twin Crazy and Twin Husky would like.  Big Bro was having a great time shopping.  He was great when I would sometimes say “too much money” and would not even cause a fuss.   Some of these Star Wars sets are outrageously expensive.
  • After naps, we snacked.  Twin Crazy then sat down and read some books out loud again.  I love this stage that she is in right now.
  • Kids went outside to run while I was waiting for roadside assistance for yet another jump-start.
  • It finally got there and the kids had a good time watching the car get “fixed”.

After dropping the kids off I went to the Toyota dealership to drop off the van.  They gave me a car to use in the meantime.  I Prius!    Half electric, half gas!  It gets 50 miles to the gallon!!  I love it!  I asked when they would come out with a minivan and the salesperson laughed.  They will be coming out with a station wagon and SUV so maybe a mini-van is not that far out of reach several years from now when the Toyota “dies” for good.

I had fun driving home and decided that I did not want to go home right away.  I went to a hot spot in my new town where they have AMAZING lamb-burgers (only 20% ground lamb… but SOOOOOO yummy).   A beer also hit the spot.  It felt good to be out.   In a normal environment.   I felt good.  I had a good day with the kids essentially doing nothing.   They were reasonably well-behaved except for the “my room” thing and teasing Twin Husky.  

It is chilly outside and I am typing in my living room under a cozy blanket with the fireplace on.  And a fly zooming around my head.  The crickets outside.   It was a good day.

Happy weekend all –

– Mama K

June 4: Rain, rain go away


A rainy Monday.   After an amazing weekend with the kids, in duos.   Last night when I came back with Twin Husky and Twin Crazy, the reunion with Red and Big Bro was fun – lots of chatter and banter.   The children miss each other when they are away, but I can also tell that they like the more attention that separation from their siblings brings.

Highlights of the Morning:

  • All of the kids were still snoozing past 7:10 AM.  Quite unusual.  I guess that’s what good baths and full weekends do; plus rainy Monday mornings.
  • Twin Husky looked confused when he got up; Twin Crazy was immediately playful.  Playing hide-and-seek, talking, laughing, … what a difference in personalities
  • I dressed Twin Crazy and got rid of her “dirty stinky diaper” – she’s regressed with potty training which is understandable with the changes in her life right now.
  • Red was waking up slowly; her hair all over the place but clean.  When her eyes were finally focused, she woke up and out of bed just fine.  Fixing her sheets, and asking (demanding) me to gather her things (backpack, baby, seal animal, jacket…..).  This is our routine together.  Me and her joking about all of her stuff.
  • Big Bro got up without a problem.  He wanted to bring his “bad guy” Legos to school today and bring his “good guy” Legos tomorrow.  
  • The kids were all laughing about a small rubber chicken keychain toy that Big Bro pulled apart.  You can now see a hole in it and they were laughing about the “chicken’s butt”.
  • The kids were walking around on tippy toes which I thought was cute.
  • Big Bro wanted to tell me about rainy days at school and what they do at recess if its raining.  How they watch movies instead and how today he hopes that it rains all day so he can watch two movies.
  • Red wanted me to help her find her favorite clothes in the dryer.   She was happy.
  • Big Bro needed help finding clean socks.  We went “fishing” together for clean socks out of the dryer. 
  • I started a load of wash and then we were off.  Big Bro rode today with the Motley Crew.   I packed up Twin Crazy and Twin Husky.   Red wanted to go too and was upset.  I said I would pick her up from school today.   It’s hard to hear their cries when they can’t come with me.  If it were up to me I would take all of them.

I’m on the ferry and it is gray.   I have certain things that I want to focus on for work to prepare for the Fall forums and also turn to sales for new memberships.    I also need to attend an internal meeting related to these forums with a Director from another office that I’m not excited about.  He will likely play a larger role in my forums since the Director that is involved with them now is retiring at the end of the year.   This other Director is moving in and managing him will be a challenge.

I also need to organize some things for home:   order a garbage bin, call to check on Batman (the sick guinea pig), order service to hook up my TV and run wires for surround-sound.   Follow up with the fence and hand-rail project.  Confirm schedules for Custody Evaluation.   I think that’s it on a personal front. 

Highlights of My Working Day:

  • I decided to buy a HUGE breakfast sandwich as I was dodging the cold rain to the office. 
  • I got through a ton of emails and sent out an invoice for our project which just ended. 
  • I received word that our client that requested a high-level proposal checked internally and they do not need our help at this time.  🙂
  • I went through some financials of the forums we are running to see how profitable they are; and also thought through approach for sales
  • We had an internal meeting where we talked about the accounting and how to standardize some of the work that we do with the forums; also an approach to reach more prospects to generate new members.

The day went by quickly but I feel like I did not accomplish much of anything.    Hopefully tomorrow I’ll feel more productive.

Dinner and Bedtime:

  • I was so exhausted on the ferry home that I did not write but instead slept.  I am drained.
  • I picked everyone up and was surprised to see Twin Husky in a brand new outfit – cute little jeans (with pockets) and a collar polo shirt.   Their daycare provider purchased it for him; he looked so handsome and even repeated that over and over.  He loves the pockets.
  • I got home and started to boil water for pasta.  As this was going, I started to break down cardboard boxes to recycle, related to my move.  The kids were all outside playing and the neighbors were out there too so it was nice.  I enjoyed myself but found I was running into the street WAY to much to fetch their balls.  
  • Dinner was fast and the kids ate well.
  • All were fighting and cranky so we started bedtime earlier; I had the younger ones but the older ones wanted to be with me; co-parent was completely frustrated.  I dressed the younger ones, read to the older ones, sang to the younger ones, and am in bed now. 

 

My plan for tonight was to start dismantling my bed.  I just don’t know if I’ll be able to start this project.   I can also do the curtains so I might just do that instead.   Red is now crying and I just can’t take this.  I cannot wait until June 15th when I can be free from this sterile house and remnants of lost hopes and dreams.   I’ve completely let go and need to move on and staying here through the end of the school year is really hard.   I can’t wait until the 15th when I can start to breathe again.   I’m missing my house and I want to be there.  And be there with the kids in their laughter and fits of cranky rage.   And of course, the weeds.

Til tomorrow –

Mama K

May 14: Balls, bubbles, and bellyaches


Monday – all kids up and out and it’s to work in the city for me.

Highlights of My Morning and Commute:

  • Red and Big Bro both found clothes they liked since all laundry was done and in their rooms with all of their favorites.
  • Red was having trouble finding a “house” that came with a pajamas gift for her over the weekend. She likes to carry around her things in this box, along with all of the other bags of her favorites. Twin Husky over-heard this and he remembered where the box was. He took us to my room and there it was! I praised him and made a big deal about how he helped Red to find what she was looking for and how great that was. How much of a good brother he was and how he must love his sister. He was smiling from ear to ear. I said how it must feel good to help someone and how wonderful it was and how happy Red was. He was jumping up and down and smiling at this point. He even reached out and gave Red a hug.
  • Twin Husky was walking around and playing with a “light saver” toy of Big Bro’s (actually, he found it somewhere and I need to figure out where so we can return it). Twin Husky was so cute swinging the thing around and acting like a big boy.
  • Big Bro had a splinter in his foot this morning so I spent some time tweezing it out. It was a small sucker but he (Big Bro) put up a fight.
  • Twin Crazy was VERY clingy this morning. She was also asking for a lot of water. I felt her head and she felt slightly feverish. Poor thing. I hope its not too bad. I packed some medicine for her with the rest of their daycare things.
  • Big Bro headed out with the Motley Crew – he is the leader of the pack today.
  • I dropped Red off and was making fun of her and all of her stuff…. backpacks, knapsacks, a purse, the pajama box, her hat, a jacket…. she looks like a bag lady.

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The ferry ride in was fine; I talked most of the way with a neighbor.

Highlights of My Working Day:

  • I organized the conferencing capability for our sales call tomorrow. We will be using a WebEx service and I needed to get familiar with it. I made changes to the discussion document and sent it out to the internal team for review. I made some changes to it after talking with my Director. I also talked with our partner on it as well so I think we’re in good shape. I hope this turns into something – I would love to have this initiative launched and attached to my name.
  • I also reworked the Executive Summary for the client deliverable from last week and sent to our client. The deliverable itself needs work and I will be the one that has to do it, I have a feeling. I’ll wait on that for tomorrow AM and Wednesday.

I’m on the ferry now and it is really nice outside. I’m looking forward to getting the kids. I need to see them and hug them. I need some reassurance today.

Over the weekend we talked to the kids about “two homes” and there were no tears – I think that will be to come. They understand the concept of two different houses with time with daddy and time with mommy. Later on on Saturday night I talked to them about it again and told them that I went through it when I was a kid and it felt scary and new; that they can always talk with me and if they have any questions. Red wanted to know what would happen if my house breaks when I am there alone. She also wanted to know what would I do if I am alone. “I will think of you kids and I will miss you. But I will know that I’ll see you again real soon.” Big Bro wanted to know if there are kids there and if they are nice. They liked the idea of the chickens. They wanted to see pictures of the house so I showed them. They asked if I could keep our existing house and have co-parent go to the other house. They wanted to get new Legos for the new house. We will visit it next weekend and it will get harder once the separation actually happens. I was soooooooooooo scared for this first talk but it went easier than expected. Probably because the kids don’t understand. I asked if they were sad and they didn’t know. I asked them if they were more like confused, and they said yes. So they are confused, do not know what is happening. Big Bro is upset that I won’t be with him riding bikes to school anymore. But that would happen anyway since there will be a change for the summer. He doesn’t understand that either. I guess I just have to take this slowly with them.

Dinner and Bedtime:

  • I picked up Red with her tons of stuff. We were joking about all of her things on the way to the car.
  • We picked up the Twins and yes, Twin Crazy was very sick today. 103.5 fever! The daycare provider only has the twins so she gave her medicine and put cold towels on her to bring the fever down – she also has a stomach issue with bad poops all day long. I knew the little girl was not right this morning. She was sooooo clingy – drinking lots of water and had a slight temperature. I didn’t think it would be THAT bad though.
  • I picked up Big Bro and followed him home as he rode his bike. While we were waiting for him to arrive on his bike I looked back and Twin Crazy had on a pair of Mr. Potato Head eyeglasses on, but upside-down and on her forehead. She cracks me up.
  • At home, I made dinner while the kids played outside. Balls and bubbles. Twin Crazy was playing which was good.
  • After dinner we played with Legos, read books. Big Bro and Twin Husky were playing ball together which I LOVED watching. I helped Big Bro find the Lego pieces he needed. Twin Husky was busy kicking balls and throwing toys over the dollhouse.
  • Twin Crazy tried to eat some Jello but was not that interested in it.
  • Bedtime with Red and Big Bro was fine. They are both quiet up there now and I think are drifting off to sleep. Red had her pile of stuff all over the floor of her bed.

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I am very, very tired. I hope Twin Crazy is OK tonight. I’ll likely wake up to check on her because of the high fever she had today.

Til tomorrow –
– Mama K

May 9: The birth of a homeowner…


Fast morning! Since my day yesterday was so funky in terms of work, I am working from the office today so I had a normal routine with the kids and all of the drop-offs.

Highlights of the Morning and Commute:

  • I woke up and got ready, packed up Big Bro’s lunch before anyone else got up.
  • I went to get Twin Husky and Twin Crazy. “Mommy!!!!!!!” So cute. Twin Husky is so cuddly. He always wakes up so happy. I held him for a bit while sitting next to Twin Crazy’s crib – she takes a bit longer to wake up. She was then ready and we grabbed up all of her “stuff” (blankets, babies, stuffed animals). She had a dry diaper!!!! I’m so proud of her.
  • Red was awake and happy. But she rejected her clothes and requested that we see what was downstairs in the laundry room. I did a load of wash yesterday so there was plenty there for her to choose from.
  • Big Bro picked out a new short set outfit he received from Nana for his birthday. He looks awesome in it and he loves it. He looks like a full-fledged boy and I just can’t believe that he is 6 years old. So much has happened in my life and my relationships over these past 6 years.
  • Downstairs the Twins and Red all wanted cereal. They all ate well with no issues. I got Big Bro’s toast ready while dishing out vitamins to everyone.
  • Everyone was ready so quickly. We were doing great on time. There were no breakdowns with one exception – Red was asking for more “sunscreen” for school but I had a hard time understanding her. So that got her upset for a bit (but no tears). She did great and she tried again a few moments later, really trying hard and slow to say the word “sunscreen”. I understood her. She smiled. I said I would buy some today on my phone and it would get here tomorrow (thank you Amazon!!!)
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    I am now on the ferry thinking about what I need to do today. I have to debrief from the client meeting from yesterday and there will be more to do but not much. I also have to get our materials organized for our forum sales meeting next week. That will be top priority today. So I think today will actually be quite smooth. I feel much more relaxed, less under-the-gun. I may work on some personal items as well which need some focused thinking. I am closing on the house today but will likely not be able to pick up the keys until tomorrow. I’m looking forward to getting that set of keys in my hand!

    Highlights of My Working Day:

  • I worked on survey materials to sent to participants of our sell meeting on 5/15 and worked with a consultant to get it loaded in our survey tool
  • I reviewed my notes from our client meeting yesterday and wrote up what our team needed to do, changes to make to the Final Deliverable, and areas of follow on work for the company.
  • I scheduled some prep meetings over the next several days
  • I worked on personal items today as well – I’ll likely book this as 1/2 day work.
  • I CLOSED AND RECORDED ON THE HOUSE TODAY!!!! I will go there tomorrow and pick up my keys, measure the rooms, and start to line up appliance purchases, a shed, and I also want to get a fence and handrails put in. Oh… .and furniture. For the kids, kitchen, and living room. And maybe a rocking bench for the front yard. Lots to buy. I’m excited.
  • So now I’m on the ferry and feeling giddy. I’m looking forward to being with the kids tonight and also seeing them with Batman. I feel better when co-parent is not around. I enjoy these times alone with the children. I can’t wait until I’m in my own space and I’m able to make it comfortable so that the kids feel like it is their space too. I want them to be part of this even though they will likely be crushed when we tell them what is happening. We are going to talk with them this Saturday morning about the divorce. And we will go on a road-trip to see the house the following weekend. This is the calm before the storm, but to be honest its been feeling pretty stormy already. But today is a ray of sunshine. I am happy. I am a homeowner. And I am working towards a better life for me and I’m hoping for the children as well.

    Dinner and Bedtime:

  • I went to pick up Red first. I told the teachers and directors there about my home purchase and the fact that we are going to tell the children this Saturday. So to be there for Red if she is having a tough time next week. The Director broke out in tears. She doesn’t understand how anyone cannot put their children first. I can’t either.
  • I picked up the Twins next. They were both excited; Twin Husky sitting in Big Bro’s seat and Twin Crazy running over to a tricycle to show me how she can ride it.
  • I picked up Big Bro next. Everyone else wanted to come inside too. They found the cupcakes and had the birthday celebration today. The pan was put on top of the refrigerator – I still don’t understand how they got lost. oh well. I’ve been talking to Big Bro about it and how I’m sorry about it and how he must have been disappointed since he was expecting them. He doesn’t say much. I’m not sure if it’s because he doesn’t really care or if he just doesn’t like talking about it.
  • I ordered a pizza and then we headed home.
  • We played with Batman for a bit and even fed him a carrot. He LOVED it. Twin Husky held him and he was so cute looking down at Batman. So sweet. Twin Crazy was busy trying on my shoes. Each of the kids took a turn at holding him. The novelty of picking out the poops has already worn off for them.
  • I can’t believe it but Twin Husky had yet ANOTHER kitchen flooding incident. This was not as bad as the first two, but still….. I need to figure out how to disable the ice/water dispenser.
  • I was cleaning up downstairs a bit, waiting for the pizza to come when I realized that all of the kids were upstairs and it was WAY to quiet up there. So I went up, but they were all being good! They were all in Big Bro and Red’s room together. Big Bro was doing Legos, Twin Husky was laying on Big Bro’s bed, and Red and Twin Crazy were playing together. They were all so quiet. They were all so good! And they were all together! I loved it. So I sat with them for a bit and then heard the doorbell ring. Pizza was here.
  • All ate well. I asked “raise your hand if you want desert tonight” and the kids were all raising their hands. Twin Husky was raising both of his hands REAL high and shaking them back and forth which made me laugh.
  • We then had baths and a round of cupcakes.
  • I started Twins bedtime routine; they love the book “The Hairy Toe” and I read it so that it’s scary and then funny at the end. They love it. They went right to sleep, no problems.
  • I then sat with Big Bro and Red for a bit. Big Bro wanted me to help him find the Lego pieces as he was putting the set together. Red sat on my lap and we found the pieces for him. It was our quiet time together.
  • I showed Red the sunscreen that I ordered for her from Amazon. We then ordered bandaids for the kids since we are out. Again, I love Amazon.
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    I am now outside of their room finishing this up; I feel like I have so much on my mind. I’m worried about money. My cash flow situation is so scary these days. And there’s a lot going on with the divorce. I’m feeling strong again. I’m OK when he is not around – I get angry and strong. I’m looking forward to the house but also concerned for the children. I just want things to go as easy as they can for them. They are so happy now and it crushes me to know that it will end in just a few days. I’ve had a great week with them so far – they respond to me (except for Twin Husky and the water). Big Bro is a breeze. No whining or tantrums. It is just easier.

    Tomorrow I will get my keys. Tomorrow I will walk the house and measure the rooms. And start to go online and shop for a refrigerator (probably with no water/ice dispenser) and washer / dryer. Then furniture — I think bar stools first since I can probably get away without the rest for the time being…. I also need to buy a mini-van. Again, cash flow is scary now. Somehow I’ll make it work out. I know I will.

    Til tomorrow –
    – Mama K

    May 8: Sometimes you try so hard and it just doesn’t matter


    It is the end of the day and I can’t even begin to explain the complexities of my day today. I was working, running, picking up messes, delivering client presentations, baking cupcakes, wiping butts, … …. …. and sometimes you work so hard and it just doesn’t matter.

    Highlights of the Morning and Commute:

  • Chocolate Tuesday. Kids ate great; the morning was uneventful with the exception of some good bonding time between Red and Batman. Twins were in great moods and probably supercharged from the sugar.
  • Big Bro and Red both got dressed quickly and we were all out the door without a problem. Big Bro woke up to a Spiderman helium balloon that I tied to his bed the night before. I do that for each of the kids on the mornings of their birthdays.
  • However…. the Twins’ daycare provider could not take them today because of a funeral. And I STILL did not have back-up care lined up with the exception of a neighbor and I hated to impose like that… so I dropped Red off and came back with the Twins, hoping I could find the solution
  • I immediately looked for their immunization records which was needed by Red’s daycare to have them come in on a drop-in basis. Great news…. I found them no problem. Bad news… I left a message for them in the AM but they didn’t get back to me until 10 AM and by that point the festivities (tragedies) of the day were already in full swing…
  • We played with Batman for a bit. Twin Crazy had fun holding him.
  • Twin Husky showed me his “work” from the other day – a card that he was drawing on. I overheard the twins talking about it with each other and Twin Husky asking Twin Crazy to sit with him. They were so cute. I got them set up with paper and markers for “their work” so that I could begin my working day too….
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    Highlights of My Working Day:

  • I had one conference call at 9 AM which I was able to muddle through most of the time on mute. But there were still some Twin talk in the background so I’m sure I didn’t get away scot-free.
  • It was the call at 9:30 that was the serious problem. I mean, a HORRENDOUS problem. It was a team meeting for a joint sales presentation we are delivering next week. Essentially I am organizing it and I’m a bit stressed at the lack of participation from our business partner and also their lack of understanding of what we are trying to do. I am very protective now of the business development efforts we do and am hesitant to bring in partners, for concern over their own motivations and using our client relationships…. anyway…. i digress. At one point in the conversation the Twins really started to get crazy. And I was leading this call. There was no way to go on mute. So I simply went outside in the yard to finish the conversation. It was literally only 10 – 15 minutes of outside talk time. Having twins does not simply double the trouble. No way. Because they team up with each other. They work together to elevate the trouble to an entirely different level. Within the 10 – 15 minutes, they (one of them) brought their little chair over to the refrigerator, and began to empty the entire ice dispenser out all over the kitchen floor. Then, they (someone) started with the water spout from the refrigerator. Then, twin Husky started filling up water cups and when I came in he was in the process of dumping the entire cup all over Twin Crazy’s head. So of course that erupted into wails. I quickly walked outside to finish the call, albeit in shock. In two minutes I was back inside, waddling through a sea of ice-water in the kitchen and dealing with two wailing Twins who were freezing cold. It was at this point that Red’s daycare called me back and said they had room. I asked when can I bring them over and they said “as soon as you can so they can transition”. THANK YOU GOD.
  • I gathered their things and told them what was happening. They know Red’s school well – I bring them there all the time to either pick her up or drop her off. So they were excited that THEY were going to school. To play with friends. To play outside. To color. To sing. To read books. To eat. To go night-night. We packed up their blankets, Twin Crazy’s lovey, Twin Husky’s Tiger. Changes of clothes. The class was in the yard when we got there. We got to see Red. The Twins fell right into the outside routine with all of the kids. I was impressed. Twin Crazy just went off and explored and started to play with a tricycle. Twin Husky was investigating a play structure. Twin Crazy was smiling ear to ear. And then squealing with Red, who was looking over the fence with her friends. Twin Husky was clingy when it was time for me to go. I asked Twin Crazy if she was OK and if it was OK if I go while she played at school, and she said “yeah” without a problem. No tears from that one. It got me a bit down seeing them in that environment. I really don’t think the daycare where they are now is good for them at this stage in their development. They need to be with other kids besides themselves.
  • I ran home and had enough time to bake 24 cupcakes for Big Bro during his aftercare class. I was running short on time but I needed to do this for him since it was his birthday and he was expecting the cupcakes. I guess someone else would have been preparing for the client meeting – but I was focused on those cupcakes for my child. You only turn 6 once, and he is at an age where he remembers these things.
  • I got myself ready in record time – big client presentation for my client project
  • I dropped off the cupcakes but the aftercare door was locked. I went into the kitchen of the school and left them with someone with specific instructions about the aftercare building and Big Bro’s name. She said for me not to worry he would get them.
  • I hauled ass to my client meeting. Stopped at Trader Joe’s for a salad.
  • We had the meeting. It went well. I made the mistake of mentioning to my Director on the team that I might have to leave early. He rolled his eyes. After the meeting he mentioned that I seemed distracted. Hmmmm. Maybe a divorce underway? Home purchase? Children in a daycare center that is brand new to them? Me rushing all around this morning not even knowing if I was going to make it to the meeting? My kid’s birthday? Wondering if the cupcakes got to him OK? Thinking about the flood in my kitchen that happened not even 4 hours ago? Distracted? OF COURSE I’M DISTRACTED!!!!!!!!!!!! So it doesn’t matter that I bust ass to try to get this work done, even though I tell them that it is virtually impossible for me to do client projects….. I got there. I presented well. I was confident. I didn’t even look at the deck before presenting. These things just don’t bother me. I was there. I made it. But it didn’t matter. I was “distracted”.
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    Dinner and Bedtime:

  • I got home in enough time to change cars to the mini-van and also buy gas. Then went straight to daycare to pick up the Twins and Red. They were so cute sitting at the table having a snack. The teachers said they had a great time, no tears. They stayed close to each other most of the day. But they had fun. I loved seeing them there. They said goodbye to everyone on their way out.
  • We picked up Red and she was excited to see us.
  • We then picked up Big Bro. I asked him about the cupcakes. He said there weren’t any cupcakes. I asked the workers about the cupcakes. They said there weren’t any cupcakes. WHAT?!??!?!?!?!?!?!??!?! You mean I bust my ass to get these here and there ARE NO CUPCAKES?????? It’s not even the wasted effort or the rushing that pissed me off… it was that I disappointed Big Bro. He was expecting cupcakes at aftercare. And we talked about it. And they didn’t get to him. I felt like a failure. I felt like I disappointed him. I was probably more disappointed than he was, but I still can’t believe it.
  • He rode his bike home. I asked him to think about what he wanted for dinner. He wanted mac-n-cheese (boxed kind) but with two additional pasta shapes added to it. I add real cheddar cheese to this. So he picked out the shapes.
  • As the water was starting to boil, we went in to cuddle with Batman. The kids are holding him and he is getting to know us. We were all there except for Twin Husky. Big Bro decided to go to the kitchen to start on the cheese mix and he ran back into the room saying “Mommy… something REALLY bad happened in the kitchen… you’re not going to like it……”. I was immediately worried about Twin Husky….
  • The floor was flooded AGAIN. Twin Husky was no-where to be found. Big Bro found him upstairs hiding in Big Bro’s bed.
  • Dinner went great; we all ate everything
  • 3 saved cupcakes split between 4 kids along with ice-cream went great. We all sang happy birthday.
  • Presents went great – we received boxes from my mom and dad for Big Bro to open; Big Bro got some clothes and FOUR lego sets having to do with superheros.
  • After dinner Big Bro worked on Legos. Red held Batman. Twins were acting crazy.
  • I started on Twins bedtime routine and did lots of kissing with them and talking about school. They were both tired.
  • Downstairs I worked with Big Bro on the Lego sets and picked out the pieces for him as he followed the directions.
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    They are both drifting to sleep now as I type this outside of their rooms. I had a very busy, hectic, crazy extreme day. Lots of kid-time, but lots of disasters. Flooded kitchens, crazy conference calls, last-minute back up child care, a child’s birthday, missing cupcakes, and a Director that doesn’t understand what it is like to be a mother consultant of four small kids that is going through a divorce AND buying a house and thinking about cupcakes and what to do tonight to make her son’s birthday special. He just doesn’t get it. I was THERE at the meeting and in the end it doesn’t matter. I will hear about how I was distracted.

    At least the kids were all happy today. At least Batman is beginning to trust our family. At least the closing on the house looks promising for tomorrow. And at least we are all breathing, and living, and with each other in this moment. And at least Big Bro had a great birthday, from what I can tell.

    Til tomorrow –
    – Mama K

    January 17: They’re back at home!!!


    Last night when I got home all kids were actually up. So I had the chance to hug them, hold them, read to them, talk to them, and watch them as they endlessly showed me all of the great toys they received over the weekend. There were a lot of “Mommy look at this…”. It was so cute. I had to hold each child for a while.

  • Twin Husky had a hard time going to sleep which is VERY unusual. So I sat with him in the dark and told him that he came back to me and that it was OK. We sat in silence and then he was OK to go to bed.
  • Twin Crazy needed help with her nose – which means I had to put Aquafore on her chapped nose to make it feel better. She seemed satisfied with that.
  • I had to hold Red and read her The Tale of Peter Rabbit.
  • I had to sit with Tyler and listen as he told me all about his new legos.
  • Highlights of the Morning and Commute:

    I took no pictures this morning. I just wanted to soak in the moment with the kids. It was great to see them sitting in their breakfast stools this morning. It was chocolate Tuesday so all kids were excited.

  • Twin Crazy let me pull her hair back so she could better eat. She kept spilling her oatmeal and would tell me about it so I cleaned it up and pushed in her seat. There. All better.
  • Twin Husky wanted “more chocolate” in his deep, husky voice. He spent the rest of the morning strolling around his tigers, and also walking around with Big Bro’s yo-yo.
  • Red was doing really well. We only had one issue with one sock this morning. I think I’m going to try to find seamless socks for her. I think that will help.
  • Big Bro was great. He was very cooperative. Except that he was missing his backpack. I told him that going forward ALL of our things for the next day NEED to be put in their right spot so we can find everything. Shoes, jackets, backpacks. I really try to stick to this routine but it doesn’t work when we all don’t do things consistently. Going forward we will.
  • I dropped off Twins and Big Bro – I barely made it to the ferry. I had literally one minute to spare.
  • Now I’m on the ferry and it is cold. I have a large coffee with me. I am hungry and have no make-up on (back to the normal routine!!). I will need to work on the presentation for our proposal meeting tomorrow, and will also need to start to prepare for two planning meetings for our forums in April. I also need to start the outreach to potential guests to get them to attend. And I have a lot on my mind on personal matters. Somehow I need to get to some of that today too. It will be busy for me. I’m going to buy myself a breakfast sandwhich on the way into work.

    Highlights of My Working Day:

  • I grabbed a big breakfast sandwich on my way to work. I didn’t bother to put on make-up or doing anything with myself. I felt like hunkering down in my office and getting shit done.
  • I organized discussion materials for our proposal meeting tomorrow. We will present our project objectives and approach to our potential client. It will be me and one Director going. I get to wear a suit!
  • I got my schedule mixed up and wound up missing a meeting that I lead. It is a standing sales meeting related to a forum we are launching and I moved it up so someone in the U.K. could attend. Well, I missed it. Shit. So I sent out the materials late, and we will [try to] meet again in two weeks time.
  • I had a feedback session from one of our meetings in October. I hear the same things from each of these meetings, yet always something a bit different… interesting.
  • I organized the notes from one of the meetings back in October. We collectively decided that we would not send out minutes to ANY of the forums since we were all so late. It would look ridiculous to send them out now. But we do need them for our files, and to help us prepare for the next sets of meetings in April. So, I got one finished off, and I have one more to left to do.
  • I spent time working on personal things as well. A lot of writing. Thankfully for this blog, I think I’ve gotten much faster at putting my thoughts to paper. It didn’t take me long to clean up what I had written over the weekend.
  • Dinner and Bedtime:

    I talked with a neighbor on the way back on the ferry. I am in good spirits. I will be on my own tonight with the kids since hubby will not be there and since our Mother’s Helper cancelled on us. So, I was actually looking forward to being there with the kids, solo.

  • I picked up Red and she was excited to show me her sparkly hairbands. She let me wear one.
  • I ordered a pizza on the ride over to Big Bro.
  • We picked up Big Bro and then he started a crying/whining episode about Lego pieces. Unbelievable. Why is this kid always so hard to handle at these times of day? I think we need to pack more food in his lunch or something. I’ll do that as a test tomorrow to see if it makes a difference.
  • Twin pickup was so cute. They were inside, playing with blocks. Twin Husky made a road with his blocks and was driving a car down the line of blocks. Twin Crazy built a very intricate wall with her blocks (apparently with the daycare provider) and was very proud of it. Then Twin Husky came over and knocked it down. Twin Crazy pursed her lips and held back a laugh. They were way too cute.
  • At home, we organized our shoes and jackets. They are all in one place so we know where everything is tomorrow.
  • Pizza came right away! All kids ate well – particularly Big Bro.
  • I couldn’t believe it, but it was only 6:20 PM when we finished dinner!!!! We had lots of playtime. I also couldn’t help but get some cleaning up done. The place was a disaster. I also did some laundry, but then spent the rest of the time playing with the kids.
  • Big Bro was playing Legos.
  • Twin Crazy and Twin Husky were playing with milk and blowing bubbles through a straw. They both wound up drenched in milk. I tried to reprimand them but they were too cute that I needed to take a picture.
  • Red was helping me clean up. She was also busy with her Princess stickers.
  • I spent time tickling Red, Twin Crazy, and Twin Husky.
  • Twin bedtime was fast; they both need vaseline on their noses now before bed. I guess it makes them feel better.
  • Bedtime with Red and Big Bro was really cute. We read 1/2 books since we were tired. We researched Lego directions on my iPad since Big Bro does not know how to put one of his hand-me-down Lego trucks back together. There was lots of potty time. Me: “OK go back to bed now Miss Poopy.”….. Red: “OK I’ll go to bed now Miss Cleans My Poopy Butt.”
  • I asked them if I told them yet how much I missed them over the weekend. Of course they said “No.”. So I squeezed both of them as hard as I could and said “This much!!!” I then started to blow them kisses, they wiped them off, and I said that they just rubbed them in further in their skin. Red told me that I’m funny. I wanted to scoop her up just then and never put her back down.
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    After they got to bed, I cleaned up a sink-full of dirty dishes, took out the compost, cleaned up more crap, folded clothes, got stacks of clothes ready for the Twins, got clothes out for Red, for Big Bro, organized a pile of jackets, and organized a pile of shoes. I will be solo tomorrow and I want to do as much as I can tonight to make it easier on all of us. I also pre-programmed the coffee machine for tomorrow AM.

    It’s late – but I had a GREAT time with the kids. We had so much play time. And while I was busy bustling about and talking to them, I was also getting things done around the house. They were all either busy with themselves, or with each other. There was activity in all directions, but there were no fights, no tantrums, and no drama!!!! I loved it. It was actually very relaxing.

    So I’m sitting here in my bed with my bedwarmer on and feeling really good about the day. I had a busy day at work and a busy day at home. And good conversation in-between.

    Til tomorrow,
    – Mama K

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