Aug 9 and 10 recap: SAHM in the summer

It has been a busy two days for me so I collapsed into bed each night without a post.  I had the kids and wanted to take advantage of the summer time with them before school starts.   The school year for us will involve many highway trips in early morning rush-hour traffic so I wanted to enjoy this time with them on my days off before the school year begins.

Thursday, August 9:

  • We woke up to chickens.
  • Chocolate Thursday at Mommy’s house!   Red teased a chicken with her chocolate tortilla roll-up

  • We hit the road to get Big Bro’s backpack which we forgot a daycare the day prior.   I took the opportunity for us to introduce Twin Crazy and Twin Husky to their new daycare room when the “school year” starts.   Red showed Twin Crazy the potty (very small!  Very cute!) and they used it.   Red helped her wash her hands and showed her where the soap was and the paper towels and trash can.   Big Bro showed Twin Husky the kitchen set (Twin Husky loves playing kitchen) and they all experimented with the couches and the books.   They were having a great time.  We showed them the cubbies for their “stuff” as well as the hooks for their jackets.  Both indicated that they would like to come here for the day and play and learn.

  • From here, I was spontaneous and decided to take them on a train ride.  We talk about the trains all the time when we are commuting on the highway.  I talk about how I take that train to work and how it goes into the city to my office.   They have been asking about going on a train ride and going to my new office.  Big Bro and Red did not have the opportunity to see my new office and they wanted to see it.  So I called in advance and then we headed over.  IT WAS SO MUCH FUN!!!  The kids were great.  We all stayed together.   We parked and remembered the number of the parking space. We paid for parking together and then we went through the turnstile and up the escalator to wait for the train.  On the train we stood up and looked outside and also had some time underground.  They were very brave.  And the older kids looked after the little kids.   I told them how many stops and when to get ready for the next stop.  THey were excellent and followed directions so well.

  • Along the street we had a long 5 blocks to walk, but again, we stuck together, held hands, went slowly.   It was lunchtime and there were lots of people walking about but all were generally good / patient with us.  I got a lot of comments.  I love going places with all of these kids.   I love being able to do things with them in tow.    Especially when they are so good and are able to take in so much.   We talked about the city, the big buildings, how people move fast, how we used to live here, the streets where I used to move the stroller with Big Bro and Red.

  • In the office we were surprised to learn that there was a birthday that day.  So they brought lunch in, and better yet, cupcakes.  That was a huge hit with the kids.   They were extremely talkative with my co-workers and very lively and funny.  Big Bro was showing off his Lego plane.  Twin Crazy and Twin Husky were busy playing/talking/fighting like twins.   Red was quiet, but cute – we talked about her “sibling haircut”.   Twin Husky asked my boss “do you have a penis?”.    He is on the boy/girl thing and yes, they talk about penis and vagina body parts all the time.  My boss (who is kidless and in his 60’s, about to retire), indicated “Yes, I do have a penis.”.  OMG.

  • The kids made it back AOK on the 5 block walk to the train station and on the ride back.

  • When we got home it was dress up time.  I tried to get the Twins down for a nap but it was impossible.

  • We headed next door to see the neighbors and the kittens.  They invited us over to the pool.  We gladly accepted.
  • At the pool the kids were having an amazing time.  My other neighbor showed up at the pool with beers and pizza so we made a night of it.  We met more friends of neighbors and more kids that are Big Bro’s age.  Nice kids.  They hit it off.  I love it here.  I gave big hugs to all when I left.  The folks were great going into the big pool with Big Bro and Red while I kept my eyes on Twin Crazy and Twin Husky.  Big Bro wants me to get the phone number for the new kid he met so he can continue to play with him.  He had a great time with him tonight.

  • We saw deer as the kids were getting ready for bed.  A mother and her baby.  The baby has gotten much bigger since we’ve seen it last.

  • The kids slept well.   (As did I).  It was a full day.

Friday, August 10:

  • We again woke up to chickens.
  • The kids did art activities while I straightened up the house a bit.   I started a lot of laundry.

  • After snack I took the kids to the playground.  A part of the playground where there is sand and a structure with a water pump and spouts and pipes.  The kids had a great time.  Big Bro was in his Batman costume.  Twin Husky was completely immersed in his building, pounding, scraping, water activity.   He was in his own world.  Twin Crazy had fun playing a little more conservatively than her brother.  But she loved the sand and the water.   Red was very apprehensive about the sand at first.  She didn’t like the feeling on her hands.  But once she got into it she loved it.  She was making me sand meatballs.

  • We headed home for lunch and naps.  Again, the Twins refused to nap.
  • We played outside in the blow up pool since it was so hot outside.   They were enjoying it but Big Bro was having a hard time.  He dumped the pool upside down.   I don’t know what his problem was but I sent him inside.  I set up the kids again, and then I went in to get Big Bro.  We sat on the rocking chair together, with him on my lap.  He was cranky at first but we had a conversation.   How I thought his behavior was not that friendly and if there was something wrong.   He wouldn’t answer.   We then just talked.   Talked about school, about how much fun that will be, about math, and science… and he told me he didn’t want to go to aftercare since you can’t bring your toys out.  So I told him that Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday there would be no aftercare.  I would pick him up from school and did he like that?   His face smiled.   And on Monday and Tuesday, we were going to see if he could go home with the Motley Crew (friends behind co-parent’s house).   He seemed much better then.  He was ready to play with his siblings again.

  • We played in the pool.   Red asked me to sit in the pool.   The kids were all pouring water on me and I was carrying on enjoying myself with them.  They were laughing.

  • I took the opportunity while Red’s hair was wet to actually try to cut it to even out the sibling haircut.   I think it looks OK.   She doesn’t seem to care.

Before you knew it, it was time to head to co-parent’s.   On the way, we drove by the parking lot where I park for my commute, and also the train station where I go on Mondays and Tuesdays.  The kids wanted to see that.

The kids were in good moods.  They had very active days and I had a lot of time to spend with them collectively and individually.

I went food shopping and bought gas and then headed home – doing these activities helps me to avoid the rush-hour commute traffic on the way back.   I was tired when I got back.  I played with Cocoa a bit.   Did some gardening/watering.   Did some work on my computer with photos.   Then called it a night.

I had an amazing two days with the kids.   I was able to get things done and also spend a lot of time with them.   They are feeling more and more comfortable here and I love it.

July 11: Riders and farmers

I worked a 1/2 day today from home and then picked up the kids after not seeing them since Sunday.   It is also so late right now that I hope to be brief…

Highlights of My Working Day:

  • I woke up later; showered; drank lots of coffee.   Straightened up my “office” at home and realized that I need to get this place organized so I can be more efficient.  It is the “holding” place for lots of boxes that I just have not had the energy to go through and unpack.  This room is the least put together of all the rooms in the house.
  • I had a internal call to straighten out some billing issues and then we discovered more billing issues going back several years.  Ugggh.  What did I inherit?
  • I talked with a friend from college for a bit; caught up with each other; we are both going through hard times now but support each other.  We think so much alike.  I don’t have to take those extra steps to explain things to her.   She just gets it and understands how must feel without me even talking about it.  She finishes my sentences for me.   It makes it easier to explain my story.  I miss her and will likely not see her again for a very long time.
  • I led a planning meeting with several clients for one of the forums that I need to organize this Fall and we came away from the call with lots of great ideas.  I now have my marching orders so will be busy the next several months.
  • I sent out some communications to potential replacement lawyers for the forums and also potential new clients.
  • I spoke to my friend from work who is leaving and both of us burst into tears on the phone.  She is leaving the firm and accepted a job in NYC so her husband could be better positioned to find a job in that market.  I am so proud of her.  I am continuously struck by the strength and power of women who do whatever it takes to provide the best for their families.  Is it part of our DNA?   Are working mothers a force to be reckoned with?   We are so strong!  

The Rest of the Day:

  • I was still teary on my way to pick up the kids.   It felt so good to see them.  To feel them in my arms.  Big Bro saw me first and he was busy washing his hands of finger paint.  He kept washing his hands and purposely did not run over to me — he’s at that age where his friends are important; I was OK with that though.  I knew what he was doing.   And I knew that at some point tonight he would specifically ask me for some one-on-one time.   That’s just the way he is.
  • Red was outside with her friends doing water play.  But she was sitting by herself.  I asked her teacher if she was OK and she said that she was playing but then suddenly got a little sad and wanted to sit by herself.   When she saw me she ran into my arms and I started pulling her up to do flips against my body.  It’s our “thing” together.   We looked at the classroom lizard on the way out.  I then saw her teacher again and asked her about the “baby talk” that I’m hearing from Red.  This is new.   And the teacher heard it too.  I want to understand if she does this during the day when I am not around or if this is something that she is doing now in front of me.  I don’t know what to make of it.
  • Twin pick up was great.  They wanted to show me how they ride their tricycles.  They are getting so good with those pedals and steering.
  • On the way back we got stuck in traffic.  We talked about trains, music (picking out the drums, guitars, etc.).   A Motley Crue song came on “Wild Nights” and Big Bro heard the DJ and commented on Motley Crue and how that is like HIS Motley Crew gang…. Yes!  Absolutely!   That’s why I nicknamed his riding crew the “motley crew” as a joke.   It is so great how we are engaging like this with each other.   I’m really enjoying this older age.
  • We got home and Big Bro and Red wanted to go next door and check on the neighbors.  I’m glad they miss their friends.   I threw dinner in the over and headed outside to work on strawberry bushes.    Putting stakes in the ground and tieing up the stems.  The bushes are getting big now and the leaves are getting heavy.  When they get watered the stems just limp down so I figured they needed some support.   The kids were interested in what I was doing and even started to help with watering them.
  • We ate quickly and had lots of veggies and fruit
  • We then went back outside and started to plant carrot seeds in a seedling kit I recently bought.   The kids all worked together to fill the little containers with soil, then put the seeds in, put more soil on top, water them, and then press the soil down.  I love these projects where they all work together.
  • I knew it was bedtime when Red and Twin Husky started fighting over a broom.
  • We read books to the Twins in the living room and then tucked them in.  Red stayed with Twin Crazy while I read a book one-on-one to Big Bro, per his request.   I then read one-on-one to Red.   I need to spend more time with them but I don’t know how else to do it.  I would like to start “routines” like this so that I know I can at least squeeze in some mommy-time for each of them, consistently.  But I need to do more.
  • The boys fell asleep right away; the girls were up for a bit.  Red was happy and very talkative.  Cocoa was also in their room this week.  I taught them the meaning of the word “roommate”.

I am so tired right now.   I had an emotional day with tears and that always wipes me out.  And then add to that seeing the kids again.  And feeling like they changed a bit and I missed out on it.  And hearing Red’s baby-talk.   And hearing in the car how the kids don’t like the car seats or sitting in traffic.   I wish co-parent would agree to come closer in proximity.  He doesn’t see how the drive and commute is affecting his kids.   It’s terrible.  And tomorrow the Twins and I will have to make four trips.   I’ll have to give them a treat of ice-cream or something.

Til tomorrow –

– Mama K

June 22: Beer and a bagel

Looking at the date I just realized that my grandmother would have turned 92 on this day if she were still alive. Sorry mom for not calling. I’ll talk to you tomorrow.

Friday and my day off –

Highlights of the Morning:

  • I woke up to Red and Twin Crazy and then also Twin Husky jumping in my bed. They wanted to play with the guinea pig so I got her and we were all in my bed. Then Big Bro came in too and I had all kids plus a guinea pig in my bed. That’s the most action its gotten in quite some time.
  • We watered house-plants since it was too cold to go outside and water plants. Big Bro likes having that “job”.
  • The kids then continued with guinea pig time and I actually had to use the timer function on my phone to have equal rotations. That worked well to avoid conflict.
  • We all got dressed and headed out to drop off Big Bro and Red. Once we got there Big Bro realized he had a splinter in his foot so we were all in the lobby as I was working on his foot. It was a hard one to pull out because it broke and there was just a tiny, tiny piece to grab onto. Eventually I got it. Whew.
  • The ride home was uneventful. Not much traffic. We talked about trucks. I also had a conference call for work that I took with my earbuds in.
  • I did some laundry and Twin Crazy and Twin Husky were enthralled with the new machine that you can see through.
  • They wanted to visit the chickens
  • Afterwards I made some lunch and they took naps – I did some work and then also weeded. I attacked the green dandelions that are beginning to flower….
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    The Rest of the Day:

  • After they woke up we all gathered our things and headed to the car. On the way out I stopped to get my mail and the VENUS FLYTRAP that I ordered from Amazon arrived. COOL! I was excited to show Big Bro and Red.
  • Not much traffic, whew.
  • They thought the plant was cool. Big Bro knew exactly what it was as I was opening it. He guessed it. I said it was something that we were just talking about the other day and he guessed it in one shot – VENUS FLYTRAPPER. How cute.
  • I dropped them off at co-parent’s and he started a fight with me in front of them.
  • The ride home was fine; maybe I’m just getting used to it.
  • I attacked some weeds in the backyard. I have a part of the yard that is downward sloping and I thought it would be fun to make it a garden… with traverse walking stones – the space is really un-usable since there is such as slope so I figured a garden would be the best thing. I first pulled out all of the green weeds for the chickens, and then hatcheted the all of the nasty brown tall flowing weeds. In the end it looked like I butchered a part of the yard. It looks terrible. I have to do something about that.
  • I came in, showered, and had a bagel and a beer. I watered the lawn and I’m now going to put together my composting bin. Again, I am a person of extremes. Prior to this I could barely keep a houseplant alive and now I’m sowing the earth and wanting to compost for fertilizer.
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    I’m going to sleep well tonight.

    The kids will be back with me tomorrow at 4 PM. I’m looking forward to getting some things done in the AM and then seeing them later that day.

    Have a great weekend all –
    – Mama K (farmer)

    June 6 & 7: Thank goodness Nana is here

    I missed yesterday’s daily journal posting.  Sorry.  Really.  I’ve just been a bit crazed lately.  Moving.  The arrival of my mom (YEAH!!).  So I fell asleep just before typing it out.  Sorry again.  So I’ll recap the last two days.

    Wednesday was a 1/2 work day for me.  I remember being busy.  Sending out lots of emails and sales outreach for a forum we are trying to launch.  Getting conference calls set up.  I was very productive.   I was also excited about the day ahead.   My mom was flying in for a couple of days.  I was excited to see her and show her the new house.  I need some reinforcement in my life (and help with the move) so was glad for her visit.

    After work I picked up Big Bro.  We went to Toyota to get some floor mats installed.  Now the car REALLY looks good.   Big Bro was excited about the free bottles of water and the granola bar snacks.  I was excited about the Starbucks coffee.   After that, we went to pick up Twin Crazy and Twin Husky.   We then went to Red’s daycare.  I had a short conference with her “teacher” which went well.  She is right on track.  While I was doing the conference the 3 other kids played.   Afterwards we picked up Red and then headed to the airport.  My mom arrived just as we did – great timing!   We headed out to the new house and the kids were all talking and telling Nana about it.  About the chickens, their new rooms, the planting, and their new friends.  They were all excited.

    As soon as we got there the kids wanted to show Nana their rooms.  So cute.   Then of course we took the trek up to see the chickens.  Red was following one around that was cruising in our back yard.   We did some lawn watering, talked with the neighbors, and got my mom settled.  Before you knew it I had to get the kids back — I had co-parent order a pizza; poor Big Bro fell asleep in the car and didn’t wake up for dinner. 



    I woke up and started to dismantle my bed.  The kids were enthralled.   The rest of the morning was uneventful, I think.  I played with the kids and felt good.

    Big Bro went to school on his bike.  I took the rest of the kids to my house.  I couldn’t believe my eyes.  The place looked incredible.  My mom was up until 1:30 AM the prior night (4:30 AM east coast time after flying all day!!!) cleaning and organizing my kitchen.   The place was really straightened up everywhere else.  Boxes were stacked and there were clear paths to walk.  Whew.  Thank goodness my mom is here.

    We spent the day eating, organizing clothes, finishing the kitchen, clearing a path to the chickens, picking up Big Bro, accepting package deliveries from Amazon/UPS and FedEx, receiving my shed, almost receiving my washer/dryer (I need to reorder — GAS dryer…. damn it), getting AT&T to install a phone jack, getting ADT to install a security system….. more playing, more eating, …. we went out to dinner and all kids ate like champs.  Then they started acting crazy so we fled.

    I left my mom at the house to enjoy peace and quiet.   She looked exhausted.   She was thinking about more work with kids clothes but I really hope she hit the sack instead.

    Once we got home the kids went to bed and I went to Home Depot.   It is amazing the $$$ you can spend there.  I have to cut myself off soon.  I think I should be good to stay clear away from there for awhile (I hope).

    I got home and showered.  It was badly needed.  I smelled like ass.  I mean, I actually smelled myself so you know it was bad.  I hadn’t showered in 2 days and essentially was wearing the same clothes so it was really, really, bad.  I’m now typing this freshly showered, body very sore, with wet hair.  I love the smell of my skin right now.   I’m really happy.   Things are coming together and I love my house.  I love the space.  I love the yards.  I love the neighborhood.  I love how it looks, how it smells, and how it is mine.   And how my mom approves of it (at least she says).   Yes it is small but it is all that we need.   And it is beautiful.  And we are making it a home.   And I can’t wait to get there tomorrow to start another day there.

    Til tomorrow –

    – Mama K

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