Tuesday, June 26, 2012

I have, I have, I have so much...

I have been on summer vacation for over two weeks and I have hardly blogged at all.  Why?  I'm on summer vacation.  I should be free to blog all day every day. 

Um, I have been doing other things.  Oh, and I have three adorable children to do these things with all day every day.

I have been swimming.
I have been reading a cheesy book.
I have been napping and snuggling.
I have been coloring and doing puzzles and playing make believe.
I have been watering my plants every morning after breakfast.
I have been staring and staring and staring at my hair in the mirror wondering what the heck to do with it and deciding that haircuts are expensive and I'd rather spend $50 on more plants or take my kids to the zoo and so I'll just see what the sun does to my hair this summer.
I have a three-year-old.
I have a five-year-old.
I have a seven-year-old and do you know how much fun they are?
I have been playing ladderball and frisbee and scoops and paddleball and badminton.
I have been drawing with chalk.
I have been doing yoga.
I have had rehearsals (more on that later)!
I have been hosting visits and playdates.
I have been running errands freely; not "in a window".
I have been cheering on my children as they ride their bikes and trikes with more and more confidence. 
I have been on day trips with my children.
I have been lounging afternoons with my husband.
I have not been shuttling anyone anywhere - how nice to not have any sort of schedule.
I have been interrupted while at my computer intending to blog.
I have just been handed an invitation to a tea party complete with a golden coin so I can pay to get in.
I have just been instructed that when I hear hands clapping and my name announced it is time for me to enter the tea party.
I've just heard hands clapping followed by, "We are now ready for Mama."

Well, don't let my silly blogging keep you waiting my dears.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Mama playpen

I would like a playpen just for me.  Not to contain me, but to keep them out.  Here's what happened.  The kids and I were having lunch outside.  I served their food and they sat happily at their adorable kid-sized picnic table.  Then I came out with my plate, sat at the patio table which is all of 9 feet away from the kids, and they immediately descended upon me.  The girls were oohing and aahing my plate, even reaching for items off it, while Wolfie decided at that precise moment he needed to tell me an interesting fact about whales while standing a half inch from my face.

Yes, they love me to pieces and I them, but let me be when I want to eat!

So I shooed them away and had this sci-fi thought that I could really use some sort of force field right about now.  But then I thought of it - a Mama playpen.  I'd pop it up around me and I would be able to eat in peace.  I mean, they would still talk to me non-stop but I wouldn't have to swat any little hands away from my plate or politely reject an offering of a half-eaten carrot.  "No thank you, just put it back on your plate.  You're so nice for sharing, though."  I know, I know, they would just throw their food at me, but that's the price you pay for being in a cage and if I choose it, if it's voluntary, I can handle ducking every now and then as a trade off for not having a child with a wet bathing suit insist that she  sit in my lap while I'm typing on my laptop.  Or the are-you-kidding-me arm grab while I'm painting my toenails.

No wonder my mother (and all of your mothers too) sent you outside to play in the fenced in backyard and then locked the screen door.  Sure, if there was a real emergency, you could yell for her attention.  But for the most part, you were on your own.  My mother wasn't locking me out, making the backyard my playground.  She was locking herself in.  And so what if it's because she wanted to vacuum and dust.  It's what she wanted to do and she wanted to do it without me underfoot.

Yes.  A Mama playpen.  I'm taking orders now.  Who would like one?

Friday, June 15, 2012

To be righter

This afternoon I was happily, no, blissfully pulling weeds.  Then Wolfie approached me with two paddles and a small ball and asked, "Mama, do you want to play this game with me?"

I hesitated and he said, "Come on.  What sounds like more fun to you - pulling weeds or playing with your son?  So, do you want to play?"

In a flash, I experienced what could only be called "Mama Sense" and my answer would have been a resounding, "No."  I'm a terrible person, right?  How can I even call myself a mother?  I don't even deserve this sweet boy.

Here's what I considered during my flash of Mama Sense:
1.  Wolfie, you are darling, but you are not very coordinated at paddle ball so we will not have much of a volley.
2.  Because your shots toward me will be wild, I will have to lunge awkwardly and might pull a muscle.
3.  Because your shots toward me will fall short, I will have to do much bending over and that will hurt my back.
4.  Some of your shots will go way way away and I will have to walk all over the yard to get them.  See number 3.
5.  There are only two paddles.  What are the chances the girls will not start demanding, hollering, whining, and interfering to get a turn?

But I love my boy, and I am a good mother, so I said "Yes."

Guess what?  All of the above happened.  But you know what else happened?  We giggled really hard.
1.  When we did have a volley of three in a row - we whooped it up.  It was a celebration.  And I love to see that boy smile and laugh.
2.  His wild shots were usually accompanied by some sort of wild gesture and pose.  This was hilarious.  What's more, I imitated some of his ridiculous postures and that was even more hilarious.
3.  I bent over.  So what.  I was pulling weeds.  Duh.
4.  Even though I had to walk all over to pick up the ball, Wolfie judged the cause and effect relationship and evaluated his actions and talked about using smaller power or stronger power or just medium power next time.  It was a lesson in physics, people.
5.  The girls did want to play.  Of course.  And they got to.  We set up a rotation that both enforced the imperative skill of taking turns in a family of three kids and reinforced the fact that we don't need to buy three sets of every single thing because we have three kids.  It is good to learn to be patient and gracious and to sometimes enjoy watching your silly brother do something that you cannot do.  Plus, is there anything sweeter than seeing your toddler say, "Here you go.  Your turn."?

Did I mention we laughed?  We all had giggle fits.  Wolfie smiled big and toothless and that just warms my heart.  He made a good argument and even though my Mama Sense was right, his logic was righter.

Monday, June 11, 2012

I don't really know how to go to Pizza Hut

Tonight was a school sponsored mother and son date night.  We were to all meet at the movie theater at 6:15 for a group picture, treat bag, free popcorn, and tickets to Madagascar 3 at 6:40.  Wolfie (and I, of course) was so excited for this date.  At first I figured we would all eat dinner as a family, then Wolfie and I would skip over to the movie theater.

Then I thought that he and I should go out to dinner.  When I proposed this, he said I could chose the place.

Pizza Hut popped into my mind.  We had never been.  He had earned a free personal pizza every month last school year for a reading incentive and we never, ever went.  Pizza Hut, in his mind, became this unobtainable restaurant we had tickets to.

Maybe some of you go to Pizza Hut often, I'm not making judgments here, it's just that we only have gone once with our nieces and my mother-in-law.  So I thought I knew what it was like to go to Pizza Hut for dinner.  Or maybe I was confusing Pizza Hut with a pizza place at the food court.  Or maybe, since I sometimes do this, I was fabricating the whole Pizza Hut experience in my mind to match what I needed to happen.

Wolfie and I entered Pizza Hut and a hostess asked us if we were dining in.  Sure.  But what I was expecting was some sort of cafeteria experience where there was a pizza bar and Wolfie and I would each grab a slice of pizza, sit down to eat it, quickly, pay and leave, again quickly.  Because, um, by the time our hostess seated us and presented us with menus (?!) I realized that we were cutting it close to group picture time.

I had to order from a menu?  What is Pizza Hut trying to do?  Make me miss our photo op at the movie theater, apparently.  Do you know what's on the menu?  A couple of pizza choices.  I mean, there is nothing to really pore over at the ol' Pizza Hut.

I ordered two glasses of water and, um, oh, I don't know...a pizza.  A cheese pizza.  Size medium because there are only two sizes of pizza on the Pizza Hut dine-in menu.

I expected our waitress to walk directly into the kitchen, pick up a cheese pizza that was all ready to go and just sitting under a pizza warmer, turn right around and deliver it to our table approximately 15 seconds after I ordered it.


When you dine in at Pizza Hut they make a fresh pizza for you.  Or, at least I think they pretend to.  I do think the pizza is ready to go and sitting under a pizza warmer only out of sight and the waitress waits 8 minutes to make you think a chef is personally preparing a fresh pizza.

By the time she brought it to our table, on a pizza-in-the-oven-slider thingy, we had to leave.  I told her as much and she brought me a box.  What a friendly girl, and the pizza was piping hot, so maybe some sort of pizza chef prepared and cooked this pizza just for us.  But the box cracked me up.  It was the quintessential Pizza Hut delivery box.

So much for dining in.

But, I ask you - when was the last time Wolfie ate a slice of pizza in the car on the way to a movie theater?  Never!

Friday, June 8, 2012

OP kids

Other. People's. Kids

I like other people's kids.  I do.  I like kids in general.  I really, really do.  But....

We went to the water park today.  We arrived, put down our bag at a chair, took off our shoes, and entered the wave pool.  We were in the wave pool for less than 5 minutes and this little girl comes up to me and Luna and asks, "What's her name?"

I said, "Luna," and the little girl said, "I'm Audrey.  She can play with me."

Oh, adorable, I thought.  Then...

Audrey asked me what my name was.  I said, "June."  She pointed out that she was wearing inflatable water wings to help her swim.  "Awesome," I said.  Then....

Audrey said, "June, watch me swim.  Watch me swim, June.  June.  June!  Watch me.  Watch me.  Watch me.  Watch me, June.  Look at me swim.  June, look at me swim.  Look at me swim.  Watch me swim.  Watch me.  Watch me.  Look at me.  Look at me swim.  Look at me.  Watch me.  June.  June.  Look at me.  Watch me swim.  Watch me swim.  Watch me swim.  Watch me.  Look at me."

No one came to rescue me.  She did not have an attending adult.  Duh.

Why does this happen to me?  I'm accessible, my husband says.  I'm Mama and Mrs. Saavedra.  All the kids come talk to me.

But today I was MAMA.  Yesterday was the last day of school, Audrey.  Okay?  Audrey?  Give me a break.  School is over and I get to be my children's mama all summer.  So here's what I said:

I'm watching my own kids.
I'm not going to watch you, Audrey.  I'm watching my own kids.
Where is your mom?
Oh, well what grown up is in charge of you?
Okay, you need to ask Miss Cindy to watch you.
I'm not watching you.

And I swear I almost said, "Get away from me."  But I didn't because I am a teacher and teacher's don't say that to children.  But today I was Luna, Wolfie and Tulip's mama, only, and mamas can tell other people's kids to go away.

I've Done This

I've failed to put away the laundry.

I did the laundry, so give me some credit.

The way laundry works in our house is that dirty clothes goes in the tan cloth hamper in Mama and Papa's room and clean clothes reappear in Mama and Papa's room in the white plastic hamper.  (then I usually fold it while sitting on my bed, and then put it away in my and my children's dresser drawers)

For the past week I have found myself saying, "Check the clean-clothes hamper..." in response to phrases such as, "Where did all my shorts go?" and "I don't have any underwear!"

I never folded it.

I never put it away.

We pretty much rifled through a full hamper of clean clothes sitting just 4 feet away from the dirty one.  We merely transferred clothes this week.

And really, isn't it all about cutting out the middle man?  Why do I need to fold it and put it in drawers that are much much further than 4 feet away from where it will inevitably end up?

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

more things I should have not seen

When you see your children in an environment that is not your own home, it's a bit confusing.  Then, hopefully, it's surprisingly lovely.

We were at a party over the weekend and I saw/heard my kids playing some sort of "Wake the Mummy" game in a bounce house.  I've never witnessed my daughter coax another child to rise from the dead and become a mummy.  But boy oh boy was there a huge smile on her face.  She loved this game.  I mean, you get to count to 5 and she's a real pro at that.

Then, when the child who was playing the mummy got up, everyone jumped with glee and this one boy sang that line from that one song....every....single....time.  Yes.  That song.  What line from what song?

"I'm sexy and I know it."  Do you know how many times the kids played Mummy?  And likewise do you know how many times we all heard this boy sing "I'm sexy and I know it?"

87 times!

My daughter is not too familiar with that song (and for the record, I have nothing against it) but you have to understand how music works in our house.  We don't listen to pop radio.  No.  My husband currently has just shy of 500 gigs of music on his hard drive.  I'm serious.  Come on over and burn whatever you want.

So after hearing it 87 times I wondered what she would do with those words.

Here's what: the next morning at breakfast she sings out, with a huge I-know-something-you-don't-know smile on her face, "I'm 15 and I know it!"