Sunday, July 20, 2008

I Heart Target

Scored a Wii Fit, birthday cards for Mom (the amazing woman turns 75 today!), a passable armband case for the Sansa (sadly, the clip broke last night on my way to the gym) and two extra tall baby gates this morning. All by 8:20.

Hopefully, this is a sign that today'll be a good day.

Psych! We got a Fit!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Our Day With Thomas

I don't even know if I can begin to convey how difficult it is to take the Muffins out sometimes. They were quite good on the way up to our adventure; we didn't even resort to using the newly installed mobile DVD player until we were about 25 minutes away from North Conway (it was about a 2 hour trip), but the kids did have the new distraction of Caitlin sitting between them to occupy a lot of their time (even thought she tried valiantly to sleep).

Getting out and about was alright, and lunch was pretty good. We ate at one of our usual North Conway haunts and there was only one crying jag when I wouldn't let Liam have his entire meal in front of him because it was too hot. He ended up winning, but I did manage to cut up the chicken and potatoes and he managed to not burn his mouth.

Then we headed out to see Thomas.

Early on, just seeing the train was a big hit. J tended to Liam, and I had Ella. My attempt at getting a happy family picture didn't go over too well and Cait took over Ella while I ran over to the gift shop tent to buy something souveniry. I knew there were a lot of Thomas products, but the very first thing I saw was Thomas toothpaste. Hello? I was a little overwhelmed by it all. I settled on two shirts, two caps, two wooden train whistles and an alphabet floor puzzle which will be a Christmas gift (it got rave reviews from two other mothers who were waiting in line ahead of me). A plush James was a last minute addition since the rest of the fam found me and Liam locked onto it.

Ella fell a little bit in love with Thomas, I think, and just didn't want to see or do anything else. She was very upset when the train left for one of its scheduled rides, but became even more upset when it was our turn to ride the train (because, of course, it meant that we weren't standing outside looking at the train). She pitched a glorious trantrum, the result of which was that no one - I mean no one - sat near us on the train. I was mortified, but J was a supreme champ and contained her and ultimately calmed her down and she even fell asleep for all of 2.3 minutes towards the end of the ride.

Liam was in a trance on the train and was the epitome of the perfect child.

Prior to our ride, however, he fell in love with a plush James toy (which I unwittingly referred to as Percy, only to be corrected by another mother that "Percy is green") and wanted nothing more than to sit in the dirt and push James around. It was cute. And filthy. And time consuming.

It poured buckets while we were on our train ride, but we only got a little wet while boarding. Mercifully, the rain ended just as our ride came to a stop.

After a tedious, but successful, search for balloons, we packed up and headed home. The kidlets defied my expectations, however, and did not pass out immediately upon being snug in their car seats.

We'll try to do this all over again next year. I think 3 may be a better age for this kind of event. Thank God we had Cait with us and thank God I'm married to the best husband (and did I mention the best of the best fathers?) in the world. Liam, Ella and I are very lucky indeed.

Also? This all happened at the end of a week where the contractors have been here nearly every morning - banging away - by 7 am AND the kids decided that now was the perfect time to not sleep in their cribs anymore, prompting a massive cleaning and emptying out of their room, as well as the conversion from crib to daybed?

We're very tired in our house.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Before I Forget!

Last night, Ella informed me that she was my best friend.

The other night, while J was getting Ella ready for bed, she flopped around trying to be funny while he was putting her shirt on. She hit her head on the wall. Cait, J and I all asked her if she was alright. She shook it off, rubbed her head and then declared, "I not alright! I hit my head!"

Liam's latest obsession is all of the "airmanes" at the local airport. Our day just isn't complete without taking at least one spin by the airport to see all of the 'manes. We've managed to have some good timing lately, too, catching a few take-offs and landings. The helicopter at the local National Guard unit (conveniently located right next to the airport) is also a big hit.

A Year And A Day

Yesterday was my blogiversary, which I didn't forget per se. I just thought it was today. Oh well. I'm here now. I was thinking about the blog yesterday. In fact, believe it or not, I think about it quite often, but just don't get to sit down and write nearly as often as I'd like.

Anyway, this is also my 150th post (I just love even numbers, don't you?). I know, I know. I'm a slacker poster, and I won't pretend that I've been pleased to see that nearly all of the blogs I check in with on a regular basis have been posting less frequently. I don't feel so all alone. Plus, I never promised daily updates. I did promise more frequent updates, and I really do try. It's just that I wonder whether or not what I have to say really is worth saying sometimes (and, the inverse is true, in that I sometimes I fear what I do have to say and therefore just avoid saying it). Fear not, though, my spotty posting will go on!

We've been busy lately. The kids are in a really interesting place. Going out in public with them is nearly impossible. They pretty much refuse the stroller or a cart and insist on walking. Well, that makes it pretty damn difficult for Mumma to take the Muffins anywhere. And even when J and I are both with them, life isn't significantly easier. Liam and Ella are very sociable and want to see everything. Stopping to consider why there aren't anymore oatmeal teddy grahams? Well, no! Not on their time! Trying to pick out a welcome baby card for KL's new baby girl? Liam and Ella will have none of that. Keep them moving! Show them the world! So, yeah, shopping trips are hell and are kept to a minimum. Going out to eat, however, has gotten easier. Both kids have developed an affinity for chicken and enjoy feeding themselves. (My favorite trick? Order their food asap upon being seated so that it comes out first, has time to cool and then Mumma and Daddy can enjoy their meal once it arrives...the kidlets are fed and happy (usually still munching on something) and you aren't trying to cut up bites of chicken in between shoveling food in your mouth before stopping an impending meltdown).

To be honest, it's not actually going places that's the real problem. It's leaving. I've got the most beautiful, friendly, intelligent children in the world. Until it's time to get back into the van and head to our next destination. Then they are demon children. With the strength of Herucles and the speed of Mercury. Try to lure them into their carseats and you're in for a workout, my friends. Liam can grab onto the outside of the van and twist out of his seat like nobody's business. Ella kicks like a Rockette on speed and can turn on the tears (and screams!) in a flash. A new diversionary tactic is to switch them up. They enjoy the novelty of sitting in the other's seat so that helps in a pinch, but it's a good struggle to leave anyplace 9 out of 10 times.

Don't even get me started on the battle of wills that is changing Liam's diaper as of late. Of course, he was an angel for his father tonight while getting ready for bed. Earlier today? He nearly had me in tears.

In other news, work has begun on the house. The roof is nearly finished (we needed to have the garage and porch redone...the main house was done 5 1/2 years ago) and work begins on the deck tomorrow. I am so damn excited to have a deck! The siding and windows will be done in a couple of weeks and I cannot wait to have it all done. For years I've been dreaming about getting this work done (well, OK, not the roof - that was J's concern; we lost some shingles after the marathon winter we had so he was a little paranoid about getting it redone) and now it's happening!

As I mentioned above, KL had a beautiful, perfect baby girl on June 30th. I hadn't even mentioned that she was pregnant, but I'm thrilled that S is now a big sister and their family is complete. I've cleared out an area so I can make up the baby's quilt since we won't be seeing them until we head up to VT for Nurse and I's civil union at the end of August. I have time, but not much.

Speaking of babies, our attempts to add to our family haven't yet been successful. We're in a bit of a holding pattern and I'm not sure how I feel about that. I can rationalize it from here until next year why our family is perfect the way it is and I fully recognize how absolutely blessed we are to have two healthy, beautiful, vivacious children, but, selfish jerk that I am, I want more. More of the good, the bad, the sleeplessness, the insanity, the carseat and diaper changing battles and more of the love, the sweetness and the wonder that is watching little people grow. The only way I can describe it is that I no longer feel empty, the way I did before I had Liam and Ella, but I don't yet feel complete. Makes sense to me.

Alright, enough of my blathering. Next Friday we're taking the Muffins (and C - whose real name is Caitlin, btw) to Day Out With Thomas. I'm hoping it goes better than amalah's experience. I'm sure it'll all be great...until it's time to get in the car to head home.

Be well, and here's to another year!