The magical month of July!!

How come the magical and arguably the best month of summer July,no school; end OR start, no stress, (wait was the “no stress” part before having children!?) always go so fast?. It races away in a haze.

Our July doesn’t start great with illness and almost unbearable heat. We are trying to save by not turning on the AC as much in the house but with our many large windows framing the family and living room it creates a vacuum of heat and you can hardly breathe. The kids have swimming three days a week (and are making great advances-when they listen to the swim instructor that is) and no camps. I signed my daughter up for dance Friday mornings and have the nanny come entertain my oldest (or is it the other way around?!).

I’m keeping baby girl out of the pool the first week due to some “diaper issues” (those swim diapers are not really built for holding anything, now are they) and I’m trying to save our pool (and myself from a major clean up) and my daughter from embarrassment (she totally wouldn’t care) even though she is feeling better. She is very mad that brother gets to swim and very curious about the swim instructor. We (meaning my daughter) watch brother every lesson in full on swim gear even though only toes (and feet) can go in the pool. Every time my son needs to work towards a promise of a favorite thing in order to listen to instructions (since he doesn’t like most food the options are limited and pretty much narrowed down to “Subway” , frozen yoghurt (ice cream) or a cookie at Starbucks (don’t judge). I also promised him a small toy if he will swim by the end of the four weeks. His listening skills are improved by constant reminders but he tends to forget very frequently and has been known to do “his own thing”. The instructor who apparently used to be an elite swimmer gets very frustrated-seemingly much better at swimming than dealing with small kids.

All the lessons means less social time outside of the house, especially if you add soccer Mondays and dance Fridays but we are still able to steal some ice cream dates with close friends. By the end of that first week the kids are all feeling like themselves again and I am beyond relieved to be out of the bad diapers/added laundry (gross) trenches!

I finally think the leaking of various body fluids (I know major yuck! …oddly enough less so if you are a parent of little kids…or maybe not so odd considering the frequency of said fluids..) is over. I venture out to Target. With the oldest (still recovering somewhat) safely at home with daddy (watching football) , I bring the other two.

Since I am the youngest’s walking, talking food source (and since hubby is not quite comfortable with him yet) he is coming too!
He is all smiles so it clearly (almost…eh not fully) make up for the two year old’s whining.

I know she has been sick and all and that she is tired but come on…everything is “no”.
Are you hungry, tired, need diaper change, hug…new shoes? No, no, no!
She is in full on 2 year mode, and of course everything I do is wrong-and she complains about it-loudly!!

I’m barely hanging on as I scroll down my “iPhone reminder list” of stuff we really need (and you know a few… occasional extras) as my toddler is reduced to tears after not getting a new “Peppa Pig” toy! In my head I mentally repeat “avoid the toy aisle…always always avoid the toy aisle…even if it means getting creative with diversion strategies and round about ways to get to the things you want. Even if you need something in the aisle next to the toys- do not, I repeat, do NOT pass them!!”
No shortcuts parents-this is serious mental planning. Think I should suck it up and take the whining, crying, melt down, “tantruming”?
Let me tell you many of time-I have and let’s just say it’s so not worth it, but today she spied this toy and being in the mood she is in; its all over…

I briefly distract her with some new shiny shoes but let’s face it- they are no Peppa pig’s dream house substitute…
At least the full on drama tears have subsided into heavy sobs and violent hiccups, not (barely) facing this brave mama! But here we are back to full on tantrum tears (aren’t they the most fun “people are officially starring and judging” kind”). Wait, what the heck happened now???
Oh, I see who was the complete idiot putting “Doc McStuffin’s” Lego set amongst the shoes huh, huh??

It’s clearly time to escape this place before my perfect little angel of a baby boy wakes up too- not so perfect…and far from an angel.

It’s Sunday-therefore all lines are long. When we are up next and I think we made it, guess who wakes up…?

The not so sympathetic cashier ring up my items painfully slow as both my kiddos wail, scream, yell and cry in a potpourri of scorned, disappointed, ignored, hurtful (as well as hungry) emotions. They are clearly being unfairly treated (according to everyone but me. This is when the cashier holds up a pink and purple Peppa Pig set (well…you know…) with some suspicious brown stains on them. I match her disgusted look at first genuinely confused …until I look down at the cart…and the seat occupied by my daughter…

 

 

Happy friggin 4th!!!

Hubby is scheduled to fly out early morning on the Fourth of July and I’m not going to lie- it sucks!

But we are not going to let that keep us from the fun-oh no!

We have a full day of celebration planned this year. We are going to a parade (have never seen a real live American parade before and am really excited!!) in our neighborhood and fireworks by the beach (love fireworks) and we are bringing grandma and grandpa (and hopefully uncle, aunt and cousins as well) along! I have bought food for a family BBQ and festive paper plates, cups and utensils as well as quite a few Independence Day decorations! I have also laid out matching flag colored outfits for myself and all the three kids! The weather promises to be warm and sunny but not too hot. Maybe we can swim in the pool and grandparents can take the littlest baby so that I actually get to cool down and splash around as well. I can’t wait to spend some much needed quality play time with my kids!

I’m in high spirits; baby’s first fourth- lets do this!!!

And then darling daughter wakes up with a fever and then an extremely runny (smelly, leaky) diaper….
Which after breakfast leads to another…and another…with the mood to follow!
Can you say; complete toddler meltdown!

So yeah, we wave bye bye to daddy dearest (oh yeah; thanks for leaving me Hun!) as I rapidly begin to understand that nobody is going to want to hang out with us on this very special day…

Holiday or not, kids get sick and there is nothing you can do about it. I cancel all our plans with friends as well as family. It’s all good, we will make it work, it is just the crankiness and the overwhelming loneliness I feel when kid number two starts throwing up…

I order in food, but right now I only have one kid willing to eat and that would be the one without any teeth!

Its not like I have time to eat anything anyways, I’m running around like a mad woman, and strangely enough the idea of eating while people around me (and on me) are vomiting (and dry heaving) does not seem that appetizing…

I stream YouTube videos on the tv and keep changing diapers, smearing diaper rash cream, wiping butts as well as tears and pushing fluids.

I desperately stage some photos in memory of this “special” day of all my little kiddos in their outfits (good thing my “fancy” camera snaps dozens of photos in seconds because there are no willing participants and especially my daughter will not stand for it) on the patio- which turn out more sad than funny (keeping up the facade right…or not).

I change them out of their celebratory clothes right after our private little (disastrous) photo shoot scared any nasty fluids will make the nice outfits filthy (the washer and dryer already working overtime).
Of course my toddler throws another tantrum wanting to keep her red, white and blue Tommy Hilfiger dress on…

Let’s just say I’m in for a long night…

The kind of night where in between nightly nursing session (and they are plenty) I have to change sheets twice (we are now out of sheets that fit our bed), wrestle as well as share said bed with not one, not two, but three sweaty, germy kids (good thing I love them). I also have one of them throw up as I brush their teeth-after having thrown up…Hate when that happens!

I’m laying awake in our big bed (that suddenly feels small and cramped) when all the kiddos are finally asleep listening to each of their individual breathing patterns, (one arm around my beautiful daughter and another around my littlest man, while my big helper sleeps by my feet…for some reason) listening to their little whimpers and snores and my heart fills with so my love that I can hardly stand it…

Yes, they are a handful, and messy and smelly and oh so loud but at the end of the day I am just so so grateful to have them! Grateful that they are here with me, healthy and happy and whole (even with a nasty stomach bug) . They are my biggest accomplishments; who would have knows after my degrees and my diplomas that being a mommy would make me feel so important, so proud and so extraordinary!

Hope you had a great 4th of July this year everyone-I did despite it all (I have to admit it was pretty bad…and sad). I had a holiday I didn’t expect, one that I didn’t see coming and I was all alone to handle it all. But I think maybe that we have all been there one time or another and anyways; isn’t that what us mothers do…? We care and we fix…and we handle!

Too late I realize there in the pitch black room (while my five year old is mumbling something about Star Wars and transformers in his sleep) that I forgot to cancel the swim instructor-scheduled to come first thing in the morning…

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No life guard on “doodie”

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So my son has started swim lessons (“swim” is a very relative word if describing what he is learning). We have signed up for four Fridays with his little girlfriend (at least that is how he thinks of her, their relationship is very up and down, if it would be on Facebook it would be deemed “complicated”)

Even if our boy actually did great in his first lessons (blowing bubbles, got his hair wet, his hands turned into big “ice cream scopes”) he has (dare I say it) gone down hill from there.

Their first lesson, his friend announced when being asked to do something (nothing unreasonable mind you but all related to “fun in the water”) that “I don’t do that” while my son announced that “I have poop in my pants”. Oh, the joy of teaching four year olds how to swim!

The swim coach, miss J is a very fit (major body envy) late teen/early twenties girl with long blond hair and a ton of patience (must be a prerequisite). Her patience is tested over and over (let me tell you) and seems to be a requirement with my son especially (“lots and lots of poopy”)

After their lesson (when all adults involved feel slightly frustrated and very tired) we get to have some “relaxed” pool time. Please don’t ever confuse this with the relaxed pool time you had pre-kids (maybe this is what miss Jen now gets to enjoy, hence her patience with our kids), you know the laying by the pool for hours with your magazine or your summery romance novel, cell phone and water bottle (or maybe even a “real” drink), your only worries being “when do I have to flip over/re-apply sun tan lotion/take a dip in the pool/go for a leisurely stroll to look for hotties or flirt with the life guard and maybe when is lunch?”

Gossiping with your bestie while inhaling the latest drama waiting for the random clouds to pass is nothing in comparison to trying to get a word of conversation in to your fellow mama while  your simultaneously try to keep your children from killing each other, or themselves by drowning/keeping your baby from flashing your mom boobs (btw not sexy) to the life guard, the teenage boys in the big pool and your elderly neighbor “well, hello there”.

Relaxed pool time post kids means keeping them alive at all costs (no, you don’t just continue walking straight into the deep hot tub without floaters on, run like a maniac by the big pool or push your friend off the pool stairs). There are also snacks involved, and water and juice and breast milk (limited) and pool toys and pool rules and ice cream (“may I have some pleeeeaaase!) and sticky, thick suntan lotion (reapply every hour or after being in the water…), paying attention to sun and shade and hats and floaters and “don”t fall”, “don’t splash”, “don’t run”, and “don’t pee in the pool”.
And the dos “do be nice to your friend, sister, friend’s mom, walk, share your toys, practice swimming and shower after pool”.
And the constant reminders of everything above in a never ending cycle like a broken record featuring “b*tich mom” or your most annoying CD set on repeat, adding “you CANNOT swim….yet”

When us moms do get a word in to each other, sweat dripping down our foreheads (not just from the sun mind you) and our minds in constant “hyper alert fight/flight mode” we talk about our kids (especially mine) and their fondness for potty words. I mean at a time in their life where they are being so good for finally learning how to go potty “good job” (hold the fireworks) and they are being praised endlessly for “doing” the words we then frown upon, does that even make sense? “Do you need to poop or pee?” “Good job peeing/pooping”, “wow lots of poo, great job, high five”, “you went poop at the mall, yaaaay!!” But then we turn around saying “do not say “potty words”, poop is bad, very bad and not funny, bad bad. Hmm, isn’t that slightly confusing?

Today was our last day together at the pool, we celebrated (like always) with ice cream, the kids were mostly friends and “in love” with their “bestest girl/boy” (ganging up against some “outside threats” instead) my boy did better than last time “swimming” and no law suits were being discussed over the swim coach “hickey”. All kids running around in the grass pretending to “turn their mothers into ice, fire and rocks” and only minor melt downs over the low milk supply provided (baby not boy) and not getting to have lunch with his bestest girl (definitely boy).

A great day over all and tomorrow is the 4th of July, and there is still lots of summer left! Can life be better!?

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