Friday, March 30, 2012

Indian Winter

Its been so long since I have blogged, I figured I would do two tonight to make up for lost time.  (this is the second)

The other day, Cali and I were playing with her shape sorter.  I was trying to teach her shapes and colors. It reminded me of the time when Bayly and I did the same thing.  Its funny how they get fixated on certain shapes.  And its not easy shapes; not square, circle or rectangle.  Bayly's favorite shapes were diamond and oval.  It is seeming like Cali's favorite if a crescent, with the triangle gaining ground.  Shapes?  Sure my kids know shapes.  And not just your everyday, borring shapes.  They know cool shapes.  Crescent?  Check.  Semi-circle?  Check.  Square?  Not so much.  Circle?  I'll get back to you.  (Totally just joke.  She's got a few of these.)

When I talked about getting serious about teaching Cali the shapes, Bayly turned to me and told me not to teach her the tough ones yet.  "Ya know, like rectangle prism and cone."  I don't even think I could tell you what a rectangle prism is.  I knew it at one time, but that time was many moons ago.  Needless to say, Cali is still working on the basic shapes.  Someday soon we will branch out into the weird land of shapes like rhombus', cubes, and parallelograms.

Living in New Enland, we are never surprised about the weather.  "If you don't like the weather, wait five minutes."  Now it seems we are in an Indian Winter.  (Very similar to an Indian Summer, just its winter's repeat performance)  While there was minimal snow this year, and gratefully so after the endless dumpings of the white stuff that we got, the sky is forecasted to drop some of the white stuff on us this evening.  This after the week of 70 degree days, my tulips and daffodils came up, and started my seeds (in pots) for my garden.  Now I can barely have them outside to sunbathe; its too damn cold.  And don't get me started on golf.  I played 18 holes at Torrey Pines last night.  Yup.  The weather got us golf types all hyped up for the season.  Now we are relegated to playing a simulated course in an old grocery store.  I did shoot a 112.  I'm not sure I should print that.  Its a pretty bad score.  It was a tough course, simulated or not.  That's my story!

The winning ticket

Like so many others living in the 42 states that take part in Mega Millions, I have the winning ticket.  Sorry to all the others out there who think they have it; I got it.  And like all of the other Kagillion people out the hoping and praying that the little piece of paper their friendly connivence store clerk gave them, my wife and I were fantasizing about what we would spend roughly three hundred something million dollars on (if you took the lump sum and after taxes, according to the news).  Pay off some things, buy some things, do anything I want.  I will be sure to let you know after I win and the endless line of wheel barrels stops transporting loads of cash to my house.  

Good luck to everyone with Mega Millions Fever.  I hope you win.  More importantly, I hope I win.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Influx of..........Play dates

We had a play date set up for today.  Us and two other Stay At Home's or Semi Stay At Home's.  Well one of the families in today's play date had to back out.  Something about kids coughing all night, coughing himself to throw up, and not wanting to spread germs.  Its  better that they didn't come.  I couldn't handle any sick kids with this weather.  The other mother and two kids did attend.  All kids played well together.  Cali did her best to try to keep up to the older ones, mimicking, copying, and even butting into their imaginary world.  Bravo, little one.  Way to get involved.  All in all, it was a good idea for the kids.  They ran around, played while the parents chatted about this and that, and even had a great PB&J lunch.

After my house was put back together from the play date, we relaxed and got ready for the art show at daycare.  They seem to do this a couple times a year and its great.  You see that they actually do something at school other than play, trace letters or numbers, and identify patterns.  Every level, every age of child did a wonderful job.  Even my child was highlighted, even though she only goes three half days a week.  While we were there, we found our way to the other parents that are in our little circle of friends that share the same daycare.  Its kind of like a little click within the daycare.  I am sure we aren't the only ones with our own little click.  I remember at Bayly's birthday, the other parents from daycare were very chummy chummy with each other.  Who cares?! Let em.  We are much cooler anyway.  (While I am sure this is the case, I am not closely familiar with any of these other parents and cannot confirm nor deny this.  I am sure they are cooler than a cucumber, I have no first hand knowledge.)  After talking over snacks and cookies, we decide that the kids need to the park to run off the day's energy; mostly burn off those cookies the kids devoured.  A popular park is picked and we decide to make it a pot luck dinner at the playground.  This particular park is set up with picnic tables and an eating area; we have had lunch there many times.  The weird part was being a parent, walking in with a Crock Pot full of chicken cacciatore.  Who brings a Crock Pot to the park?  Then the next family rolls up with a pizza.  Now we're taking.  Then the next comes with hummus, bread and chip-like snacks.  All perfectly normal for an evening at the park.  But who brings a crock pot insert with chicken cacciatore to the park?  Classy people, that's who.  The kind of classy people that spell classy with a "K."  That's us.  We all ate, played and enjoyed the great weather.  And it was good, if I must say so myself.  And we fought off those dirty looks from all the other parents who came to the park without so much as a snack half as good as our dinner.  Jealousy is for the weak.  (Yea right!  Whatever.)

Then we got home, bathed, and did bedtime without incident.  That hasn't happened in a very long time.  I am going to chalk it up to the vigorous playing that they did.  Either that or they finally are getting that their parents have things to do after they go to sleep.  I think I'm going to stick with the my first assumption.  But stranger things have happened.  Only tomorrow will tell.  What do you think?  That's what I thought.  It was the playing!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The tulips! The tulips! The tulips are coming!

So its been some time since I have blogged.  I know, I know.  I am a horrible blogger.  In my defense, the weather is getting warmer and the outdoors are calling.  My bulbs are coming up and the heat if off.  Give me a break, ok?!

Now that spring has made an early entrance, me and the little ones are spending time playing outside and breathing in the wonderful warm, fresh air.  Some yard work is getting done.  Some seeds have been started in pots.  Some birds have even braved our bird feeders for a quick bite.  All of this late spring like weather got us thinking:  Lets get the kids fed, washed/bathed, and lets take em for a walk so they will be tired when we get back.  Great idea!  Day 1 goes rather well.  They eat.  They wash/get washed.  They RUN for a mile or so each.  We get back.  Brush teeth/wash up again/medicines, etc.  Get to bed and they are wired.  Bayly has been tough to get to sleep lately.  Mostly missing her mommy, but partly because she's four and wants to see how far she can go with it.  Cali was bouncing off her crib like a kid with ADHD on speed.  We try to get her down; she'd go down, only to be up again in 10 minutes.  Turns out she comes down at 11:00 in her mother's arms asking for a pear.  With her cherished fruit she plops down beside me on the couch with the intention of becoming totally engrossed in Mad Men.  As I look over at her to make sure she is still breathing and hasn't lodged a giant piece, or the whole pear, in her mouth, she turns to me and pulls on muy cheeks and says, "Tickle Tickle."  How can you not love that.  A few minutes pass and I sneak another couple of looks.  She was totally engrossed in the drama of 60's advertising men and their shenanigans.   My wife said she was a spitting image of me, staring intently at the television, immersed in the plot.  I'm not recommending you go out and start your toddlers on Mad Men or any other intense drama, or even any mindless nonsense that may be beamed onto your television by the government so they can read your thoughts and make you buy COKE or drink Ogalvie.  What I am saying is its ok to let the kids stay up a little late once in a while.  11:30?  A little late?  Minor details.  But she did sleep till 9:15 the next morning.  Come to think of it, bedtimes the past few days have been tough.  It might be time to start shrinking her nap time.  Who the hell am I kidding?  I need those two hours in the middle of the day for my sanity.  And to fold laundry.  But mostly for my sanity.

I think the next time we do a walk trip at night, we might try walk first, then dinner and cleaning and etc.  Its worth a shot.  What's the worst think that could happen?   She could be up till 1:30!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

A short one

I have been lacking on this blog.  My bad.

The kids have been as good as can be expected.  We are learning each other.  What they can get away with and what punishment(s) will work; it changes daily.  Mostly I think they are finding new ways to push the boundaries.  And my buttons.  Par for the course.  The weather is getting nice out and we are finding playing outside a Godsend.  Exercise and fresh air.  The only drawback is the house work is falling behind because we are all having so much fun outdoors.  Oh well.  That's what rainy days are for.  I guess I just have to find a way to juggle the outdoors and the indoors.  Life is so complicated.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Trifecta? Impossible.

Its been a long two days since the last blog entry.  I feel like I am letting down my loyal readers (if there are any out there.  Perhaps in Europe or Australia).  Yesterday I went to get Cali up from her nap and I was surprised to find she had poo'ed her diaper, stuck her hand in it, and proceeded to wipe it on the rail of the crib.  How psyched was I?  So I calmly tell her that it was gross and that is something we do not do and it is yucky.  I clean her up.  Disinfect said rail; somehow she didn't get feces anywhere else, and we go about our day.   Both girls found it necessary not to listen to a word I said for the rest of the day and wen to bed at 7 without incident.   They must have known they messed up.  God knows I didn't hide the fact that I was to be listened to.

Today rolls around.  I was not looking forward to an encore of yesterday.  It can't happen two days in a row.  It was just a freak occurrence.  The kids seem to be total angels apart from their sibling counterparts.  Its when they join forces, the seas part and all listening ceses to exist.  Usually parting bodies of water waits until after nap time/relaxation time.  Today was set to be different.  Had a good morning with Cali while Bayly was at school.  Vacuumed the house, washed the floors with the best cleaner known to man; VINEGAR, picked up her sister and got two loads of laundry folded.  Bayly and I took advantage of the great weather and played outside while her sister napped, going in every so often to check if she had awaken.  Then it happened.  She woke up, again smeared poop on her crib rail, and was quite chipper when I went in.  Again, I clean up the little pooping machine, disinfect the crib, and go outside to try to burn off some energy.  About 20 minutes of cordial and polite frolicking and playing ensue.  Then, like a switch, they stop listening to anything I say.  So then it's time to put a kabash on the what seems to be blocked ears and go inside.  They were playing so well together, minds well move it inside where they can be contained.  They run off upstairs to seemingly play nicely together while I start whipping something up.  They somehow found time, in 15 minutes, to make one heck of a mess of Bayly's room.  Bayly blamed Cali.  Cali ran off to her room.  No one listens to clean it up.  Crying, screaming, tantrum-ing, and finally cleaning.  That's done.  Back to dinner.  Nothing burning, nothing cooked beyond recognition, nothing unidentifiable.  We all go down to be in the same vicinity, mostly so I can watch what trouble might ensue.  Keri comes home unnoticed while we are checking on the grill.  Finally some back-up.  Maybe a fresh face will deter this behavior.

Not so much.  The total disregard for parental orders continued.  Its nice to see it doesn't happen to just me.  Maybe, hopefully, Lord Please don't let there be an encore tomorrow.  I am supposed to take them in public tomorrow night.  At least there is something I can hold over their head if they don't behave.  But that won't be needed.  They will be the angels that they are.  It can't happen THREE days in a row, right?


Saturday, March 10, 2012

My little girl is 2

Today there was a birthday party for my little girl.  And, Yes I knew about it.  It wasn't a total surprise to me.  'Twas a Pancake and Pajama Party.  A novel theme for a child's birthday, if you ask me.  Kids (both mine and other strays that roam the neighborhood) were well behaved.  There was the normal birthday party drama; and then there were the kids.  Just kidding.  Its late and I'm tired.

My little one is two.  My, how time files.  It seems like a month ago I was holding my wife's hand in the operating room (planned C-section) both thinking we were having a boy, when Cali burst into our life.  I guess they weren't kidding when they say time files when you have kids.  I am going to wake up and they are going to be going to school.  Really that's only a handful of months away for Bayly, but you catch the drift.  I think Ferris Beuler had a quote about that.  Google it.  I'm way to lazy right now.

Last thing....  Did you remember to set your clocks ahead?  (This last point if for my American readers.  I cannot say without reasonable doubt if my German and Russian readers follow Daylight Savings Time. )  Spring ahead.  But not too fast.  The kids are growing up fast enough.

Friday, March 9, 2012

One day I will teach these girls....

On the eve of my youngest daughter's second birthday party, I have to remind myself that my kids are good kids.  Today they have put that theory to the test.  Both kids wore me out, and not in the they ran me around town doing fun things.  They were on my last nerve since their mother left the house.  Cali was pulling Bayly's hair to the ground.  I was feeling kind of bad for Bayly.  She wasn't even fighting back.  Could it be her "lover not a fighter" mentality?  Could it be we taught her so well not to hit and fight?  Is she just a pushover?  My only thought is that we will teach her not to lay down and take that in due time; when she understands that you don't fight to fight, you fight for what you believe and for your honor.  Both things a four and a half year old can't quite grasp yet.  And I don't think her sister really needs a black eye at 2.  She may deserve it, by the hand of her older sister, but she doesn't need it.  Sisterly love!

But Bayly wasn't a saint either.  She is on this baby talk kick.  Its really annoying because she is so well spoken.  At a eight months or so, she told the daycare director that she was parched.  What eight month old uses parched in a sentence?  And correctly, for that matter.  So when she talked very baby like from school, through the grocery store and back home, I can't help but get annoyed.  And to top it off, she would not listen to save her self.  I understand when Cali doesn't listen she just doesn't know any better.  But Bayly does know better and still she does it anyway.  I guess I shouldn't expect her to be an adult.  She is only four and a half.  Yet she does act better than some of the adults I have met in my life.  A credit to my parenting?  I like to think so.

She requested me to come up and see her after her mother put her to bed this evening.  I go up to her sanctuary (yea, right.  Its a room in my house that has her clothes and that she sleeps in - no sanctuary at all) to find her being lulled to sleep by Mr. Bieber.  Being a father, I ask why she likes JB so much?  Is it his singing?  Is it the songs?  Her response: "I like the way he looks."  I have my first crush on my hands.  At least he can't break her heart too bad.  I have to wonder if she really thinks this or is it just a mimic of all the girls in the movie?  I'm going with that.  She's FOUR, for crying out loud.  I know people say that girls are growing up faster these days from all the estrogen they ingest from all the plastic in the world, but this is a little much.  I just have to keep telling myself that it is a phase and one day, it will pass.  I mean, all those girls got over the New Kids when I was younger; she will get over this.  One day, she will discover another teen heartthrob, a different genre of music, an activity that pulls at her heart strings, and even a real boy.  Lord help me when that day arrives.  By then she will know how to fight back, not get taken advantage of (at least by someone other than her younger sister), and know what she really wants.  And to this yet to be named boy, watch out.  You have got your hands full.  If you hurt her, you will have to answer to me, and her younger sister.  I'm sure she is the brute of the litter.  Lets hope she finds an activity.  She's good at dance.  Decent at soccer.  A damn fine artist.  And has the perfect personality to run for public office.  Lets focus on the activities for now.  Boys are a bad influence.  That may be the father in me talking, but lets be honest.  Activities are more fun, more work (mostly), and have a better long-range outlook.  Lets hope Cali doesn't get struck by the same crush.  Then Bayly just might fight back.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Spring is in the air

In the Northeast today it was very spring-like.  So much so we went to the park and played like animals set free to return to the wild.  The problem with this is we live in New England where if you don't like the weather, wait five minutes.  And by golly, it is looking like that is the case.  The powers that be (i.e. the always accurate weathermen and women of the secret fraternity of liars - meteorologist) are calling for up to an inch of snow tomorrow night.  What the hell, man?!  What are you gonna do?  Just be happy the kids got out and played in the fresh air for hours today.  Yes, hours.  I am betting we will all be excited when we can do this everyday.  When I was a kid, all we would do is play outside; riding our bikes, playing home run derby, rummaging through the woods searching for nothing and everything all at once. It seems these days all kids want to do is play PacMan or whatever is all the rage and watch the YouTube.  I am going to raise my kids the way I was raised; by making our own adventures with our imaginations, getting, into sticky situations, and finding ways to not tell the parents about said situations (mostly innocent fun).  Days like today make me miss my day-long bike rides around the neighborhood, finding trails in the woods, or playing street tennis.  (for clarification that is tennis in the street)  I want my girls to explore, get dirty, and have fun.  Not sit in front of a television munching on ghosts and watching some idiot put on a million t-shirts.

To change the subject for one moment, I was thinking about an expansion project.  Expanding what, you ask.  While I would love to expand our house to have a kick ass garage with a man room; this is not, will not, or can not be in the budget.  Expand the garden?  While that has to be done, it is not what I was thinking (Crap!  Now I have to do that, too).  I was thinking of expanding the family.  Now before all you loyal readers get all excited and start getting us baby stuff, I was thinking four legged and furry.  NOT a cat.  I repeat, NOT A CAT.  They are gross, lazy, and we are all allergic.  My apologies to the crazy cat people of the world, but no cats are welcome here.  I was thinking of a hypoallergenic dog; a labradoodle.  But in order to be certain it will not cause major spikes in our medical bills, we/I have to be certain it is a true labradoodle.  Which means I must go through a breeder.  Some of my friends say don't do it; Don't get a dog.  They smell.  They chew.  They are bad.  You can't go away without worrying about feeding/letting it out.  Exe cetera, exe cetera, exe cetera.  I don't know.  We always said we'd like the kids to have a dog when they are young.  And since I am home, I thought it would be a good time to have one.  I'm sure all the readers of this will tell me not to.  Fine.  You may win, but as of now it doesn't seem that bad.  It would be fun.  What can go wrong?

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Four star day, My ASS!

Every day I try to read my horoscope.  Mostly for fun; if they are right 1% of the time that would be a lot.  Yesterday I was to have a two star day.  All in all it turned out pretty well.  The kids were well behaved, my house didn't blow up, and there were no fatalities (at least not my fault anyway).  Not what one would call a two star day.  So this morning, while reading my totally truthful and accurate horoscope to see I was to have a four star day, I should have known it was a steamy load.  Nevertheless, I was expecting a good day.  Why?  Because the newspaper horoscope lady said so.  As it turns out, she got her days reversed.  FedEx messed up my delivery.  Did you know dispatch has no way of contacting the driver?  UPS contacts their drivers.  I guess that's the difference between a dented package and a crushed one.  I missed him by 5 minutes.  He probably drove by my house four more times during the course of the day where he could/should have dropped it off.  Then Staples.  "The Office Superstore," no longer carries FireWire cables.  Staples!  Apparently they don't think the FireWire thing will catch on.  I guess it's too slow for the genius buyers at Staples HQ.  Oh well.  Their loss.  Then the day really starts living up to its aforementioned star rating.  Tantrums, waking sisters during nap time, refusal to clean up after the A-Bomb goes off in dress up land, more tantrum, daddy getting slugged in the kisser, no stories, no dessert, more screaming, dinner,

"I don't like couscous!"

"Have you ever had it?"


Exactly.  Now I sit here and blog away, trying to decompress from the awesome telekinetic power of Ms. Horoscope, or whatever her name is.  She mind as well be a meteorologist; they have just about the same batting average.  I guess I should do some Power Yoga, clear my mind, work my daddy physic into some sort of shape, grab a beer and watch some Idiot Box.

Four star day?  Yes it was a four star day.  They all are; with the right attitude!  You just need to see it from a different angle.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Rush hugs??

To fill my "me" time (I try to do things I want to do to keep my sanity), I was looking to join another band.  Just something to do, something fun.  I did audition for a band, but I think I will pass on it.  I did fairly well, but I don't think its the right fit for me.  Maybe I am getting old.  Or maybe my musical tastes have changed after I've been rocking out to mid-tempo Americana tunes.  But I just couldn't bring myself to play music that I don't respect.  Why cover a song that I don't think is that good anyway?  And smelling like smoke isn't an aphrodisiac for me.  

When I am not in "me time" mode, the kids and I find ways to fill our days.  Usually its laundry and housework.  Sometimes its fun little outings.  Occasionally its lunch out.  But most of the time I, we hang around the house and play.  Not a bad gig at all.  While I was filling my "me" time today, I expected to return home to my lovely wife all frazzled, the house a disaster, and the patients running the asylum.  I walked in the door to find none of the above.  All of my beautiful ladies were doing crafts at the table, the house was in reasonable disarray, and there were no frazzles to be found.  The girls were well behaved.  Some days the stars and planets align, the seas part, dogs and cats get along, Rush Limbaugh hugs a hippie (well maybe not, but you get the picture).  Today was one of those day.  Come to think of it, I don't think there was a big blow up about nothing today.  Yes today was a good day.  Now we just hope the alignment stays for a while.  The hippies need the hugs.  

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Russian Yoga

My wife and I started Power Yoga a couple of days ago.  It is a very fun and powerful workout.  That is if you can balance, which I have some issues with.  But eye on the prize; we will be stronger, more fit, and one step closer to the land.  Look out world.  A couple of hippies were born!  Next stop a Prius, farming, and no more meat.  (now that is just preposterous, on so many levels)

I don't have anything else tonight.  I am boring.  I hope you enjoyed today's post.  And a big shout out to the readers in Russia.  I don't know who you are, but thanks for reading.