Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Best Valentine's Day EVER!

It started off as any normal day would, with the exception of a brief "Happy Valentine's Day" to Chanel before getting up for the day. Well, and except for the 3:00 coughing fit Thing 1 had, requiring a dosing of meds, as he gets over the bronchitis he and his brother have. All well and good, I walk out the door on time and head to my car.

The car didn't start.

No problem, it needs a new battery. It's had this issue before and once I jump it I'll be on my way. It's just a matter of backing up the van onto the lawn next to the driveway and hooking up, right? Negative, positive, negative positive, give it a minute...turn the key and...nothing. Give it another minute. Nothing. Just a few more. Nothing.

OK, off to Walmart to pick up a new battery with the van. Find the one I need, $120 later, I'm calling a coworker to let her know I won't be attending the 8am meeting while driving home.

Changing out a car battery is a fun challenge for the uninitiated. The bolts are usually rusted, there's the slight danger of electrocution, and you never have quite the right tools for the job. I managed through with what I had and may have given my wrist a slight strain on the way. With the battery installed, I go to fire it up. Nothing.

Crap.

Back in the house, I'm putting my tools away as I hear Thing 1 ramble on about something. Being the awesome father I am, I didn't think much of it or listen to exactly what he was saying, figuring he's down the hall in one of the kids' rooms playing with their mom. I head that way to let Chanel know the problem wasn't the battery.

Wait a sec. Thing 2's room is closed. Oh, yeah, it's about nap time for him; Chanel's rocking him to sleep. Thing 1 is still rambling on. Where is he? His voice is coming from the bathroom. What's he saying? "I pooped everywhere."

Crap.

Apparently, the little guy, while urinating, decides that he needs to poop as well, right where he stood. When I found him, he was standing next to the sink, one poop-covered foot lifted in the air, poop-filled pants and underwear around his other ankle, poop smushed into one bath rug, another turd sitting on the floor, and more smeared across the other rug. While I'm cleaning him up, he's giving me the run-down of what happened in a voice that sounded like he was disappointed in himself, making it impossible to be mad at him. "I was peeing and suddenly I had to poop. I pooped everywhere. There's poop on that rug, and there's poop on the floor, and there's poop on my foot, and my leg, and on the other rug." Of course, when finished explaining, he would repeat it again from the beginning, as little kids do.

As I'm wiping him up, I get a text from Chanel in the next room: "He's too loud!" Oh, is his talking keeping Thing 2 awake? Would you like to switch? I told her what I was dealing with and surprisingly she didn't want to.

From there the day was somewhat regular: Chanel took the kids to a playgroup while I read a class assignment. They came home, we all had lunch and enjoyed a family nap. The afternoon was full of errands to the bank, Kroger, Lowes, and Walmart. We came home for dinner, wrestle-Daddy time, bath, and bed. Then I was off for a little community service of sorts at the Knights of Columbus hall to work Bingo. True, the afternoon was also peppered with instances where I called into the garage to see how the car was (they hadn't gotten to it yet), but in the quiet moments after I came home and snuggled into bed next to Chanel, I was able to reflect on the fact that my Valentine's Day was spent with my family, having fun and making memories. Despite the rough beginning, it truly was my best Valentine's Day ever.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Who'da Thunk It? My 3-yr-old did!

Since our oldest learned to talk, I've been jotting down some of the funny words/phrases he comes up with. He's downright hysterical without even trying and it's fascinating to be able to catch a glimpse of what goes through a 3-yr-old's mind. Someday I'll put all of the quotes together into some sort of book and surprise him with it when the time is right. But for now, here are snippets of some of our most recent conversations:

Every time we drive to school, we pass this gorgeous house and I go on and on about how perfect it is for us and how I would love to live there. In typical "guy fixes the problem" fashion, Bobby says, "Let's knock on the door and ask nicely if we can have their house. If we say 'please' they will let us have it, right, Mama?"

**********

Bobby: No, David, you can't play this game. You have to be THREE to play. You're only one.
Me: Hmmm....guess I can't play either then. I'm 32, not 3.
Bobby: No, Mama. What I meant was.....you have to be either 3 OR 32 to play.

**********

Bobby: Mama, what are you doing?
Me: I'm highlighting my hair, Bobby. See the box? I want my hair to look like that.
Bobby: (grimacing) I really liked your other hair better.

**********

(while driving home from school)

Bobby: Mama, I want to invite everyone in class to my birthday party.
Me: Well, we've got some time...your birthday isn't until April...
Bobby: I want to invite the boy in the white shirt. What's his name?
Me: I didn't see who was wearing white today.
Bobby: He was wearing a WHITE shirt, remember?
Me: Bobby, I didn't really notice what everyone was wearing today.
Bobby: But he said he wants to come.
Me: How about we figure out the details and THEN invite people, ok?
Bobby: Ok....he ate Cheese-Its for snack today. You know? It was that boy. The one in the white shirt who ate Cheese-Its. NOW do you know his name?

**********

(I hear David start to cry down the hall...)

Bobby: Mama, I don't know why he's crying. I didn't hit him in the back of the head with a car!!

**********

Bobby: Is it tomorrow yet?
Me: Nope, it's today.
Bobby: Now, is it?
Me: Still today, Bobby.
Bobby: But I want to see Grandpa Greg and Grandma Lisa TODAY.
Me: I know, but we have a few things we need to do before that happens, Bobby.
Bobby: Is it Wednesday?
Me: Tuesday. Still Tuesday. And when you ask again in two minutes, it will still be Tuesday...

**********

(a completely naked-for-no-reason Bobby rounds the corner...)

Bobby: Mama, I picked a piece of snot out of my nose but couldn't find a trash can...so I just shoved it back in.

**********

Rob: Bobby, you sound like a broken record when you ask over and over again.
Bobby: What's a record?
Rob: ...you sound like a skipping CD.

**********

Bobby: Come look at the oven, Mom!
Me: Are you helping me cook? Aw, that's sweet, Bobby.
Bobby: No, I want you to find the piece of snot I just put in the oven.

What is the obsession with snot in this house???

**********

Bobby: Mama, I need to you kiss my ear. Somebody kicked it.
Me: What? How'd they do that? Were you on the floor?
Bobby: No.
Me: Well, I don't think anyone is tall enough to get their foot to your ear. How'd it happen?
Bobby: He kicked it with his foot.
Me: Were you bent down?
Bobby: No, standing up. Oh wait, I was laying on the floor.
Me: Ok...what were you doing on the floor?
Bobby: Laying there.
Me: But why?
Bobby: I don't know. I think I was really standing though. I laid on the floor a different time.

**********

Bobby: Mama, when I was a baby, my first words were "Dada", "Mama", and "David."
Me: Well, not "David." He wasn't born when you were a baby so you had no reason to say his name.
Bobby: But he says my name.
Me: Yes...he has a reason to. You didn't.
Bobby: But I DID say "David." Maybe you just don't remember.


Ahhhh.....kids. :)

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

What Makes a Great Play Area?

Chanel needed a little retail therapy the other day so she packed up the kids and met me at the local Burger King as I came home from work. Even though we rarely eat anything there beyond an occasional milk shake, the kids love the play area and it had just been reopened after a remodel so we were intrigued with what changes may have come.

I got there first and waited for the rest of the family to arrive. Once there, Chanel and I switched cars, I switched shoes (steel toes in BK? not if I need to climb up after someone!), and we all waved as Mama drove away. No tears today because we're at BK!

We walk in and sure enough, there are changes. The room is bigger than I remember, the padding seems fresh, and the padded floor area looks new. What catches the boys' attention most at first, though, even before their shoes came off, was the flat screen TV showing Toy Story 3. Hmm...

They get past that pretty quickly because it's mounted so high that they have to strain to see the image that's poor to begin with from the sun glare coming in, and moved on to the touched-up contraption of steps, webs, and tubes. After climbing for a while and sliding for considerably less, another family comes in: a pair of older boys, perhaps 8 and 10, with their mother.

On the plus side (you don't know that's a pun yet), these boys were not going to be a threat to mine as they passed through the tubes of the climbing contraption. It was pretty clear that these boys didn't come to BK just for the play area and were unlikely to go anywhere near the physically challenging area of the room. Their mom sat at the end of the room where she had a better view of the TV and made herself comfortable taking up the entire bench of the table for "4" while she waited for the food to be delivered.

Side note: when did you stop having to wait for your own food at the counter? It's not fast enough? "Ma'am, this'll be a minute or two, you'll want to sit down." Seriously, that standing was valuable physical exertion that woman desperately needed.

Meanwhile, the older boys fire up the Wii, yes, the Wii, that is attached to the other flat screen TV in the play area. This, unfortunately, does put a stop to the climbing, sliding, running, and spinning that normally takes place in such areas. The magnetic draw of Mariokart, even to be just a spectator, is too strong for toddlers. After the players' food was brought out and they had to rejoin their mother, the demo still had a strong enough attraction to hold the attention of two otherwise physically active little boys.

Good job BK. You ruined your kids' area. I know we'll miss it more than we'll miss the milkshakes.
Nutrition facts about BK Milkshake