Category Archives: Bean

You’re The Worst

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The other day, I shared a link on Facebook to an article called “The Curse of the Second-Born Child.” It uses a heck of lot more curse words than I would have, but it essentially says that your second-born child is an absolutely amazing, crazily loved asshole sent to earth to break you.

Truth.

The love I have for the Bean is boundless. This child is a bright spot in my life- she’s funny and smart and clever and quick and gorgeous. She’s also been working my very last nerve for a good month now. If something can be a battle, it is. I realize I have a hand in all this too and that I need to disengage but man, it’s so easy to get sucked into to battle of wills with her.

Monday the Bean’s homework was to write out the contractions for “it is,” “you are,” “I am,” we are” and “he will” and use them in a sentence. Her schools gives out homework passes for various reasons and she has a bunch she can use so she chose to use hers on this particular assignment so she could play all evening instead. That was fine until she came home yesterday with classroom work involving contractions that she bombed. She didn’t have any homework last night, so I told her that we were going to do Monday’s homework as review to make sure she understood the concept.

She was furious at me for this injustice. There was wailing, gnashing of teeth, yelling and tears. There were dropped pencils that she “couldn’t” find and pencil tips that were broken on “accident.” In total she probably spent under 5 minutes writing the sentences and 40 minutes fighting with me about having to do this. Any time I tried to help Beaner, I was snapped at but any time she asked for help and I didn’t jump immediately she reigned hell fire down.

Fun times, man.

I kept my cool. I didn’t engage, didn’t yell and told her firmly what behavior was and wasn’t acceptable until the 5 freaking sentences were written. Beaner would let me see what she was writing, but I knew it was going to be good and she did not disappoint:

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I’m thinking that my mom is mean. It’s so mean that she making me do amaroke (I assume that’s “homework” and she was just too full of righteous fury to sound it out). We’re not going to the playground. He’ll got to the store. You’re the worst.

You guys, I may frame that sucker.

Really, Mom? Can You Not?

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It may come a surprise to no one, but I like myself. I’m comfortable in my own skin 95% of the time and don’t really care a lot about what people think. Scratch that. I do care- but sometimes I get so lost inside my own head or in the moment that I forget to care. That results in me dancing on the sidewalk as I’m walking the kids into school. Or singing under my breath to the songs in the grocery store (not loudly, not obnoxiously- you’d have been right next to me to even notice). Or holding impromptu dance parties in the car or the kitchen. I’m both a horrible dancer and singer, but sometimes the feeling over takes me and my feet are moving. I also like to greet everyone I know with a smile and a hello, using their name which is awesome 99% of the time unless I call someone by the wrong name. Which I’ve done. Multiple times.

Scorch is my son through and through. He doesn’t care and will more often than not join me dancing and talking to random people everywhere we go.

The Bean, however, is her father’s child. More private, more subdued and more prone to being completely embarrassed by me (or the Hubs or Scorch- we’ve all sinned against her). The Hubs and I are lucky enough to take both kids to school together most mornings. The kids start their day in an L-shaped hallway, with the door to their morning assembly being off the longer part of the “L”.  Guess where she makes us say goodbye to her now? Yup- the short part of the “L”. Kisses must be short and quick and no long hugs are allowed because someone may see us. That stings more then I thought it would.

You guys, do you know how hard it is for me not to walk down the halls of Bean’s school singing and dancing to “Shake It Off?” now? So. Hard. If it was me and Scorch, I would and we’d both laugh until our sides hurt and go on with our day. But not the Bean, she’d want to melt into a puddle and be so mad at me so I resist the urge to boogie.

I try to be respectful and kind and considerate. I’m trying to find that middle road where I can still be me while still taking the Bean’s feelings into consideration. There will be times I will unintentionally embarrass my kids and there will be times I very much intentionally embarrass them. Right now I’ll save my dances for the car or our house and mind my manners in public in the hopes my daughter still lets me hold her hand and hug her when I want to.

The Good, The Bad & and the Spotted

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The Good
The Bean is feeling about 70% better. She can actually walk, eat and talk and has enough energy to annoy the hell out of her brother.

The Bad
She missed this whole week of school (it was only 3 days long due to Spring break), which means she missed 9 days of school in March total.

The Spotted
Girlfriend’s arms, legs, hands, feet and face are COVERED in a spotted rash. According to the doctor, it’s all part of the stomach virus she had and is not contagious. It doesn’t seem to bother her too much, although her hands and feet are itchy as heck, but it looks terrible.  Not that I tell her that, but I cringe in sympathy/horror every time I look at her.

sickkid

The Good
I put ketchup in Scorch’s toothpaste this morning as an April Fool’s joke- just a tiny squirt at the top of the bottle- and it was hysterical. His reaction was picture perfect and I’ll pull the video out every time I need a laugh.

The Bad
By the time we got to school 30 minutes later, Scorch didn’t find mine or the Bean’s continued laughter at his expense funny and proceeded to have a meltdown that included a 5 minute recap of all the horrible ways we tease him. That list included this prank and that fact that we bring up the time Belle kissed him at Disney World when he was 5 over and over. Bottom line, according to my kid, I’m the worst.

The Good
Every time my dog farts or wags her tail vigorously, it smells like gingerbread.

The Bad
It sells like gingerbread because Crazy had infected, impacted internal anal glands – a fact we discovered 6+ weeks ago and are still working weekly to fix at the vet. Every time the vet does their thing (I’ll spare you the details), they spray her down to help with the smell. It doesn’t help. The scent of Gingerbread now makes me feel sick.

The Bottomline
Kids are sensitive souls with wacky immune systems and elderly dogs have issues that no one ever warned me about because if they had, I would have stuck with cats.

 

Being an Adult is Terrible

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Some days – a lot of days – I wonder where my children’s real parents are. You know, the grown ups? The adults that know what the hell they are doing and look cool, calm and collected while doing it?

Because I’m not that parent.

Except for when I have to be. I had to be on Saturday night. About 30 minutes before bed time, the Bean (who had been 100% fine up until that point) started saying she didn’t feel good. I quickly ushered her off to bed and hoped that what ever it was could just be slept off. She fell asleep quickly and I went to watch TV and fold laundry completely unaware of what was to come.

Around 9:20 I heard this odd noise and a whimper, so I went darting up the stairs to see what was going on. You guys, I found a scene out of the Exorcist. The Bean puked everywhere. On to the floors, walls, doorways; down our vanity and the side of the toilet, on to the shower curtain. Essentially every where excerpt for where she should have puked as she tried – and failed – to make it to the toilet in time.

It’s a well documented fact that I don’t do puke. That’s the Hub’s job. But the Hubs wasn’t home so guess who had to be the adult? Yup, me. Somehow I faked it. I cleaned the Bean up, cleaned my house up, threw the first of two loads of laundry into the wash and got the Bean back into bed (with a bucket by her side) without 1) vomiting myself, 2) crying or 3) just giving up. If that’s not an adult, then I don’t know what the hell is!

48 hours later and my poor baby is still miserable. This is how she elected to sleep for 2 hours today even though she hasn’t been physically sick for almost 24 hours.

SickBaby

Yes, that is my bathroom floor. Thank God I cleaned ever nook and cranny of it after she got sick Saturday night so I didn’t get too many heebyjeebies when I found her asleep like that. Could she get any more pathetic!?

Here’s hoping she’s on the upswing tomorrow and I can go back to waiting for the legit grown ups to show up.

Still Hibernating

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I’ve had this silly window open trying to come up with a new blog post for a good hour now. And you know what I’ve got?

Nothing coherent or really noteworthy. But if I don’t post, this will haunt me so here you go.

Things here are good. We survived our crazy February and cling the to delusion that Spring has to arrive sometime. The kids went 4 weeks in a row without having a full 5-day school week thanks to the snow/cold. We combated the cold by spending weekends playing some sport or another in the gym or by eating our weight in carbs. Sometimes both! The exercise outweighs the carbs, right? Right.

Basketball

Scorch did ski club this year and was hell bent on snow boarding. We warned him that it was much harder and that none of his friends were doing it but he was not changing his mind. So we let him. And he stunk at it. Scorch is a very social creature with an easy athleticism so this was so hard for him. He was on his own (minus his instructors) and it was really, really difficult to learn. Every week he was a basketcase about going to ski club but every week he went and the very last week he finally passed his test and was released out of lessons!

I’m sure there is some lesson in there about perseverance but truthfully I’m just thrilled the season is over because it tipped his anxiety over the top. Every Wednesday was a battle of nerves for him so we both ended up taking deep breaths by the time he was dropped off at the resort (him due to nerves, mine due to frustration). I’m really proud of him for pushing through but Wednesdays were long, long days.

I realize that of all the things we could be dealing, anxiety is way down the list of things that suck but this winter has been hard on Scorch. His biggest fear is getting sick – which he never did this winter. Not once. Which would be great except he’s been waiting for illness to strike him down since December. Over half his class got struck down with the flu and strep in the same week and he was as healthy as a horse. Well, as healthy as a horse who was convinced illness was stalking him just waiting to pounce. At his request I’ve spent more time feelings his cheeks for a fever this winter then I did in his first 3 years combined. I walk the line between being very sympathetic and wanting to shake the kid and tell him that he has not spike a fever in the past 30 seconds since the last time I felt his cheeks (no exaggeration). Spring cannot get here soon enough.

Winter

~*~*~*

The Bean, on the other hand, is completely unfazed about most things in life. As long as you’re doing what she wants, when she wants. And as long as you don’t laugh at her if she does / says something silly when she didn’t mean do. Or if you don’t laugh when she wants you to, at what she said even if it wasn’t funny. She’s a complicated creature is what I’m saying.

After a little bit of a rough start to 1st grade, the Bean is currently kicking butt and taking names. She taught me something in Math last week that I never realized and hasn’t let me forget it yet. Beaner is playing Little League this year and I cannot wait to see how this rolls out. In football, she was amazing AND managed to get two wedding proposals. Who know what’ll happen in baseball!

~*~*~*

And that’s our boring, ordinary, quiet life. Which I’m totally OK with. Hopefully we’ll come out of hibernation soon and be back to our normal chaos.

Daily Snippits

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Oh these children of mine, they just fill my heart. And 95% of the time it’s with love and happiness! We shall not talk about the other 5% of the time.

I lied –  because what am I if not an over-sharer?!

This past week was spirit week at the kid’s school. Monday was Sports Day, Tuesday was Mis-Match Day, Wednesday was School Spirit Day and yesterday was Character Day. I had been talking to the kids all week long about Character Day- where you get to dress in your favorite character. We have a few odd costumes laying around and I was more than willing to help them put something new together if they wanted. All week they told me they had it under control and it was all good. I knew darn well that was a lie, but was too busy to really concern myself with it.

Character Day arrived yesterday and, to no one’s surprise, the kids had nothing in mind and were freaking out. Always the one to look for the easy way out, I told them they were going to baseball players (what..they are characters!) because lord knows we have enough baseball paraphernalia to clothe a team in my house. All was more or less fine (read: each kid only cried once while getting dressed) until it was time for them to figure out what hat they were each going to wear. Mind you, we have at least 7 baseball hats in my house, but they each wanted to wear the same one. Because, of course they did.

Cue the meltdown of epic proportions from each kid (Scorch: it’s my hat. Bean: I called it first. Lather, rinse, repeat) until I finally said no one is going to wear a hat. Period. Which went over really, really well. I hustled my sobbing, pissed off kids out the door and 2 seconds later Bean ran back in while I was putting my shoes on to tell me Scorch agreed she could wear the hat, so we can bring them both. Clearly I was born yesterday because I believed her only to find out the little shit was lying when Scorch promptly lost his mind when she climbed into the car wearing the hotly debated hat.

We drove to school with the volume on the radio turned up to the max just so I didn’t have to hear them anymore. It’s pretty clear my parenting style is both mature and understanding.

Thankfully the hat decision was decided by a few heated thumb wars and peace was restored by the time I left school. As our beloved crossing guard likes to day, yesterday was a day that called for day drinking.

~*~*~*

Earlier this week on Mis-Match Day, the kids decided to dress as each other. Bean had on jeans, a button down shirt and a tie. We pinned her hair up and called it a day. Scorch decided to wear a dress (over his shirt and jeans) and a beautiful pink barrette to school. The kids thought this was hysterical (as did I) and they wore their clothes proudly all day (barrette included!).

Flash forward to Wednesday night when Scorch got home from ski club. He was in the bathroom getting undressed and I realized he never took off his school clothes- he just put his long johns, sweatpants and ski pants over what he had on. He did the same thing for his top half. That meant he had on 4 layers on his bottom half and 7 layers on his top. While I appreciate the need to be warm, I asked why he hadn’t changed first?

Oh, I didn’t think of that.

I couldn’t help but laugh.

~*~*~

Last night as I was putting the kids to bed, I told the Bean I loved her. Her reply? Not as much as I love eating boogers!

The end.

Real Life

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So here we are, 4 days back into reality. I admit, I was patting myself on the back a little bit earlier today at how well this transition has gone. Everyone has gotten up and off to school with minimal complaints and zero tears. We have an extraordinarily busy 6 weeks that kicked off this past Monday and thus far we’ve gotten everyone where they need to be on time and with 99% of the equipment needed. I even managed to get the kids to school early one day- we were killing it this week!

And then tonight happened.

I knew we’d have roughly 45 minutes at home before we had to take Scorch to basketball and I knew I wanted to have a hot, easy, well-liked dinner on the table within that 45 minute span. So I did some advance work and had a meal ready to go in the allotted time. It was a simple meal- chicken, corn, fresh fruit and macaroni and cheese- one that I knew from experience the kids loved (which is key in order to get them to eat their whole dinner within 15 minutes).

Except for tonight, the Bean was not having it. Like, at all. She literally cried for 25 minutes over this meal. She wanted a peanut butter sandwich and damn it, she was going to have it. Now, if I had cooked something new or something I knew she didn’t like, I might have been apt to give into her. But this? This was one of her Top 5 meals of all time, so nope – she was not getting a PB sandwich. So we dealt with 25 minutes of crying and yelling that she was NOT going to eat that food. She HATED that food. It was the WORST meal EVER.

Meanwhile, Scorch was laughing hysterically over her antics which just enraged the Bean all that much more. So between the screaming about the food and the screaming at her brother, the child was losing her voice. I kept trying to keep Scorch out of the line of fire, while reprimanding him that laughing at his sister was not a good idea-  all the while trying not to laugh myself because the Bean was being a nutball.

Yeah, that was fun.*

Then before bed, she wanted a kiss. But when I got close to give her one, she put both her arms out to stop me and said she didn’t want one. When I walked away, she called me back saying she did want a kiss. After 3 times going back and forth, I finally blew her a kiss, told her I loved her very much and walked out. She cried herself to sleep muttering what a horrible mom I was under her breath. The good news is it took her literally less then 1 minute to fall asleep.

TGIF tomorrow is all I can say!

*Yes. She ultimately ate her meal. And asked for seconds.

Snippets

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The Bean is playing flag football. She said she wanted to play, so we signed her up and then she lost her mind over the fact that we dared to do what she had asked us to do. Needless to say, getting her to her first practice involved a combination of lying (“Coach won’t have a full team if you’re not there- you don’t want to let the other kids down, do you?”) and bribery (hello dinner at Friendly’s!). But we got her there and she loves it. Can’t-wait-to-go, why-can’t-we-play-every-day loves it.

She’s the only girl on the team full of sweet, funny, nice 5 and 6 year old boys. Last week during the game, one of those sweet boy went up to the Hubs and asked completely out of the blue, “Coach, can I date your daughter?”

The look on the Hubs face was priceless. “No, you can’t. Pay attention to the game.” Then, as an after thought,  “Plus, you’re too young.”

That sweet little boy walked away, then came back 2 minutes later and very seriously asked the Hubs if he could date the Bean in 10 years when they are both 16.

I melted and the Hubs had an internal panic attack.

~*~*~*~*~

The other day I was with the kids and we stopped by a Catholic school. The kids read the name of the school, written on the building in old fashioned script and promptly informed me that it was a Pinocchio school.

It took a lot of persuading to convince them that, no it wasn’t a Pinocchio school- it was a parochial school. Still not sure they believe me.

~*~*~*~*~

We have an Elf on the Shelf, Buddy. Buddy’s been with our family since Scorch was 3 and his return every year after Thanksgiving is a Big Deal in our house. Thankfully Buddy is a lazy elf, so he doesn’t get into trouble or make messes- he just moves from spot to spot every night, finding a new vantage point from which to spy on the kids and narc to Santa.

Except for last night. Last night, Buddy didn’t move. He stayed right where was was because he didn’t want to go to the North Pole to have to tell Santa how rotten the kids were. Instead, he left them a note telling them (nicely) to shape up or face the consequences. I wasn’t sure how my delicate snowflakes were going to take Buddy’s letter this morning- but damned if we didn’t have the most peaceful morning in recent history today.

I’m hoping that elf is feeling verbose and isn’t afraid to drop a stray threat or two as needed the rest of the month!

~*~*~*~*~

This morning on the way to the work, I passed a field of cows and sheep. So, as I’m wont to do, I pulled over, hopped out of my car and took some pictures with my phone (all the while cursing the fact that I didn’t bring my good camera today).  As I got closer to fence separating me from them, all the sheep turned tail and ran away. Then they all stopped at pretty much the exact same time and all turned to look at me. The absurdity of the group-think going on cracked me up, so I laughed the whole walk back to my car.

Babes- lots of them.

Is it any wonder that I got texts from 3 different people asking if I was OK by the time I got back to the car? Gotta love small towns where everyone driving by knows you and wonders at your sanity.

For Everything

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Earlier this morning, the Bean and I were playing, having a half dance party / half martial arts battle when she started taunting me. I teased her and told her that if she kept that up, I’d pull her tongue out of her head and fry it up for dinner. She promptly burst into tears, horrified that I would ever think about doing such a thing.

After a long conversation, I finally convinced her that it was joke, that I would never pull her tongue out and her body would remain intact. A pinky swear or two later, and all was well again.

Later we were driving home, listening to Ramona Quimby, Age 8 in the car. The Quimby family was eating dinner and everyone was remarking about how delicious the roast was until Beezus discovered that the family was, in fact, eating tongue. It was cheaper, Mrs. Quimby explained, and the Quimby’s were trying to make every dollar stretch as far as possible.

Bad timing, Quimby Family, bad timing.

~*~*~*~*~

I’ve sucked at this whole blogging thing this month. I wanted to focus on gratitude this month and instead, I froze. Life is crazy busy (as always) and frankly, I didn’t know where to start when I’m thankful for everything. The family that birthed me, the family that I married into, the man who made me a wife, the kids who made me a mom, the friends who make me a better person. My little, warm, snug house hours away from the snow in Buffalo, the jobs that I so enjoy (95% of the time), the books that fill my imagination and the books that spark my children’s minds.  The animals that curl up on my toes at night and the body that keeps moving every day. There is so much to be thankful for that frankly, it’s overwhelming this year.

So I’ll cut myself some slack and hope that this whole blog (or at least most of it) exudes gratitude. I hope that even when I’m complaining about the kids or the Hubs that the amusement and the love ultimately shine through.

Root Bear Baby

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The Bean was taking her bath tonight and when I went into check on her, I found this:

BeanerBath When I asked her what she was doing, she told me she was a teacher, teaching her class and her husband (that good looking fellow with the blonde hair and the khaki shirt next to the orange blob) math. Thanks to the crappy quality of the picture, you can’t tell that she has written 5+?=9 on the wall.

“What?!” I said. “You’re too young to get married!”

“I am not, I’m a root beer baby so I’m older then I look!”

This took me a second to puzzle what she was saying out.

“Do you mean you’re a Leap Year Baby?”

“Yup, that’s what I said!”

“No, that wasn’t what you said and even if you did get it right, being a Leap Year baby technically makes you younger, not older.”

“Oh, then let’s just not mention this again,” she replies.

*~*~*~*~

My kids make me crazy sometimes. They make me question my sanity and my intelligence and they have been known to push me thisclose to the edge. .But they are two of the funniest monster I know and I wouldn’t trade the privilege of watching them grow for all the money in the world.