Thursday, November 26, 2009

A Little Schoolyard Justice

It's going to be hard for John and I to do, but we're going to have to learn to let the kids work things out sometimes on their own (I'm talking over the next few years - I realize that 2-year-olds should not be allowed to rule themselves). Obviously the goal is to teach them how to do this so they just aren't beating the tar out of each other when disagreements flare up, even though I expect fisticuffs to happen sometimes (just no blows to the head, okay kiddos?). I'm going to struggle with it because my knee-jerk reaction when disputes happen is to jump in to fix everything and attempt to make things right.

My sweet little boy has acquired the frustrating phrase "No! Stop it!". He uses it indiscriminately and, while he WILL figure out quickly it definitely should NOT be said in the direction of his parents, he uses it whenever something does not go his way - which is about one thousand times a day. Very, very annoying.

Well, he had the nerve to say it towards his older sister the other day while I was out of his view and too far away to take care of things. I saw the whole scene and wish I had video: Ainsley was on the couch watching Dinosaur Train and The Boy decided he just couldn't bear to leave her alone. So he tackled her legs and she rightly shoved him off. He then pulled his finger-pointing "NO!!! STOP IT!!!" and she looked at him, leaned forward, and yelled "No! YOU Stop It!". And he stopped it. And it took everything I had not to laugh because, well, that's just what he needed.

Nothing like a little schoolyard justice to bring about some equilibrium. Unfortunately for Johnny, though, I have the feeling the pendulum of power will rarely swing in his direction.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Birthday Presents

John's birthday is coming soon and Ainsley is all fired up. She thinks birthdays are fabulous and has been peeved lately, knowing that John isn't having a party. In her world - and what a wonderful world it must be if this is what she has to be indignant about - everyone on the planet should have a "friend party" on their birthday. She's right, you know. We all deserve a Friend Party on our birthday...

So, because she rightly loves birthdays, she has been obsessing about how to celebrate her dad's. What sort of decorations? What kind of cake? (she wants to make brownies - I'm thinking that, while brownies are perfectly delightful, the guy deserves a little more) And the big question for tonight, just before bed = What do you think we should get him?

I tried the "Daddy would love it if you made something for him" argument, mostly because I have no idea how I can get the kid out by myself to shop. That, and it takes her 35 minutes to decide on something simple like a snack and I couldn't imagine the patience I would have to muster to get through a browsing excursion.

I should not have worried. My girl already knows what she wants to buy her dad and it is:

Light bulbs.

And something for the grill.

I don't know why, but I was told we were going to the "Daddy Store - you know, where Daddy's shop" (read: Lowe's) to purchase light bulbs and a grill accessory.

So that's what we will do.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

House Of Pestilence And Woe

It has been a rough 48+ hours at Chez Laird and I am praying the worst is over. Actually, I know the worst is over because John and I are no longer violently ill and simply in the recovery period. I still don't know what happened, really. John had been limping along with a cold throughout the week, but the rest of us were perfectly healthy until 4:33 p.m. on Friday when the awfulness caught me off-guard as I was playing outside with the kids. The only reason I know what time it was is because we were waiting for John to get back home and I was doing the checking-my-watch-every-two-minutes routine to see if maybe 10 minutes had passed from the last time I had glanced down.

The nastiness hit the ground with an all-out sprint from that time on and went through me, then Gracie, then John, then Ainsley, then...mostly avoided Johnny and Lizzy. So far, those two have only had The Fever and another mild issue (please, PLEASE thank me for sparing you gory details).

What was the worst part? Both parents being simultaneously knocked out and still having to parent. We so wished we could have called someone to help, but we so did not wish our germs upon anyone. What did we do? Well, I'm pretty sure the kidlets got about 8 hours of television on Saturday and 4+ today. No guilt and I think I can handle it if they don't go Ivy because of the brain cells they lost this weekend. We had no choice, although if I have to listen to the shrill voices on "Fireman Sam" again I may run away.

I only got a couple pics from the weekend:

We had to get some fresh air and A just couldn't handle being on the couch inside. Poor thing. Our graffiti on the back porch looks fab. We are so classy.

This doesn't quite represent John's misery unless you know him, but the guy always smiles. Shortly after this I sent him inside and up to bed.

Lizzy and Johnny - you are not allowed to get this full-on. I will feed you ice-cream and lollipops for dinner if you stay in the clear. Capiche?

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Makes Me Proud

We were on vacation with some great friends a few years back when some comments were made concerning how loving I was to John (the sarcasm was not appreciated by this girl - I really am nice to my man. Just not in a public way. I have a reputation to protect.). The conversation started with one of the husbands said something along the lines of "Woman! Make me a sandwich!". And it was correctly suggested that if John said something like that to me the reply would be "Make your own dang sandwich!".

I confess I do not pray often to have a servant's heart...something to think about for tonight.

Now before this true story is told, I am VERY NICE to John when the kiddos are around (like, 98% of the time). Most ridiculousness is saved up all day for after all the midgets are in bed. Or not within earshot. There are many, many years ahead where they will experience The Mommy in my flawed nature. So keep in mind there has been NO EXTERNAL INFLUENCE as you read.

Fast-forward to tonight, 7ish years later. Ainsley and I are sitting down to eat some kickin' brownies and John is giving his baby girl some grief because she wasn't diving in right away to the mess of chocolate. And, after about 5 minutes of ribbing, this is what happened:

John: If you aren't going to eat that brownie, I'm going to eat it!

Ainsley: You can get your own brownie.

The delivery was perfectly blase'.

I'm so proud.

Her poor future husband.

John just reminded me I forgot to include my silent, double fist-pump, cheering that took place in the background. I did do that.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Not a lot to say about Halloween this year, except that it was FUN!! The weather was perfect, the kids weren't terribly squirrely, and Ainsley thought everything was just the berries. Only panic of the evening: while I carried Johnny's epi-pen with me, just in case HE didn't grab some peanut-tainted candy-of-death, I completely forgot about people GIVING him death-candy. I mean, it's completely natural for us grown-ups to hand the sugar bombs directly to the kiddos - especially when they're holding out their meaty little hands and smiling so sweetly. But I was talking to a neighbor and turned around to see Johnny shoving something chocolate in his mouth (The Boy does not take bites of anything - all food is just jammed in). Fortunately it was a relatively benign Twix, but one of the girls had a Snickers. Lesson learned.

And some pics, of course:

I love this picture of Lizzy - from the day she was born, she has always had her feet up on something, just chillin'. We would go down to see her in the nicu and it was as if she was on vacay in the incubator. She does it in the stroller, in the grocery cart, anywhere.

Ainsley - who decided the girls should all match. A shout-out to Miss Kirby who loaned us the dress. It was perfect and she looked so darling. Thank you!

Four Snow Whites and two Handy Manny's. I deserved more candy than I received, but we did have someone take pity on us and delivered four ice-cold ones to the door. Very nice.