Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Extremely Selective...

Hearing that is. Unfortunately this hearing problem affects every single male in our house. Every. Single. One.

Just this morning, Thunder was glued to Diego when I had the nerve to ask what he might like for breakfast.

"Capn' Crunch!"

"We're out, Honey. I'll get some later at the store. We have Cheerios or PB toast. Which do you want?"

"Capn' Crunch. Yeah, I'm hungry so get me a bunch please."

"Did you not hear me? I said..." (repeated the above and paused for his response.)

Finally, during the commercial break, Thunder responds:
"Momma, did you forget about that Capn' Crunch? Cause I'm HUN-GRY!"

I lost it. I'm so sick of not being heard. Or, being heard, but only as white noise.

Hail and Lightning both can be playing in the dishwasher/toilet/Bert's toolbox/etc, and I can scream like a banshee, "Get outta there!" With no reaction from the boys. Moments later, I can whisper "Does anyone want candy?" And all three boys will come running.

Bert is super guilty of this crime as well. And he knows it. He's been caught too many times.
Example: Fall football. Every Saturday our television is hijacked by the SEC.
I need to run some errands, ALONE, for my sanity. Before walking out the door, instructions are given:

"The kids just had a snack. Hail should be up from his nap soon. He will need a snack when he wakes up. And a diaper change. I'll be back in two hours.... Babe, did you hear me?"

Bert: "Uh, yeah." (Without ever looking away from the tv) "You said the kids just ate... hey, I heard you. Go and have fun. See you later."

Within 10 minutes my phone rings. Typical questions follow... "Lightning wants a cookie, has he eaten this afternoon?... What in the world is wrong with Hail? He won't quit screaming..."

I've decided to communicate by e-mail only with my boys hence forth. Since Lightning is screaming at the top of his lungs (napless) at the moment, I think this decision is wise.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Honeymoon's Over

My children take after me when it comes to the whole rise and shine part of our day. Bert pops out of the bed, wide awake, ready to meet the day head on. I like to wake up slowly. Lay on the couch for a bit, while sipping coffee.

Lightning, our 2 year old, is probably the most like me.

Every single morning he gets up between 6-6:30 and wants me to lay on the couch with him for a "widdle bit." I happily oblige, since it's still so early, and usually snooze on the couch until the second child wakes up, while Lightning watches Noggin. This morning, Lightning sat up several times and would smell the air, then lay back down. Finally, he turned to me and said in a whisper, "Momma, somedin' smells stink." (I love the language of a 2 year old.)

"Hmmm, wonder what?" I replied.
Lightning immediately placed his sweet little hand over my mouth and said, "Dat. Dat smells stink.... Ummm, Momma, you not have to lay down with me no more. I'm all done."

Thanks, kiddo.
Honeymoon's over.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

I'm not on your team!

Preschoolers crack me up when arguing. Our brood has graduated from "You have a girlfriend..." (though it's still used quite a bit) to "I'm not on your team!" Not sure what team they are referring to, or why the other child cares about said team, but right now it's what to say when you are totally pissed off and need to cut down deep. The following just took place:

Thunder: That's not a very good karate kick! Look, do your leg like this. (Demonstrates the correct way to "round house" kick someone in the face.)

Lightning: Mine is good too! Look! (Demonstrates his version of the "round house.")

Thunder: Nope. Not as good as mine.

Lightning: FINE! I'M NOT ON YOUR TEAM!!!

Thunder: Momma! He said he's not on my team! Momma!! Tell him not to say that!

Her Highness decided to throw a new one in the line up this morning as well. While watching "Scooby Doo" a commercial came on for some Barbie that she actually doesn't have. -Thanks to my Mother, she has nearly every Barbie ever created.

Thunder, who is very sweet most of the time and loves his big sister with all his heart: I'm gonna get that for you when it's your birthday.

Her Highness: Okay.

Within moments some sort of spat had begun. A commercial for a Power Ranger toy came on the tv.

Her Highness: I'm NOT getting you that for your birthday!!!

Thunder: Yes you are!

Back and forth they went until both ended up in tears over what presents they would/would not be getting. One's birthday is in June, the other November. What in the world?

So, the next time someone cuts you off in traffic, your boss fusses about a report, or someone is rude to you, lay it on them thick. Give 'em a piece of your mind and really let it all out... Just holler at the top of your lungs, "I'M NOT ON YOUR TEAM!" Or, let them know what they won't be getting for their birthday. Either way, it's a sure fire way to bring a person to their knees and realize the force with which they have reckoned.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Umm, should I be offended?

Raising Her Highness has been a blast, so far. Having only one little girl, I do tend to doll her up a bit when going out. Well, I once was responsible for the dolling up process. Now, she is in charge of it all... her clothes, shoes and hair style are all in her control. Fortunately for me, she tends to pick the same styles, if not cuter, as I would anyway. She's only 5 1/2 (that half is very important to her right now) so I'm scared to learn what type of teenage fashion diva we are going to have on our hands.

Since she was six months old, the child has not left our house without a hair bow. I'm very strict with this policy. I cannot stand for little girls (or boys for that matter) to have hair in their sweet faces. Not to mention, she feels better when all of that wild hair is not in her eyes. Recently, my giant hair bow obsession was brought to my attention. Having a child in kindergarten has introduced us to many new and interesting people. Her Highness met a sweet little boy at school, whose Mom seemed pretty normal (not something to take lightly) so we scheduled a play date. While hanging out in their backyard she says to me, "Tim has really enjoyed getting to know her this year. At first he came home and said, 'Mom, there's this girl I like in my class. But, she's a BIG BOW HEAD.' But, now that I've gotten to know her, and you, I told him not to call her that anymore. She is definitely NO BIG BOW HEAD!"

I'll admit, at that particular moment Her Highness was being seen in public (for maybe the third time ever in her 5 1/2 years) without a bow. It had fallen out while she was at school, so she shoved it into her backpack.

It was one of those things where the conversation changed quickly, so I didn't get to find out exactly what she meant by it. Thunder and Lightning were fighting over a rake. Hail was throwing a temper tantrum to run in the street, so the play date ended abruptly, as most play dates do when The STORM tags along. But her words still hung with me. She's from Minnesota, I kept telling myself. She doesn't understand OUR culture. She's not the prissiest of gals either. More of the sporty type. But so am I. I just love that my sweet daughter loves to wear only pink and ginormous bows. If that makes her a BIG BOW HEAD, then so be it. I had no idea that term was even considered negative.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Sometimes the voices outside my head are way better than anything I could ever make up.

The following is a true story.

I had to visit the doctor today. The visit that none of us ladies enjoy. I won't go any further, but that's where I was, waiting patiently to show every square inch of my hind end to my gyno, (Okay, so I did go further, sorry.) when the following conversation took place. I have already admitted to being a people watcher. In this case, I only wish that these were some of the voices in my head. Unfortunately, these voices came from two, very real teenagers, who were sitting directly across from me in the waiting room.

To help you with the mental image: A young white female, probably no older than 19, with a very tight (not maternity, and she was pregnant enough to be showing) low cut shirt. Her boyfriend, donning a Nascar cap and t-shirt, was present for this visit because they had an ultra-sound scheduled. The two were giddy to have just learned a "Junior" was in the making. We will call this Jerry Springer-ish couple Cherry and Bubba.

Real quick though, Cherry is a name my Mom liked when she was pregnant with me. Cherry. Can you imagine the jokes boys would have made with that?? Thanks, Daddy, for putting your foot down on that one. Back to the waiting room...

When reading the following, think of the accent that Joy uses on "My Name is Earl." Then, slow it down and triple it. If you're not a fan of the show, think total rednecks from the dirty south.

Cherry: Yur Mama is gunna be sooooo happy to have a grandson! Don't fur-get to call her.

Bubba: Yip. Sure will. Hey, you know what that doc said was right. And I know that the whole time yur down visiting your Maw-maw, yur gonna be sittin' on the porch smokin'. Cause that's all she really likes to do anyway. Sit and smoke and all.

Cherry: No-no. I done made up my mind this time. I'm quittin' cold turkey. I done told Maw-maw that I ain't doin' it no more, so you can call her the whole time I'm down thur and ask if I've had any smokes. I'm tellin' ya. This times for real too.

Bubba: Well, you know smellin' them camels on her, ain't gonna make it no easier for you to quit. You best be behavin' yur-self while your gone too.

Cherry just laughed it off. I don't even want to know what all behaviors warranted that last statement. Cherry and Maw-Maw must like to party. Poor "Junior."

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Song Lyrics

As seen in the post below, we rock out to kids songs much of the time. I've sang the song "Oh, my darling Clementine..." many times. I never actually knew the words to the other verses though. The song is about the man's daughter drowning, and him watching her and being unable to help because "Alas I was no swimmer, so I lost my Clementine..." Seriously?? Why is that considered a KIDS SONG?? For real, it goes into details of how she did it too. "She walked the ducks down... her foot hit a splinter..." I'm now retiring that cd.

I do love to hear my kids sing funny songs though. The funniest part is when they fill in the words that they aren't so sure of. Example:

Lightning: (Still singing Christmas carols) "Jingle Bells! Jingle Bells! Jingle all the WAYYY! Oh much fun to ride and sing and play! Hey! Somedin-somedin I love my Momma HEY! HEY!"

He just loves the "HEY" part.

Her Highness: (My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean-- yet another kids song I'm unsure of the meaning) "My BODY lies over the ocean. My BODY lies over the sea. My BODY lies over the ocean. So bring back my BODY to me."

I asked what in the world that meant. How could your body lie over the ocean?
To which she replied: "Momma, it's just a song!"
She still doesn't believe that it's "Bonnie."

Monday, March 16, 2009

Oh, Hail.... Not you too.

I love running errands when I only have one child with me. Bert has the luxury of working from home when he wants, so I take advantage and will run errands while the "big kids" are playing or watching a movie. Hail is still not considered a "big kid" simply because when left to entertain himself, he usually chooses the toilet or eating Barbie shoes as his hobby. I enjoy our one-on-one time though. Not to mention, he still has no opinion when it comes to what type of music we are listening to, which stores we are going in, and how much candy he can have at the check-out. Well... that is, until now. Saturday I ran to the grocery store, Hail in tow, to get just a few items. As soon as we got in the car, I happily turned off the kids songs cd and tried to find a grown-up station to listen to.

Hail: MOMMMM-AAAA! (In the exact same tone Lucy says Momma when I insist she lets her brothers play in her room.)

Me: What Buddy?

Hail: Tar! TAR! TAR!!!! Mommm-aaaaa! MOMMM-AAAA! TARRRRR!

Me: What in the world are you trying to tell me? You see a star? Where? I don't see it. Where
is it?

Hail: TARRR! Tink-a-tink-a! TARRR! Tink-a-tink-a! Momma!

Me: You've got to be kidding me. (Re-inserting kids songs cd)

Hail immediately began dancing and singing. I tested him to make sure that was really what he wanted and that I didn't just distract his thought pattern. Turning it back to Kelly Clarkson, I belted out "Since you've been gone..."


I've now lost total control of my own car.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

The Voices In My Head, Revisited

So, as my blog has revealed, my life is centered around boogers, diapers, forcing crazy boys out of trees and playing chauffeur to the world's prissiest five year old Drama Queen. Since I spend so much time in the car line at Her Highness' school, I have a few pet peeves that I would like to discuss with these folks.

To the Snobby Mom in the new, gold Suburban:

Seriously, get off the phone. Granted, you may not have had tons of time to chat to your BFF since you had to rush between having botox injections and getting spray-tanned. I know your life would be less complicated if the local plastic surgeons office would just hire a professional spray-tanner, but little John Parker needs some attention too. Attention, and then a hair cut. The 90's frat boy, shaggy look went out, well, in the 90's. Plus, John Parker might be able to see better if his hair is not in his eyes.

To Tanya the chain smoker:

For real, second hand smoke is the reason Angel is hacking her poor little lungs out every single afternoon while she waits to get into your smog filled car. Your second hand smoke, which is the reason Angel sounds like a tuberculosis patient, is one of the reasons my child has missed 17 days of school this year. If you're not going to quit with the cigs, could you at least teach Angel how to cover her mouth when she feels a coughing fit coming along?

And, Tanya, could you please ask your baby's Daddy to turn his bass down a bit. The days he picks up Angel, none of my wild boys are able to fall asleep due to the vibration of every single window in my van. I spend the entire 20 minutes, which should be in peace, trying to convince my crew that our speakers won't go that loud, plus "Itsy Bitsy Spider" won't sound as good thumping as Kanye West. Isn't he a little old to be listening to that music?

To Susie Homemaker:

I'm sure you keep some kind of notebook in your car, charting the time you get to the school each afternoon and how fast you get precious little Mary Kay hyphenated Eloise buckled in her five point harness car seat... But, today when you line hopped me, you should have deducted several minutes off your score, cause that is totally against the rules. Had I pulled up into the position that you just couldn't wait one single second to get into, my sweet Lightning's head would have been in the sun, risking him waking from his 20 minute power nap. Do you know what happens to me if he doesn't get a full 20 minutes?? I realize that by not pulling up all the way, I left exactly one car length space in between me and the next car. That was not an invite for you to pull forward and then do a 12 -point parallel parking job. I hope it was worth having Mary Kay-Eloise two seconds earlier than I got Her Highness.

To the Husband of the Too Cool for School Mom:

Wash her van already! All it's missing is "WASH ME" in the dust. Don't be afraid to use the shop vac occasionally and suck up some of those four month old fries. Also, your wife could seriously use a trip to the spa for a full body massage and pedicure. Her attitude might improve if she had some pampering. But, I'm not promising it will... see notes on Snobby mom.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Drama. Queen.

You are all invited to Her Highness' coronation. She will be crowned "Highest Drama of All Drama Queens" later this week.

Two days ago, Hail accidentally dropped a rather large rock on Her Highness' foot while playing in the backyard. I know it hurt. She was wearing flip-flops, so there was no protection to the top of her dainty size 10 foot. (Thunder and Lightning both have passed her in shoe size.) She limped to the door, wailing as if someone had cut her foot completely off her body. I saw that it was red and swollen, so I did all the usual Mom tricks: hugs & kisses plus a wet paper towel. For some reason a wet paper towel has always done the trick when it came to boo-boos with my kiddos. Don't ask me what the magical powers are in the water, but it always works.

Fast forward to the next morning... I wake Her Highness up for school and she says, "Momma, my foot is so sore. Can you carry me to the living room please??" So, being the wonderful mother that I am (insert sarcasm, I will do anything to get that child out of the bed in the morning. It takes her FOREVER to wake up and she's ALWAYS late for school.) I humored her and carried her to the couch. It was so sore that I "had" to dress her too. While putting on the first sock she goes like this...

"OOOhhh! Oooohhhhh!!! Be careful! It still hurts REAL BAD! Wait a minute... No, it's my other foot that hurts. Be careful with that one."

I know you all are wondering where in the world she would get this personality trait and to be quite honest, I have no idea.

Monday, March 9, 2009

My system is flawed...

to say the very least. I need help. No, that's an understatement. I need a total housework/organizational makeover. I'm calling on all my "friends" to help. For real, if you love me, or even if you don't really know me, but have enjoyed reading about my insanity, please help a sista out. I have lost total control of my house and all things living, breathing, brewing, smelling within. I need to know, from you folks who have better cleaning skills than me, how in the world do you do it?? Is there a drive that comes from within that just won't let you go to bed with dishes in the sink? Cause that's problem #1 for me. The mess just really doesn't bother me until my kitchen smells so bad that someone with chronic sinusitis would even gag walking into the room. I'm embarrassed to tell you that most of the time the dishwasher doesn't even get loaded until we are completely out of sippy cups and coffee mugs. And sad thing is, we have a kajillion of both, so it's several days before I "have" to do a load.

Problem #2, HAIL. He's a 17 month old that just won't quit. He's into EVERYTHING all day long, so if I stop and try to get busy with something other than playing with him, he's eating shampoo or playing in the toilet.

#3 I tell myself all day long that I'm going to get busy as soon as I put all the kids to bed. Wonderful theory, but I always conk out within three seconds. I'm seriously borderline narcoleptic these days. What keeps you other parents awake? For real, I know I'm not the only Mom on the planet who is exhausted, so how do you stay up after hours?? Too much caffeine isn't beneficial for me, cause I end up waking up in the middle of the night and not getting back to sleep = more narcolepsy.

4. LAUNDRY. I HATE IT. I'm tempted to give away all but four outfits a piece just so I won't have to fold mounds of laundry and put them all away. So sad, but I can go months, 3-4-5 at a time, with out ever folding clothes. I just keep digging through the pile, shaking out the wrinkles, then washing and throwing clothes back onto the mountain again. The ones on the outer skirts need washing again, because we've been stepping on them for months.


Okay, so here's where y'all come in.... Please, even if you don't have a google account, take the .3 seconds it takes to create one, and leave a comment with any type of advice you may find beneficial. I need to know what works for you. Even if you don't have children at home any more, or if you haven't had children yet at all... if you've ever kept a house clean for more than 24 hours, I want to pick your brain. If you aren't willing to help, would you at least be willing to stop by and visit me when I get transferred to a mental institution?? Or, stop by the house and see that my children are being fed, since by that time BERT will be responsible for cleaning and feeding the Hudson Storm and our Princess. Goodness, DHR (or CPS fill in your state's agency that takes away children from unfit parents) will have to get involved by then.

For real though, I'm not asking for sweet comments about how I have four kids and I'm still a good Mom even with a stinky house... If Michelle Duggar can do it with 18, surely I can find a system that works with only 4. Maybe I should go out and adopt a few cult type, glazed over teenage girls to take care of the babies and cook meals... No, that won't work either. My boys would drive even the Duggar-ish of gals crazy. Come on y'all. I really do need some advice. Even if it's harsh, I need it. Thanks in advance for your help... And Bert thanks you too. He's tired of digging in "the pile" for underwear and dress socks.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Harry James

Our little Stinker Pot. The boy is now 17 months old, and has me jumping through hoops all day long just to keep up with him. Monday, I was babysitting for a good friend who also has three boys that are very close to all of my boys' ages. Six boys, five and under, is a party, let me just tell you. Nikki's boys are much more obedient than mine, so it really wasn't too much trouble. They all play very well together, so it's nice for everyone to have a playmate and change of pace. All six boys were playing together in Jack & Ty's room, when Trent, the youngest of the McElroy bunch, only two weeks younger than Hank, came into the living room with a book for me to read. I pulled him up into my lap and began reading. Hank, looking for his lost playmate, came wandering into the living room a few minutes later. He got a funny look on his face, when he realized Trent was stealing his Momma's lap, and said, clear as day, "Ewwww, Momma. Ewwww. Tent TINKY! Ewwww! Tinky Tent." I have a slight cold, so I assumed Hank knew what he was talking about. Perhaps Trent had just done the deed in the boys room and didn't have the guts to tell me, so he brought a book to me instead, hoping I would smell him and change his diaper. I stood Trent up in front of me to check his diaper. That's when Hank made his move, climbing up into my lap as quickly as he could, with a smirk on his face. 17 MONTHS OLD, y'all! My other three would have just laid down at my feet and thrown a ginormous temper tantrum, or bitten the other child. I am scared. If these are the stunts he's pulling at 17 months, what do we have to look forward to in the teenage years??

A couple of nights ago, our entire family was piled in front of the teli watching "American Idol" a Hudson House fav. Our kids love for us to announce them as contestants, then they sing a favorite song. Bert and I are the judges and make comments, then we quickly announce that "You MADE it to the TOP 12!!!" Each child jumps up and down and squeals, Lucy usually squeezes out a few fake tears and thanks the audience for voting. Fun times. We use their full names when announcing, and since Hank is still too young (or is he) to understand, we would just say "Hank! Yeah for Hank!" and clap. To this, Jack says, "Hey Daddy, I know Hank's full name... It's HARRY JAMES! But, we call him Hank." Ever since, Bert and I have called him Harry.

Post Script: His name is Henry, Henry James, but we call him Hank... That's short for Henry.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Al Gore may be on to something...

I'm still not a huge fan though.

Saturday the kids were out in bathing suits, playing in the pond that had formed in our back yard. Sunday, we were "snowed in" since we live in the south and have no clue how to handle a winter wonderland. I'm so not jealous of my friends and family who live north of Nashville. I don't know how "you guys" deal with this mess. One day was fun and all I could stand.
Thunder suffered slight hypothermia. He and Her Highness played outside for nearly three straight hours. When I finally forced them inside, he could barely walk. After soaking in a warm bath for 30 minutes, he finally regained feeling from his waist down.
Funny how things change with age... I enjoyed watching the children from my heated living room, instead of being out in it. I was on hot chocolate duty, happy to greet my little snowmen with warm blankets and dry clothes to change into. I had a flash back while drying the kids off for the fifth time... I remembered how my Mom always stayed in to get dry clothes ready and make hot chocolate. I always thought, "Poor Momma, she doesn't get to stay out and play. She has to be inside doing work for the whole family while we have all the fun..." Mom, I'm on to you.
Saturday at Noon:

Less than 24 hours later:

Yes, those are grocery sack snow boots. It's the latest fashion.

My little snow angels

Hail was stuck indoors with me. He got to go out for
about 20 minutes (while I took pictures). He didn't care
for it too much.

How to keep toddlers entertained, and frost bite
only on the fingertips.

Warming up with hot chocolate and smores