Thursday, July 30, 2009

A Day in the Twilight Zone

The last three days have been chaotic. The Oracle is a contractor, and he's currently working in a government office. He spent the last three days working in an office quite a distance away, which meant being out the door at 5:50 a.m. to catch a train at a different station than his usual. Blech.

We're running one car which means I had to drive The Oracle to a train station twenty minutes away for his commute instead of the one four blocks away.

I confesss I'm a bad mama. When I drive The Oracle to the local station, I leave our children asleep in their beds because I am out and back in under seven minutes. (After this episode, I suspect The Oracle will need to walk to the station or take an earlier train once school starts in September.) The station he needed earlier this week is twenty minutes away, and that meant stuffing sleepy kids into the car for the ride. They were wide awake by the time we got home and were demanding breakfast.

Tuesday we dropped our car off for service and thankfully provided a rental for the day. The rental was a Grand Marquis and too small for a family of five. After lots of squabbling and elbow wrestling, we joyfully returned the rental and picked up our car yesterday after breakfast.

Swimming lessons were immediately afterward. Then it was time for lunch, and my in-laws picked up Precious Daughter and Mighty B. just before 1:00 because I had a to write a doctor's deposition at 2:00. I scurried off with Kryptonite to the sitter's house.

At the sitter's house, I knock on the door. No answer. I knock on the door again, and no response. I call her number, thinking she might be upstairs and not hearing me, and no answer.

Now what?

My brain is spinning. Normally, the sitter picks up her son at 12:30, but she's home by now. Something must've held her up, but I can't wait any more. Hoping she was okay, I load Kryptonite back into the car, and I start heading to the job which is only a ten-minute drive away. I called my firm but got no answer, instead leaving her a message with my dilemma.

I tried calling the attorney's office and got a non-answer from their staff. I really had no choice anyway, because the job was due to start in twenty minutes.

I arrive at the doc's office with Kryptonite and meet opposing counsel in the parking lot. I explained my problem and asked her opinion on having a five-month-old baby present during the deposition. She was very open to it (thank Heaven) and began sharing some of her experiences with last-minute Take Your Kid to Work days.

When plaintiff's counsel arrived, he marveled over Kryptonite and compared her to his older baby. When he learned she was mine and present for the day's work, he took it in stride.

The third Seven to pop up on the slot machine was the doc himself. His is a family practice, he loves pediatrics, and offered to hold Kryptonite while I worked. Jackpot!

Opposing Counsel realizes she doesn't have half of her documents for the day's dep, and steps out to arrange a fax from her secretary to the doctor's office.

Kryptonite awakens, and the doc reaches out to take her. As I lift her out of the carrier I notice a familiar unpleasant odor. You have GOT to be kidding! Ah well. At least someone else is tied up with a fax machine, and I'm not the sole reason for delay. I take her out to the car for a quick change. Naturally, her diaper was a thoroughly nasty blowout. The kid had poop under her arms, for crying out loud! At least I had a change of clothes for her.

As I'm locking the car, I spy the baby sling I'd just purchased through eBay on the seat. I had it at the pool with me that morning. I stuffed the sling in my purse and returned to the doc's offfice.

Returning to my seat, I stuffed Kryptonite into the sling. She seemed pretty content and we began the deposition. About fifteen minutes into it, she started to crab. Ter-ri-fic. I start twisting back and forth on the seat of my office chair, but she isn't buying it. When the attorneys went off the record for another matter, I passed Kryptonite off to an office worker who eagerly offered her services earlier. I initially worried that the doc would be annoyed with his staffer taking the next hour off to fart around with the court reporter's kid, but it was better than having her squawking every thirty seconds and interrupting things.

An hour later, I can hear Kryptonite screaming. She is pissed. She wants her mama, but what can I do? I'm in the middle of a job. A short while later, the staffer comes in and asks if I have a bottle.

Yeah, I have a bottle and I have formula in the car, but I know full well that Kryptonite won't take it. She doesn't like the formula. She likes her milk, um, directly from the source. She'll take a bottle containing stuff from mom's dairy bar, but she doesn't like formula. I didn't have anything freshl bottled with me. I wasn't anticipating this job to take that long, and Kryptonite ate at 12:30.

Whatever. Kryptonite wasn't going to need to eat until 4:30 or so, but I made the bottle anyway. I figured it would give the staffer something to try. Kryptonite wanted her mama. The End.

We resume the deposition, and it takes for-ev-er. I can hear Kryptonite crabbing off and on, and we're perpetually interrupted with off-the-record discussions having nothing to do with my baby. At one point, a thunderstorm cracked open right over our heads, nearly shaking us all out of our chairs. The 41-year-old doc jokes that he thought he might have a second heart attack. NOT FUNNY!!!!

We didn't finish until 4:45.

The race was on! I had to get The Oracle from the train station, the kids from my in-laws, Precious Daughter to her summer stock practice by 6:00, and NONE of that was going to happen on time. It was pouring buckets and I could barely see. I made a batch of phone calls, the results of which were that nothing was going to be completed on time, but we eventually got everyone home safe and sound, and things were back to semi-normal.

I'm glad that's over!

Oh. The sitter? She just never got the message I left. I'm annoyed, but I'm glad she's okay.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Up and Down

I am being driven to distraction as I write this. It's nearly 11:00 p.m., and Precious Daughter is still awake.

The kid just will not go to sleep. She says she's not tired. She says she can't sleep. She says she's hot, and her hair is sticking to her neck. She's thirsty. She can't get comfortable. Excuses, excuses.

If she'd stay in bed for longer than fifteen minutes, her body might have a chance to fall asleep already!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

The Downside

After living two houses away from each other all their lives, Precious Daughter and the Blonde-Haired Girl have become pretty good friends. Whether this is simply a product of being separated from school-year friends or the beginnings of a really good thing remains to be seen. She seems like a nice kid, and I certainly hope they remain good friends for a long time.

The downside: Mighty B. We don't have a boy his age two houses away any more. For a while, our neighbors had their daughter and grandson living with them while their son-in-law was in basic training, and it was wonderful. They played constantly.

Mighty B. is feeling left out, and I'm feeling like an ogre. On one hand, I can't stand his being excluded by his sister and her new friend. On the other, I understand the girls' need to be by themselves without a pesky little brother tagging along.


It also reminds me of my own childhood. I didn't have many friends either. When my older sisters would go out, they were often saddled with, "Take your little sister!" I can't imagine what my mother thought the result would be. Would forcing me into their company make them want me along? Ummm... no. I was probably sent along as more of a deterrent to bad behavior, because (as much as I hate to admit it now), I didn't really learn that I could keep secrets from my mother until I was fifteen or so.

(Edited to add: I suddenly recall my very first screening of The Rocky Horror Picture Show. My sister, V, was going with her friends, and my mom whacked her from behind with "Take your sister!" I spent the movie in a state of perplexity. I didn't "get" the audience participation end of it, and I was thoroughly annoyed at my inability to follow the plot of the movie from all the shouting. Oh, and I was utterly agog with V's and everyone else's ability to fluently drop obscenities on cue. A year and a half later, my friends were going and I was probably more enthusiastic than V was.)

Whatever Mom's goal, the end result was my sisters' resentment at their lack of freedom in my presence and my feeling awkward at being forced into a situation where I wasn't always welcomed.

Fortunately, Mighty B. is still too young for that swirl of emotion. At the ripe age of almost six, he still believes that the world adores him and that it is his oyster for the taking, even if that oyster is full of Barbie dolls, Polly Pocket, and cheerleading pompoms.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Four Years Ago

I wanted to post these yesterday, but I forgot. They were taken on 7/9/05, and I thought it would have been fun. But, I forgot a lot of things yesterday, like sunscreen when we went to the pool and Precious Daughter's summer stock practice.

Kryptonite is teething. Her two bottom incisors cut through a couple days ago, but they're still giving her a lot of grief. Either that or she's following in Mighty B.'s footsteps. Mighty B. was like a shark with all of his teeth coming in at once, and it was a hellish time for him with all those teeth coming in without a break in between.

Anyway, Kryptonite didn't sleep well for two nights. She was uncomfortable and crabby and only slept while I held her. It was rough.

Back to the pictures. My chicks were approaching their fourth and second birthdays.

I found this workbench on eBay. It was one of my earlier and most favorite purchases, and well worth the drive to go pick it up. We still have the bench, but the kids have lost and/or destroyed most of the tools. It'll need new tools and a good powerwashing when Kryptonite is old enough for it. They played with it more than the kitchen set which, sadly, was curbed for trash collection a couple years ago.
In this next one, Precious Daughter chose the train table for a catnap. (Wow... look at my blinds! They were still smooth and unchewed from the Knucklehead's anxiety attack or something when we were out.)

I'm glad we still have the train table. It's probably my all-time favorite of their toys. That white blanket on her head has quite a history. I'll have to write about it sometime.
Ah, well. I guess it's time to return to the reality of glazed eyes staring at the TV and complaints of nothing to do on a gorgeous, sunny day.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Sixth Photo in My Sixth Folder

So I got the idea from Coffee Bean. Hers is way funnier than mine.

My folders are arranged by date created rather than by name. This photo was taken in June of 2005 during a neighborhood child's birthday party. The birthday had a bug theme, which should explain the very funny headgear my children are wearing.

At the ripe age of Almost four, that Dora the Explorer dress was one of Precious Daughter's favorites. It was the first thing out of the drawer or the basket whenever I did laundry.

Mighty B. was at least three months away from his first haircut. His shirt was one of my favorites, too. He's wearing it in a lot of pictures during that summer.

This puny post took over an hour and a half to complete.

Why? Because the moment I peeked into this folder from 2005, I had to peek in all the others. I didn't realize how much my kids changed in such a short time. I mean, I knew they changed, of course, but so many little things pop out of the memory banks when you look at pictures. I forgot how much fun their baby-ish selves were. They're still a lot of fun, of course. I wouldn't trade their current selves for their baby days.

Seeing these old pics reminds me of how quickly time is zooming by. My mom always said that my sisters' and my young years (baby to school age) were the best of her life. I have to agree. I love watching their bodies, minds, and personalities grow and change.

When they hit puberty, I'll probably change my mind on that.