Friday, October 28, 2011

Tonight's a Twofer, What!

Since the last post was kind of whiny, I am going to change the tone.  Baby M is cutting two front teeth and a couple molars.  He can say the word booze.  Development is going swimmingly!  He can order alcohol and chew real food, kinda.  I am depriving myself of sleep so I can play on the interwebz, even though I have to cook and clean tomorrow, and dress myself for the family invasion.  Why am I depriving myself?  Because I neglected to describe my fitness assessment.

I joined a health center affiliated with a local hospital.  I chose this gym because 1) it's cheap and 2) it has child care.  So I go ahead and make the appointment to have an assessment.  After I have the assessment, which will definitely suck, the trainer will give me a workout, which theoretically will help me shrink.  Yes, this is the carrot and stick.  On the morning of my assessment (notice the first syllable is ass, which draws attention to the fact that mine has spread,) a very buff and possibly, well maybe, straight male nurse/trainer comes to lead me through the gym to the room where they humiliate you.  As we were walking I discovered the best part of the gym.  Everyone in there is older than me!  Every. Single. One of Them.  How freaking awesome is that!  My gym is inhabited by the elderly cardiac, and pulmonary rehab patients, with the odd joint replacement thrown in.  I look GOOD in this gym!

Elation fills me as we step into the humiliation cell, or assessment room.  Guess how your BMI is measured these days?  Your trainer, who should wear a black pillow case with eyeholes cut out, uses the little caliper things to pinch the fat on seven places on your body. Not two.  He measured my belly fat, my hip fat, my back fat, my thigh fat, the little weird fat pocket between my arm pit and bra strap.  He even measured the fat under my arm pit after he measure the fat on the back of my arm.  Thank heavens I shaved the day before (I think).  I don't think my OBGYN has ever examined me this closely.  Crikey!

Then the trainer tells me my number.  Apparently I am 39% fat.  I am going to say that 5% of that is in the boob, so I am 34% fat.  WTH?  How did this happen?  Oh yeah!  I ate a lot!  So now I am going to stop eating and start sweating.  My goal is to lose 70 pounds in a year.  Lord help me, I am going to be working out for the first time in my life.  On the bright side, I look good in my gym!

And...I'm Back

Had to take a brief hiatus to work some things out.  In short, I am going crazy being a SAH mom.  I think I actually do need to work and be around people.  So, I have been depressed, and somewhat coping, but not really.  I keep sticking food in my mouth because I am so stressed out with being home with the kids all the time, and trying to teach G. while M. competes for whiniest baby of the year award.  Then I gain more weight and get more depressed, because I am overweight and disgust myself.  So I have been a fat ball of depressed stress.  EW.

I also tend to just spaz out on A about not every having any time to not be a mom or wife, and to remember what the hell I like to do.  This hasn't been good.  The hubs and I sat down and did some talking.  I am now a member of a gym and love it!  I got back on Weight Watchers, and have lost 4 pounds, so that is pretty stinking awesome as well.  And I think I will be returning to the work force after G tests in January to get into the magnet program.  Hopefully it will go better than the G/T testing where he decided to come back later.  (failed!)  There will be a lot of prayer going into the decision to no longer stay home, but I am pretty certain that is my direction.  I am going to stop being a middle school life group leader at church and join the ladies group instead.  I need grownups so badly!

Tomorrow is the last soccer game of this season, for which I am extraordinarily grateful.  No more snotty private school mommies to deal with next season, please God.  They are all, "ohhh...I don't have any kids at home, but I don't work, so I can polish myself all day.  I will toss my carefully colored blonde locks and ignore "the outsider"". I am more, "oh, I took a shower about an hour ago and when I was done the baby was crying again (as usual) so my hair isn't dry.  I apparently don't wear fancy enough clothes to sit on bleachers and watch a 4-year old soccer practice.  Yeah, it's been a dream to deal with these awesome ladies.  I am sure they have redeeming qualities under their shallow attitudes.  Or not.  I am just going to beg, plead, and tantrum if necessary to get G on a team with real people.  Oh, and other boys, that would be nice too!

Tonight, A. watched the boys so I could go have dinner with another stressed out, never a moment to herself, almost sick to death of her family, mommy.  We both really enjoyed hanging out with another woman and talking about how we love our kids and how hard it is when they won't stop crying or whining.  No one tells you how much motherhood can isolate you, and how you need time away from your kids to talk to peers.  I went waaayyyy too long without this, and as a result I was almost batshit insane.  I feel better now.

Tomorrow will be fun.  I am getting up early to bake a cake for G.'s end of season shindig.  I also have to make some chili, and vacuum the den and hide the laundry that is decorating every surface of that room.  And dry the soccer uniform, and wet jet the floor so I can pretend I mopped.  It should be a pretty busy morning and a pretty good day.  Can't wait to see my parents.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Bedtime for Babies

I guess I am not the most feminine of women, because I do not enjoy putting my children to bed.  With my oldest child, circumstances forced me to rock him to sleep every single freaking night as a baby.  I hated it!  Let it be said that my oldest child did not cuddle, and did not coo.  He would scream bloody murder for an hour and a half before finally just tiring himself out.  No matter what time of night you tried to put him down, you were in for the scream fest.  Some mommies will probably want to crucify me for this, but I did not like my baby during this time every day.  I dreaded it, and I resented it.  I came to understand why people shake babies.  I don’t condone it at all (I sucked it up and dealt with the little turd lovingly, everyone else can too.)  I really just wanted him to conk out and let me have a few minutes of peace.  Peace was defined as time to do my homework, or plan for my 5 different classes.  And the irony is that he really threw tantrums when I finally stopped rocking him.  In short, the kid fought sleep like it was a pack of ninja bunnies out to eat his face.

My circumstances are vastly different with our second baby, and I do not ever rock him to sleep.  He goes to sleep faster in his bed, and sleeps more soundly.  While M. is a totally different kettle of kid from G. (can we say mellow?)  I also think his awesome sleep habits have to do with our unswerving devotion to not rocking.  The only time he gets rocked to sleep is at his grandparents, if we don’t catch them first.  And then we have a week of hell when we get home because we have to go on holding detox.  All in all, it’s okay.  Will our next baby get rocked to sleep?  Probably not.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

We Survived Snot and Vomit Week!

Yes, each and every one of my little family was blessed with a stomach virus, and a cold virus all in the same week. It was not so glorious, and I am not going to describe why baby M. and I took a bath at midnight last week. We also got carpet in our den, making it the only room in the entire house that does not have hard floors. NO one was allowed in the den until vomit free for 24 hours. We spent a lot of time in the small living room last week. Thank God it is all over! So what else has been going on? Well, G has not forgotten the word vagina. However, he has forgotten the meaning.

Today while we were homeschooling it up, G and I played a game where every time he got an answer right, he got to pin a leaf on his "Halloween tree". I do realize now that I was doing this backwards and he should have been taking the leaves off, but I didn't get certified to teach pre-K now did I? Anyway, he was also naming the types of leaves as he pinned them on the tree. There were: willow, pin oak, live oak, red oak, and vagina berry. Yes folks, according to my son, it does grow on trees.

Thankfully I was able to gently correct him and say, "sorry dude, I think you mean china berry leaves, not vagina berry leaves." For the first time in his entire life he didn't argue, or ask any questions, and I was able to send him outside for "recess". Then I laughed hysterically at the mental image he gifted me. Days like today make up for every miserable night I spent rocking that screaming little turd to sleep. That kid is more entertaining than a pet racoon.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

LIcking Inappropriate Things

Yesterday we got carpet over the terra-cotta and concrete flooring in our den. It is heavenly. M. is as delighted as a congested 8 month old on decongestants can be. He spent a good 5 minutes rubbing it with his little baby fingers and flexing his little baby toes in it, before he licked it. The flavor was not quite what he expected if his face were any indication. So that would be the first inappropriate thing licked this week.

Today M. learned he could scoot around the room. 3 different electrical cords were licked, before I got them away. So now we are up to 4 inappropriate things licked by M. this week.

This morning A and I were awakened by the sound of G vomiting vigorously while M coughed courageously. Thankfully G made it to the toilet. So both kids got to make a trip to see Dr. Monica. While checking in, M. leaned out of my arms and licked the receptionist window. Then he licked the arm of my chair in the waiting room. I'm almost certain he licked the blinds behind me. Then he licked the table in the weigh-in room, and in the exam room. I think he also licked and chewed on Dr. Monica's hair. So that takes us to 9 inappropriate objects.

After the trip to see Dr. Monica, M. licked the outside of his brother's water bottle (can we say ew! vomity germs!). Then he had to take a break and have a nap while we picked up some popsicles for G. After his nap M. was again lounging on the awesome new carpet and managed to grab 3 different remote controls and 2 phones and lick them all. Then he rolled to the TV and licked the speaker.

Moral of the story, you can't disinfect everything, because your baby will find new things to lick.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Reset Buttons and Not Sucking

This was written on Saturday, but I didn't hit publish post until today because of the buckets of snot poring out of Moses' and my heads.

How much more awesome would life as a parent be if kids had reset buttons. If you could just erase certain things that were said to them. more toddlers with potty mouths. No more preschoolers repeating embarrassing things. Today, I would have loved to have such a thing.

G is playing soccer. I know this isn't the super competitive league, but it is important to our little family. We have special game day pancakes, and fix his hair in a faux hawk. It's fun for us to get him pumped up and feel good about himself. G now is into our ritual, so every Saturday morning we get pumped for some beautifully chaotic, 4 year old soccer.

G also expects adults to tell the truth, because we don't lie to him. If we say, "Son, if you do that again, I will punish you," we back it up. If we say, "we are going to do X, on this day," we do X on that day. Because that is the way the world should be when you are 4. He doesn't yet know that adults suck a large part of the time. Today, he got a lesson on this. So he's a trusting and naive soul.

A family member told G at his first soccer game that he, the family member would be at every game. This man has missed the last two games. So we are stuck with explaining to G why this adult, who he loves, has stood him up. Let's see...what truth should we tell our child? That this person is selfish? That this person is a liar, and unworthy of his trust? How exactly do we tell our child this.

Last week a friend of mine from out of town missed G's game by about 30 minutes due to my new phone being a new phone. Meaning I had no contacts yet, and sometimes forget I have the ringer off. So she told G that she would be at his game this Saturday no matter what. Then came the week. Things happened, as things do, and she wasn't able to come to town. Which would have been fine and understandable had she called. But G was looking for her, and was disappointed that his "aunt" wasn't there as well.

Moral of the story is, don't promise to be there for a child and then bail. You kind of suck if you do. Just call ahead of time and at least let the kid know what is going on in general terms. Don't forget them, oversleep, or just not show. Don't teach our children to lie. Also, if you pour that big bowl of suckatude over a child's head, have the decency to apologize to them if their parents will let you. Be an adult.

Today did have a surprise joy saver. G's aunt and younger cousin came to the game unexpectedly. You could tell it just made his day, and he played so much more joyfully after they arrived. He even blocked a goal and then drove the ball all the way down to his goal. He wanted to show off for his baby cousin, who mutually adores G. So he didn't really care that some people didn't show for his big game. Guess that just shows me how I should feel too.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

G arranges the universe

When A and I got married, we were living 3 hours apart. So, after the honeymoon we packed up G and moved to the big city. During our first year of marriage A and I bought a house on a quiet street inhabited mostly by the newly wed and nearly dead. It seems as if half the residents have been here forever, and the others are chasing small children just like us. It's a nice little place to live. However, my parents are now 3 hours away. G does not like this. Here is his solution, as told to his grandmother last week.

"G-ma, you should move to S-city. There are lots of jobs here. You and Pop don't need the horses, you could sell them and use the money to move to town."

My mother replies, "Well honey, even if we moved here we probably wouldn't be able to live very close to you."

G says, "No, you could live close to us. Our neighbors are very old. They'll probably die soon, and you can buy their house."

-Ahhh....the simplicity of childhood.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Lap Colic

For those of you who are not Southern, Lap Colic is a horrible condition most often contracted by babies after visits with family members. Grandparents are notorious carriers. Lap colic is spread by holding babies as often as possible, picking babies up whenever they make a noise, and rocking babies to sleep. While one of these actions may not result in Lap Colic, a combination of all three certainly will.

Symptoms of Lap Colic include: extreme fussiness when placed in a walker or exersaucer, extreme fussiness when placed on the floor, extreme fussiness when placed in bed at nap time. Anytime the baby isn't being held expect moderate fussing to an outright tantrum. This terrible condition can spread different symptoms to the rest of the family. Siblings will contract whining and become reclusive, only coming out of their rooms when the baby is sleeping off the last screaming bout. Parents develop eye twitches, taut muscles, and ringing in the ears.

Lap Colic is a wretched, wretched condition. Whatever shall we do? Distract! Distract! Distract! Take your baby outside in this beautiful fall weather. Sit in the floor with your baby, and the sibs, and play instead of picking up your baby. Return to your normal routine and stick with it. Be positive. Smile at your baby even when you want to scream, "What is your problem? I am not the enemy!" Sing silly songs at your screaming baby while he or she is in the high chair/exersaucer/walker. Dance for your baby. Give baby a bath if you are especially desperate.

Eventually you will have to let your baby cry while you cook, or shower, or poop. Some things just have to happen in your household. You won't go insane. And you still love your baby if you walk away for a few minutes to escape the excessive fussing. Breathe. Joke about it. Prayer is never out of place. And for heaven's sake get a baby sitter and get away occasionally. Your sanity will thank you for it.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

G the fashion police

I usually try to drop in a funny G story every now and then. G is quite the fashion critic these days, once he is forced to put on pants. I don't know how that happened with me as a parent, did. So, G has had some fun stuff to say about todays fashion. Let's go by type of clothing.

leggings: Mama (in a loud voice, from behind his hand) why isn't that lady wearing anything over her panty hose? I can see her underpants! It's Hiwarious (hilarious in G-speak)

workout shorts: Mama, (thankfully in the car away from anyone) why do those ladies just wear their panties to story time? Don't they know they are 'sposed to wear real clothes? I had to put on shorts to come, and you wore a dress. They should know better.

dresses: Mama, I like your dress. You look good. (he winks and gives me a thumbs up).

My little fashion policeman. I love him so!

Catch up

We are always playing catch up. I think I have really bad time management skills. But it is okay. M is going through a really not fun phase. He wants to sit up and play, but he can't sit up by himself, so he gets frustrated. He also gets frustrated because he wants to crawl and can't. And he is revamping his little napping routine, which led to hours of screaming today when we were trying to put him down, and he wasn't ready yet. He only napped once today. God bless my hubs. He gave me earplugs and let me nap, and he wrestled the troll child. Thank God for church, where I was able to take both kids to their little area and go worship in peace. So there were good and bad things today.

I am still occasionally working on the kids' bedtime stories, getting them typed up. Again, bad time management, so progress is slow. Tonight A is at the movies, and the kids are in bed, and I am blogging my heart out and watching "The Chronicles of Riddick" again. I love these movies! I am sad to say that I no longer can watch SyFy original "horror" movies when the hubs is gone. I am a wuss.

We are back in church, and I think we are all much happier. I have gone and volunteered to help with the 6th grade girls because a lack of volunteers with all the kids stuff. Lord help me. Hormone buckets with mouths, attitudes, and a strong tendency to move in packs, like hyenas. It should be fun. I hope God can move through me to be a positive influence. He knows I have been enough of a bad influence in my lifetime, I should be allowed to make it up now.

All in all things are good. A is busy at work, which is usual. G and I will start homeschooling in a week or so. I am actually excited about it. I am praying this is a positive thing for us. I think he will like the structure, and I am hoping that M cooperates. Tomorrow's greatest mission is cleaning the kitchen and catching up some laundry. AND I have girls' night with the women from our life group. My first activity with the women in my life group and I am so excited. I hope everyone has a good week. One can hope I will blog more faithfully, but who knows.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Gardening with a Child

My oldest child is a sponge who soaks up knowledge, and occasional dirty words with amazing ease. Since we have decided to have a garden this year, he has been helping me. Typical afternoon with the 4 year old, starting seeds.

I pour water into the handy little seed starter kit I bought at Home Depot. The child giggles and notes that the "nutrient pellets" look like dog turds. I teach him how deep to poke his finger into the dirt for each type of seed. More giggling at "poking poo poo". The child sticks his finger all the way to the bottom and looks around for approval. Then we fill in that deep hole and try again. Tell the child how many seeds can go in each hole. Wait approximately 5 minutes for him to painstakingly count out 3 teensy little seeds and drop them one by one in the hole, while he tells them how they will grow and grow and give us food, and he might actually eat it. Stop child from dumping the rest of the pack of seeds into the next cell because now he is bored with planting seeds. Child wanders off to play. I plant more seeds.

Later, I need to prep some dirt for transplanting plants. I pour a bag of composted manure and a bag of topsoil together in my garden cart. I begin to mix. My spawn sees a big pile of dirt and comes to assist. Giggles when I tell him I have cow poo poo in the cart. He helps me mix the dirt, then freaks out because he has poo poo on him, just as the baby is waking up and wanting a bottle.

Change and feed the baby. Instruct dirty older child to wash hands. Child comes out of bathroom with muddy hands. Question older child: did you use soap? Child replies: no ma'am. My response: go back into the bathroom, stand on your stool. wash your hands and arms all the way up to your elbow and use soap. Child runs to bathroom. Splashing sounds resume. Child comes out of the bathroom with forearms and hands dripping bubbles. My response: go rinse your hands and arms and dry them off. Child complies. All acts of the child take place with him talking non-stop, asking at least 3 questions a minute. I do not finish planting seeds. I also do not really care. I will get to plant more seeds with him "on the next day".

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Bedtime Stories

I have a couple of comic type blogs in the works in which my oldest spawn plays a starring role, but have been a bit too busy with the kids and house and what not to get them proofed and up for the viewing public. As I logged in today I fully intended to "fix" these posts and get them up. Then I completely lost interest in those topics and decided to instead write about bedtime stories. Bedtime stories are pretty much a set in stone nightly tradition in the Elliott household. We read a book, tell a story, and say prayers and go to sleep. We do not skip our routine unless we are up extremely late, and even then the spawn usually talks me into a very short story. This story, which I made up after yet another request for a cup of water, is about just that, a cup of water. I have expanded it and cleaned it up a bit for the reading public. I hope you enjoy.

A Cup of Water

By K.L. Elliott

Once upon a time there lived a little boy, in a medium sized house, by a great, big sea. It was a wonderfully friendly sea. Its waters yielded fish into his father's nets, and threw shells up on the beach for the little boy to collect. It only asked that the little boy and his family in the medium sized house respect its creatures and help them if need arose. The boy and his family heeded the sea's request and lived in happiness and prosperity. The little boy, who ate fish and breathed the fresh sea air, grew and grew and was soon to be a great big boy, but had not quite gotten there yet. He still had to stand on a stool to wash his face at night and his mommy still checked his hands before supper to make sure they were clean, but he just knew, he had almost grown enough to be a great, big boy.

Being almost a great, big boy, and being a rather bright child, the boy decided to walk along the shore every day, and help any of the sea's creatures who might be in danger and so help his family as well. During these walks the little boy saw many wonderful things. He saw the gulls circling above his father's ship as he sailed home in the evenings. He saw the hermit crabs exchanging shells when they had outgrown their homes, and tidal pools which were like tiny, little worlds all their own. He also saw the selkies leaving their skins (which really look like fur cloaks) on the beach as they changed into their human forms to walk about as men and women. Sometimes the selkies would even stop for a moment and answer questions from the little boy with so much curiosity, and so the boy grew wise to the way of the sea and its sea creatures.

It was on one of his daily rambles that the boy heard the gulls cry, "Doom! Doom!” Hurrying around the curve of cliff the boy saw a man sneaking into the cave one of the selkie ladies used to hide her skin when she walked about on land. The little boy knew the man from his village, and he was a very naughty man. The little boy knew the bad man could be up to nothing good, so he ran as fast as he could back to his medium sized house to tell his mother what he had seen.

"Mother, Mother! I just saw Seamus Wall-Eye sneaking into the cave the selkie ladies use to change their skins! What should we do?"

Startled his mother turned around holding the plate she had been washing, "Sneaking into the selkie cave? I bet I know what he is up to! He is stealing a selkie lady's skin to force her to stay human and be his bride. No woman in the village will have him, so he has resort to stealing and dirty tricks. Well, I'll tell you what, we will play a trick on him, and save the selky lady the trouble of having to deal with that mean old man."

Quickly, the little boy's mother went into her bedroom and took the rich fur coat her father, a sea captain, had brought her from the frozen north on one of his final voyages. She put it in a sack, and gave it to the little boy. "Now you take this sack," she said, " and put it on your little sledge and drag it down the beach to the selkie cave. You walk right on in that cave and act surprised when you see Seamus sitting there with the selkie skin. Ask him what he is doing, and stand in front of your sledge like you don't want him to see what is on it. Now that man is forever after something better than what he has, so you must make him trade you the real selkie skin for the fur coat. While you do that I will wait at the top of the cliff and stop the selkie lady from going down to the cave. You must be a clever little boy, because if we cannot save the selkie lady, the sea may not provide fish for your father's nets." Saying this she kissed her son on the forehead and took off for the trail to the cliff top to stop the selkie lady from walking into Seamus Wall-Eye's trap.

The little boy did as his mother told him and drug his sledge down the beach to the cave. Whistling, he walked in as if he didn't know Seamus was sitting there waiting to trap a selkie lady. "Why hello Mr. Seamus," he said, "what are you doing here?"

Startled, Seamus Wall-eye, sat up straight and glared at the little boy, "Well, uh, I'm uh, I'm uh...I'm a-waiting on somebody. What's are you doing here?"

"Oh, nothing," said the boy, as he eased in front of his sledge with the bag on it, "I had just never seen you down here is all. Are you going to be long? Do you know when your friend will get here?' Seamus eyed the little boy and tried to circle around him to get a better look at the sledge.

"Well, I don't know how long it's a-gonna be before my friend gets here. If I knew when she would get here, I wouldn't be a-waiting, now would I?" Seamus tried to get around the boy again to look at what was on the sledge, but the little boy just moved with him, staying between Seamus and the bag. The little boy knew that he had to make Seamus think that whatever was on that sledge was so important he would try as hard as he could to keep it from a grown-up.

“Say uh, what have you got in that bag,” asked Seamus, standing on his toes and peering around that little boy.

“Oh nothing, just an old fur coat,” the little boy said.

“A fur coat,” Seamus looked surprised, “what are you doing carrying around a fur coat?”

“Nothing,” said the little boy as he eased toward the mouth of the cave, “gee Mr. Seamus, I have to get going. My mom is going to be mad me if I am late for dinner.”

Seamus quickly stepped around the little boy and got between him and the exit.

“Now there’s no need to be hasty there, son. I’ve never seen a fur coat before. Maybe you can take it out of the bag and show it to me.”

“Oh no sir, I couldn’t possibly waste your time like that,” replied the little boy, trying his best to look nervous. “You don’t want to see and old lady’s fur coat. Why it wouldn’t even fit you. It is much too small for a big man like yourself.”

“A lady’s fur coat you say,” said Seamus arching his brow and stepping a little bit closer, “I definitely want to see this lady’s fur coat.” Seamus continued moving closer to the little boy, and suddenly sidestepped and grabbed the bag off the sledge.

“Hey! Give that back! That’s not yours! Someone is going to want that coat! Give it to me!” Cried the little boy, as he pretended to reach for the bag.

Seamus easily pushed the little boy back and dumped the contents of the bag on the floor of the cave. Sure enough, inside was a lady’s fur coat. It was a deep, dark brown, and as soft as a cloud. Seamus, having never seen a fur coat before, was suspicious. He looked from the coat to the selkie skin, which looked like a fur coat, and back.

“Whose coat did you say this was boy?” Seamus asked the little boy.

“Umm my mother’s?” the little boy replied in a hopeful tone.

“Now boy,” said Seamus, “I’ve never heard that you were a liar, and it would surely hurt my feelings if I were the first person you lied to. Now you tell me who this coat belongs to, or so help I am going to thrash you till your legs fall off.”

The little boy looked at Seamus as if he was frightened. He was so close to tricking Seamus and getting the selkie’s skin back. He heaved a great sigh and said, “Honest Mr. Seamus, I was just bringing my mother’s coat to the cave.”

“Just bringing the coat to the cave you say…” Seamus trailed off with a thoughtful look. “Son, I don’t believe you were just bringing a coat to a cave, I think you were bringing it to the lady who comes to this cave at dusk. I think you have a selkie skin, and this here coat,” Seamus kicked at the real selkie skin on the floor, “doesn’t belong to nobody. Well, you can’t trick Seamus Wall-Eye. No sirree.”

Seamus rubbed his hands together with glee. “Well, I’ll tell you what we can do. You can leave this coat with me, and I’ll wait on the lady for you. When she gets here I promise to give it to her. We can put this other fur coat in your bag, and you can take it on home, and tell you folks that the seal lady hasn’t come back for it. Tomorrow, if you come back here, we can trade. This way you can get on home to dinner.”

Seamus had absolutely no intention of giving that coat to the seal lady, and the little boy knew it. What Seamus didn’t know, was that he was about to spend lots of lonely evenings sitting in a cave with a plain old fur coat, while the selkie lady was going to get her skin back and be able to return to the sea without even seeing evil Seamus Wall-Eye. The little boy hung his head, and peered up at Seamus from under his lashes, “I don’t know Mr. Seamus, I am supposed to take care of this coat.”

Seamus crossed his fingers behind his back and told the little boy, “I surely do promise to give this coat back to its owner when she comes for it.”

“I guess it would be ok for me to leave it with you then, since you promised and all,” said the little boy reluctantly. It was very, very hard for him not to giggle at tricking mean old Seamus so very thoroughly. “If you will just put that other coat in my bag, I’ll be going now Mr. Seamus.” With that the boy hastily grabbed the bag, containing the real selkie coat, and quickly drew his sledge out the cave and toward the beach, leaving Seamus standing in the cave gleefully petting the plain fur coat.

The little boy drug the sledge around a bend in the cliff and quickly pulled it up the trail to the top of the cliff where his mother, and the selkie lady, or seal lady waited for him.

Breathlessly, he handed the bag to the selkie lady, “Here you are ma’am, here’s you coat so you can be a seal again. I left Seamus sitting in that cave with Mama’s fur coat. He thinks it is really your skin, so he will be waiting there a while.”

“Good job son,” said the little boy’s mother as the selkie lady examined her coat for damage. “I’ll tell you what else we are going to do to Mr. Seamus Wall-Eye. When we get home, we are going to report my good fur coat as having gone missing. We will also report of seeing a light in that cave, and tell the constables that we think thieves are hiding out in there. When they catch Seamus in there with my coat there will be nothing he can say to get out of trouble. They will take him to jail, and it is no less than he deserves for trying to steal a selkie’s skin and ruin the prosperity of our family and that of the village as well.”

The selkie lady held up her coat, “I can’t thank you enough for saving this for me. If I were stuck on land I would soon pine away for the sea and die. For saving my life I will give you a gift.” The selkie lady pulled a simple carved wooden cup from the pouch hanging from her belt.

“Thank you,” said the little boy looking at the cup and thinking that they had plenty of cups at home.

“It’s a very nice cup…” his mother said.

The selkie lady gave a bark of laughter, “it is a magical cup,” she explained, “This cup will always give you water, cool and sweet. All you must do is hold it to your lips and drink, and the water will always appear within it, until you are no longer thirsty. It will even work for animals or other people, if you choose to share. You will never thirst as long as you have this cup of water.”

“Oh,” said the boy with greater respect, “it is a very useful gift. Thank you lady.”

“Yes, thank you,” said the boy’s mother, “It is a relief to know that whether he is in the middle of the ocean, or a desert, or just down the path, that my son will not know thirst. This is a gift fit for a king.”

The selkie lady smiled as she started down the path. “A king would not need this cup, because everything is brought to him. Your son however, will need to seek his way in the world. This cup will attend to one of his needs, as he attended to my need for my skin. It is an equal gift in my mind. However, if either of you should ever attempt to sell this cup, it will no longer work. You may give it to someone whose need is greater than your own, and you will be rewarded thrice over. That is how the magic of the cup works. Farewell good people. You shall not see me on your beach again. I must find a new beach where no one knows me, so my skin will be safe while I walk on land.” With that, the selkie lady dashed to the edge of the water pulling her fur coat around her as she went. In the space of an eye blink where a pretty lady with large brown eyes had stood there was now a seal diving into the water and swimming away.

“Well,” said the boy’s mother as they started on the path to their cottage, “today has been adventurous day.”

“Yes it has,” said the little boy thinking of his supper.

The boy’s mother stopped on the path and drew her son to her. “Thank you for being so brave, I am so very proud of you.” She knelt down so they were eye to eye. “I want you to keep this cup with you at all times. You never know when you will need a drink of water, and one day your life may depend upon it. Hook it to your belt and carry it with you always.”

The little boy did as his mother asked and hooked the cup to his belt. From then on he would hook his cup to his belt every morning and leave it there until he got ready for bed at night. It was a handy thing to have when he got thirsty playing, or needed to rinse after brushing his teeth. As he got older it even saved his life a time or two, but that is another story.

The End

Saturday, February 26, 2011

The Night of Blue Vomit

I don’t know what universal law states children must vomit primarily at night, and rarely in the toilet. However, I hate that law. Last night was not quite our typical Monday night. Due to negotiations for buying a house, my husband had missed some work, and was making it up at home. Being the considerate spouse, I took our son to his favorite park, where he promptly burst into tears because there was no one there, and he desperately wanted a playmate. Tears lead to me trying to think of an equivalent treat, and I hit upon the car wash. The car wash is grudgingly accepted as a substitute, and away we go to sample the delights of an automatic foam sprayer.

The car wash has its normal soothing effect on G, and all is well in our world. It isn’t very late, and I don’t feel I have killed enough time, so I take him to TCBY. I had not eaten any supper and was going with the idea that yogurt counts as a meal for a pregnant woman, especially since I need the calcium. We call A to let him know where we are going, and he decides to come hang out and have a family yogurt date with us.

We meet up and make our selections. A gets a hot fudge sunday with all sorts of yummy things like bananas on it. I get a triple berry parfait with cheesecake flavored soft serve yogurt. G chooses the vibrant rainbow cream yogurt. Rainbow cream is a treat for the eyes of the average three year old. It is a vibrant inky blue, reminiscent of blue ink, swirled with play dough yellow, and pagoda pink. It all but screams, “I will stain your clothes and make your poo funny colors!” G loves it. The first bite turns his lips blue, and by the time he has eaten half of his cup of sweet dairy goodness, his hands have followed suit. The table is adorned with inky blue blotches, and A is monitoring the frequency of napkin usage with the desperation only a person still in his or her nice work clothes can feel.

We finish up our yogurt with a minimum of drips and head back home. G has no complaints other than his very runny nose. We get home and it is bath time for the small sticky boy. G gets in the tub, piles in all of his bath toys and proceeds to have a large ocean battle. About halfway through his normal bath time he looks at me and tells me, “Mommy, I have indigestion.” Then he promptly vomits bright inky blue yogurt, and the remains of his supper, right into the bathtub.

I admit, at first I stand frozen, transfixed by the sight of these new polar ice caps encroaching upon the pirate ship and canoe. Then my son’s distress breaks through the wall of utter disgust, I pull him out of the tub and stand him over the toilet to finish up. I wrap him in a towel and call for his daddy to bring me a glass so G can rinse and spit after he finishes expelling the last of the yogurt. Daddy steps up like a pro, fetching water and then drying and dressing the boy so I can drain the tub, rinse the toys, disinfect the tub and bleach the toys. He even reads G his nightly bedtime story and gives him night night kisses. All is well. Operation de-vomit the tub is going smoothly and one of our favorite shows is on television. We retire to the couch to discuss our mutual disgust with blue yogurt vomit, and a television character’s behavior.

Suddenly, there comes a frantic yell of “Daddy! Mommy!” Yes, it has happened again. Thankfully all the blue was expelled earlier. Into the breach goes my husband, my dear sweet husband of 8 months. G comes to me and begins quite calmly pointing out where he has puke on his clothing. A starts stripping the bed, or “ground zero”. Eventually our small person is in clean pajamas, on fresh bedding and is fast asleep. Not long after, so are we.