A Day in the Life – Part I

Someone commented recently that I am “living the dream.” I don’t know what the hell they meant by that. Because this is not my idea of a dream.

5:00 a.m. – I wake with the urgent need to pee. And the urgent need to remain child-free for at least another 30 minutes. I suffer silently, in the dark, in bed. Incontinence in a few years is a small price to pay for another 15-30 minutes of solitude today.

5:27 a.m. – I can’t take it anymore. Slowly, slowly I roll out of bed, tiptoe to the far bathroom, assume the position. Sweet relief is on its way.

5:27 and a half a.m. – Screams and blood-curdling wails. The monster wakes. I shuffle to his chamber. I must answer the call.

5:28 a.m. – I sit to nurse. He kicks me in the gut. I almost pee, but do not want to add slipcovers to my laundry list, so I squeeeeeeeze those muscles and soldier on.

6:00 a.m. – I finally convince the bairn to get off my tit. I need coffee. Badly.

6:05 a.m. – The coffee is perking. The kids are watching PBS. Finally – time to pee!

6:06 a.m. – Quietly, quietly, I tiptoe to the bathroom, assume the position. Sweet relief is on its way.

6:06 and a half a.m. – Screams and blood-curdling wails. Crashes! Shouts! The sound of shattering glass! I race to the scene, pajamas around my ankles.

6:08 a.m. – The children have discovered my basket of toy instruments. I make a mental note to hide those damn things better and hitch up my pants.

6:09 a.m. – Leaving the cacophony behind, I tiptoe quietly, quietly to the bathroom, assume the position, sweet relief blah blah blah.

6:09 and a half a.m. – Two small heads peek around the corner. They want breakfast. They have kazoos. Suddenly, I can’t pee. And I make a mental note to put a lock on the bathroom door.

6:10 a.m. – As I fill bowls with protein-fortified whole grains, slice grapes with precision, fill sippy cups and pack a lunch, the children serenade me on kazoo and the dog leaps around my feet. He needs to pee. I can sympathize.

To Be Continued

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Simplicity: It’s Overrated

The simple life may be overrated.

My husband and I are both from small towns. And by small, I mean, small enough to know the names of every kid in your graduating class, first and last. His small town is so small that he knew every kid in his class – plus, who their siblings were, their parents and grandparents and their crazy Uncle Eddy. It’s Mayberry minus Barney Fife. (Thank heavens for small blessings.)

And I love his small town. (Not as much as mine, of course, but it has it’s charm.) We got married in this small town and we’ve spent a lot of time here in the last decade. When his mother died, we inherited her home and it’s been a nice little respite for us and our friends. There are quaint historic homes and buildings, hometown festivals with parades for the kids and pets, ghost lore and the world’s best limeades from a real soda fountain. There are TWO traffic lights and, far from being a one-horse town, you can actually take a carriage tour courtesy of TWO horses, thankyouverymuch. Plus, it has a super low crime rate, very little pollution, a lower tax rate and more affordable real estate.

So in December, we moved here. Yup. After over 50 combined years in Central Texas, we moved to Mayberry, population 2106 (plus 4).

We were tired of our declining neighborhood (who wants to live across the street from a guy who raises wolves? You’re okay with that? How about a MURDERER? And wolfman and the murderer were NOT the same person. I am SO not making that up). We were tired of traffic and noise. We wanted country air and a few farm animals, freedom from distractions and the pressure of too many kids activities. We wanted to turn over a new leaf.

So, we found a huge-to-us house attached to 36 acres of woods, pasture and water – but still in the city limits. It faces my mother in law’s home and the street out front? That’s the street my husband learned to ride his bike on.

So far, we’ve seen deer (so many deer including three fawns this season), foxes, raccoons, rabbits, squirrels, bluejays, cardinals, woodpeckers, hummingbirds, frogs, turtles, skinks, lizards, fascinating bugs and (terrifying to me) snakes. We also got a few new pets: two fish, one dog and eight chickens. (Cheech loves the chickens, but it is, as yet, unrequited.)

We are spending more time in nature as well. We are in the Piney Woods region of Texas and not only is it cooler here, it is breathtakingly beautiful. We actually have SEASONS. I planted a bird and butterfly garden, 100 flowering bulbs and an herb garden. And every week or so, I buzz around on my new lawn tractor to keep the acre the house sits on tidy and hopefully, snakeless.

People are nice here. Scooter played T-ball this summer and I met some awesome people and he made some friends. (I was also bitten by some vile ninja-like insects, but nothing’s perfect.) I’ve met most of the neighbors and, to my knowledge, none of them raise wolves nor are they murderers.

I’ve learned to make yogurt. I’ve baked bread. I’m making freezer meals and preserving farm-fresh produce.

I am Laura Ingalls Wilder. Hear me roar.

But, I really miss some of those “distractions” we left behind. As a stay-at-home-mom, I miss not having to ACTUALLY stay at home all day if the walls are closing in on us. I miss having a children’s museum, a zoo, and Target all in my backyard. I miss having a full music studio – with a waiting list. I miss my UU church with tons of kids. And, I really really miss our kids’ adopted grandparents, all my friends and the best dang part-time nanny we could ever have hoped for.

Two fish, one dog and eight chickens don’t go very far in filling the void. Neither does homemade yogurt. Not far at all.

So, here I am. Revisiting Ye Olde Blog. But, imma have to wrap this one up – an ebay listing for a sweet lot of Thanksgiving trolls ends soon.

I Need a Hobby

I haven’t written in awhile. Ok. Not “awhile.” For a really long time. So, here is the truth.

I’m not really a writer.

Nope. Not a writer. I know writers, real ones, and they write a lot. They go to conferences and discussion groups. And they also get paid for it. (Or at least get some cool swag because they have such a following really cool companies want them to blog about their stuff.) And as you know, dear readers (all 7 of you, plus my mother), I don’t write a lot and no one is paying me for it – and I have received no swag, cool or otherwise.

But, I’m back. At least for now. Because, well, I think keeping up with this little blog is slightly more respectable than the other options I have for filling my time. It is certainly less embarrassing to say to my husband, “I finished the laundry today and then wrote a blog post,” than it is to say, “I finished the laundry today and then made yogurt,” or “I finished the laundry today and then scoured ebay for new troll dolls to add to my collection.” (Sadly, I have actually done those things in the not-so-distant past. The things other than finishing the laundry things, that is.)

So, I’m not a real writer. But, I do need a hobby. Lucky you.

I don’t know what I will write about. Mostly nonsense. I hope some of it will be mildly entertaining. But it will sure be a better use of my time and creative energy than making yogurt or rehabbing troll dolls, right?