Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Just when you need an extra pair of hands....

they appear unexpectedly.

Tonight, I was rushing around getting everyone organized for tomorrow's day. Lunches needed to be made, baths needed to be enforced, muffins made for Gus's 1st grade class, and a birthday cake needed to be baked so that it could cool overnight for Gus's family birthday celebration. Unfortunately, no one told Henry that I was busy. He did not notice that I had very little time to rock him to sleep. In fact, he decided that I had extra time on my hands and decided that we needed to play together in the rocking chair. It was a great game we played: Henry flopping from one side of my body over to the next. His weight pulling down on my shoulders. All the while blinking those big brown eyes at me. It was painfully clear that my insistent rocking and patting rhythm was not working. Even in the dark, I could see the whites of his eyes staring at me, his cooing and gooing sounds pierced the night as if it were 3:00 in the afternoon. After 20 minutes of rocking and patting my
insomniac,I spied the bright red digital clock numbers which flashed 10:30pm. Time was flying by and I still had not made the muffins or birthday cake.

I decided that Mr. Henry would have to go to sleep without me. I placed him in his crib, patted his little shoulder and told him to go "night, night". It was no sooner that I turned toward the bedroom door that Henry made it very clear that he was unhappy with my decision to go downstairs. He cried. Loudly.

I worried that his tantrum would wake his brothers, but they had been asleep long enough to be in heavy dreamland at this point. So, serenaded with King Henry's screams, I continued my work in the kitchen. Muffin mix. (wailing) eggs. (wail. wail. waaaaailllll.) oil (waaaahhhhhhhh) blueberries (screeeeeaaammmm). Mix well.

After about 10 minutes of unrelenting wailing, my youngest child finally quieted down and gave up the hope that I would come back to his crib to rock him. He was finally asleep and I could put my muffins in the oven in peace. After all, he is getting spoiled from all the rocking,holding and kissing he experiences from his parents and siblings. He needs to learn to put himself to sleep. All babies do.

After I washed the dishes, I headed up the stairs to check on his highness. I peaked in the dark room and heard some movement. Fearing that he was getting ready to start wailing again, I heard a faint whisper, "Mom." I could not imagine which boy was calling for me at such an hour. Who was UP?? After a few seconds, I saw a shadow in the rocking chair. It was Nick. He was holding a happy (and very awake) Henry. He was playing the same game with Henry as I had been earlier. "Mom, he was so sad. I had to help him 'cuz he was crying."

Well, just when I needed an extra pair of hands, love appeared in the form of Henry's big brother Nick. What a beautiful sight it was to see my 11 year old rock his baby brother and help me get my jobs done. Good for me, good for Henry, bad for Nick since he's going to be falling asleep in class tomorrow.

I think he would say it was worth it.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

I'm thankful for...

Red Wine
Long lost hugs
Priests and seminarians
Late night surprise visits
Family, cousins and friends
Napping with Henry in my arms
Carpet Steam Cleaner and the man that operates it
The sound of my husband's silent sleeping breath
Hand me down toys
Plentiful Food
No schedules
Puppy Chow (three batches!)

Shopping in Texas

Thus begins the shopping season!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


Jack and Gus get into some massively gross burping contests that make me cringe. They seem so proud of their talents, no matter how disgusting it is to one of the few females in this family. I heard a recent burping exchange the other day in the living room, where Jack justified his smaller burp:

Gus: Burrrrrrrrrppppp!

Jack: Burrp.

Gus: My burp was longer and louder than yours.

Jack: Yeah, but mine was smellier.

Gus: I'm going to work on it.

Jack: You need to.

I just shake my head and wonder where in the heck this stuff comes from. Thanksgiving, here we come! The rafters will be shaking!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

One thing you never want to run out of.

For some really great deals on diapers and baby items, you must visit this site.
Shipping is free for orders over $50 and the orders are shipped the very next day. The Wall Street Journal highly recommends this site, so I just placed my first order tonight!

Another great site to look into is this one. You can download discount coupons from a large list of popular stores and recieve free shipping on most orders. Check it out for all your shopping needs....at the very least, you save on gas and fighting long lines at the mall!

NO girls allowed.

Nick needed a haircut in a bad way today. The problem is that my boys mostly despise getting their hair cut. I think it has something to do with having to sit still in one spot for more than a minute. Understandably, I decided to bribe the boys with a buttery Katie's pretzel and a trip to the toy store if they could first patiently wait for their brother to get a much needed haircut at the barbershop.

All the boys liked the sound of going to the toy store, so they scrambled into the car with great enthusiasm and also enlisted the company of a neighbor friend.

Now the place where the boys get their haircut is a place in town called, "Friendly's Barbershop". I don't take the boys there very often; only when their dad is unavailable to cut their hair. It's one of those 'old timey, quaint barbershops where men mostly go. (Women would never want to get a haircut in this place!) It's got the "candy cane" pole out front, fairly inexpensive haircuts, three basic stations inside, and a couple of gumball machines that offer gum for 10 cents. I like to think of it as one of the last places in this town where men can gather and talk openly about politics, women, cars, hunting and the weather without the politically correct crowd...or obnoxious demanding women, forcing certain opinions on tired ears. It's a sanctuary for men I think, so I always feel out of place when I walk in with my brood of boys. I sense that the conversation between the men there stops when I walk in, and they must talk about things more mundane because of my presence.

As I hurry my boys to the the waiting area, I wonder if they feel the same sense of not belonging as I do. (I'm sure it's the same feeling men get when they have to sit in their wives gynecologist office.) Not a chance... these boys fit. right. in. Before I knew it, the boys spotted the magazine rack and excitedly selected a magazine to peruse. "Hmmm." I thought as I looked up from my Newsweek magazine, "These boys look like a bunch of old men relaxing in their rocking chairs." I was struck with how quiet it was. They were so good!

After a few seconds of looking at all my quiet boys, I realized what they were reading: Sports Illustrated, Guns and Ammo, Hunting Magazine and Bass Fisherman. Truly this was a world I could not relate to in the least, but could certainly understand. You can argue that it's not a man's world anymore, but you can always find one at your neighborhood barbershop. I find it very refreshing that there is a place in my town where my boys are comfortable...even if I am not.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Picky vs. Perturbed

I made a new version of my popular chicken pot pie recipe last night. I used a Bisquick crust instead of the regular pie crust recipe the family was accustomed to. This change was not popular with a certain man in my life.

Him: What's on the top of the chicken pot pie?

Her: It's a Bisquick crust. I did not have a pie crust.

Him: I can't eat that. It looks like the airplane food I got sick on when I returned home from Chile.

Her: OK. Don't eat it.

Him: (munching on salad) Did you wash the lettuce?

Her: Uh...yeah. Why?

Him: It's a little grainy. (He picks out a small bug from the lettuce.) Oh! No wonder the lettuce tasted grainy. (She glares.)

Her: (slightly perturbed) Well, EAT it anyway! Bugs don't eat much!