Monday, July 30, 2012

"This is how you repay me?"

We all had those days when we were kids. We were having a fantastic day with one parent, the other or both and then - for one reason or another - we ultimately ended up throwing the worst temper tantrum we could muster up.

These tantrums could be thrown as a two-year old or 12-year old. They take different forms, but are tantrums nonetheless.

Regardless, it resulted in the "this-is-how-you-repay-me speech" from Mom and/or Dad.

"I drove you all the way to Cedar Point, paid for you and your friends to get in and this is how you repay me?"

"I went to three stores to find your special jeans, spent $50 of my own money and THIS is how you repay me?"

"Do you know how much time and money I spent planning this party for you and this is how you repay me?"

I received insight into the toddler version of this speech (and what brings it on) today.

The last Monday of my maternity leave (that's for another post) and I've become old hat at this two-under-two thing.

When I say "old hat" I mean I no longer look around in disbelief, stewing. Instead, I'm not surprised while stewing.

Sometimes I'm able to just go to my "happy place". Unfortunately, the door to said-place is sometimes locked. We'll get into that another time.

I was up early and actually showered AND dried my hair (hold the applause until the end of the post, please) before 7 a.m. I was ready for Miss Abigail.

She got up and I made her oatmeal and got her dressed in Buzz Shirt No. 2 (we alternate). We watched The Cat in the Hat and played downstairs in the toy room. Jack wasn't overly compliant, but we made it work.

After Jack was fed and calmed down, I asked Abby if she wanted to go to the park. I put Jack in the Ergo so Abby could ride in the wagon. It's what she always asks to ride in when we go to the park, but I always use the double stroller for my own sanity.

She was so excited and we brought her new Buzz Bear. I wrestled Jack into the Ergo (he's in a weird, in-between size for it) and we headed off. Unfortunately, I grossly underestimated the heat and was sweating bullets before we even got to the park.

I pushed Abby (and Buzz Bear) on the swing for what seemed like an eternity and then she "cooked" (threw wood chips into a hole) before we left. She also ate dirt. It was a good all-around experience.

We got home and I made her lunch: a peanut butter sandwich with extra peanut butter on the side, apple slices (which she asked for and didn't eat) and yogurt. She licked the peanut butter off the bread, ate the extra peanut butter with her hands, dipped the bread in yogurt and licked it off and then ate the rest of her yogurt - and a second - by dipping her fingers in it.

I made my own lunch and asked if she wanted any, so she ended up dissecting some green beans and eating a few bites of couscous. By the end of the meal, she looked like a Christmas sugar cookie with sprinkles.

The entire time she was eating lunch, I let her watch "Buzz". She watched Toy Story and the last third of Toy Story 2. When she was finished eating, I cleaned her up and was going to wind down with her before her nap.

That's when it started.

Abby went NUTS because she wanted "Buzz again! Buzz on the TV! Buzz again!"

Her screaming woke up Jack, who had been sleeping peacefully in his Rock n Play (something I was excited about because it meant I could put Abby down for her nap without interference), so I had two screaming children on my hands as I began cleaning up all of the couscous off the floor.

Abby raced through the house - upstairs, downstairs - screaming "Buzz AGAIN! Buzz on the TV!"

That is when the insight hit me because, without warning, the phrase, "This is how you repay me?" popped up in my head.

I was overly cheerful this morning. I took her to the park in the wagon, sweating my arse off just for her. I pushed her in the swing. I lost Jack's paci in the process. I made her lunch with tons of peanut butter and let her watch Buzz back-to-back.

And this is how she repays me?

I ultimately had to carry her upstairs for her nap and put her in bed without stories because she was so out of it, she wouldn't relax even to let me read to her. She screamed bloody murder for a few minutes, but has since fallen silent, thank goodness.

Mom, you can go ahead and chalk this up as one of those "learning experiences" you wished upon me over the years while you were in the midst of one of my many, many tantrums.


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Funny moment to write down

I was rushing around trying to get the kids ready to leave the house. In the process, I was massively peed on (think fire hose) by Jack when I took his diaper off (Note: I always put a wipe over it, but he was already mid-(forceful)pee when I pulled the front down. I'm lucky I didn't get it in the face.).

I had left my clothes on the washer and the door to the washer and dryer open (we have them in a closet).

I was downstairs tending to Jack and I kept calling for Abby to come downstairs. It was all too quiet up there.

Finally, she emerges - looking very pleased with herself - with a Downy ball.

She made sure to put it on the ground (on its side) so the water inside of it spilled onto the floor.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Daily Bites from the Dub Household

Enjoy some quick thoughts from my frazzled self.

Recognizing Mommy's Love for Coffee
Kimberly and I took Abby (and Jack) to Jungle Java this morning. It was an adventure, to say the least. I welcome all parents of teens to bring their children to our house to help them remain abstinent.

Anyway. We stopped at Starbucks on the way back because I hadn't had any coffee yet for the day. I hilariously thought I would be able to have coffee at Jungle Java "where kids can play and parents can relax!" Riiiight.

I was putting Abby down for her nap and put my coffee on the dresser so I could read her a book. Abby walks over to the dresser and points up, saying, "Mommy foffee!" It actually took me a minute to figure out what she was saying because I had no clue she knew "coffee".

I said, "Yep! That's Mommy's coffee!"

She said, "Hold it?"

"You want Mommy to hold her coffee?"

"Uh huh."

I fall deeper in love with her every day. She's now recognizing my need to caffeinate.

She did what?
I really regret not having a video monitor when I hear Abby over the audio monitor saying, "I did it! I did it! I did it!"

My mind wanders to many different possibilities. Did she climb onto the changing table? Retrieve an action figure that fell on the floor? Do a handstand? I'll never know ...

Paci-weaning victory!
One very exciting piece of news is that Abby has completely disassociated from the pacifier.

We were in our room and she found two of her pacifiers: one "Pinky" and one "Greeny". No idea where I was hiding them.

She ran them over to me and said, "Jack? Jack?" Meaning they were Jack's.

We give Jack a completely different kind, so the fact that she said they were for him means she's totally over them! Yay!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Sleep experiment fail

We got home from my parents' house around 1:45. Abby typically goes down for a nap around 1. So, I was already behind.

I brought Abby and Jack upstairs to the bedroom with the intent of putting Abby down for her nap. Well, Jack began stirring in his car seat and I had to tend to him first. I ended up getting him to sleep, putting him down in his crib.

Because he was asleep, I decided to test having Abby and Jack sleep in the same room.

When I was trying to put Abby down, she kept climbing onto the side of the crib to peer in at Jack sleeping.

"Jack? Jack!"

Then she would get down, point to the bottom of the crib and say, "Abby climb?"

Repeat times 10.

I finally went into the bathroom and got her stool so she could safely look in on Jack (in the event that he needed big-sisterly assistance).

I got her into her own bed and told her sweet dreams. At this point it was 2:45. Awesome job, Chrissie.

I heard her talking to herself (or Jack?) for awhile.

I would here a bunch of garbled gibberish followed by "Jack?"

"Ajdkau jkdaliurl djkalrks Jaaack?"

Repeat times 10.

She then fell silent for awhile. I held on to the pipe dream that she may have actually fallen asleep.

Then I hear, "Buzz Lightyear reporting for sector duty!"

My dream faded.

He reported a few more times before she started to say, "Woody? Woody? Woody Woody Woody? Buzz? Buzz? Buzz?"

Then Buzz's laser went off.

Now I hear her saying, "Ow! Ow! I hurt! A boo boo. A boo boo. Abby hurt!" For the record, I have heard zero thump or indication that she may have actually hurt herself. I call nap foul.

The glass-half-empty perspective: Abby didn't nap. She may be cranky.

The glass-half-full perspective: She occupied herself for more than an hour. Jack slept through it all.

No idea when we will retry this doozy of an experiment.

Monday, July 9, 2012

The maturity of parents

As many of you now know, Abby is currently obsessed with Toy Story. These movies are good, so it isn't an issue, but it has brought Tom's and my immaturity to light.

The main character in the Toy Story movies is Woody.

Do I need to elaborate on the immaturity I am speaking of?

The lines that make me giggle are endless.

In regards to getting the Toy Story dolls for Abby
Tom: "I was in the store thinking to myself, 'Should I get the 15-inch Woody or the 12-inch Woody?' Then I was like, 'Heh heh heh'"

Abby during the scene in Toy Story 2 when the cardboard cutout of Woody is revealed
"There's a BIG Woody!"

Me talking to Abby about finding her doll
"Where's your Woody?"

I could go on and on. Clearly we will be teaching Abby mature life principles as she grows up.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

So Long Pacifier: the Stuff Sitcoms are Made of

Abby's Vaseline-crusted hair.
Oh. My. Gosh.

Just when you thought it was safe to celebrate a pacifier-free life.

Abby completely duped us into believing we were going to get off scot-free with the pacifier removal. We introduced Buzz, Woody and Jessie and she did pretty well at bedtime and naptime for the first two days.

Then came day three.

The craziness started after I attempted to put her down for a nap. She complied and stayed quiet in her room, but I suspect she didn't sleep even though she was in there for an hour. When I got her up, she turned into Crazy Abby.

I essentially turned into a raving lunatic chasing her around the room, grabbing things from her and placing them out of her reach. We ultimately ended up with a collection of ointments, lotions, pens, etc. in the center of our dining room table because it was a spot she couldn't reach.

It started when she removed Jack's blanket from him and looked at me coyly. I told her to put the blanket back. She did ... for a millisecond. Then she removed it again and repeated this three or four times. When I scolded her, she thought I was HILARIOUS.

Then she rocked Jack as hard as she could until I shooed her away from doing that. She quickly stole his pacifier and raced into the other room so I had to chase her down and remove it.

Don't worry, that didn't get her down!

She shoved the baby swing hard in what appeared to be an effort to break it before moving on to the DVDs.

She quickly cleared the shelf and began removing the discs from their cases. Then she wanted a snack, asking for cheese. I went to the kitchen to get said cheese and turned around to find her with her finger in a tub of Vaseline, looking at me mischievously.

I took that from her, so she moved on to the toys with small parts.

She grabbed a couple wooden toy sets (think nesting-doll-type things) and began putting the small pieces in her mouth. The second time she tried it, the entire thing went in her mouth. I quickly confiscated that and placed it on a high shelf.

I put her in her room for a couple minutes to collect myself and organize the room.

On the way back down from her room, she opted to go down on her stomach, head-first. Awesome.

Her reign of terror was just beginning. She opened the wipes box and tried to pull every one out of the box. She grabbed lotion and squirted it onto her hands and the floor.

Each time I removed what she had and turned to relocate it, she scurried off to find something else.

Tom came home and thought the entire thing was entertaining and attributed her behavior to being a typical two-year old. I wasn't angry with him for making this statement, but couldn't help but be satisfied when - in response to him asking Abby to bring him a heavy coaster she ran off with - she promptly threw it at him.

Don't worry ... no dads were harmed in the process.

The kicker to this awesome day came at bedtime. We gave her a bath and put her down to a chorus of screaming. SCREAMING. SCREAMING.

It reminded me of the sleep training days. It's been awhile since we've had to instill the cry-it-out method, but we had no choice. She was inconsolable and wouldn't calm down for an hour.

Finally, after repeated attempts at getting her to sleep, she fell silent. We breathed a sigh of relief at the fact that she was finally asleep.

Then more crying. Tom went in to investigate.

Suddenly I hear, "Chrissie? Do we have more sheets?"

"Great," I think. "She threw up." This is something she did regularly while we had trouble getting her to nap.

Turns out she didn't throw up at all.

Tom said he walked into the bedroom to find Abby on her bed, cross-legged and covered head to toe in Vaseline.

She had climbed up onto the changing table, grabbed the Vaseline and proceeded to spread it to her hair, her body and her bed.

I had to give her another bath, though I didn't do a good job of cleaning the stuff out of her hair, so she had a great look going today. She ultimately went to sleep after some time calming her down and we had a much easier night tonight, though it wasn't perfect.

I have to say, though ... the worst part about this entire ordeal is that Tom DIDN'T TAKE A PICTURE! Come on now! This stuff needs to be photo-documented!

Especially since it is going to take something big to top this performance. I'm sure Abby is up for the challenge.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

The dreaded pacifier removal

Abby still uses a pacifier. We've all called it a "that" for quite some time. Not really sure how she started calling it "that" ... I think we just asked if she wanted "that" and it stuck.

Now she calls it "Pinky" because weaned her down to only using a pacifier at night and she would sleep with two: one pink and one green. Tom calls them "Pinky" and "Greeny" but she calls them both "Pinky".

Getting rid of the pacifier cold turkey has been in the works for awhile. We wanted to make sure it was the perfect storm. Unfortunately (because we're scared), that time is now.

  1. Jack is here and has woven into our household.
  2. She's on a rigid (and successful) sleep schedule for both naps and nighttime.
  3. We can't put it off any longer!
Since Abby is now obsessed with Toy Story, we decided to get her "big girl" gifts: Buzz and Woody dolls. These are the real deal, too, people.

We literally watch Toy Story, Toy Story 2 or Toy Story 3 multiple times a day. Don't judge.

We figure these dolls would help the transition. We decided to pull the trigger tonight.

First we broke the news to her (following a nap when she still had "Pinky" and "Greeny" in her grasp) that she was a big girl and that we were going to give her pacis to babies. She handed them over.

Then we introduced her to her new big girl friends.

It was as if she saw movie stars ... or ghosts. She was totally freaked out when she saw Buzz and Woody. She has since fallen in love with Woody and is terrified of Buzz ... which is completely ironic because she refers to Toy Story movies as "Buzz".

But Buzz makes noise and he startled her, so now she just enjoys him from afar.

It was a tough bedtime tonight, but we're hoping she sleeps through the night no problem.

I'm fully expecting to need an adult beverage during tomorrow's nap time, however.