Tag Archives: children

Bed time: A mind war

It’s almost 9:30 pm. 23 month old A2 is standing up wailing in her crib. 5 year old A1 who shares the bedroom is narrating what’s happening and A3 just woke up by the chaos.

Beautiful.

It’s these moments that keep me in peace.

A2 just tossed her blanket and pacifier out of her crib again. I tried explaining to her that if she tosses them again, she won’t get them back… but we both know that she won’t sleep without them. So this is another mind game.

She threw them out, again, and she’s still crying. I tried taking them for a while. She cried… I held on to them for a few minutes then gave them back. That will work, I hoped.

Well it didn’t. She tossed them out within the same second and is still crying.

I went back to my chair without picking them up. And here I am. I’ve written about the chair before. I have a chair set up outside their bedroom, where I sit until they fall asleep. It’s been a while though. They’ve been good lately and didn’t require me to sit here until they fell asleep. But A2’s getting close to the crazy two’s and so I’m back here again.

It’s been a few minutes, I’m wondering if I should get up and hand her the pacifier and blanket just yet. Her cries are sounding more and more tiresome, with yawning intervals.

I got up and handed them to her, came back to my seat. I talked to her…I shouldn’t have talked to her.

She just threw them out again!

She wins this round, again.

Why don’t I just yell at her?

Because then I would teach her that yelling is a mean of communication that I use.

Because then she will fall asleep with fear having been her last emotion of the day.

Because then I would have put my child to bed in anger.

I’m hoping there’s a better solution.

I’ll figure it out…eventually.

This isn’t working.

A1 just suggested “call dad.”

Ya, call Jack and have him do the dirty work…

Ok one more try…

I tried the utter most tenderness. I went in, didn’t say a word picked her up, held her tight, kissed her, cleaned her face from tears, leaned down with her, she reached for her blanket and pacifier. I stood up, still not saying a word, I pointed to my cheek, she reached in and gave me a kiss. Then I pointed to her crib, placed her in. Sung her a lullaby and walked out.

Went back to my chair.

By the time my butt touched the seat …

She was already up and bawling again.

That was a complete fail.

Jack just came up. He gave it a go…

He tried tenderness, some discipline, yelled a little, played a little, danced a little…

Still a no go.

He leaves.

We should make them pay for tickets at this point, because we’ve become a show!

Ok I’m desperate; it’s been over 40 minutes. I know she’s tired.

I take out my phone and go online. Search for an Armenian Lullaby. I play it and go back to my seat.

She stopped.

This song is really beautiful.

She’s sleeping.

Unbelievable!

The power of music…

They’re sleeping in peace, no one got mad at another, no anger, no fear, no guilt.

Just love and music.

Ah… now that this is done, I should start with my chores… I’ll rest when I’m old.

Goodnight.

P.S Listen to this song, it will make any man, woman or child give in to slumber.

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re-lax

A2 draws on the wall.

That wall was already ruined 5 years ago when A1 drew all over it. They can draw all they want I’ll have them paint my house when they become teenagers.

“How do you not freak out?” many ask.

Freak out? Yell? Get angry? Cry?

The world will give you real reasons for all that, but your child taking a crayon and drawing on the wall is not a reason to lose yourself.

Children will learn to read and write in school, the only thing you can ever really teach them is self-control.

If I flip out because they drew on the walls, covered the furniture in stickers or ruined the wood floors by riding tricycles in the house then how will I keep my cool when my daughter is trying to sneak in at 6 am in about 15 years or even worse, when she tells me she is pregnant before being married.

When I told my father I was pregnant before being married, he said: “Blessed art thou among women” and then he said “ I need a nap”

And blessed I was…

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You never know what the next moment holds.

I’ll close the lights; maybe I won’t see the mess. I’m sitting in the “proper” living room right now, trying to get away from the family room. Just to let you know how “proper” it is here, there’s a tricycle right next to me.

People ask me “doesn’t it bother you?” of course I would love to have a perfectly organized and clean house… but that’s not my reality. I have an almost 2 year old whose second favorite hobby is emptying drawers and cupboards on the floor. There’s no secret stash child!

Her first favorite hobby is sticking her hand in the toilet. You all know that by now.

We try to keep them busy over the weekend by doing activities. We played outside, A2 ate gravel, we drew on the sidewalk, A2 ate the chalk, we made bubbles, A2 drank the bubble soap. Before the day was over she went through 4 outfit changes and finally 10 minutes before bed time she stuck her whole arm in the toilet. Jack had to hold her while I washed her; we scrubbed her as if she was going in to perform surgery. “Scrub harder” Jack insisted. It’s just toilet water, no big deal.

Just as we thought the day was over, we found her in the upstairs bathroom chugging a bottle of Jack’s contact lens cleaning liquid.

After they were all put to bed, I went outside for some fresh air. “I’m outside” I told Jack. Sat on my front porch, exchanged a few texts with some friends and they came by to pick me up for a little drive. We drive up and go watch the mansions sometimes, dream big a little, chit chat a little and I’m usually back home within a half hour.

This time, I came back home 5 hours later, drunk with a glow stick necklace around my neck.

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Talking poop

Finally ! Some down time.

Jack is finally watching tonight’s game. It’s recorded so that he can watch it peacefully once the girls are sleeping. Last time we watched a game together, I asked too many questions and then really aggravated him when I said that the opposite team seem to be better skaters. “They glide better” I said, while our team was losing 5 to 1. Needless to say, I learned a new lesson.

Note to self: Do not say anything negative about the team during a bad game.

In fact, I should’ve stuck with simply not talking to him during the game. What was I thinking?

He was so emotional about it… jeez.

I’ve also learned that to keep our marriage happy I should only say half of the things I’m thinking to say. A less talkative me makes a much happier him.

Poor him he’s got 3 more to deal with, and they all seem to be growing up to be as talkative as me.

Today at the dinner table, A1 asked “Next time I sleep at granma’s I’m going to make cookies, do you think that’s a good idea, a bad idea, a very good idea, a very bad idea, a very very bad idea or a very very good idea?”

Waaaaaaaa? Again we just stand there without an answer. We lost you after “cookie” kid!

Last time at dinner, conversation was about Elephant Poo. “Do you think the Elephant poops this much?” A1 shows the size of a pile, “Or this much?” she show’s a bigger pile. Jack answers “Thiiiiiiiiis muuuuuuuuch!” even A2 was participating to the conversation, after all it was mostly sign language, and poo is a word she knows well.

Poo is a word we know well too. You expect to have to deal with poop when becoming a parent, but no one tells you that it will end up in your hair, on your face and under your socks at least once at some point of the process. You better wish it happens sooner than later, because the older they get, the more real their poop gets. When they’re new born and only drink milk, it barely qualifies as poop, it’s more like mud. It doesn’t even smell all that bad. But when they’re all food group eating toddlers….ooof!

I remember, a long time ago, when my grandmother was changing my bratty little brother’s poopy diaper, he wouldn’t stay put. Poor woman was left in sweats by the time she managed to get him cleaned up. She grabbed a wipe to wipe her face only to realize she had just used the dirty poopy wipe on her face.

I was 8, I laughed so hard not knowing life had similar plans reserved for me…

If someone’s ever scared you by running after you with a Kleenex containing a squished spider, a dirty diaper filled with stinking, hot S&*% is good payback.

Well, I just spent 260 words talking about crap. That’s why blogs are so great, anything goes!

I think next time I’ll write about farts. Oh! So much to say!

Btw after the last post I went to check on the kids and found this.DSC04415 - Copy

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Face your fears and look inside

“Face your fears” is what I’ve been telling myself lately.

The older I get, the more I get to know myself. Maturing I guess.

Last week, I went out with some girlfriends to see a band play in a bar. Place was packed, probably over 100 people present. After a short chat with the singer of the band, she decided to call me up on stage before they started playing to “Say a few words”. I hadn’t planned anything; I just went up there and winged it. I don’t remember everything that I said; we were in a bar after all and had been drinking. I just know that the first thing I said was “Hi I’m Julie and I have 3 kids!”

Great intro for a rock band!

I continued babbling things… tried to pump the crowd… told the ladies in the audience they should get their bras signed by the band members…

What was I thinking? I don’t know! I was just having fun. When I sat back down some of my friends were looking at me like “What just happened?” and some that have come to know this side of me had a “No surprise here” kind of face. One of them turned to me and told me “Julie, you’re the most fearless woman I know”.

And believe it or not, that comment’s been in my head since then.

I am not fearless; I am the most fearful person I know. I am scared of everything.

It’s easy to let fear guide you. It will guide you towards safety. No risks, no taking chances, no experimenting… is that what we want?

Believe it or not that’s exactly the dilemma I’m living right now. I have fears in me… should I face them? Or just go towards whatever is safer…after all I have 3 kids.

I can’t imagine what you are thinking reading this. You’re probably think I’m a complete nut job. Well lately that’s what I’ve been thinking too. Ever since I gave birth to A3 my mind has changed. Ok, it’s not that it’s changed; it’s as if it’s always been the same but I’m just starting to realize what it’s like.

Maybe 3 kids are what it took to get me to start looking on the inside. I look on the inside and I get scared.

That tells me there’s a lot of work to be done there.

I’ve been stressed out all morning…with all these thoughts in my head. Now that I’m writing it all out, it’s making more sense. I guess this blog does help channel my stress. I know I knew this before, because I’ve mentioned it in a previous post. But it still seems like I just realized it now.Basically, I do feel better now after having written this.

Some people have the ability to center themselves and work on their inner self. Others need something to shake them and wake them up to start doing so. And most will go on with life never making this realization…

I think I’m being woken up right now.

It’s taken a lot for me to even start thinking about these things… a lot has happened to me in the past 5 years and now I’m finally learning about life.

All these thoughts running through my head ever since A3.I’ve thought it to be many things; maybe they are symptoms of baby blues? Maybe the baby blues combined with the winter blues? Maybe I’m a bit depressed? Maybe these hormones are making me crazy? Maybe I’m becoming a soft bipolar?

Or maybe this life is over whelming and I just need to calm down and learn to relax.

“You need to take good care of yourself, so you can take care of others.” They say, and they are right.

It’s more than taking care of my body and mind….

I need to take care of my soul.

P.s If you think I’ve lost my marbles…wait till you find out what I googled today. (Well one person already knows, and it’s not Jack)

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+++ Why you shouldn’t clean if you want your kids to be calm

It’s the afternoon. I have A2 and A3, A1 is not home from school yet. It’s the first time that I blog while A2’s awake. Not only that, it’s the first time I actually have the laptop out while she’s around.

A3’s in ++++++++a chair and A2’s wobbling around. Every time she comes near A3 to give her a +++++++–kiss all stops and I watch her every move in fear.

Those plus and minuses are from A2, she passed by and pressed on those keys.

They’re both calm right now. Anyone who sees this post and knows the state of my home might think “Instead of blogging you should’ve picked up the mess”.

The room is completely quiet; all we hear is A2’s toy singing. Everything sings in this house. I am sitting down next to them quietly typing away. Now if I were to start picking stuff up, washing dishes or cooking.+++++++++++++++ (Another visit)I would be moving around, making noise, water running, pots and pans clunking, I would be creating a different mood.++++ (A2)

I want them to be calm, so I should  create the atmosphere for it. Usually in the evenings, after supper time, I dim the lights and I actually put on Spa music. They can do as they wish, play, run, yell, but the background is this. I’ve learned this from my own mistakes, I use to leave the TV on, talk loud, clean up… Then I realized that all this noise was making them agitated.

It took me three kids to figure this much out.

A2’s back. She’s closing the laptop and yelling “NO!” … I gtg. She gave me enough alone time, now I’m going to go play!

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A Real Hippopotamus

Finally, kids are asleep. That includes A3 who now at almost 4 months just started a semi-regular sleeping pattern.

What an evening it was ! Supper time was ultimate choas, A2 was covered in food by the end of it and we later found left overs in her diaper. A1 refused to eat, so out came the threats.

“You threaten your kids? Shame on you!”

I do whatever needs to be done. Threats, blackmail, we all do it, let’s not kid ourselves… “If you don’t eat I’ll tell the tooth fairy not to come see you in two years when you start losing your teeth”.

A1’s super excited about the tooth fairy business but she’s still only 4.

The other night, when I was lying in bed next to her as she requested, she was talking. I was so tired that I was slipping in and out of sleep. She was saying “Baby teeth don’t have roots, that’s why it doesn’t hurt when they fall” (is that even true?) When I woke up again she was saying “The eagle is the king of birds” and then I must have fallen asleep again. When I opened my eyes a few minutes later she was making shadows on the wall. Next thing I know i feel a little finger poking my face “Mommy, you’re sleeping ? But when am I going to see a REAL hippopotamus?”

Tonight A1 went up to bed by herself and this  is a big deal is this house. Jack and I can stop arguing over who’s turn it is to do it. We do it in code obviously.

“Ok time for bed, daddy’s going to take you up tonight !”

Daddy: But mommy! You should go, you tell such great stories !
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Me: Yes, but Daddy’s going to scratch your back!

Daddy:  Honey, who do you want to go up with you?

We all know the answer to that one… it never fails.

Mommy!

Ah! we’re going to regret this when they become teenagers and don’t want to have anything to do with us.

Parenting is a constant guilt trip.

Another big achievement in our house, A2 now picks us dirty rolled diapers and puts them in the trash. Then gives herself a round of applause.

With A3 sleeping a little better, A1 going to bed by herself and A2 picking up diapers, alot is changing around here. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Then again, perhaps I don’t want to see the light, I don’t want this tunnel to end…

All this house playing business can get overwhelming but my overall attitude is to stay calm and truly enjoy it. They say “It passes fast, enjoy them”… and boy are they right.

Ah…I  miss them already, I’m going to go watch them sleep now.

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The hare and the Anniversary Special

Hare: n. Any of various mammals of the family Leporidae, especially of the genus Lepus, similar to rabbits but having longer ears and legs and giving birth to active, furred young. (thefreedictionnary.com)

Dishes, laundry and bathing three kids leaves mommy in a cold shower by the end of the evening. No more hot water.

Right before that, A1 asked to be read a story before bed. So I started:

“ I’m gonna tell you the story of the turtle and the, the hmmm… how do we say “lièvre” in english.”

A1: What’s that mommy?

Me : It’s a wild rabbit that runs fast.

A1: Oh! A kangaroo?

Me : No. Let’s ask daddy. DAAADDDYYY

Jack answers from across the hall “What!”

Me: How do you say “Lièvre” in English?

Jack: I dunno. Coyote ?

Btw as I wrote  this Jack came up behind me and said.egg

“Don’t post this; people are going think I’m stupid… You’re still going to post it aren’t you? Your blog is nothing without me!”

And he’s right the blog is about my life and he’s a big part of it. Since we’re talking about Jack, might as well continue.

In our house weekends are so chaotic that we rarely have time to eat, so I always prepare a bowl of hard-boiled eggs so we can at least have a quick dose of protein in a snack. Jack has made it a habit to crack the egg on his head. Yes you read right. He takes the boiled egg and he smashes it on his head. It’s partly to make the children laugh but he does it even when they’re not around.

So Saturday, on our anniversary, I decided to put one non-boiled egg in that bowl.

I think you can imagine the rest…

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Why a blog?

 I haven’t blogged in a few days and it’s been bothering me. 

This is not working. Every time something happens I try to memorize it so that I can later write it in my journal. When I eventually have some time I try to read my journal (whatever I had time to write) so that I can blog about it. Since no there’s way I have time to do all that, I’m going to have to say goodbye to my notebook.

Aha! Did you think I was going to say “the Blog “just there? Well since I don’t want that to happen, I’m getting get rid of the notebook and I’m going to keep writing what I’m thinking in the moment.

Sunday night, I joined some friends at a Super Bowl party after the kid’s bed time.  On my way home I almost got into a bad car accident. The reason was simply that I was thinking about a million things at the same time, and therefore was distracted.

I’m usually good at finding fun ways to manage the kids and keeping my stress level down, but recently, after having baby # 3 I must admit it’s been a challenge. I really need to make some adjustments in order to come back to my usual self. There’s only so much I can do with the kids and the chaos but there’s a lot I can do with myself.  I guess this blog can be the first step by giving me a way to vent.

(To be continued)

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A new day, a new post?

Blogging every night will be hard. Some nights I pass out right after the last kid is in bed, other nights I pass out in the last kid’s bed. Children ask you to stay with them a while before they fall asleep. Yes, we do enjoy spending that time with them, scratching their backs and answering their multiple questions. But let’s be honest, sometimes we just need them to sleep already.

See, when you have three kids it’s a little different; your child asking you to lie down next to them until they fall asleep gives you a valid reason to leave your spouse alone with the other two.  If the opportunity to sleep on duty presents itself you do not let it pass. Plus it’s the perfect scenario. You can stay as long as you like, no one will know. Zzzzzzz

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To blog or not to blog

People tell me I should start a blog, so I googled “blog” to find out what it is. Yes, I’m relatively young but I’m technologically challenged. I have no knowledge about technology past the bare basics. This doesn’t only apply to computers and the internet; I must admit using the TV is a bit of a challenge for me. The DVR scares me and I can’t differ regular viewing from HD for my life. My camera always stays on the same setting and I hate using the home alarm system. I come from a home where my dad put up a “beware of dog “sign in the window, and that was our alarm system.

I found out what a blog is, checked out a few… ok but still not sure what I’m expected to write on it.  The bigger question is, where am I going to find the time to write a blog? It’s past 10 pm; I have two kids in bed and a two month old still up. As I’m writing this, I’m looking around at my house and it’s a complete mess. There are toys everywhere, laundry to be folded and put away, dishes to be done and to top it all off my little coat hook system broke on Christmas day when we had family over and put over 20 coats on a small 5 hook board…so now all the kids and our coats, snowsuits, hats, scarves are spread out on the living room couches.

I have to stop now. Baby is crying.

Fed,burped, rocked to sleep and I’m back.

Baby crying again. This will be impossible.

I’m back. How do they know to hold their poop until you put them in a fresh diaper??

This is what’s going to keep happening, I’m going to be on a train of thoughts, I’m going to get interrupted by someone and then lose track of mind. Yesterday as I was thinking about this blog thing, I was trying to make a written list of things I could talk about. I promise you I didn’t get far.

So I guess this is my first blog post .

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