Thursday, May 29, 2008

My son

When I had my daughter, she was just so easy to understand. We're very similiar, I get her moods, her dramatic tendencies, I understand the way her mind works. I like baby dolls and figurines, frilly dresses and making up stories. We both lie thru our teeth enthusiastically, etc. But Sammy - he's so different!

He's very specific about clothes, refuses to get dressed in the morning unless he's approved of the outfit ahead of time. And he'll insist that I cut out the tags of his shirt. He's got three older sisters, so he learned early that if it glitters, it's good. He believes firmly that there is no outfit that wouldn't be improved upon if there was a beribboned headband on his head. But there are so many ways in that he's such a quintessential BOY that I'm always a little baffled. Like the truck and choo choo fascination. Trash trucks, fire trucks, even a big van is enough to send my boy into ecstasy. He presses his face to the window screen and screams out "TRUUUUUCK!" whenever one happens to drive by the house. He's thrilled by bugs, thrilled by them. Earlier today, he killed an ant with his little finger, toddled past me to the potty, and flushed it. No comments to me, just handled the situation just like Daddy does. He hated the carriage from the beginning, and it's only now that he's two that he'll consent to sit in one for any length of time. He's obsessed with ducks - all birds, really, and will yell at them at the park plaintively, getting irritated that they don't come when he demands it. He's in love with his older sister, everything is about "Dessi." He's recently become enamored with "NO" and "MINE." I capitilize these because he doesn't say them, so much as he yells them. He forbids other children from climbing the slide when we're at the playground and likes nothing more than snatching a toy and screaming that it's his, and only his.

But he's got this sweetness, this earnestness about him. He's a communicator, when he's upset, the only thing that will calm him down is when I articulate exactly what happened. "You wanted to play with Jessie's toy, Jessie said no, so you tried to bite her, and Mommy put you in time out until you could say you were sorry." And he'll nod sadly and agree, and only then, after he's sure you understand exactly why he's so distraught, will he start to calm down. He's a grubby mess most of the time, but he can skin his little knees and keep on trucking. No tears for him - he's fallen off of furniture, tries his best to fly by jumping off of stuff, he's hell bent on causing himself bodily harm, and yet somehow, he's still fine. A little bumped and bruised, he's had black eyes, split lips and big bumps, but no stitches and no broken bones.

He's very similiar to Marc - that same level, easy temperment, he's not affected by Jessie's moods, she can be screaming like a mad woman over something, and he's just popping along, happy as can be.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Fifteen minutes - that's all it took

I cooked dinner for my children. Earlier today, they were driving me batty (I'm PMS-ing really bad), so I cleaned the living room (not spotless, but pretty damn good) and packed them all into the carriage and went for a long walk. We went to Elm Park, saw both families of baby ducks (confirming for me that there are two families, not just the same one I saw twice), and then I bought them ice cream. Walked home, all was well, then I decided to cook. So I cooked dinner, talked to Annie and Becky on the phone, and just wandered back into the living room to find an oh-my-God disaster. How does that happen so fast??? You literally can't see more than six inches of floor. There are figurines, stuffed animals, overturned laundry baskets, dress up clothes, clean diapers and pull-ups liberated from their drawers and tossed around the play corner. The shelving unit itself has been dismantled and the little drawers are being used as boats, I think.

I'm simply ignoring it. I've got another few minutes until Marc comes home, and I'm just going to pretend the room doesn't exist.

It hasn't been a great day.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

I'm so sick

Don't know if it's allergies, or just a kick ass spring cold, but it's not fun right now in my body. I've had two motrin, I'm on my second cup of coffee, and then I'm going to take a HOT shower, and hope for the best. Memorial Day weekend, and I'm busy - I don't want to sit at home and be miserably sick.

We took Bella overnight last night, and she's playing with the kids in the living room. I threw some cheerios at them, so they are all content with Go Diego Go, and I'm optimistic about the rest of the day. I have to give Bella a bath, and then I promised to take them to the park to feed the baby ducks. Marc is still sleeping, and I'm letting him sleep as long as he wants, in hopes that tomorrow morning he'll repay the favor. Doubtful, honestly, in the five years we've been parents together, I don't think I've ever been able to sleep in as long as I wanted to - in order for it to happen, he'd actually have to take the kids out, but hope springs eternal, I guess.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Sam just got up from his nap

And he's vaguely feverish, fighting off a cold, and his cheeks are rosy and warm. His first words, before he'd even fully woken up, was "Dessi?" And when I told him that Jessie was at the doctor's getting her cast off, he started crying, really hard, and just kept repeating her name in the saddest little voice. He loves her so much.

Who loves a trip to the park in the rain??

The answer, of course, is I do! I've got a little routine for Monday, Tuesday and Thursdays (Wednesdays, I have too many babies to attempt it) where I head to Elm Park in the mornings, come home for lunch, put everyone down for a nap, etc. So I gambled that it wouldn't rain - and lost. We're a soggy bunch at the moment, but we were able to stop at the store and get donuts (Sam's got a "Suuuuugar" obsession - I think he just likes saying it - and was delighted to discover donuts covered in the stuff). We also got juice boxes for tomorrow's lunch for Jessica and tissues. Sam's cold has materialized, and I've got boogies everywhere. Jessie's cast will hopefully come off today - she's a little crabby right now. My poor girl woke up in the middle of the night and curled up on the comfy chair and just sobbed. I was in bed already and assumed that Marc was with her, so I didn't immediately get up, and by the time I did, she was heartbroken that I had left her alone to cry. Ahhh - the guilt. So I slept with both of them in the bed, and am sore and tired as a result. I look forward to the day when I can reclaim my bed for my own :-)

Baking challah and cookies today... feeling oh-so-domestic.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Just your average Wednesday

I've got Harrison and Jordyn here today, plus my two. And it's lovely, we went for a walk earlier, I had Harrison and Jordyn in the wagon and Sam in his little monkey backpack. We walked down to the store to get butter for cookies this afternoon, and then sat outside in the sunshine and played bubbles and chalk. Then Jess came home from school, we all had lunch (tuna, pickles and chips) and I changed all three diapers, put Harrison down for his nap. Jordyn and Sam are getting ready for theirs - Jordyn has to wind down a bit, and Sam didn't seem emotionally ready - although Harrison literally asked to "lay down in bed" so I figured I'd put him down first.

I've got much to do, in the upcoming days. Glennys, Annie and John are all coming for dinner tonight, tomorrow night, Lilli and Sarah are arriving for two days straight. Friday night, we're all going to Janet and Josh's for shabbat dinner, Saturday we're going to a cookout at either my brother or my sister's house, Sunday we're hosting one here, and Monday we're going to whoever's house we did not go to on Saturday.

Jess is doing well, temperment wise. She's becoming so independent in a lot of ways, and it feels like we spend a phenominal amount of time arguing about stuff, but I try and keep telling myself that she's just testing the limits and figuring out who she is, and not trying specifically to make me insane. Then she'll morph back into toddlerhood, and want to be rocked and cradled to sleep. Sam is still very much a toddler, still nursing like a mad man and right now, he and Jes are playing 'baby' when Sam pretends to be Jessie's baby. She makes him lay down and pretend to sleep. I'm hoping maybe he'll just fall asleep while they're doing it :-). He's got this new thing where he raises his hand to express his willingness to do stuff. I'll say "who's ready for dinner" and Sam will wave his hand in the air - it's so cute. I don't know where he picked it up - Jessie doesn't do it. But he's very good about it, he never raises his hand unless he wants to do it. It's amazing to me how intelligent he is, and how apparent it is from such an early age. Not that Jessie wasn't the same way - but she was so much more verbal about it. Sam isn't anywhere near as much of a talker as his sister is, but he's still very communicative, which I love.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Baby Ducks

There is a family of baby ducks, or as we like to call them in the Cohen household "baby quackies" at Elm Park. And for the past two days, that's what we've been doing each morning. I haul the boys outside and push the carriage down to Elm Park - we walk ALL the way around the pond, pointing out the "big quackies" and the "baby quackies." Yesterday, the baby ducks were all huddled in the nest or right beside it, but today, they were out and about. Five little baby ducklings and their mommy duck out on a sunny morning. And it was so lovely - I had the two toddler boys, and my big five year old girl and we fed them stale bread and then played at the playground for an hour or so.

It's an interesting society at the playground - in the late afternoon, it's overtaken by bigger kids who run and scream and scare the hell out of my cherubs, lots of Moms and Dad and grandparents, but in the morning, there is usually just me and the nannies. Sometimes a grandparent or two, but not often. I'm assuming that they are nannies, because they are so young to have these kids... and I watch them, wondering if the kids are missing their moms. I am so glad that I'm the one pushing my babies on the swings or catching them on the slides.

Cold afternoon now - the sun is behind the clouds and the temp has dropped considerably. I'm making my afternoon cup of coffee, and my kids are bopping around the house, Jessie is curled up under the table, fuming that I won't let her play on the computer, and Sam is sneaking potato chips leftover from lunch. I've got a stack of new books from the library to read later on once the kids go to sleep, I've got dinner thawing out in the kitchen, waiting to be cooked... I'm feeling a bit like I've accidentally been trasnported back in time to the fifties household, especially because I'm unreasonably happy that my husband will be home for dinner tonight - but while this may be old fashioned and WAY too traditional - I LOVE being a stay at home mom and wife.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Thank goodness the wedding is over

Not that it wasn't a fabulous wedding, because it was, but because the three nights of leaving Sam had been hanging over my head and I'm so glad that I don't have to worry about it anymore. And as an added perk, I know that he will survive without me and is fine. No lingering damage, he's cheerful and friendly this morning. I'm sleepy and feeling overwhelmed with a lot of cleaning that, to be perfectly honest, I'd rather not do. I'd rather just curl up with a good book and a comfy blanket over my icy toes and read for the afternoon.

Marc is off with his friends, doing the D&D thing, which is lovely, actually. I like just being at home with just my cherubs. I very rarely get to spend time with just my two kids - there's almost always an extra one or two floating around, so I'm very happy to just have them at the moment.

Had a thing, last night, with a woman who was once my closest friend. We had been best friends thru junior high, high school, and most of my twenties, but grew apart after I met Marc and had the cherubs. I say grew apart, like it was a painless, gradual sort of thing, but in fact, it was really wrenching and difficult. And seeing her last night felt odd, and uncomfortable in a lot of ways. I'm not the same person I was six years ago, and what used to feel right and normal is now ... just not something I want to be a part of anymore. I LOVE my life now - my husband is my best friend, he's the one I trust with all of me, and my children are the most important things in my life. I'm not willing to carve out any extra room in my life for her.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

He will not self destruct without me

This is my new mantra... I have to leave Sam a lot over the next couple of days. Big wedding, and I'm the maid of honor. Special girls only dinner Thursday night, rehearsal Friday night, and then all day Saturday until late that night. And I'm worried and anxious and sick at the thought of my poor baby crying and crying without me. But I left him last Saturday and he did really well... As much as I hated it, I think it was good for both of us. We're so attached, Sam and I. For the past two years, we've been glued at the hip, and I can probably count on one hand the number of times I've gone out without it. We're together so much that I no longer feel whole without him there, like I accidentally forgot my arm at home. And he's getting bigger, he's almost two now... it's not the same as when he was a tiny baby. It was right and good that he and I were together constantly then, but now, I think it's time for him to experiment with a little independence, it's good for him to realize that he's a person without me there - and of course, it's also good for me to do those things as well. And he's going to be okay - he's a smart, confident little boy, and hopefully, I've instilled a sense of security and well-being that will get him thru the upcoming days.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Sam tried to bake his ducks

Being the good mom, thought I'd whip up some cookies for my children. My mother bought me some cookie dough, so I put the oven on three fifty to preheat and spooned out the dough onto the cookie sheet - after a few minutes, I opened the oven to discover that my son had put his two favorite stuffed animals (Quackie 1 and Quackie 2) into a sleeping bag cover bag and stuffed it into the oven. Where I baked it.

I feel as though am I ill prepared for a boy. For this boy - Jessica would NEVER have attempted this. It just wouldn't have occured to her... I could have burned the whole apartment down if I had actually let the oven preheat the way I'm supposed to - fortunately, I'm not a patient baker and the ducks just got a little toasty, and not actually hot enough to catch on fire. Did I mention it's a gas stove??? I knew he put stuff in the microwave, I'm used to opening that and finding straws or toys or measuring cups - but he's never done the oven before. I'm afraid of what he'll do next.

I was on the phone with my mother, telling her what her grandson had just done - when I realized that he was standing on the desk next to the computer, applying sunscreen to the monitor.... he's lucky he's cute. He toddled out of Jessie's room earlier with a pull up on his head like a hat, sucking on a medicine dropper like it was a cigar. It's moments like that - that's what's saving him from me killing him.

Can I reschedule Mother's Day? Do I get a "do over"

Yesterday was just kind of crappy. Not entirely sure why.... it started out nice enough. Marc got up, made coffee, did the dishes, all of which was wonderful... then my mother in law cancelled coming over here for brunch. Which was good in a way, because then I could relax about cleaning up, but we had gotten Lilli and Sarah over to see her. Then Jessie threw her first temper tantrum of the day because we had to bring the girls back... and we were off and running. She just had a miserable day, mostly. She was pleasant enough with my mother, we went over there for the afternoon, but Marc was really distant and weird all afternoon, Sam was a complete koala baby, I think he was afraid that I'd up and leave him again, so he demanded that I hold him all day long. Jess was just nasty and mean, yelling at me and being all around wretched.

But ah - today is glorious Monday, and all is well in my world. Kids are cute, Jessie stayed home from school today (she had such a crappy weekend I figured she needed a day to recover, plus she was complaining about her allergies) and Sam is cute as a bug - I got him a Thomas the Train t-shirt on Friday, and no lie, he's had it on every day since. I pry it off of him occasionally to wash it, but he's literally screaming at me while I do it, and mourns it's loss the entire time it's being laundered. Marc just picked up Jess to get her cast checked out, it's really loose, so I'm hoping that they give her a new one, or just pronounce her wrist 100% healed :-)

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Almost there....

God, it's been a long week. And this weekend is going to be absolute lunacy, not that most of our weekends are crazy, but this one is a little excessive. Tomorrow, I have to get up, grab all the library books (there are thousands) and the dry cleaning, drop off Jess at preschool, Marc and work. Hit the library, Target to get a gift for Jessie's friend's party on Saturday, and the dry cleaners. Grab Jess, go home, babysit for a friend's three little boys while making challah, after they leave, I load up Jess and Sam in the pouring rain, pick up Lilli and Sarah at the JCC, come home, finish making dinner, host Shabbat dinner with all four kids, plus Janet and Company. Lilli and Sarah are spending the night, I have to bring Jess to dance, drop the girls off, drop Jessie off at Annie's house, drop Sammy off at my sisters and go to Beverly for Greg's party. Then pick them all up (except for the girls) and come back home. Sunday, we'll do Mother's Day - which for us is trekking back and forth between Yvonne's and my mother's house. I'm tired just typing it.

Kids are both well - Jess is a little whiney, but I think she does it for her own amusement half hte time. Sam is well - pissed that I haven't taken him outside yet (he keeps pointing to the window and screaming "SIDE") but I have one too many babies to fit in my stroller or wagon, so he's going to have to wait until Harrison gets picked up.

On a side note - I'm taking the kids to the ice cream truck for dinner - because there's not a chance in hell I'm dirtying any more dishes today.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

I love Tuesdays

No real reasons, but it's always been my favorite day of the week. I mean, Fridays are right up there too - but Tuesdays hold a special place in my heart. Marc first e-mailed me on a Tuesday ;-)

Nothing really new or exciting going on... kids are both well and healthy. Jessie is growing up so fast, but still so little sometimes. She crawled into bed with me last night and I was so happy. I know I should be encouraging her to stay in her own bed and be all independent, and mostly I do - but I love to have her snuggle up against my back and sneak her arm around my waist to sleep. Sammy is becoming your typical two year old - even though he's a couple of months away from actually turning two. He's into saying No all the time, for no apparent reason, he fights with his sister and is loving his little duck called Quackie.

Gorgeous day today - we're inside until it gets a little warmer. I'm playing toy rotation game - which is really not all that much fun, but necessary when you've got buckets and buckets of toys and many toddlers.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

My baby lost her first teeth

Not her first tooth - her first teeth. She cut them at the same time and lost them at the same time. I still remember when I saw them for the first time and know that I'll never forget when she lost them. Jessie had two loose teeth, and I figured I had a while to get used to her losing them. But she's got that cast on her arm, and when her shirt got stuck on it, she grabbed the shirt with her teeth and gave a good yank. Out came the first tooth, and she started screaming, came tearing thru the house stark naked and crying. I held her and cried a little, she's growing up so fast and I'm so proud and so happy to have her. Then Marc realized that the second tooth was barely hanging on, and he gave it a little tug, and out it popped. Two teeth at once! My big girl... she was so proud.

I wrote her a letter from her tooth fairy, I named her Marigold, and we gave her two presents, a book and a diary - plus what she calls "double money." Because Marc had six singles, we quickly determined that each tooth would be worth three dollars - so I put all six bill in an envelope with my letter, sprinkled the whole thing with glitter (we call it fairy dust) and stuffed it under her pillow.

Having children is so amazing, and it's just not something I ever get used to. I'm consistently thrilled by it, something new is always happening, and the best part is that I've got two, so I'm living thru two sets of amazing milestones. And even though Sam's the second one, I find his just as thrilling as Jessie's. Sam's now seriously saying "No, no" and "Mommy." And he's enchanted with this new ability to get his point across, and declines almost everything. In fact, for about ten minutes in the car earlier, he sang the word "no" over and over again.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Sam's newest thing

He shoves his finger in his nose and says wisely "Booooooooogie." Ah - the moments that make a mother proud. Took everyone outside for a lovely walk and played bubbles and colors. Which is code for Sammy shoving the carriage around the driveway and Jessie blowing bubbles while Harrison clutches all the chalk he can hold to his chest while he runs after bubbles. Sam's asleep right now on the couch, clutching his 'quackie,' and Harrison, who apparently no longer feels compelled to nap, is up and watching JoJo's Circus. Jordyn is chattering in my bedroom, where she's supposed to be sleeping and Jessie is drinking a disgustingly chocolate glass of chocolate milk (I let her add her own chocolate).

Jessie has two loose teeth, and is very excited. I'm apprehensive, a bit. Loose teeth, starting kindergarten and watching Hannah Montana - it's all happening very fast for me....

so so tired this morning

Probably due to a lack of coffee - but I've got my second one beside me and am optimistic about the future. Curious George is on in the living room, all three kids are lulled into contentment with television and cheerios. No major plans for today, it's kind of chilly this morning, so I'll put off my walk with them until this afternoon, hopefully after Harrison goes home, so that I can cram the two toddlers into the double stroller and make my girl walk.

Had a lovely night last night, cleaned my house and put my cherubs to bed nice and early, and Marc got home early enough so that we could hang out before I fell asleep. Still not sure what the plans are for tomorrow... but Jessie has all day preschool, so it'll just be me and my boy :-).

I relented and started letting Jessie watch Hannah Montana. I still worry it's a bit too old for her, but in all honesty, all she watches is the theme song, so it turned out to be a non-issue. She's getting so big so fast...