Thursday, February 11, 2016

Why Isn't It Open 24 Hours

Me: Oh man, I want to go to Target by myself.

Becky: You should try it.

Me: I bet I would do a whole lot less yelling.

Becky: Ha! I would hope so.





This photo has nothing to do with anything. He's just very, very nice to look at.
You're welcome.



You guys. I yell a lot at Target. Mainly because I usually have at least 3, but most often 4 kids with me, and only two of them will stay in the cart. The other two promise me, every single time they promise me, that they will be good listeners and stay with Mommy. And every time I am fooled! I am definitely the idiot in this scenario, but they are master manipulators of cuteness. 

Things start off well, but then about 13 seconds into the trip Tula runs, like hauls ass, down the aisles toward where she thinks the toys are. Luckily for me she's always wrong. That girl has no sense of direction. Or memory apparently. She's been to Target a billion times in her short life. Then Addie takes off in a different direction, because she actually knows where things are, and I stand there fully prepared to abandon the boys in the middle of the detergent section but trying to decide who to chase after first. 

Usually it's Tula, and while I'm running I start yelling, "ADELINE LEIGH! Get back here and watch your brothers!" And then the staff rolls their eyes at me for leaving my invisible 4 year old in charge of the babies. 

Then I spend the rest of the trip talking very sternly through gritted teeth that they better stay with me or I'll blah blah blah. No one listens to me. I still chase after them through the whole store. At least we get some exercise in. 

The amazing thing is I NEVER forget anything. I always get everything I came for, and about 20 things I didn't need but now cannot live without. Such is the pull of Target.

I've seen women with their kids all standing attentively next to them, never going so much as a pencil's length away from them. How do they do that? Am I not strict enough? That's probably a question for a different blog.

The answer is most likely, yes. 

But you try having four teeny tiny kids and see if you stick to your guns constantly and still are able to love.   I could be a warden all day, but then I'd be a warden all day. 

A blog for a different day!







Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Is It Too Late Now To Say Sorry

So, my friend Tiana and I started sending pictures of ourselves (I hear the kids call them selfies) drinking wine back and forth to each other.

She'll send me something like this, with a caption that says something like, "Best parenting decision I've ever made!"





Drink up, Mama!


And then I'll send something back like this:



Way ahead of you!
(Also, yes that's my daily hairdo. UGH! My hair. Can I just shave it all off? Can I!?)



And the reason we started doing this is because being a parent is stress-mother-fing-ful! So is having a job. And a partner in life. And paying bills. And living through winter. Depressing, grey-skies winter. And listening to your grandma tell a story about her sprinklers. And running out of grapefruit La Croix. And realizing the reason your hand smells like poop is because there is actual poop on it. And listening to your grandma tell a story about her sprinklers, again. And trying to plan to train for a marathon, then realizing how much time it'll take away from your kids. And feeling guilty that the time away from your kids for the marathon training actually sounds nice. Like a break. Like a breath of freedom, paid for in shin splints, and pulled butt muscles, and knees that creak and crack every time you move. And making dinner no one eats. And forgetting to put the laundry in the dryer so now all your clothes smells like mildew. And stepping on a small pile of Cheerios and crushing them into a billion smithereens just moments after you just finished cleaning the floor.

Being a parent is hard. So, sometimes. SOMETIMES. You need to have a few delicious sips of wine to help you manage the evenings. Especially because 5pm is the witching hour. 

5pm is the time kids decide to lose their marbles, freak out about any and everything, make every mess possible, and start fights with each other the second you think they're playing nice. This probably happens because you're trying to make dinner and unwind, and kids cannot handle your focus being on anything but them.

And since Tiana has been my friend for 20+ years I can call her and say stuff like, "OH MY GOD, my kids needed attention all day long. Like, it just did not end. They're so needy! Oh! And then! My husband came home."

And she'll say, "Oh they're the worst. They want you to say hi to them and stuff. As if there's time for that!"

"Right?! You know what would be romantic? If he walked in and just started sweeping. Like, didn't even take his coat off, just started really getting into those floors."

"Oh, and then if your kids would actually sit and read books. Quietly."

"YES!"

Aaaahhh. We can dream can't we?

(**I guess I have to put a disclaimer in here that we both love our kids and husbands times a thousand. Obviously, those five people are my favorite five people in the whole damn world. But occasionally you need to let off steam. And if you're one of those people who doesn't do that because you keep it all bottled in, or even more crazy, one of those people who doesn't do that because you "don't feel stressed by your young family" then good for you! I'll bet that Xanax tastes delicious washed down with that gin and tonic.)


Anyway, instead of a picture I sent a short video to her (and Alex, my other bff living the Kid Life). Because a picture just did not do my feelings on my wine justice.

I had just found out my husband wasn't going to be home until after bedtime, the kids were going bonkers being that the clock had literally just struck 5:01pm and Justin Beiber was blasting on the radio. I had two choices - Get all sad and mad and stressed that I had another 3 hours alone with the crazies, or get down with it. Laugh it all off and dance my mother fucking ass off.

I chose option 2. Because I like not crying. 






That continued for a good while. And yes I drank that whole glass in two swallows.

HOW COULD YOU NOT? Especially when Justin is asking if it's too late to say sorry.

Nope. Never, Justin. You say sorry all you want!



Part of the reason I started with the wine. Someone is her own canvas.



Addie was covered in paint too, but then she got cleaned up and looked downright adorable.
Gorge.



Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Phrases That Have Different Meanings In Your 30's, No. 174

"Hold on, I need to find my pants."

In my 20's if I would have said, "Hold on, I need to find my pants," it usually was because of some fun night of sexy stuff with someone I barely remember, and I was trying to pretend to find them but knew I probably didn't really need them anyway because I was about to get right back into bed.

But in my 30's? Not so much.

Now it's because I need to hide my insanely white booty from the neighbors, and to protect my legs from the one year olds that like to use me as a chew toy. If I have pants on at least I have a barrier between their teeth and my bare skin.

I yelled "Hold on, I need to find my pants," last night to my husband, but it was in no way sexy. No way at all. I was standing in the girls' room with no pants on because I'd just gotten back from a run and was halfway through taking my sweaty clothes off before I heard a crash and a gag which could mean someone broke something and then someone else is currently gagging on a broken shard of something, or it could just mean someone broke something because they're choking on something. Either way the outcomes are not good. So, I raced across the house pantsless to find a broken bedside lamp courtesy of Tula (the 4th in a year) and Henry gagging on a wad of newspaper. All in all not as terrible as it usually is.

20's - Sex.

30's - Naps at the movie theater because I can't stay awake past 9pm.

20's - Drinking til 3am, then waking up and going for a long run.

30's - Drinking some Emergen-C at 3pm and hoping the boost of Vitamin C doesn't keep me up past my 8:30pm bedtime.

20's - Reading a whole book in a day, then going out to dinner with friends.

30's - Eating leftover mac 'n cheese off the floor for dinner, then looking at my new book on the counter and just thinking, "I want to read you but I need to fold these socks."

20's - Moving across the country on a whim.

30's - Moving to the other couch because the other one is caked in day-old yogurt.

20's - Think I know what depression feels like.

30's - Deal with postpartum hormones and feel the world break apart.

20's - Think I've fallen in love a few major times.

30's - Have kids, know that I was an idiot in my 20's, truly, madly, deeply fall in love with four little kids. World is amazing.



So, yes. Things and phrases are different from decade to decade.

I'm cool with that. I like this decade.





I couldn't find the boys the other day, and then I heard some cooing from the bathroom. Guess who learned to climb into the cabinet!



Grant is so happy to be part of the girls!
Also, you can totally tell which two are mine because they don't stop eating for anything.



Lovin' up on Auntie Judy.



Me: Tula, that's beautiful! What is it?
Tula: A tent.
Me: A tent?
Tula: A tent for a dragon.





Thursday, January 28, 2016

I'm A Real Boy!

Well, I just turned the corner into the kitchen to find Henry repeatedly slapping Luke across the face with uncooked bacon while Tula sqautted naked over the heating vent to "warm up her pee-pee", and Adeline just stood by sucking her thumb watching the whole thing unfold while standing in the bucket of dirty water I'd left out after I mopped the floors, shaking her head like, "These kids are out of control."

Does anyone with more than one kid not walk into stuff like this? This is normal right? I mean, since winter hit my kids' Weirdo Levels have really shot through the roof. They are constantly finding new things to jump off of, and they can't stop themselves from doing things like putting on every single piece of clothing they own and walking around like puffy, tiny little Joeys in that one episode of Friends.







So, we got stuff figured out.

Luke thought the bacon smacking was hilarious especially after the dog got involved, so I let it continue until all the raw bacon had been eaten and the babies had been sufficiently licked clean. Less work for me.

Tula was schooled on the fact that her pee-pee was already warm enough and if she ever actually peed in anything not a toilet she'd be sold to the first gypsies I could find. The she smiled. A scary smile. There's pee somewhere in my house isn't there?

And Adeline was told that standing in dirty floor water was not the same as having a pedicure, despite the fact that she is still fairly sure I'm wrong.

I feel like that scene from Pinocchio where there are no rules or adults and the kids turn into smoking, alcoholic donkeys is not far off from my life. Not far at all.

Good thing they're so damn cute.



Hen. Rockin' the sock monkey hoodie.



The ladies using me as a jungle gym.



Luke is SUPER pumped about the museum!

Friday, January 22, 2016

One Year Olds!




I don't know how to write about the boys turning one without blubbering all over the place.

I don't know how to write about the boys without writing about everyone else. Because we are all intertwined right now. It is Luke, and Adeline, and Tula, and Henry, and me, and Josh in a huge pretzel of a family.

I don't know how to write about the boys without saying they are little balls of joy and light.

I don't know how to write about the boys without mentioning that they poop all the time. They are constantly poopy. How can such tiny things poop so much?!

I don't know how to write about the boys without wanting to go wake them up from their nap and hug them, and smell them, and listen to them coo, "Ma ma ma ma ma." Because they are my little loves. They are my heart. 

I don't know how to write about the boys. 

But I'll try. And I'll fail. Because these boys are the lid on my life.  

The girls are the box, and the boys are the lid and inside is everything else that's ever happened.

I don't know if that makes sense, but when people say they had their blah blah number child and knew their family was complete, that's how I felt with the boys. The second they were born my heart exhaled and was like, "Ok. This is it. This is who you are, Amy."

And then it handed me the box and let me try to figure it all out. 

The wrapping is tricky, and it's hard to find things in there sometimes, and nothing is as it seems, but it's still me. It's still my box. 






That smile on my face, is because the one year olds are so warm and sweet, you can't help but glow around them.



Having children has made me take notice of how kind people are around me. The day Adeline was born I have never been so surrounded by love and kindness and generosity and genuine well-wishings from people I didn't even know. And since that day it has not stopped. Maybe it was there all the time and I didn't really notice it, but having the kids peeled back a layer of the world and exposed a whole lot of love and happiness and joy I couldn't have imagined. 

Part of this is strangers who encounter me out in public, and who usually say something like - How do you it? Or - Wow, you've got your hands full, good job! Or - Are all those yours? You look great!

No one walks up to a stranger and says - I'll bet that puppy keeps you up at night, good for you for still walking him! Or - You look like you just went to the gym. Way to get your workout on! Because that would be weird. But there's something so unifying about having kids. It makes people give you a little I-know-what-that's-like nod as they pass you and your tantruming two year old in the middle of Target. And it makes them come up to you in the grocery store and say, "What cute kids you have!" right before two of them knock down every single box of cereal in the middle cereal shelf as they run down the aisle with their arms extended playing "Dinosaur Grocery Store".

But the truth is, having four is easier than just having two was. 

And I know that sounds crazy, but it's true. Having two was so hard for me. I could not figure anything out. But having four? Well, I don't have any choice. We get it done, and we get it done (almost) on time or we don't have a life. Maybe all this is just a very crazy way to teach me that I need to be busy in order to be productive, and if that's the case, "VERY FUNNY GOD. You could have just given me a lot of jobs or something."




What's that? On a two day road trip in the car with four kids and three out of the four have blow outs and the bathroom where we stop has no changing table? No problem! TO THE DESERT!



So, the boys are one. And they could not be more different. They are both happy and funny, but in such different ways. Physically, Henry is huge and strong, while Luke is slight and wiry. Vocally, Luke wants to have deep, long babbling conversations while staring intently into your soul through your eyes, and Henry is content to just scream something loud and then crawl away from you as fast as he can. They both do the crazy crab crawl the girls did. My kids do not crawl on their knees, they use one foot to propel them on their butts while the other one pushes. They stand, they walk while holding onto something, they eat anything and everything you put in front of them, and they think their sisters are hysterical. 

They love their sisters. To them, Addie and Tula are quite possibly the funniest things ever created.

Their dad is a close second. But he changes their diapers (oh the horror!) so, the girls win every time.

All in all, this year has been crazy, and wonderful, and hard, and tricky, and full of love and joy, and so comfortable and nice, and it's because of the boys. It's because we are a full box now.





Birthday breakfast! Super happy about their bananas.



Ha! Henry's face! And Luke is about to fall. 
Love it.



My little lovesies.




We made all these babies! Whaaaaat!

Monday, January 18, 2016

Water Under The Bridge


Just a word to the wise:

Don't listen to Adele everyday, for four weeks in a row if you want to, you know, carry on with life.

It's like I'm a drug addict. I know what listening to her album does to me, but I can't stop it because it feels so good to feel so bad!

And by bad I mean sad.

And by sad I mean let's have every heartbreaking memory feel like it's happening all over again, every single day, so that I wander through the grocery store with mascara running down my face staring at the food for so long employees have to ask me if I need help, to which I can only reply, "Do you sell glue to repair MY SOUL?"

No. They don't sell that, it turns out.

And I don't know what Josh is thinking, but he keeps trying to discuss the songs with me. Like, asking me what she means and stuff. And I'm like, "Isn't it obvious? Their love ain't water under the bridge. He's gonna let her down gently."

And he's like, "What? That makes no sense."

And I'm like, "She doesn't want him to pretend that he doesn't want her."

And he's like, "But he's breaking up with her?"

"Yes."

"So, he doesn't want her."

"Yes he does, he loves her."

"If he loves her then why is he breaking up with her?"

"Because maybe it's just not the right time for them. Maybe things aren't working."

"If things aren't working then shouldn't they break up."

"Yes. But that doesn't mean their love is over. It ain't water under the bridge, Josh! Don't you listen to the chorus?!"

"So, he's going to let her down?"

"Yes."

"But he loves her still?"

"Obviously."

"This song makes no sense."

"Oh my god, do you understand love at all?!"



Turns out he doesn't.









Also, because this one is my favorite. YOU GUYS! It's so good:


Thursday, January 14, 2016

Not So Recap-y

So, I know I said I was going to be recapping The Bachelor, but I can't this week because I had too much wine while I was watching it and I don't remember anything. Not that I blacked out, but I had one and a half glasses of fancy wine and thus passed out into a deep red-wine induced sleep five seconds after it ended.

Also, because I finished watching it at 11:30 pm. That may as well be 3am in my world.

Maybe next week I'll watch it during the day, while I force my kids to take an hour and twenty minute bath, like a normal person!

"Mom, can we be done taking a bath?"

"No! . . . He gave the rose to her?!"

"Mom, the bubbles are all gone."

"Blow on the water. Oh my gosh, I can't believe she said that."

"Mom, the water is cold."

"It's not that cold. When I was a kid we had to take baths in buckets of ice."

"No, you didn't."

"You don't know me!"

"Mom. . ."

"You have to stay in the bath until Mommy's show is done!!!"


You all do that right? Make your kids take baths so you can watch bad TV?

Nope. Me neither.


Ok, tomorrow - I can't even believe I'm going to type this - the boys turned one.

How did that happen?!

But first! Pictures.





Luke, loves life.


Hen does too.


Best bath ever. Everyone got clean, and no one got drowned.



"Yes, crocodiles DO eat flowers."



The boys love eating.


While Adeline is at school Tula sweeps snow. Seems like a fair trade off.



Being a musician is a hard life. So many fans, so little time.