30.3.06

In praise of my husband

My wonderful genius husband gets up and goes to work everyday even though he doesn’t want to, even though he is tired and sick and his back won’t stop hurting and it is raining out side and he has to work in it. “Nuff said” except there’s more.

When I first got married I fully expected to pull my weight in the income department for a while. My solid mid-western upbringing allows me no rest if I’m not “contributing”. Add to this the conflicts I viewed between my father and mother over the fact that she chose to stay at home and care for us, and he chose to follow his dream of becoming a professional artist by starting a studio in our basement, and the very little money that resulted. I’m proud of my mom for sticking to her guns and making her kids priority, and I’m proud of my dad for pursuing his dreams, I just wish I hadn’t had to live through to sometimes hell that resulted from our pecuniary situation and the way they both despised each other because of it. My mom eventually caved and started working after my little sister was born, before she started school, I know that it torments her to this day to think that some of my sister’s problems are from that time when she was shucked into questionable childcare. (We couldn’t afford anything good.) My dad just assumed my mother was selfish and expected him to take care of her all of the time rather than working full time to support his drawing habit.

Enter a baby 6 months into my own marriage; imagine my mental state when I thought about money. It was my MILly who sat down with me one day as I was trying to figure out how I could finish midwife training and apprenticeship with a newborn so that I could make enough money to support us both if we should need it and took my hands in hers and forced me to listen to her.

While firmly but gently holding my gaze she spoke into me so that it penetrated, “Your job from now on is this baby. You will be the one who takes care of it at night you are the only one who can do this job. This is the job that God has given to you to do. Aaron’s job is to figure out how to make money to take care of you both. The men in this family have been raised to expect to support their wives and children. Aaron knew what he was getting into when he married you. He chose this and he has been trained to do what is right and to support his wife and children however he can.”

At this point I burst into sobs, which lasted a good twenty minutes.

But I had only partially accepted what she told me. I tried to do a stay at home business, which was fun and worked for while. I taught piano lessons. With only one child I was actually able to contribute and help as my husband went to graduate school without compromising as a parent. Then came two. I was no longer contributing; I was no longer able. I felt useless, afraid, BURDENSOME. I suffered from postpartum depression.

My husband has never once abandoned his responsibilities to me, or our children. Though I know he’s wished he could. He has kept us clothed and fed while working on a graduate degree, he has chosen carefully and responsibly in all of his decisions to make sure that we are taken care of. He has postponed several of his dreams in order to make sure of this.

I have finally stopped feeling guilty about marrying him and causing him all of this difficulty. Don’t laugh. I really have felt guilty, though he’s said nothing to make me feel that way. I have finally accepted that what his mother said is true. He chose this, and bless him he’s standing by his choices. And I’ve realized that even if he was single and free of responsibility he would still face the same kind of challenges in the same areas and would have to grow the same way, just through different means.

Sometimes I see him checking out ticket prices to Asia. I know he’s not dreaming about a family trip. He loves to travel, to get up and go and be somewhere else. He hasn’t done this in six years, even though I’ve encouraged him, it would be financially irresponsible he says. He has a gift for writing and thinking and teaching, and he builds houses for people because he makes so much money doing that that to change and start out in a new field would be quite the blow to our pocketbook, perhaps insupportable. He comes home too tired at the end of the day to study or write, or even read some days, and yet he rarely complains. His body is breaking from the years of swinging a hammer and his spirit is tired and sometimes despairs because he is not doing what he loves or is made for. But he gets up and goes back every day.

I am extremely fortunate to have found a man like this. I ‘m amazed that I find anything to complain about, ever. (Well there are the dirty works clothes lying all over the place every night but really I’ll just shut up now.) We have never had a fight; he is too level headed for that. We have discussions where he listens to me blub, and then asks if I want advice or just a hug. I am constantly asking him if he’s angry with me, guilty conscience? He usually isn’t, though sometimes I finally drag out of him that he was a little bit irritated a while ago but figured it was silly for him to be so didn’t say anything. The meanest thing he has ever done to me is not talk to me very much for a while because he didn’t want to expose me to the depression or whatever he was dealing with. (Which felt very mean at the time.)

I know he’s not perfect, better than most people. I know his weaknesses and the things he struggles with, and that is why I am even more grateful for him because I see how he deals with them and how he functions in spite of them, and how he loves me still even though he sees mine.

I trust him completely. I know he would never leave. I hope and pray every day that he figures out how to do what he was made for and take care of us at the same time. Some days I still try to figure out how to help him, to ease some of his burden. I think it’s possible if I’m creative enough. But thanks to him I’m not doing it because I’m afraid or guilty anymore, simply because I love him and feel truly blessed to have been chosen by this man.

Until I figure it out I will write long mushy blogs about how cool he is and how proud of him I am. Any one have any ideas?

Yet another post about bodily functions

Six is the number of times I have cleaned pee out of the carpet in the past two days.
The girl decided to forget how to use the potty yesterday and instead go wherever she chooses. Once while sitting on my lap nursing. Once after sitting down on the ground next to the kitchen so a stream could puddle on the carpet and spray the linoleum all at once. Another time she stood in the bedroom next to my bed staring stupidly at a spot on the wall as it ran down her pants and into more carpet. (I am a walking commercial for Nature’s Miracle; it really works.) But she's still learning how to do this and I have some patience for her.
Then, this morning, the boy comes into my room to tell me that he pooed, so I go to help him, which is when I notice the tiny spatters of liquid poo all over the bathroom floor. He apparently mistook a little diarrhea for a fart and it came out on the floor. Slightly irritated but realizing it's not really his fault, I help him to wipe up all of the splatters and rinse out the towel that wasn’t smart enough to get out of the way in time. Then we proceed to the living room and he tells me that he peed on the floor. My four-year-old potty-trained boy peeing on the rug. WHY? Because he couldn’t tear himself away from the show he was watching long enough to go the few extra steps to the bathroom and urinate in the toilet.
One is the number of times I was angry with my son today. See if you can guess when.

28.3.06

Stating the obvious

Conversation with the Girl while she's pooping on the potty.

I go poo mommymommyIgopooIgopoomommy.....

(distracted silence)

Mommy! I go Poo!

Yes honey you're going poo. Good job.

I don't eat poo mommy.

hmm?

I don't eat poo mommy, it's nasty.

Yes poo is yucky, we don't eat poo.

(triumphantly) I don't yike poo, iss yucky. (Giggling)
Oh... mommy, I go poo.

MmHmm.

I go poo in potty.

Good job sweety.

I go POOOO!!!!

(sighing) Are you finished?

Nope.

Okay, call mommy when you're done so we can wipe.(leave bathroom)

MOMMY!!! I have MORE pooo.

Are you finished.

Uh huh.

Okay get up.

Mommy I goed poo. I all done.

Talking to the Boy

Mommy are you a lady.

Yes honey I'm a lady.

But I'm not because I'm a BOY!

Yes, you are a boy.

And my sister is a little girl.

Mmhmm

And daddy isn't a lady he's a MAN!

That's right.

Mommy why aren't the Girl a boy?

Because she's a girl.

But why.

Because she's not a boy.

But why is she not a boy?

Because God made her a girl.

How come.

I don't know.

But why did God make her a girl?

I don't know.

But why is she a girl.

(exasperated) Because she is a girl she's not a boy. She has girl parts not boy parts, just because.

(also exasperated) BUT WHY????

I TOLD YOU I DON'T KNOW

But I want her to be a boy mommy.

(Under breath and sarcastically) Sorry about that, I'll try harder next time.

What mommy?

(Dismissively) nothing.

What did you say mom?

Nothing.

What were you talking about?

Do you want to color?

YEAH!! (Skipping, cavorting, and excitement all around)

Okay go to your room and color. (sigh and look for lost brain cells. Give up a second later when daughter yells, "I hab POO!!")

23.3.06

Skin

My kids are still naked.

I bathed them this morning and then it is their job to get their selves dressed. Some days they do this right away, especially my two year old. If she thinks we are going somewhere exciting she will go and get her pull-ups on, and her pants and shirt and shoes and sweater and purse and put her babies in the stroller and wait at the door. I of course haven’t even gotten to the shower part of the day yet and am nowhere near dressed.

Some days she forgets the clothing part and heads straight for the shoes and purse and babies, which looks really funny.

My son will stay naked all day if I don’t insist on clothing at some point. Except for the few days he has surprised me by getting dressed before I am even out of bed, one day he even put on underpants. (He never wears underpants; he prefers to free ball it like his father.) We had made a big deal about how when he stops peeing in his sleep he’ll get a huge big boy pants party and I guess that got him excited enough to put some on.

So what do I do? Nakedness was a big deal when I was little, my father was terrified of it and remains very squinchy when it comes to all matters physical. I picked up all sorts of complexes from him. My mother seemed like she always was naked. Of course I was a girl and liked to hang out in her bedroom when she was getting dressed or in the bathroom when she needed to go so it’s my fault I saw her naked all the time, I wouldn’t stop following her around. I will never forget one day when I was a teenager. (Sorry mom.) I went past the laundry room door, which was ajar and saw my mom standing there totally naked, except for a shirt that came down to just above her buttocks, ironing some clothes. She obviously thought she was alone and emerged fully clothed none the wiser, but some how that glimpse of my mother’s naked butt has never left me.

I don’t want to cause my children to be embarrassed or feel that there is any thing shameful about the way God made their bodies, they are beautiful. I also don’t want them to be exposed to the evil that can happen when other people look at them and aren’t themselves healthy and well adjusted. I want to protect their bodies from the eyes of others. I, of all people, ought to know how much damage another’s eyes can do.

So I have a few new rules. They can’t go out on our patio without clothes on, or out in public period. I’ve not had to explain why, which is a relief because I’m not sure I could without making them afraid, which I don’t want, or taking away their innocence a little, which I’m trying to protect.

Inside the house is a different zone and I just have to play it by ear. An hour ago I told my son to get some clothes on and he said, “I’m not cold.”

I told him that there are other reasons to wear clothes, but he didn’t ask what they were.

Now I have to go out and play with him because he has finally gotten dressed and put his shoes on in anticipation of an outside playtime with mommy and he’s waiting very patiently.

20.3.06

Baby Blues

It’s been awhile I should post something.

I wrote something last Thursday night and I didn’t post it because some rational part of my brain was telling me that maybe I should wait a little bit and reread before showing that one to people. The reason emerged the next day. I was in the throes of PMS when I wrote it. I’m still surprised and knocked sideways every month by this hormonal rollercoaster that sneaks up on me. Sneaks because I am kind of new to this monthly cycle thing after two babies and breast feeding, I went almost four years without one and didn’t start again until just recently. I feel like I’m 14 again.

I guess it’s time to have another baby.

We haven’t yet because although I’ve reached the point where the whole misery of 9 months of sickness and a year of recovery afterward are just a hazy sentimental blur, my genius husband’s memories of me being moody and sad and bitchy and needy and then dealing with post partum depression after the last one have not become fond memories yet or even a little bit hazy for him. He said recently that he likes me again and he would like me to not change for a little while longer. Me too quite honestly, I just have some kind of hope that maybe it won’t be as bad this time, what were the first times for if not to gain experience for making the next time go more smoothly? The cure for post-partum that I finally found: exercise, the endorphins bring things back into balance for me. The cure for the early months of sick and tired and weepy, (This is still theory, but I would like to try doing it in a place that is mine for once instead of my mil’s house living in her spare room or at my father’s house.) We have always seemed to be in transition in the early months of my pregnancies, either on a break from school, or changing countries, or something. I think I could deal better if we were more settled. And didn’t have to cook in a kitchen filled with unfamiliar and sometimes unpleasant smells and food, and smelling 8 different breakfasts in progress when I woke up every day.

So really I am overly optimistic and he is pessimistic with a huge dose of data to back up what he would call merely observing what actually has happened to date. But we are agreed that our family is not all here yet and at some point we will have to put that all aside and once again welcome into our lives new life with all of the inconvenience that entails. I wonder if there will be another moment when we just know it’s time, or if we should just go ahead and do it because now is as good a time as any. I kind of want/am waiting for a moment, I wonder if it will happen.

17.3.06

Fantasies

I have this fantasy that things were easier for women in my position before the advent of women’s lib. Don’t get me wrong; I enjoy the almost equal footing with men that I enjoy in our culture. I’m glad that there are women running companies and pursuing careers and using their minds and talents in ways that are interesting and satisfying to them. I just think it must have been much easier to be a stay at home mom let’s say one hundred years ago. Let me explain.

Assuming that I even received an education, the fact that I am intelligent, was a good student, and talented in the arts would have placed little more expectation upon me than to marry well or at least comfortably. I would not, and neither would my instructors, have put any pressure on myself to do anything with my education other than marry and produce children whom I could educate. I was however schooled on the heels of the triumphant woman’s liberation movement of the 70’s into which I was born. My mother, though she elected to be a stay at home mom was influenced enough by the acts of the woman of that era to expect that her daughters would have different, better, and greater lives than she had. My public school teachers echoed this theme, praising my accomplishments and expecting me to take my skills as far as possible in the public arena. In short, I was raised with great expectations. I believed them and expected different and better things for my life too.

Imagine my surprise when I meet a man and find myself longing to bear his children and when they are born absolutely repulsed by the thought of giving them to someone else to raise while I pursue this better and greater life. I make the choices that are as true to my deep self and the person I want to be as I can and suddenly I find myself in a life that looks remarkably like my mother’s. I can’t help thinking the adjustment would have been less of a shock had my greatest aspirations simply been to live a life like my mother’s and if I had been taught by my culture and society to treasure these things that I was now embarrassed to tell people about. I know what my university professors were thinking when they learned I had elected to marry and raise children rather than pursue a professional music career. Some of them said it out loud. I am wasting my life.

When I think of the women in my life that I most respect and want to be like, they are women who did not choose their own empowerment but gave themselves to caring for others. My great Grandmother who passed away last summer spent her entire life raising her six children, taking care of her husband and then taking care of her grandchildren and great grandchildren and anyone else she met that needed help. She had more joy than a room full of people my age put together and I want to be the kind of person she was. The rest of the list is varied, Mother Theresa, my mother in law, Heidi Baker, Jackie-Pullinger-To, Elizabeth Elliot, but they are all strong women who’s strength lies in great faith and love for others. I was not trained to strive for these things.

The other reason I think it would have been easier to do what I do before women’s lib is that perhaps I would not have been educated. I am plagued by nihilism. For those of you who don’t have philosopher husbands to explain such terms to you it is basically wondering daily what the point of daily life is. Is there a big picture? Why are we here? I wonder what the point of raising my children is. It is to have a better life than I did? That thinking didn’t work out for my mother because here I am, (though my marriage seems to be better so far.) So I raise my children to be strong and intelligent and virtuous so that they can raise their children and their children can raise their children. WHY? See for this to all have a point I have to have a fundamental assumption that life is good and is better than nothing, something that has eluded me, though I wish I could gain it somehow. The mother’s that have kept Africa alive for several years now don’t have this problem, they know life is good because they are faced with the reality of losing it every day. They don’t stop to wonder if they are wasting their talents keeping their children alive from one day to the next, they don’t wonder if they are too smart for this kind of thing, they know that staying alive matters and that what they are doing is vital. (At least in my fantasies they do.) Imagine living at a time when making a good batch of yogurt was a source of immense pride, or having several children who were strong and healthy, or being given the honor of preparing the evening meal by yourself as a sign that you had grown up, a time when the basic day to day tasks still meant something, and were worth doing instead of something we rush through to get to our “real life”. Perhaps I should be blaming industrialization instead of feminism and become a luddite.

14.3.06

Things I’d like to Do Today.

Some people make lists of things they would like to get done before they die, or turn a certain age, or get married. I just have a running list of things I would like to be able to do everyday before I go to bed at night.

1.) Rinse with Lysterine TWICE a day as the directions on the bottle say I should do, and wait a full half hour before eating or drinking.
2.) Floss.
3.) Do 15 minutes of a cardio workout and then stretch for another ten.
4.) Shower
5.) Apply moisturizer to legs and arms and face before getting dressed. (MY kids must be getting older, two years ago this would have been far too much to attempt.)
6.) Do a little bit of work on the sweater I am knitting for my daughter so that it is finished before she outgrows it, and before the California summer hits and makes sweaters pointless.
7.) Eat a real lunch with a salad in it and not leftover peanut butter crusts that I find laying around when I clean up after the kids.
8.) Take my kids outside to play and be silly.
9.) Read to my kids.
10.) Play fun counting and letter games with my four-year-old who is ready to learn if I would teach him. I just realized last night that I learned to read when I was 5 and he doesn’t even know the whole alphabet yet.
11.) Write
12.) Be still and pray.
13.) Talk to my husband.
14.) Listen to at least one person outside of my immediate circle and care about what they are telling me.
15.) Smile.
16.) Tidy the house at least once
17.) Go to bed before 11pm

13.3.06

Boy Games

Boys play strange games. At least they are strange to me. The games my son has been playing with his uncles, and his dad, usually involve cutting things off. They use lengths of foam as swords, or light sabers, and beat on each other and then narrate the amount of damage they are doing to the other person. One will cut off the other’s leg and declare their self to be the winner but the other will counter by cutting off his opponent’s head, to which the other will reply with disembowelment, and it goes on and on.

They have also introduced him to a variation of “I got your nose” that involves removing any body part and pretending that you can’t walk because uncle A has your legs, eyes, whatever. The Boy has been playing this game with the Girl and sometimes she gets really worried because she can’t tell that it’s just pretend. One night I put her to bed and she said to me in a little worried voice, “Boy take my nose.”

I helped her to feel her nose and realize that it was still there, and then she needed the same reassurance about her mouth, and her ears, and her leg, and her arm, and her eyes before she could relax and go to sleep.

So one day a couple of weeks ago the GH pretended to take the Boy’s nose from his face. In the silliness that followed he pretended to eat it. The Boy’s response was to cut open his daddy’s stomach, retrieve his nose and put it back on his face.

8.3.06

Big Muscles

The Boy is an incredibly built little guy. He has the kind of muscle definition grownup male supermodels would envy if they saw him. There is no fat on him anywhere and every muscle he has stands out. It’s pretty impressive.

From time to time we will get him to show off his muscles for us. He loves to do this so he’ll take off his shirt and do this funny little boy imitation of a bicep flex and we will all exclaim over how strong he is and how big his muscles are. It makes him so proud.

Today the Girl stopped in the hallway and pulled up her shirt. While rubbing her chubby little girl tummy she said, “Oh, I have stong mussos!”

“Do you have big muscles like the Boy?”

“Uh huh, I hab big big mussos in my back too.”

She turns around and points to it for me.

The Boy hears us and comes running out, strips off his shirt and starts flexing so I can admire him too.

Bra Shopping 101-mommy style

1.) Decide that you need a new bra after going almost three years without purchasing one, (except for the splurge on the really nice nursing bra two years ago after the second baby.)
2.) Get excited that there is Fredericks of Hollywood in the strip mall near your house, decide to walk there with the kids.
3.) Enter a sexy lingerie boutique with a 4-year-old boy and a 2-year-old girl.
4.) Ask the nice sales rep named Dee for black bras in a 34DD. (this is why I shop at Fredericks, they carry my size.)
5.) Enter the change room with previously mentioned boy and girl in tow.
6.) Stop for a moment and consider whether your boy is now too old to watch you try on bras.
7.) Realize that he still sees your breasts all the time when walking in on you in the shower, while changing, nursing his sister and that he may as well watch you change yet again.
8.) Pull first bra off of the hanger as little girl reaches up, “Mommy, I yant it on.”
9.) Hand her your bra to play with as your son chimes in, “I want one too”, to the delight of everyone else in earshot.
10.) Explain to son that he is growing up to be a man and men don’t usually wear bras because they don’t have breasts. Respond that yes he is correct; you have breasts because you are a lady and he would have been a very hungry baby if you didn’t have them.
11.) Think to self that you shouldn’t have brought him in the change room after all.
12.) Put the first bra on, see immediately that it is all wrong and won’t do at all.
13.) Wonder aloud what the putrid smell coming from one of your children’s bottoms entails.
14.) Listen to daughter announce, “I have poo momma.”
15.) As fast as you can put your own clothes on, leave change room and ask Dee if there is a restroom.
16.) Sigh in resignation as you learn it is two stores away and tell her you’ll be back.
17.) Drag children tooth and nail past door displays in said store with restroom.
18.) Find the restroom behind an associates only sign on a swinging door.
19.) Waste precious moments debating with son who still wishes to be in attendance in your change room whether he is old enough to go to the boys’ bathroom by himself.
20.) Take daughter to toilet, arrange seat cover and sit her down. Listen to the tiny tinkle as she grins, “I peed momma.”
21.) Ask pointlessly if there is any poo since we came all this way for that, knowing that the answer is no.
22.) Gather children and arrange clothing.
23.) Realize you can get something you need at this store.
24.) Buy it and ask them to hold it for you until you’re done shopping.
25.) Return to bra store where Dee has held your selections for you.
26.) Leave children outside change room on the floor next to you.
27.) Yell at son to stop looking underneath other dressing room doors.
28.) Apologize to whoever is in the next stall.
29.) Remove shirt.
30.) Tell daughter who crawls into your stall and demands nursing that she will have to wait until you get home.
31.) Tell daughter who is now plaintively repeating, ”I want home mama,” that she will have to wait until you are done.
32.) Put first bra on. Pull shirt back down to see how it looks underneath a t-shirt. Too small.
33.) Remove shirt as daughter yells, “No! Put shirt on mommy, I want go home.”
34.) Put on other bra as daughter yells, “Put clothes on Mommy.”
35.) Remove other bra as she screams in frustration at your lack of compliance.
36.) Realize you hate them all, (the bras that is.)
37.) Put clothes back on and leave store with children, but no bra.
38.) Realize that you will never get those two hours back again.

5.3.06

so much for that

When I met my husband he somehow managed to make me think that he was different from the typical male. I do not think this was intentional on his part, definitely not malicious, but it happened nevertheless. I am also to blame for my incredible naiveté and unrealistic optimism. We met a week before he was scheduled to leave for a year and go to India. He got on that plane with the thought that he may marry me when he returned. So he wrote me long, intimate, romantic letters online for 8 months. He wrote poetry, he gushed, he was a man in the initial stages of love. I thought it was a sign of things to come. (All the married women reading this are snorting into their coffee right now.) He expressed interest in things that I talked about through out our courtship and engagement. He held forth on topics that I now would not try to drag him into a conversation about unless my life depended on it because I now know they are often tedious for him. And so I imagined that he would go on caring about the exact same things I cared about, and help me to do them. Things like furniture for example.

At the end of December we packed up everything that we could fit into our minivan and my dad's minivan and moved our family back to California to be closer to his family down here. We left all of the furniture behind. It wasn't that nice, I found most of it in thrift stores, we were on a grad school budget, but it was functional. The Genius Husband said, as he has every time we move which is often, "Just get rid of it, we'll buy new stuff when we get there."

I've always had a slightly suspicious feeling about that grandiose statement, though I've never had cause to explore it until now. (I held on to the furniture through every Vancouver move, we couldn't afford to replace it back then.)

The time came last week to move out of the In-law's house and into something of our own. There were three furniture items I considered it necessary to procure to make this move pleasant. A king size bed mattress, (Which we did buy, though I just found out yesterday that I could have gotten a better one for half the price at Wal-Mart with a memory foam topper, oops, that sucks.) a table and chairs, and a computer armoire to hide the computer that must go in the living room if it is to be useful given the house layout, and organize bills and such. My dear husband's response to this list is "What do we need that stuff for? We don't need a table; people all over the world live without tables. As far as I'm concerned that's just more stuff that I'll have to move again."

AHA, I knew it. I was just a clever ploy to get me to get rid of stuff. Admittedly, we had managed to accumulate a lot of crap in our four years in Canada, and it felt good to get rid of it and leave it behind.

I think he would be happy if we each had two changes of clothes, a bowl and a spoon each, or a pair of chopsticks, and we used our second set of clothing as a blanket to keep warm at night. At least, he thinks he would be happy, but I can't help noticing that the one comfortable chair that we have in our house, thanks to some of our friends, has his butt in it each and every night for hours at a time. He does sit on the floor too, but he really enjoys that chair. I'm happy with our Persian style rug and fun collection of cushions as the main furnishing in our living room, the kids think it's great. But I want something that will keep the food off of the carpet and the children from wandering while eating.

So, trying to keep the peace, stay within budget, and not make this into a big giant deal breaker, (I have long ago come to terms with the fact that he is a true man, he doesn't care about accessorizing or the minutiae of human interactions and their causes, or most of the things that woman can carry on at least a half hour conversation about.) I decide to make a table myself instead of bug him again to go shopping.

I have never made a table before, though I have watched him do it for five years or more. Did I mention that my husband is a CARPENTER, that he could custom make anything I drew him and it would be beautiful, but he rarely makes anything for me. He doesn't like to take his work home. I used old pieces of the playground that were laying around outside my father in law's shed and I made two matching benches as well. I'm quite proud of myself. I used power tools and it was fun. I think I kind of get the guy thing now with guns and power tools. When it works you feel so cool and capable. I even made it with the option of being an Asian style ground table to go along with our no chairs or extraneous furniture theme which is basically a sitting on the floor theme and makes my knees hurt after while, especially typing. We want to travel and live in other places so it is like an adventure some days to pretend we are already there.

However, the whole time I am making this table I am thinking to myself that I am building up my bargaining power for the computer armoire because of all of the money I'm saving us, all the work I've done, etc. And that he will be proud of me. So I start researching armoires. It is depressingly difficult to find a solid wood armoire for a price that these two bargain driven at heart people can stomach.

Turns out he is proud of me. He has a funny way of expressing it though. He turned to me the other day and said, “I think you should just make it.”

Now, I've looked at plans and he's right. Given the right tools, and a workspace, some guidance from him, and TIME I do think I could make one.

So much for my hard earned bargaining power. I think I may have bitten off more than I want to swallow.

1.3.06

Emotional Blackmail

Today the Boy asked me to make him food because he was hungry, for the tenth time since breakfast. Kid must be on a growth spurt. Since it was after four and I was about to start dinner prep I told him to wait until dinner. After the usual round of “but I’m hungry now" and several renewed requests hoping the answer would change this time, or that he would wear me down with persistence, and the attempts at fake tears once or twice, he walked away and I thought that was the end of it.

He comes back into the room a few minutes later, a solemn look on his face and announces, “Mommy, if you don’t make me a quesadilla I will stop loving you and I will never love you again.”

The kid is four, where the heck did he get that? Do they think it up all by themselves, or do they learn it from someone. As far as I know he has never heard any one say that.

He didn’t get the quesadilla, in case you are wondering.

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