JJ spent the morning “driving Miss Averi” all around their pretend Kansas City in our living room.
“Averi, do you want to go to Union Station and play with Thomas the Train?”
“You do? Well, sorry. It’s closed.”
It occurred to me recently that our kids have been pretty isolated this winter—what with all the infectious diseases, hazardous road conditions, bone-chilling temperatures, and 50-mile-an-hour winds.
You know, all the typical signs of the apocalypse.
Did you know that Al Gore freezing over is the 5th sign? Let’s just hope he wasn’t in Atlanta this past week or Kirk Cameron will have to make a movie about it. (In case you’re keeping track, that’s a religious, a political, a geographical, and a pop culture joke all rolled into one.)
[Please tell me she doesn’t think Kirk Cameron is representative of current pop culture.]
I just went so far off track I don’t even remember where I was going with this… Oh! Stir-crazy. That’s where I was.
There was a time in my life when I wasn’t easily embarrassed. I had a one woman show in middle school. I used to perform SNL skits at family reunions. Y’all, I was the ultimate grand supreme winner of the Barksdale Elementary School lunchtime “Turn Your Face the Purplest Contest”—a contest I both invented and won when I passed out into my chicken noodle soup. (Nope. Not even kidding.)
How’s that for resume material?
I had NO shame—but in a good way. Not in the People of Walmart kind of way.
One of my very best friends (a fellow military spouse) and I had a conversation recently about Christmas and how we want our kids to experience this magical time of year. My friend is a fellow Christian who home schools her 4 kids—all of whom are young enough to believe in Santa Claus.
Before I go any further, I have to let you know that this post is a Santa spoiler alert. So, if you have a habit of curling up by the fire and reading my posts aloud to your children, now would be a good time to forgo that routine. Instead, you might want to read them something a bit less scarring.
Back to my story…
If you happen to check out my Facebook or Instagram pages, you’ll notice that there are lots of photos of JJ playing with trains. He eats with his trains. He sleeps with them. He dreams about them (so we learned when he woke up once from a nap and yelled, “train tracks!”). When we get in the car to leave the house he says, “No! I want to go back home and play with trains!” And when we finally convince him that we have to leave the house at least once a month, he says, “I want to go to the store [Barnes & Noble] and play with trains [they have a train table]” or “Let’s find some train tracks.”
Just last night when we told him it was time for bed, he whined, “But I want to play with my trains.” Never mind the fact that we have permanently set up a train track 2 feet from his bed so that he can get his fix at all hours of the night.
Naturally, JJ’s favorite show is Thomas & Friends. I do love that my 3-year-old now says things like “very well, then” and “Mama is cross” with a slight English accent, but I grew concerned about the show when I was invited by JJ to play trains in the basement last week.
Warning: The following post may be disturbing to some readers. Particularly those with a weak stomach. Reader discretion is advised.
If you caught Wednesday’s post about our exciting car ride on Monday afternoon, then you can probably guess how the rest of my week has been. I have cleaned up vomit 5 different times. FIVE. That’s about five more times than I would have to do it if I had that live-in nanny Brian promised me before I agreed to marry him.
Yesterday at 5:45 a.m., I awoke to JJ’s blood-curdling scream and the reconstituted remnants of his evening meal. I think Bill Engvall is so right about this one: someone should invent an alarm clock that sounds like a baby vomiting because there is NO snoozing!
So, as I watched 12 solid hours of kid-friendly programming yesterday, I put a great deal of thought into Mr. Engvall’s words. If I’ll never have that live-in nanny, then I should probably consider how I can turn these unpleasant moments into a lucrative business opportunity.
My Super-Simple, No-Fail Diet Plan
I hopped in the car with the kids on Monday for a week-long trip to the booming metropolis of Knob Noster, Missouri. Yes, since you asked, we do lead glamorous lives.
Brian is working in Knob Noster all week, and I thought it would be a sanctifying experience if the kids and I joined him there for five days in a military hotel. I woke up with no alarm at 6:30 a.m. on Monday (seriously, that’s a miracle in and of itself) with a list of things I needed to accomplish before our 4:00 p.m. estimated departure. I wanted to wait until after Averi’s nap to hit the road, and I knew I would need every bit of the morning and afternoon to pack for a week in a hotel with two toddlers.
Did I mention it is a one bedroom hotel?
I was shooting for super-sancitifed.
Now that the weather has turned off cold again here in the Great Plains, we have resorted to our usual, indoor play areas around town. Before I had children, I didn’t understand or appreciate the beauty of a place where parents can corral their children like cattle while they sit by the entrance/exit with a cup of coffee and their electronic device of choice. Before I was a mother, those indoor playpens were little more than noisy, filthy Petri dishes that got stuck at the end of the mall near JCPenney and the family bathrooms. Before kids, I avoided these areas like the plague. Now, I RUN to them.
Bring on the E. coli!
We’ve got a bag full of sanitizing wipes to defeat it.
The winners of the 3 months of delicious NatureBox snacks are:
Rachel Fish: “Yes I do!”
Kelsey: “I don’t ‘hide’ snacks, but I let my hubby know that there are only a certain number of ‘non-chocolate’ things for me, so please don’t eat them if you can help it! haha”
Congratulations, Rachel & Kelsey! Contact email@example.com to claim your prize.
THANK YOU to everyone who participated! If you didn’t win the giveaway, but still want some delicious, healthy snacks delivered to your door, use the code “KATY” on the NatureBox website to get 50% off your first month of snacks!(This post and giveaway are sponsored by NatureBox. All stories and opinions are my own.)
As a mother of two toddlers, I have learned to accept the fact that we will rarely venture out of our home without some sort of meltdown. Either we’ll skip Averi’s afternoon nap, and she’ll repay us with a Toddlers in Tiaras-worthy hissy fit, or JJ will wake up too early that morning and decide to do that whole-body limp thing every time we try to get him to walk. And since he’s a 3-year-old man-baby and weighs almost as much as I do, this is probably a fun scene for complete strangers to witness.
[Why can't that woman control her teenage boy? And WHY is he wearing a diaper?]
Okay, he’s not that big.