At An Ungodly Hour

I know there are people out there who get up early so they can get things done. Housework, writing, getting lunches ready… morning’s a productive time for those people. This might lead one to believe that I, too, should have lots of time for writing on here these days, what with my children getting me up ridiculously early, but it’s just not so.

On Wednesday morning, Simon got up at 3:00. UP- as in, he was sitting on the couch, then playing on the living room floor, andgenerally not going back to bed. I tried to get some more sleep, but there’s no way I can really sleep when my kid’s up alone. Yesterday was even worse- 2:00. He manages to fall asleep on the couch by around 6:00, but by then Isaac’s awake, so I’m up anyway- and Simon doesn’t get to sleep much longer, either.

What’s the problem? Well, there’s the move, which is bound to throw a guy off, even if it’s a bit of a delayed reaction. Then there’s the “sleep begets sleep” rule; if he has one bad night and doesn’t get a nap to make up for it, he’s guaranteed to have another bad night*.

He’s sleeping in this morning; it’s now 7:00 and I haven’t heard a groan/moan from him yet. Isaac, however, picked up some of the slack and got me up at 5:45. What a team!

I wish I could just go, “well, I’m up anyway, might as well get a start on my day!” Maybe if I’d had a decent sleep in recent memory, I’d do just that. There’s always plenty to do. Instead, I flake out on the couch and try to close my eyes and doze off, even for just a few minutes at a time.

I’ve done a few posts on Adventures In Home Ec, though not too early in the morning- that would just come out an incoherent mess (more so than any of my usual rambles). Other than that… this is what you get, folks.

A few nights ago I had a dream that my aunt was telling me about this fabulous night she’d had, 9 hours of totally restful sleep… and I cried. In the dream, I broke down crying because I was so jealous. Now, this is my aunt who in reality hasn’t had a good night’s sleep since about 1981, but there you have it.

I’m too damn tired to come up with a conclusion to this post that doesn’t leave things hanging, so

and by bad night I mean trouble getting to sleep, night terrors and waking up at an ungodly hour.
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OMG

Who called it?!

Right up the back. Right. Up. The. BACK. I had to cut his shirt off of him. It was that or smear poop through his hair, and that was just too gross to comtemplate, especially when the shirt was almost too small, anyway. Thank God he didn’t do THAT on the plane. :S

It’s just a good thing he’s cute:

And All That Crap

I really need for this baby to poop. We are less than 48 hours from leaving on a Westjet plane to go to AJ’s graduation (about damn time, says I), and he hasn’t gone for at least 3 days (Ike, not AJ). I swear he’s trying to save it up for the plane ride, probably just after take-off. I hate those stupid, teeny-tiny airplane phonebooths bathrooms, especially for diaper changes.

I just put him in the exersaucer, not because he likes it- he’s actually somewhat opposed to being contained anywhere not that he’s a man on the move. He has a history, though, of waiting until he’s in that thing and then pooping right up his back. I’m not sure if this is because standing up makes him go, or if (as I suspect) it’s purely for dramatic effect. Either way, I’ve got my fingers crossed.

 

ps- new post at mommyhood confidential

Photo Fun… ia

A friend introduced me to www.photofunia.com yesterday, and I blame it for the fact that I didn’t get to bed as early as I should have. It was just too much fun doing things like this:

and this:

aaaaaaand a little of these, too:

So then I had to post them on facebook… Yeah, I need a life, I know. But it was fun. 🙂

Scary Witch

Norah (my niece) has this problem with consonants- namely, she gets them mixed up, and sometimes adds them where they don’t belong. Thus, Simon becomes Dienin, Ike gets called Dike, and cookies are dookies. She’s a fan of “d”, but other letters get substituted occasionally. Like yesterday…

Madelyn and her sister took Norah to the mall. They were in The Bay and saw a Halloween display. “Look, Norah,” Madelyn said, “It’s a scary witch!”

Norah was delighted. “Scary bitch!”

As they left the store, Norah kept turning around, waving, and hollering, “BYE! SCARY BITCH! BYYYYYYYEEEE SCARY BITCH!!!”

I’m really sorry I wasn’t there. Then again, I already lived through Simon’s phase when “firetruck” was pronounced “fuck”, which was pretty damn funny, too.

8:28 a.m.

Uuuuuuunnnngh.

How is it possible that it’s only 8:30 in the morning*? About an hour ago Dad said to me, “There’s car racing on TV at 8:00, if you think Simon would be interested.” I stared at him. I blinked a few times.

“You mean, like, 8:00 tonight?”

“No- this morning.”

I was shocked. Stunned (yeah, I know what “stunned” means in NL- both definitions apply here). Aghast. “You mean it’s not even 8:00 yet?! NOOOOOOO!”

It felt like it should’ve been about 10:00. I guess my first clue should’ve been that mom and dad were, in fact, still at home and not on their way to the first of mom’s 3 services for the day. My brain, she don’a work’a so good on’a no sleep. Friends, it’s going to be a looooong day.

Oh- as for the rest of last night: I eventually got to bed after Ike fell asleep on his own- stuck his pacifier in his own face and everything. How… odd. Not that there was anything normal about last night, of course. Simon slept until some unreasonably early hour this morning; Isaac and I were already up. Isaac, who still DOES NOT want a pacifier at night. If I give him one when he’s crying (instead of his beloved BOOOOOOB), he settles for a second, and then starts twitching… and kicking… and sucking harder. Then: WAAAAAAH! Mommy, you tricked me!

So yeah, I’m tired. The good news is that it is officially less than 5 weeks until I see AJ again! I miss him so much that sometimes it gives me a stomach ache. It’s been worse since I saw him in August, and I imagine it’s only going to get worse as we get closer to his graduation. It’s reminding me of what it was like to be a kid with Christmas coming, except that instead of baking cookies and putting out the Nativity scene, I’ll be starting to pack boxes and looking into address changes/ new health cards, etc. Whoopee.

*Note that I did not say “8:30 a.m. in the morning.” I kind of laugh when people do that.

Good Day, Bad Day

It’s amazing how your life can change in 24 hours, especially with little kids around. Yesterday at lunchtime we were on our way back from a successful trip to “Once Upon a Child,” where we found fall clothes for both boys, got a couple of cheap used toys, and just enjoyed some time out of the house. After lunch it was nap time, and I actually got to lie down for a while, even if there was this baby who wouldn’t sleep without being in bed with me (and waking me up every 10 minutes). The boys and I went to Ikea around 5:00, again just for the sake of getting out of the house… also to get Simon “Ott dog? Ott dog?” He likes Ott dogs.

I can’t believe I went to Ikea and only spent $20. I guess it helps that we’re not going to have a lot of vehicle space when we move in November, but I DID put a few things back that I picked up because we don’t have the money. I’m proud of myself, even if I’ll probably go back for that picture. And the message board. And Norah’s Christmas present.

What’s even more amazing is what a good boy Simon was. He was very patient about sitting in the buggy while we looked around the Marketplace, and he LOVED looking at the toys, the kids’ furniture, the fake bedrooms, etc. But not long after we got to that stuff, Ike pooped. Not a little, not-so-bad-smelling baby poop, either. This was a stench that wafted from his diaper and made my eyes water as it drew glances from nearby shoppers. It had to be changed ASAP… have you ever tried to remove a 3-year old from a wonderful new discovery he’s made? Tantrum city, even if you promise that you’ll bring him right back. That’s why I was so surprised when I explained the situation to Simon… and he came to the bathroom with me. And stayed in the stall with me while I changed Isaac’s diaper (even if he was busy checking out the diaper disposal unit-eeew). And waited while I washed my hands, which is rather awkward when you have a baby in one arm. It was almost like he actually listened to me, understood what I said, and decided to go to a place he didn’t want to be rather than making a scene about staying with the HIMMELSK, the NYFIKEN and the BARNSLIG KROKODIL. Craaaazy, man.

But, as if the universe is trying to prove some point about kids being kids, I have a cranky, irrational, screeching creature inhabiting my son’s body today. He was awake crying a few times last night, and I was up with him (though not for long) when dad got up for work at 5:00 this morning. I’ve tried to get him to go back to bed- no dice. He’d rather be miserable and cry over spilled Nutri-Grain “cookies,” thanks very much. Isaac, on the other hand… is a cranky, irrational, screeching creature. He had a rough night, too. The kid needs to start eating more actual food during the day so he’ll at least be satisfied with a pacifier at night (maybe). He’s caught Norah’s cold, possibly because she likes to stick his pacifier in her mouth and then leave it where he can get it; just a theory, there. He’s got a runny nose, and it’s making him miserable and restless. He also has gas. And he bonked his head.

Holy crap, there’s a “digger” in the back neighbour’s yard. Weird.

What was I saying? Oh- the boys. So yeah, where yesterday I had two nearly perfect angels, today I have, if not demons, at least some lower (higher?) form of Satan’s minions screaming in the living room.

OK, I have to go get Simon and show him this digger- his eyes might literally* pop out of his head. And really, who doesn’t want THAT to happen to her kid?

 

*Yes, I am aware of the meaning of the word “literally”- though I know it gets misused a lot. I’m joking. Literally.

The Cottage- part 2

The problem with catching up on this kind of thing is that so much other stuff is going on while I’m trying to get caught up that I seem to be getting farther behind every time I write…

Where was I? I think it was the boathouse, right? We were throwing our luggage, coolers, and baby equipment into the boats as quickly as we could to avoid the rain. It’s a beautiful lake. Alright, technically the lake itself is pretty much just water- it’s what surrounds the lake that’s beautiful. Some of the shoreline is inhabited during the summer, and those parts are covered in every shape and size of cottage and cabin you can imagine; in just a few minutes you can travel from my grandparents’ cottage, which has no indoor bathroom facilities (really!) to places that are impossibly huge and, well, civilized. Some of these people actually fly in- directly to their cottages. It’s obscene. Most of the area around the lake is pretty wild, though. It’s just trees (cedar, various evergreens, birch), ferns, moss and rugged Canadian Shield rock. I can’t imagine what it must have been like for the original settlers in the area, clearing the land… it must have been backbreaking work.

But back to the cottage. Grandma (affectionately known as “Grammar” for her her habit of perpetually correcting us) met us down at the dock, and Simon was out of the boat before the rest of us. He took his time checking things out: the big, screened-in side porch that went up several years ago, the open living room, dining room and kitchen, the loft with its 2 bedrooms, and my grandparents’ bedroom on the ground floor- not a bedroom door in sight. It’s possible to find privacy on the island, but it’s easier if everyone just gets used to hollering “ANYBODY HOME?” before going… well, anywhere. We dropped mom and dad’s stuff off at the main cottage, and took our suitcases and backpacks (mine and the boys’) out to the cabin- a separate building that was built just after my parents got married. Co-incidence? I doubt it. This would be one of those areas you can have some privacy, as long as you remember to shut the blinds. We slept out there so that we (and by “we” I mean Simon and Isaac) wouldn’t keep everyone awake at night. You know, with “our” crying.

Actually, the boys both settled in a lot more quickly than I had anticipated. Simon needed someone out in the cabin with him while he was falling asleep for the first week, so I was glad when Dad and Grampa both decided they were capable of singing and/or boring him to sleep. Isaac? Isaac will go to sleep anywhere there’s boob. Staying asleep… well, that’s another entry entirely.

What did we do at the cottage? Generally what we’ve always done. There’s a corner cupboard filled with the same toys and games my brother and I played with when we were kids, books, the island to explore, napping (which I rather missed this year!), boating and swimming. We watched the hummingbirds coming to the feeder and kept our eyes open to look for the loon family- two healthy babies this year, which is great news. There are years when none hatch, or when the babies don’t make it until August; the little floating islands people have built for them to nest on are helping with that. Simon was happy to stay close to the cottage at first, which suited me fine. I’m not generally a paranoid mom, but when there’s water around, I think it’s justified. Simon didn’t want to live in a big, puffy life jacket for two weeks (terribly unreasonable of him), so I had to be satisfied with trying to keep track of him every minute of every day. Having 5 adults on the island to help was good, but that didn’t stop visions of “Me? I thought YOU were watching him!” conversations from swirling though my mind. There are times when I wish Simon would be just a little less cautious… this wasn’t one of them.

(click on photo for larger image)

Oh- you still wondering about those bathroom facilities? Some people are surprised to hear that we still have an outhouse; others are disgusted. It’s not that bad, really! It’s private, but the side that faces away from the cottage is open at the top (but screened in, thank God), and the view’s nice. It doesn’t smell bad (OK, not THAT bad), and the only time it’s actually inconvenient is when it’s raining. Night time’s not great, either, but there are these white tin pots under the beds… Hand-washing and tooth-brushing happen at a sink in the cottage, but you have to get drinking water from the kitchen, and THAT comes from a well that you have to take a boat trip to get to so you can fetch that pail of water… It’s all good. Showers? Not so much. “Go jump in the lake” is more like it. We wouldn’t have it any other way.

Oh, crap- Simon’s hurt. Gotta go.

The Cottage- part 1

I say “part 1” because, as much as I’d like to present y’all with a coherent narrative of our entire trip to the cottage (and my all-too-brief visit with AJ in Regina), the odds of me having enough time to do that are slim, at best. Simon is watching “Lilo and Stitch” and Ike’s asleep for now, but they both have this nasty habit of needing me just when I’m settling in to do something that doesn’t involve them. They’re so childish…

You wouldn’t expect a 5-hour long road trip with a 6-month old and an almost-3 year old to go well, would you? I certainly didn’t. The cottage (which belongs to my grandparents) is a great place to relax, and it’s on a beautiful lake, but it takes forever to get there. When I was little it seemed to take days. I was prepared for a lot of whining and crying, and for having to make a lot of stops along the way, so I was pleasantly surprised when Ike slept most of the way and Simon was content to look out the windows, do a little colouring and tell me about every piece of construction equipment we passed along the way. We stopped for lunch in Kaladar (which for some reason I keep calling Kandahar, but that would’ve been a bit of a detour), where Simon charmed a group of senior-type ladies with his smiles and his adorable little physique in his sleeveless t-shirt. Other than a pit-stop at Timmies, that was our only stop, and the guys were fine with that.

ready to go!

ready to go!

Then… the cottage. Hitting the dirt road is always exciting- you know you’re almost there. By the time you hit the boathouse (not literally, please), the road is down to one lane, and the trees are reaching out to scratch at the sides of your car. Then it’s into the boat for a trip down the lake to the cottage, which is on a private island (really!). I’m glad my grandparents bought a big boat a few years ago that has a cover on it, because it was raining when we got there. That hasn’t been uncommon this summer; it’s been so wet that they’ve been seeing unprecedented mushroom growth on the island. (Insert your own joke here about how it’s good to have a fungi around on vacation- I’m too tired to think).

Aaaaaand there’s Ike. Told you he’d wake up as soon as I got started on this.