Friday, April 26, 2013

Week in the life: Friday, April 26th

You may have noticed I missed a couple days.  I took some notes.  And some pictures.  But when it came time to writing, I just didn't have it in me.  Largely because those were my only two evenings with my hubs all week.  He worked Monday and Tuesday evening, and is working today through the weekend.  So I had to take advantage.  And it was beginning to feel a bit groundhogs-day-ish in these parts.

To sum it up, Wednesday brought story time at Red Balloon bookshop.  MJ loves it and is so engaged. Greta just likes staring at the other little kids.  It also brought an appointment with a podiatrist to get measured for orthotics along with an appointment at the endocrinologists to get my thyroid levels checked.  I see the doctor an awful lot for someone that's so healthy.  Then MJ had swim lessons, which Dad missed because he forgot and scheduled a barbecue.  But considering it was his only opportunity to see friends this week, it was a fair mistake, and we got to come home to a house full of friends.  Wednesday was evaluation day at swim lessons, but MJ will not be moving up because she needs to work on her kicking.  So be it.

Thursday brought a quick morning run, followed by a visit to Como Zoo.  MJ actually enjoyed the animals for once; she's usually uninterested because they're behind glass and she can't touch them.  She devised a plan to sneak up on Santa once she saw the reindeer, figuring he must be close by.  Thursday also brought a 3 mile detour, just so we wouldn't drive by her old preschool where her friends would be playing and she'd be sad :(  Thursday brought a sick Greta; both have been a little sick, but Greta was clearly feeling crummy.  I cuddled with her for a long time yesterday afternoon, enjoying the fact that she wanted to cuddle at all.  Yesterday brought a trip to Menard's to pick up some supplies for the house, as well as testing patio furniture.  And the realization, while observing my kids running wild, that a third kid would be.... interesting.  I already don't know where one of them is most of the time, so maybe a third wouldn't feel much different.
The only self portrait I remembered, and feeling too weird to attempt a better shot.  

The phone, still the most interesting part of the zoo.

I think I'll be getting looks like this from these girls for a long time to come.

Constantly losing this one.

She got in trouble and had to ride underneath, there was no room elsewhere. 

I bet they don't make chairs like this in other countries (except China, but they all get shipped here).

Anyway.  Today.

2:30  Greta woke up early today.  Her eating schedule has been totally wonky because she's been sick, so I fed her and she fell back to sleep.  Up again at 6:30, with another bottle and then I put her in the swing.  She needed her sleep, and this bought her an extra 2 hours which served her well today.

7:15 MJ woke up.  Her room was a disaster, because she's been obsessed with rearranging her furniture, so I made her clean it before she came out.  Her room is usually a disaster first thing in the morning, because she wakes up early and will play by herself in her room.  I know this trait is a blessing, we're just trying to work on the room tidying part of it.  Today, though, she did stellar picking it all up.  Looked cleaner than my room (which isn't really saying much.)

7:40 MJ and I head downstairs.  I need to de-poop our backyard (gross) because the fence installers are supposed to show up at ~8:00 and I don't want them to step in anything.  There isn't much, thankfully, and it goes quickly.  I should add that it was low 40's when I woke up, so it was pretty pleasant picking up poop in my back yard.  It's immediately apparent that it's going to be a nice day.  Back inside, MJ is dissatisfied with all her breakfast options.  So I make a breakfast sandwich for each of us: one egg over hard, cheddar cheese and tomato on toast.  Dad tells me later in the morning that it was his biggest motivator to get out of bed.

8:10  Fence guys show up.  I go outside to talk to them, and the head guy gives me a weird look.  "Do you want to.... go inside and get dressed or something?"  Apparently not everyone appreciates my pajamas-are-always-appropriate approach to life.  I change, and we go over the plans.  We're installing a drive gate into our tiny back yard.  Everyone seems to think it's weird, and he checks with us to make sure we want it.  I'm psyched that we'll have the option to pull our cars back there during snow emergencies.

8:30  I finally wake Greta up because we have to get ready to go to tumbling.  I wake her up, pack the diaper bag and head out.  We still don't get out the door until 8:50 because dealing with small children interrupts the space-time continuum.

9:10  Arrive at community center for MJ's first day of tumbling.  Greta immediately has a messy diaper, which I change in the bathroom; MJ critiques everything about the process until I finally ask her to step outside.

9:15 The parents are sent out of the room.  I'm not worried, MJ does fine, but it seems weird to me.  Usually you get to watch these activities, no?  It's a small room, I guess.  So Greta and I sit there and play, I'll have to think of something better for next week.  When MJ comes out 40 minutes later she's carrying another girls socks.  Of course, she won't keep her own socks on her feet but will play with other people's socks.  Gross.

Entertaining Greta with limited resources while we wait for big sister.
Throughout the entire class, I get frequent (grumpy) calls from hubs, who's at the rental house taking measurements of the room we put in the basement.  This is a bit of a long story, I'll try to be quick: when we lived in the house he put in a room downstairs to use for guests.  Although he ran the wiring correctly (with the help of an electrician friend) nothing else about the room was done to code.  And we didn't pull a permit.  Flash forward to now, and our house was inspected by the fire marshall; this is standard practice for the rentals around us.  Now we have to get the room done properly, and hubs is in charge since he built it.  But what that room taught both of us is that he HATES dealing with these things and I am the general home repair person.


10:00 After lessons I go pick up hubs to go the Safety and Inspections office in Saint Paul.  He thinks we should bring the girls because they're cute and will win over the inspectors.  In reality, Greta was tired and grumpy, and MJ was shy and grumpy, and they didn't do a whole lot of winning anyone over.  Not that they needed to.  Hubs decided to file for a room with no electrical because the paperwork is easier.  We filled it out, he drew out a rough blueprint and we were on our merry way.  What a freaking pain.

MJ, "charming" the building inspectors.
11:15  We leave downtown St. Paul.  Hubs is super grumpy.  He has every reason to be, I know.  We are finally getting a nice weekend and he has to work every day and will miss every fun activity we have planned.  And furthermore, he has to go back over to the rental to pull out the electrical and deal with stuff he HATES.  I try to cheer him up by suggesting lunch at Cossetta's.  It works, sort of, except for the chaos of eating anywhere with two little kids and his grump is insurmountable.  He takes it out on me, I get pissed.  We move on.  MJ announces during lunch "Do you know where chocolate milk comes from??  BUNNIES!!!"  Meanwhile, Greta is dropping the pieces of pasta we have given over the side of her high chair to see where they go.

Look what happens to this past when I throw it over the side!!!
12:10  We get home.  We talk to fence guys and clarify that the huge raised flower bed is supposed to be entirely removed; they are none too happy about this clarification.  I feel bad but also glad we caught that potentially huge mistake.  I give Greta a bath to wash the past sauce off her body and her soul.  Afterwards, I briefly hand her to hubs to grab something and he sets her on the carpet, naked.  Seriously, like 15 seconds.  And she poops all over the place.  I take her and clean her up, he cleans the rug and decides that's his cue to leave.  Hubs gathers up his stuff and heads to rental, angry at life and the beautiful day he's not getting to enjoy.

Plotting the deuce she's about to drop on our carpet.
12:55 I lay Greta down for nap.  Girlfriend is freaking exhausted.  She's been awake for 4.5 hours at that point.  But she proceeds to wake up every 30-40 minutes for 2 hours.  She's a great sleeper at night but a terrible nap.  She essentially gets one nap a day now, but sleeps for up to 14 hours at night.  I tell MJ she can watch some iPad while I'm laying Greta down.  She goes to sleep quickly, and then I finalize some VRBO plans and a few other computer tasks.

1:45  Nap time for MJ.  We make it quick because hubs is upset about an electrical issue he can't figure out.  Quick story, quick tuck in.  Somehow her room is a disaster again and I inform her she needs to clean it after she wakes up.

I call hubs back, and this begins an hour long argument/problem solving issue with electrical problems over the phone.  I resolve to be the only one to do home repair in the future.

2:30  MJ has been pounding around, clearly not sleeping.  She comes out, I tell her she has to clean her room before coming out again.  My rule is that I have to not be afraid to walk in her room.  It's amazing how quickly that disintegrates.  I go outside to talk to the fence guy, who's talking to our  neighbor.  The neighbor is frustrated that the fence won't be finished for a week (the posts have to set before boards are attached).  I think the fence guy was giving me a look like "can you believe this guy?" but that may have just been what I was thinking.  This is the same neighbor who vacuumed sawdust off his trees when we had a tree cut down and our sawdust got on his trees.

A crappy picture and attempt to capture the chaos of going shopping with these two.  Really, it's the chaos of shopping with one in particular, but I won't name names.
3:30  Greta is awake, so time to go to Target.  MJ tries to be good, but she's just kind of incapable and lands herself in the basket of the cart (also, she talks me into buying Nerds, largely because I couldn't resist the gummy bears - these are disputes we never have at the co-op).  We pick up watermelon and cantaloupe to bring to our friends for dinner  (Erin, who's also doing a day in the life).  At some point Greta drops a massive deuce that I can smell from far away and I know we need to finish quickly.  But I get distracted by clearance, etc., and it takes me a while to get out.  We finally make it to the van, where MJ nearly pushes the cart off the curb with Greta sitting in it and I lose my sh!t.  I am furious, making her get in her car seat while I change G's diaper and she flails everywhere like a mad woman.  Poop ends up on a whole pile of stuff and I recall telling MJ "You need to learn to give people space when they're stressed!"  That was my low point of the day.  (With the exception of Monday, I've kept my patience for the most part this week.  We've had a very positive week together, I'm proud to say.  I think it was the sunshine, personally.

Anyway.  5:00 and we finally head out.  Just enough time to head to Erin and Ben's, so I bring my pile o' groceries along with me.  And I mostly just vegetate while there.  Watch Greta put piles of dead grass in her mouth.  I try to stop her but mostly give up.  With only occasional reminding MJ is playing much more nicely than she has been of late.  Maybe nice and patient mom makes a nice and patient daughter?  That's an added responsibility... oy!  It's nice to see adults, and get to talk to them because there's enough space for the kids to spread out and not yell in our ear.  I also have to briefly duck out to go finish off the electrical that Hubs had issues with.

I'm guessing Erin will have a better shot of this same moment.  Maybe she'll even manage to provide a pic of me, which I apparently forgot today.
7:20 rolls around quickly.  Greta has been rubbing her eyes for a long while and is clearly exhausted.  I also told MJ (several times) that if she didn't take a nap we'd have to leave early.  The rule has been 7 p.m. bedtime on no nap days.  She is mournfully sad and I feel bad for her.  She's behaving really well, and really wants to stay.  And even leaves pretty well.  She hugs Mia as we leave and says "I'll see you someday maybe... I have to go home because I didn't take a nap...."  I guess that point was driven home.  She even said, of her own volition, "I should have taken a nap today...."

Greta fell asleep within a few blocks, which is unusual for her since she barely ever falls asleep in the car.  When we get home I move her upstairs in the car seat, and MJ is even sadder because she realizes there will be no delay while I put Greta to bed.  But I read some extra stories and she seems plenty sleepy by the time 8 o'clock rolls around.

I drag the rest of the groceries in the house, clean up the kitchen, make some iced coffee for the morning, then hear G start wailing.  I go upstairs and give her a very large bottle, and move her into the crib.  She has trouble settling and keeps coughing but eventually succeeds.

10 pm and the day is done.  Stick in some pictures and go to sleep!


  1. Why did I never think of using a laundry basket in the tub? Brilliant!

  2. Worst part about Spring: The revealing of the backyard poop graveyard.

    I run into the same problem with toddler behavior. When I'm patient and tolerant she's generally more well-behaved, but when I've run out (which seems like every day since we've been back) she's generally terrible, which makes me less tolerant and patient, and the cycle continues.

  3. This rental property situation sounds like such a stressful hassle. We have some rental properties and I don't think we needed to have all those inspections. Just mysteriously frequent ones for fixing sidewalk & streets.

  4. Poop. Ugh. I like the sunny pictures, and the giant chair!