Saturday, November 15, 2008

And So the Season Begins

As if lice checks aren't enough, Lily woke up with a dry hacking cough and what my sitter has dubbed "snot whiskers" (that lovely smear after they wipe it across their little faces). She has hacked all day. I have read other moms posts about how certain sounds or actions (crying, screaming etc) from their children cause them physical pain. I don't mean their kids are spoiled. In my case, Lily coughing makes me want to jump out of my skin. It goes back to when she was so sick as a baby and I'd lay by her bed all night listening to her breathe. We ended up putting her bed in our room so I could hear her. Waking up to your child choking on her own phlegm is terrifying. She's healthy as a horse now, but every time she coughs, I'm right back to those nights.

She hacked so hard today she started throwing up and we had to cancel dinner plans with our friends. The last time we had dinner with friends it was in July, so needless to say I was bummed. I tried Mucinex which usually helps, but no dice. Her inhaler was expired (I told you she's much better) and I didn't know what to do. The killer is she was still running around being her usual nut ball self, just hacking and gasping. Caroline set up the vomit bowl on a towel in the middle of the room and we let her be.

After I talked to my mom , she suggested we try the inhaler anyhow (Rob had said the same thing earlier and I blew him off). I gave her "puffer" and some watered down juice and a cracker. I got her to sit down to watch Little Bear. I sat down with her and well, Little Bear was going on a very long boring walk with Cat and I guess I dozed off. It couldn't have been long because they were still walking when Lily woke me up and cheerfully announced "Mom, I throwed up again." She gleefully held out the vomit bowl, then looked and inside it and said "Cool!" Rob would have gagged, but I am tougher than that. I praised her for hitting the bowl (what a milestone) and cleaned it out.

Right now she is in bed, collapsed on Rob's arm. He is the perfect sick kid proper upper. I need to remind myself how handy he is because today he was particularly cranky and I was in no mood to deal with it. I guess we do make a good team. I clean up the vomit and he holds the coughing children. We play to our strengths. All I know is Caroline and I are waking up early to go to Dunkin Doughnuts and Kohl's!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Good Movie

If you have the chance watch "Grace is Gone." You'll need tissues, but it is worth it. The father/daughter relationship was portrayed beautifully. The oldest daughter reminded me so much of Caroline (more mature, but she's older). Anyway, great movie.

The Fabulous Life

I've wondered if I should write about my weekend evenings because I am afraid that people will just get too jealous. They usually involve watching a movie form Netflicks (one I've usually had for at least three weeks) and folding 5-6 baskets of laundry. I know, I'm a party animal! Last weekend, I mixed it up by staying up until 1 am typing 19 progress reports for school.

Well, I think tonight was the topper in excitement. I watched a "hilarious and award winning" movie on the computer entitled "Lice, from Head to Dead." Actually, it was informative, I learned exactly how to annihilate the little buggers (olive oil!) and that it takes about an hour to hunt through a head of hair looking for nits. Apparently there are "nit picking experts" who offered such advice as "Relax and smile" and "Don't let them watch TV while you do it, they move too much" (although nothing was said about offering a banana while grooming).

After research and grooming, I found no lice on the girls' heads, I'll check again in the recommended 3-4 days. No, I'm not psycho, here. My poor sitter's daughter was sent home on Wed. with nits. My sitter, being the take charge plucky gal she is mobilized her forces (husband) and tore apart the house. Hopefully we are out of the woods. Of course, at the word lice we all started itching, but we are a naturally itchy bunch of women.

Well, the kids are asleep. It laundry time!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

The Eternal Optimist

I sent this rambling email to two of my BFFs the night of the election:

Is it OK to be excited? To feel like this is history in the making? Every time one of my conservative friends hears that I voted for Obama, they look at me as if I just voted for the tooth fairy (for the record, Caroline says Santa would have her vote). Is my liberal and optimistic status that well hidden? Or are they blind? I wear Birkenstocks and carry a Coexist tote bag for the love of God (not to stereo type). I am ready for it to be done. This is why I read the end of the book first. I hate waiting. I am too hyper to sit still. When my hope and optimism goes away, lock me up.

Rambling over. Cross your fingers.

peace and love,

I really was that excited. I love voting and get so excited about elections. I got to know Rob during election season our Senior year. That was 1988. Can you guess who wanted which candidate? That was the beginning of our bi-partisan marriage. The thing that I remember most from that time was how passionate we felt about our beliefs. It seems that we lose that as we grow older and life and reality beats us down. I look at everything waiting for the other shoe to drop. I have started scanning other people's actions, looking for their angle. I find myself wondering how people are going to try to stick it to me today.

When did I become such a cynic? I need a reason to be hopeful. I need to get back some of that hope and belief that I had when I was a teen. Granted, Melissa, the teenager, would never survive in the real world, but maybe she needs to hang out with Melissa, the very up tight, over extended adult, to remind her that the world has some very good qualities. What kind of message am I sending to my daughters (especially the oldest who has my pie in the sky leanings)?

So, I am going to be optimistic. I am going to believe that something wonderful is happening. I am going to relish recalling this historical event with my grandchildren. I'll just do it with caution and realism.

Saturday, November 1, 2008


I've been thinking a lot about fathers lately. Most specifically, fathers and daughters. I seem to be reading many books lately with the beginning of fatherhood as a theme (this always happens to me, I get stuck on a theme and everything i touch seems to relate to it, I don't seek it out). I've also been listening to some friends worry about the state of their relationships. One wants marriage, but her boyfriend doesn't, the other two want kids and the husbands have jitters (one of then has a baby coming, so he needs to resolve this:)

When I was telling Rob about all of the drama, his reply was "Rookies, don't they know people have been getting married and having kids forever and they're usually ok. I don't regret my girls for one minute." It is no secret (he will fully admit this) that my husband can be very difficult. He's introverted, slightly surly, deadly sarcastic, and moody. That said, he is one of the best fathers that I have ever met. I don't know if it's just me, but the guys of my generation seem to be wonderful dads (jury out on the husband front). They are loving and involved. Did I some how know this when I married Rob? Was I subconsciously able to look in the future and see that he could give my children what I always wanted, a consistent loving man, unconditional love. I had my wonderful grandfather and my step father, but my Papa didn't live with us and my step father and I really didn't bond until I was 12/13. My dad had good intentions, but he was not very paternal.

When I was pregnant with Caroline, our Douala told me that in her experience, the minute a new dads saw the baby, he would start rocking and immediately fall in a trance. She wasn't kidding. He fell in love instantly. It's a love affair that has been going on for 11 years. Fatherhood was (in my opinion) the best thing to happen to rob. I'm sure he agrees with me. It has pulled him out of himself (well at least a little). Fatherhood forces him to get out of his head and acknowledge the rest of the world. Some days it feels like I live in a zoo or frat house as they go rolling and wrestling around the house or pile on the couch like puppies. I don't think that I would have it any other way.

A couple of weeks ago, I was lamenting the up coming arrival of forty. I was worried that my firsts are all over. I guess it is good to be in a settled place with someone that I love very much. At the risk of sounding cheesy, I love him more now than when we first got married. On Tuesday, we will have been married 13 years. Yeah, he's a keeper.