So here goes.
Item 1: Your sprinkles. They SHALL be mine.
So summer is here. (Or perhaps I will take to calling it 'simmer'. That would be far more fitting. And, months from now, when I hear some twenty-something on some show on the CW ---but NOT 'Supernatural.' THAT show is awesome.--- referring to it as 'simmer', I'll sit back and smile, and think: I did that. That was ME. =)
Anyway, it's hot.
And with the heat comes the desire to cool off. (Perhaps in a pool. . . .or might I interest you in an ocean?) And fresh on the heels of THAT little desire, is the knowledge that in order to cool off in a body of water of my choosing. . . I am going to have to don a bathing suit.
I'm not going to sit here and bash my body. (Though it would be easy to do. But it is self-defeating behavior and, more than that, it sets a bad example for my children. It is one behavior of many that I am attempting to curb.) The simple fact is, I don't think I have EVER met a woman that was 100%, completely happy with her physical form, with nothing that she wanted to change. And another simple fact is that I am now 36 years old. And I am a mother. I do not look as I did when I was 21, and I am okay with that. I can no more rid myself of the C-section scar in my middle than I can change the patterns of moles and freckles that dot me from head to foot. (I am really just one big connect-the-dots puzzle. There's an octopus in a top hat on my left forearm, but you have to get creative to find it.) Nor would I. I waited too many years for that child. It is a scar that I will wear proudly until my dying day. But that does not mean that I wish to spend the entire summer feeling completely and horribly self-conscious, and trying to hide under yards and yards of (stifling) fabric.
Which means that I have had to start getting some exercise.
And, if you know me at all, you will know that I have done this, at best? Begrudgingly. At worst? Kicking and screaming.
I have never cared for exercise, and it is not something I have kept secret. But I have found that I can stomach walking the baby around the neighborhood in his stroller once a day, usually for a time of anywhere from 45 minutes to one hour. Which, I know, is not a lot. . . But once you factor in the heat, the fact that I am generally pouring sweat within the first 4 blocks, and the fact that my route takes me up and down and up (fairly large) hills continuously. . . I figure that it's enough.
So I've walked every day this week. (Except for today. On the seventh day. . . I rested. =) Sometimes I have had to employ trickery to get myself out the door. . . I would wake up saying: "Oh, it's okay. You walked yesterday. You can take today off. No shame in that."
And, just because I told myself that I WOULDN'T. . . that was enough to get me going. (I am a defiance even unto myself.)
Sometimes I have had to employ a reward system: Just do this, just 45 minutes, and then you can go home and take a nap.
And sometimes I have just had to be a hard-ass: DO IT. Get your ass out there, breathe some fresh air, and break a sweat.
But. . . I don't want to. . .
DO IT ANYWAY.
And so I have.
And it is. . . HOT.
But the silver lining in these little excursions. . . is that the people in our neighborhood like to keep their yards looking healthy. Which means that at least a few of them now have their sprinklers going in the mornings. . . and, since the front yards around this place are small, and can't contain the full arc of the sprinklers. . . there is inevitable sidewalk overflow. Extra sprinklage, if you will.
And so we have altered our morning walking route, so that we might hit several of the Mist Houses more than once.
Walking along, drenched in sweat, jamming to my tunes---
---and then we reach a Mist House, and run, full-tilt and with complete abandon, through our neighbors' sprinklers.
I giggle. The baby giggles. It is easily the highlight of our walk.
And so, just to show good form, I posted a Thank You on facebook to the owners of our Mist Houses.
And it has subsequently resulted in a new nickname for me: Sprinkles.
(I have to admit --- I am not displeased with it.)
So, in conclusion: YOUR SPRINKLEZ!!!!! I STEALZ THEM!!!
(And I am unrepentant.)
Item 2: Suddenly Chipmunks.
We might have chipmunks in our back yard.
Not in a "We might have chipmunks over for lunch, grill out and make a day of it." Not in that way. Not at ALL.
We have a little flower bed situated by the door to our garage, and a little while back Michael discovered a hole in it.
My first thought was: Snake hole!!! KILL IT!!! KILL IT WITH FIRE!!!! . . . But Michael (pretending to be the voice of reason) told me it was probably chipmunks, moles, or gophers. (He did spot a chipmunk in the yard just a few days ago, and has concluded that we have a chipmunk problem. To which *I* replied that "Chipmunks are only a problem if they don't SING." Clearly, snakes are the real danger here.) But regardless of the species, for some reason he remained hesitant about pouring lighter fluid into a hole in the ground beside our garage, no matter what convincing arguments I presented. (He has hang-ups.) So he just covered the hole with several large rocks, and waited for the snake-munks to make the next move.
Which they did. By making another hole, quite similar to the first (but my eye is untrained in the area of snake-munk holes. . . I'm sure the snake-munks probably think all of our homes look the same, too. Racists.), and about 8 inches away.
So Michael responded to this hole much as he had the first, and placed several large rocks over the opening.
. . .Which I am SURE caused quite a bit of confusion in the snake-munk community. I can just picture the snake-munks, coming home from a party:
"Dude. . . .Did we leave a huge rock over our front door when we left?"
"What? AW, MAN!!! Not again!!"
"Soooo. . . you didn't do this?"
"Of COURSE I didn't do this, Harold!! Why would I block the entrance to our OWN HOME?? . . .HOW IN THE HELL DOES THIS KEEP HAPPENING??!?"
And. . .scene.
Anyway, yesterday I found yet ANOTHER hole, which the industrious little snake-munks are determined to make into a home.
So. . . if you know my husband, you probably know that he is tenacious, dedicated, and can be much like Hank Hill when it comes to his lawn.
Which means that, essentially, he considers this third snake-munk hole an act of war.
And I am completely serious when I say that I am afraid.
Is it the fear that I will one day look out my kitchen window and see dozens of little snake-munks, marching around in a circle with protest signs, chanting things like "HELL NO, WE WON'T GO!"?
No. It is the fear that my husband is about to find his newest obesession, and that I am going to wake up one day to find myself married to Carl Spackler from Caddyshack.
Moving on to. . .
Item 3: My baby has been stricken with "the bossies"
In all fairness, this is only right, and is completely in keeping with family tradition---
---as I was, myself, an unbelievably bossy child. ('Leadership skills', my mother has decided to call it. This is gracious, on her part.)
Growing up, I was the oldest of my grandmother's seven grandchildren. Which meant that, to my way of thinking, I had gotten there first, and was thus the one in charge. (It was nothing personal. . . I just had seniority, is all.)
So whenever all the grandchildren got together to play, I dictated what we played and how we played it. ***I was not trying to be bossy. I simply knew in my heart that I had the best ideas. And, since the others went along with these ideas, I became convinced that my cause was not only just, but correct. Playtime warfare, essentially, and I had named myself as the Commander.*** I would listen patiently to what my cousins wanted to do, and would then proceed (just as patiently) to lay out my plan for the day, and then tell everyone where they needed to be.
(It was shameful, I know, but flawless in its elegance.)
And it is a trait that my offspring appears to have inherited.
He wants things HIS way, and he wants them five minutes ago.
He screams in the face of any dissent. He flails wildly when the slightest thing is amiss.
And I have been. . .unsure as to how, exactly, to address this issue.
On the one hand, he is essentially growing up as an only child (though he has two brothers), and I do NOT want to allow him to grow up to be that kid.
On the other hand. . . he comes by it honestly. =)
Yes, I WAS bossy. . . .but he ALSO has his father's blood in him, and it was only a few months into my relationship with his father when I bestowed upon him the nickname of: Mister Persnikety.
(Also, his dad is a little OCD, and I believe the Took might have just a touch of that, as well.)
(as seen below, organizing the bath toys)
So. . . what to do? After all, I DON'T want to let my little one grow up to be Took the Tantrum Thrower, Scourge of the Jungle Gym, Great Turd of the Playground. . .
So I feel that the only option available to me is to nip these little habits in the bud---
---before they have a chance to take root.
Even as I type this, he is sitting on the ground at my feet, playing with assorted toys as he wails miserably and pats the kitchen floor with his hand.
(He has taken to doing this lately. He pats the area where he wants you to sit. It was only a few days ago that we had a Great and Woeful Meltdown because he kept patting the seat in his Cozy Coupe, commanding me to sit there. Said Woe occurred when it became clear to him that I would NOT sit in the Cozy Coupe. . . .never mind that the reason I didn't sit was due to the fact that my ass will not fit through the door to the Coupe. It was clearly just disobedience on my part, and he wasn't having it.)
So he pats the floor beside him, looks at me, and wails.
I try to appease him.
"Here, buddy. . . do you want your car? The one that plays 'Funky Town?'"
"Sweetheart, mommy is trying to do something right now. Let me finish this, and we'll play. Let me just. . ."
(pats the ground insistently)
"Took! You need to calm down, darlin. What is WRONG?"
(pats and pats and pats, then wails some more.)
I am getting aggravated. I am trying to type, I am trying to keep a thought in my head before it wings away, I am trying to GET SOMETHING DONE, and WHAT is this baby doing???
He is driving me crazy!!! He is wailing and flailing, pouting and crying. He is slapping the ground, he is about to wake up his Daddy, he is irritating the crap out of me, he is . . .
He is trying to spend time with me.
He is being bossy, yes. But he is wailing and crying and ---do I see a real tear?--- patting the floor next to him.
Because he wants ME to sit there.
He wants me to sit there next to him, and play with his cars with him.
Soooo. . . I'm terribly sorry, but this post is over.
I've got shit to do.
And it's important.