Tuesday, July 08, 2014


As much as I miss having a smooshy sweet-smelling newborn in the house, one of the greatest things about my boys getting bigger is the passing of most of the baby-related drudgery. No more pumping sessions or washing dozens of bottles and fiddly breastpump bits. A lot fewer diaper changes and slightly less laundry. The children are reaching a rudimentary level of self-sufficiency in that one can almost entirely feed himself and the other is making a valiant effort. But there are definitely moments that feel Sisyphean, times when I think if I have to sweep this floor / tighten the screws on this play kitchen door / clear this table / pick up these blocks one more time, I'm going to lose it. There is dog hair everywhere, every day, thanks to summer shedding plus what we suspect is fireworks-related stress-shedding. I have to change Elliott's crib sheet nearly every day due to night diaper leaks, and the sheets snag and rip on the crib springs almost every time, no matter how careful I am. Elliott's getting pretty good at playing on his own in the evenings, but his very favorite activity is to dump and spread and strew the toys across the entire living room floor. I suppose some of the disgruntlement with the cleanup of this last bit is my own fault for attempting to keep the toys organized into little bins by type or purpose, rather than throwing everything into one giant toy box and calling it done. I'm still fat and I can't get myself motivated to exercise after the nightly cleanup, nor do I want to take any of the little time I see the kids during the week to do it earlier. I am hoping to get back to boot camp in the fall, but will have to figure out if we can afford a new pair of good gym shoes first. I miss writing, here and otherwise, yet when I do find some time to try, nothing really comes to me.

After all this complaining, I guess the logical conclusion would be that I'm in a rut, I'm cranky, I need a change. And I guess these things are all a little bit true, but as I was lining up my list of grievances earlier while lint rolling dog hair off the cloth play food and sorting plastic blocks into bins and tightening those damn play kitchen doors yet again, I realized that I'm really not unhappy. Sure, there's a fundamental level of boring shit that has to get done every day, but overall, things are going pretty great. Nico is fun and funny and imaginative and curious and kicking ass at all his summer activities. He's building and playing and showing such generosity of spirit and kindness lately. He's still sassy and four and a half but he's also great. Elliott is energetic and smart and bold, he dances and plays and laughs and tries new things. He's defiant and loud but he's also-also great. For every one thing I have to do that is dull and dumb, there are two other things I get to do that I love. That math is pretty good, I think. And anytime anyone asks me how things are or comments that the kids probably keep me busy, I find myself answering honestly that things are awesome. Sometimes exhausting, sometimes maddening, sometimes frustrating. But, they are awesome.


We're trying our luck at raising tadpoles again. Nico seems much more interested in the process this time around. He was very eager to rinse out our aquarium and then fill it with water. I spent about fifteen bucks on a little bubbler pump and air stone that I'm hoping will keep the habitat more hospitable than our previous attempt. We set up the tank last night and then added the tadpoles today. I'm hoping Nico stays curious and the tadpoles stay alive. We're also watching two caterpillars that one of the volunteers at work kindly brought in for Nico. One is a teeny tiny spicebush swallowtail caterpillar that rolls itself up in sassafras leaves. The other is a gnarly-looking dude who eats cottonwood leaves and supposedly will turn into either a viceroy or a red-spotted purple. Today when we got home, gnarly dude was hanging from a leaf by his butt, so I'm eagerly watching to see if there is another development soon.

Reading:  Top Secret Twenty-One by Janet Evanovich

Playing:  Disc One: All Their Greatest Hits (1991-2001) by Barenaked Ladies

1 comment:

  1. One thing I feel like Paul never fully grasps is that just because I'm COMPLAINING doesn't mean I'm LIVING AN UNHAPPY LIFE. There is plenty to complain about, but IN GENERAL things are GOOD.