...my child sold your honor student the answers to the test...

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Warning! No, wait....

“What becomes commonplace in our life, we take for granted….most of the time”

Since I was a kid I have always been intrigued by weather, storms especially. I remember being an idiot at the age of 5 and dancing on the lawn in the eye of Hurricane Gloria. Then dashing my ass back into the house and watching from our picture windows as the trees began to bend to breaking point.

I remember being an idiot and swimming in our backyard during Hurricane Andrew (no, we did not have a pool, we just had three feet of water from flooding) until a tree cracked and almost landed on my head, coming very close to snuffing out my pathetic little life. Now granted, these Hurricanes were nothing major compared to Hurricanes that reach our southern shores. Both Gloria and Andrew had petered out compared to what they originally were once they reached us. Normally, living in Ma the fiercest storm we ever had to deal with on a yearly basis was blizzards. And you learn as a native that with those fuckers you just hole up inside, play card games and snack on s’mores you roast in your fireplace waiting for the generator to kick in. The next day you put on 23 different outfits at once, and stomp outside to make colossal snow forts, and snowballs packed with ice.

I have a love/hate relationship with lightning storms. When I was a kid our house was struck by lightning and the attic went up in flames. The firefighters of my small, backward town, decided the very best place to put us kids while they put the fire out, was in the middle of a giant open corral… during the lightning storm. Despite us being fairly small, we were still the largest standing objects in roughly 2 acres of field. I may have been young but I did remember learning in school that wasn’t very smart. And yet the adults dumped us there while they worked on the attic. Idiots.

I think it dates back to that time that I have always had some issue with lightning storms. I love to watch them and will sit staring avidly from my window as a storm blows by. But it took until I moved to NC and storms are so damn common, that I would actually venture from my house to the car during a storm. I remember a few times back in MA I would come home hours late from work, simply because a thunder storm was going on and I would refuse to step one foot outside until the thunder stopped rumbling.

Now because they are so commonplace, I’ve begun to take them for granted. Kind of. I can saunter from my door to the car with only a little hunch of my shoulders. I’ve even got past the “dashing” phase, where you make yourself up into the smallest target ever and run as fast as you can those 3 feet. I don’t look like a turtle on speed anymore.


There is one aspect that has totally changed and I lament the loss of my “ignorance”. In MA it was almost unheard of to have tornados. In fact, in the 28 years I lived there I never once had a watch or warning. Down in NC, watches are almost yawn worthy they happen so often. J and my mom can't even figure out which one to worry about. I keep getting asked which time "Which one is better?" 
"Better how?"
"I mean worse."
"You mean which ones should you keep in the back of your mind and which ones mean iminent danger?"
"Yeah... I think"

In case you also have this confusion, a watch means that it could happen. A warning is when you dash your ass to safety. With a mattress over your head if possible. Or blankets. And belts to tie your kids to you.

Granted, we’ve only dealt with two warnings (one a funnel cloud that never touched and another that hit less than 10 miles from our house but J and I were flying through that storm and holy crap that was scary). But even though it doesn’t happen often, I’ve now found myself glued to the computer or radio anytime a storm is overhead, waiting, listening for that shockingly loud MEHHHHHH! MEHHHHHHH! Sound to tell us to run our little asses into the nearest bathroom to take cover.

Gone are the days when I could pass out in bliss to the sound of a thunderstorm at night. Oh no. NOW I charge up my phone and find myself checking the weather radar (stupid smart phone) until its passed, or waiting for the local news station to call me and tell us we have a twister inc. I paid money for them to call me hoping that would make me sleep better at night. It’s now my form of a safety net for me and the kids. They know there is nothing to worry about unless Mommy’s phone rings at 2AM during a storm so go back to bed and let Mommy be anal watching the radar by herself!!!.

I can’t sleep anymore during a storm and I miss that. I used to have a CD that played a thunderstorm that put me to sleep in seconds, now I hear thunder and my mind is off racing wondering why I keep putting off making the damn emergency kit. What are you supposed to put in that anyways? I mean aside from a flashlight, a radio, and water. I keep thinking I should put useful things in there, like a set of clothes. I have this mental image of a tornado hitting our neighborhood in the dead of night and of course I don’t always sleep with granny PJs. Wouldn’t a set of clothes be a good idea? Or along with water, what about Brandy? Your house has been shattered by wind. Do you want to drink water, or help calm your nerves while celebrating your survival with a shot of Brandy? I woudl think Brandy would be a good thing to have in the emergency kit. Problem is I may find myself having a different emergency and the Brandy would need to be restocked. Multiple times.

I’m writing this as a severe thunderstorm is flashing all around me and I’ve got my headphones on constantly listening to the live weather radar, waiting to hear about a possible curl in the clouds that indicates a tornado. Fortunately it’s the middle of the day so I won’t miss out on sleep tonight. I should go charge my phone just in case.

Monday, June 27, 2011

A New Milestone

Last week Soren, my youngest, turned 2. It was a low key event on the outside, with a play date in honor of his birthday, basically just adding cupcakes to the mix. He got a mini arm chair which he adores jumping off of, a mini doodle kit for the car (and crib), and a plush Mario which he carries with him everywhere. Nothing major, since he already has a ton of toys from his 2 older brothers.

But lately it hit me that being a mom of three children, our family has officially hit a milestone: we have no babies in the house nor will we unless there is some major cataclysmic event that brings fate to intervene and I become the next “virgin” (haha) Mary since surgeries have taken place and it has been decreed that the Beaulac family is complete. So unless this happens, after 9 (10) years, I am officially baby free. What does this mean?

Well, it means that

• Gone are gummy grins, unless I live to be 103 and my children join me in wheelchair races in the nursing home. However, gummy grins on 80 yr old children are nowhere near as cute as on newborn children.

• Gone are the open mouth French kisses to your cheek when your baby starts learning how to kiss

• Gone are those awesome vibrating chairs you use to soothe your grumpy baby, while also placing your feet on top for a free massage

• Gone are those AWESOME baby excersaucers you could place your baby in and not worry about tripping over them while you cook dinner

• Gone are the days you could place your baby down, go to the bathroom, and come back to find the baby in the same place…. Instead of drawing art on your hallway wall (or even worse, climbing the counters to get that cookie you said no to)

But it also means that

• Gone are the days of 45 minute cat naps instead of actual sleep for 6 months (WOOHOO!)

• I’m nearing the end of my diaper shift. Do you know that aside from a 2 year break, I’ve been changing diapers for roughly 9 years? 9 flipping years with only a 2 yr break in between. Holy crap, I can’t WAIT to be done with diapers!!!!

• Soon when we want to go out to dinner as a family we can actually go OUT to dinner as a family and not just do drive through because we have no baby’s who like to toss their mashed potatoes at the customers beside us

• No more baby sitting backwards in a car seat pissed off because he cant watch the movie playing on the DVD on our way to Grammys.

• No more baby food. Thank you!!!!

So there is good and bad for no more babies in this household. I will seriously miss some aspects, but I am also looking forward to the time when the kids are all old enough I’m not stuck in the shallow end of the pool and can join in splash wars and underwater races. Happy Birthday Soren, and welcome to a new milestone fam!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Friday, June 17, 2011

Hanging By A Thread

I'm going to assume it's bad that I've gained weight recently due to my increased consumption of alcohol. Right?

Kidding aside (well not really) I am about to finish week one of summer vacation with all three children home at the same time. Add to that a new medication that Xavier is trying for his ADHD and the wonderful roller coaster effects that has on us all and it's been an interesting week. So interesting that about twice a day I walk into J's office and ask him to shoot me in the head, please. He just laughs.

So far this week I have wrangled the kids out to:
* A nature walk, where Soren cried for about 2/3 of the time wanting to be picked up and carried, while Xavier clung to me with desperation as he popped his head this way and that seeking out those evil flying bugs solely out to get him and his blood. Actually, despite bug spray, he did get a few decent bites. I joked that his blood must be super sweet.
* 3 trips to the playground, which included Soren booking it multiple times the nanosecond I turned my head, bumping into an old neighbor of mine whose name I had forgotten (and wracked my mind in vain trying to remember it so as not to look like an idiot. I failed miserably). Ashe asking to go home every 3 minutes because he was tired, and Xavier screaming for 45 minutes like a Tyrannosaurus Rex at all of the kids on the play ground.
* A trip to Monkey Joes, to let the kids get their energy out. Which upon the minute I put Soren down to pay he fell completely apart, assuming I was going to leave him like I do at the Drop Off Day Care centers when I have DR appointments for Xavier. It took me about 5 minutes to fully calm him down, but even then it took him 90 minutes before he ventured away from me.
*A trip to World Market ( my new addiction) to purchase a small thing for the boys to play with, where Soren broke a jar of jam, and the older boys refused to listen to directions. It didn't hit them that I was REALLY serious about my warning of being on best behavior until I held my ground and took their new toys away until they earned them back. Which created Xavier to have an EF5 meltdown in the middle of the store. Suffice to say he did not get his toy until hours later.
*Daily trips outside to our new mini pool in our driveway, allowing the boys to play as loudly as they wish, so long as they do not scream or kill each other. Or squirt Mom with the hose.

On top of this J and I are watching Xavier with his new medication. We're supposed to know within 4 days if it works. I think waiting 4 days is utter hell when off medication, Xavier is like Curious George on Speed. I can't keep him home because he is SO LOUD that J cannot concentrate on work, being even an entire floor below us, with the door shut and white noise machine on. I can't take him out (much) because he cannot behave long enough without getting into trouble. I'm damned either way.

But we survived. And I am lucky enough that my mom is going to take the two older boys to her house for a week+ on Monday. I'll only have Soren and he's so totable we can go anywhere without worry. Please let me make it to Monday!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Bribery is So Sweet

I am not ashamed to admit that sometimes I bribe my children for good behavior. If I am going to a store where I want to wander a bit and I have two mini persons shadowing my every move I will do what it takes to ensure nothing gets broken, shattered, altered, and my ears continue to function by not hearing piercing screams and whines.

The other day I stopped at a store I had heard great things about. This was not a dash in kind of store, and I wanted to check it out in its full glory. Besides we had time to kill and it was too damn hot to go anywhere outside. So upon entering I told the boys if they were on their bestest behavior they could pick out one treat to have after lunch.

The boys decided this was a good deal, and were on their bestest behavior ever. They ooohed and ahhed at the cool toys, but scampered back to me when I told them it was time to check out another aisle. Their eyes lit up and the cool paper lantern lights, but didn't touch them. They pointed eagerly at funny glass bowls, but 3 feet away where their pointer fingers wouldn't  push over breakable items.

So for their reward I let them pick one treat out. And both boys wanted the same thing. A lollipop. But not just any lollipop:

That is not a trick of the camera angle, my friends. That is the actual size of the lollipop. These things here HUGE. And inexpensive ;) Soren and Ashe had a ball the rest of the day trying to lick those damn things down to a manageable size. My only rule was that they had to stay at the table and enjoy them. This rule was clearly stated and observed after Soren dropped his lollipop on the usedtobewhite carpet and left a pretty sugar rainbow mark. Despite massive amounts of scrubbing I still see a slight tint of radical red.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

There Goes My Sanity

I am so not ready for tomorrow. I always brace myself and prepare for this time of year. I always think I’ve got it under control. I always try to have a good list in my head of things to help make it easier. But that’s my own survival skills kicking in, trying to deny the utter truth of what is about to happen in just a few hours. Because it can never be easier.

My oldest son is going to be on summer vacation. And I will have 3 boys in the house for longer than a weekend.

I was the mom who turned the music way up and danced to the car the day I dropped him off of school for the first time. Does that make me a bad parent? No. It just means that I was confident in his ability to take on a new adventure and enjoy a new aspect of life…. while I had a few hours to myself to recapture my sanity and maybe even sit down to read a few emails uninterrupted before picking him up. I know I will also be doing the happy dance and getting glares from other moms dropping off their babies when I bring Ashe and Soren to their first day of school. I'm an equal parent kind of gal. While some moms may wonder how they will fill the time for a few hours a day while their little one learns math, science and writing, I already know what I want to do: run errands by myself, read in peace, and dance to my music without being yelled at to knock it off from a 4 year old.

However with two kids under school age I only got one year of having that freedom when Xavier started school. I’ve learned to adapt to having two kids at home for the most part. I can handle two kids at home. It's crazy but doable. But when you have three kids stuck together longer than a weekend hell tends to break loose and my sanity goes down the drain.

I could tell my survival instincts were kicking in as I opened my big fat mouth while offering up ideas to get us the hell out of the house most days when I mentioned camping. I haven’t camped since I was 9 years old. J’s idea of camping equates to a Red Roof Inn. Of course the kids jumped on this idea and decided that we HAD to go camping this vacation!!!!! Then, as they were screaming gleefully about roasting marshmllows over an open campfire, the logistics hit. Me, outside in the middle of the night with a flimsy canvas above my head, dealing with a 9 year old scared shitless of flying insects. Two boys poking each other at 2AM, dividing the tiny tent living space into his space and  "his" space, then whining at me to intervene when a brothers toe brushes against that invisible boundary line. The mosquito bites. The fear of a copperhead curling up in front of our tent entrance and accidentally stepping on it when I step out to pee. Uh huh. That’s gonna be AWESOME!

I already promised Xavier we’d go looking for a tent next week. Fuck.

It’s not that the boys kill each other (much) when they are together. It’s more like having 3 small territorial animals trapped in the same living area for 4 weeks. Try taking 3 badgers and putting them into a small house size setting, giving them 1 item they all want and watch the fur fly. That’s what my household will turn into starting tomorrow.

I do have a back up plan though. My mom has been dying to take the kids for an extended stay. I jokingly offered to give them to her for 3 weeks and she didn’t bat an eye. I may have hope here. Please, let me have hope!

Send me good vibes, folks, and let’s hope the Beaulac family can survive summer vacation sans any ER trips. Slainte!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Swimsuit Season Sucks (A Whine)

I’d like to think that even after having three boys my body looks pretty ok. I totally understand that my body went through hell and back three times and there are battle scars to prove it. I’m ok with not having that perfect teenage body where the stomach is conclave when you stand up. I’m a little bit ok with the conclave effect I have due to my lower body being stretch 3 feet forward three times. It’s gonna happen and even if I work out 5 hours a day 5 days a week, it will always be there.

I’m ok with that.

I’m kind of ok with the fact my boobs are on the smaller side. They always have been. In fact I didn’t have what you would call boobs UNTIL I got pregnant with Xavier. I love my boobs when I’m pregnant or nursing. In fact it’s the only time where I can stand in front of a mirror and feel like a real woman. Causein my warped mind boobs means female. Just like penis means male. Alas, most of the time I don’t have much boobs. Maybe that’s why I’m not a girly girl. I must think more on this theory.

I’m ok with that.

I tell myself I’m ok with my not so perfect body for 9 months out of the year when I wear my jeans and tank top, or jeans and long shirt. And then I hit the pool. And each year as I sit in the shallow end, having water splashed up my nostrils by one boy or another, I wipe my sprayed sunglasses off and watch those women who wander around in bikinis, holding the hand of a child or two. And then I glance down at my tummy poof and small boobs, and I’m not ok with my body anymore.

I can honestly say it’s not long I get to have my tiny pity party. I get a moment or two to let out a melancholy sigh and straighten my top to cover my pooch (again) before I get rammed from behind by Soren trying to dive bomb me into the 3 inches of water I’m sitting in. Or a water torpedo gets chucked at my head while Xavier and Ashe play catch a little too close. But dammit I want to whine right now. It’s my blog and I can whine if I want to.

I’ve tried the diets, Ive tried the workouts, blah blah blah. I’ve lost most of the baby weight. I look ok. But swimsuits suck. They just suck. I’ve never had the boobs to pull off a bikini. I wouldn’t even dare try one now. The two piece tankinis (which I currently own) suck because the moment I sit in the water the bottom of the shirt starts riding up. I can act like an idiot, drawing attention to myself as I keep shoving it down every 5 seconds, or pretend to ignore it.

I’d love to find a nice one piece swimsuit that doesn’t cost two thousand dollars, and when it gets wet, doesn’t cling itself so tightly to my torso that it gets sucked into my belly button like a mini black hole. I’d also like to go swimsuit shopping sans kids, so I can take my time and not be half naked in the dressing room when Ashe or Soren decide to go exploring and crawl under the door. I did it to my mom at their age, cause the local Marshals to go on lock down in case I had been kidnapped. They found me 2 hours later asleep in a cupboard. I know if I take my kids swimsuit shopping, the genetics will stay true. There is not enough alcohol in the world for me to deal with both the horror of swimsuit shopping AND little kids.

I think though, if I’m going to be swimming as often as we have been (at least twice a week and school will be out next week) I need to pony up and find something I can live with. I really don’t feel like going to the pool that often and having a mini moment pity party every time I see those women who look like they never birthed a child (yet did) with their perfectly toned bodies in a bikini holding up size C boobs.

Wish me luck on finding something decent.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Soren's Napkin

I don't know where he learned it, or why it started, but I'm getting really tired of Soren using his hair as a napkin. He has started doing this for EVERYTHING! A drop of juice on his finger? Wipe it dry on his hair. A smear of chocolate on his hand? Wipe it in his hair. Family member has a sticky hand? Grab said hand and wipe it on his hair.


I can't keep up with this kid! I try handing him a baby wipe to wipe his hands or face. Before I can turn around he's already got his hand up in his (used to be blonde now depends on what's already in there) hair. He thinks it's hysterical when I yell "NOOOOOOOOOOO" as I'm turning around to grab his hand before he causes more damage. He just laughs. And wipes his hand in his hair.

None of my other kids did this! Of course none of my other kids seem to be as OCD as he is with stuff on his hands. But still, my other kids knew to come to me and I'd clean their hands off. But with Soren I'm going to have to invest in the baby shampoo companies the amount we need to wash his hair lately.

And I think I may need to stop making dinners that involve ketchup or any other type of sauce. At least until he grows out of this phase.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Toilet Paper Incident

I have got to stop thinking that little people, a la 4 and under, can actually perform what I would consider a simple request without massive destruction to the house, household products, or at the very least, do not need a 50 page document explaining the step by step process in order to help around the house. While I think in that moment of NOW what I may ask is so damn simple anyone can do it, I am continuously reminded that no, anyone can NOT do it. At least not without destroying something, especially my children.

Take toilet paper for instance.

The other morning as I was rushing around like a chicken with its head cut off I realized that my body was telling me to get my ass into the bathroom pronto. I dropped everything and ran. And once the door shut closed and it was too late, I realized my mistake: I didn’t look closely enough at the toilet paper roll before sitting down to make sure there were enough paper products.

Of course there wasn’t.

Now I offer the excuse that I was precaffeinated. It was early in the morning, J was already downstairs with the office door shut pretending he works in an office far away from us (haha) and Xavier was already sent on the adventure of finding school clothes that both fit him and were clean. So in my sleep fogged mind I felt I had only one person I could turn to: Ashe.

So I called him over sweetly and asked him to go upstairs to Mommy and Daddy’s bathroom and to please grab the toilet paper roll and bring it downstairs. He gave me an angelic grin, and excited to be doing something to help Mom, he ran off.

I waited. And waited. And waited some more. And after 2 minutes I finally wondered where my son went. “ASHE WHAT ARE YOU DOING?”



“OH YEAH!!!!... I FORGOT.” Of course.

Another minute goes by and he dashes down the stairs so proud of himself carrying……

One square of toilet paper. I look at his offering, ponder the situation I’m in, and shake my head.

“Ashe, hon, I need more than one square. Can you please go back upstairs and bring me the whole roll of toilet paper?”

“Oh sure!” He races off and I wait again, noticing that my butt is now beginning to fall asleep. Another minute goes by and Xavier starts bounding down the stairs, dressed in a clashing outfit that makes my eyes hurt. I figure I have one battle right now; I’m not energetic enough to take on another. Let the teacher wince every time she glances at the jarring colors. But I grab his attention and ask him to help his brother help me by bringing me some toilet paper. He races off to my upstairs bathroom and almost the moment his foot hits the master bedroom threshold I hear him shouting.




Uh oh.

I’m too scared to look up. I mean really, it’s just too early in the morning for stuff like this. There should be a rule against shenanigans before 10AM on weekdays, and noon on weekends. But I am a mom, and it is my job to look after my children, even if I’m stuck on the pot. I glance up.

And there is Ashe, proudly marching down the stairs with a fistful of toilet paper in his hands. Trailing behind him is half a mile of toilet paper, which I guessed (correctly), was still stuck to the actual roll upstairs in my master bathroom. He stands directly in front of my with a giant grin on his face, so proud that he was able to help me in my moment of need, and tossed a mini mountain of white Cottenelle into my lap.

“Thanks, sweetie” I murmur.

“YOU’RE WELCOME MOM!” He marches off, happy that he has done his good deed for the day.