Thursday, August 28, 2008

Please Shield the Eyes of All Small Children

So earlier this week, I hit the 30-week mark. Which is the point where I can finally stop holding my breath completely, because the baby now has a 90 percent chance of survival should it be born now.

Of course, we all know that I'm a worry wart, so I won't really completely relax until Tiny Man is born, and then by relax, I mean that it'll only take 8 half-naked bronzed-bodied male masseuse 2.5 days to convince my muscles to stop being tense, because let's face it, I'll worry about these kids until the day I die. And then I'll probably haunt them for the rest of their lives, because how else am I supposed to keep complete tabs on them?

Anyway. Back to the topic at hand. 30 weeks. 8 weeks to go. Which, really, is frightening, because in case you were wondering how my little contest from three years ago where I asked you to name my child is going, well, I'll just say that we're still at an impasse. And the list of names currently has no uncrossed names. I swear to you, any corporation reading this who wants to pay me for the naming rights of my child, I will take your offer at this point, because that's about the only way this child will have a name before he starts dating.

So yeah. 30 weeks (lack of focus much???).

In case you were wondering, this is what I look like at 30 weeks. But before I post this, I should warn you to finish any food you are having, unless you're looking to lose weight, because this should cut your appetite. Also? Grab some sunglasses, because staring at my belly too long is like watching an eclipse, totally bad for the retinas.





What have we learned from this round of pregnancy pictures? That my ass? It not look so good in these pants. While my Motherhood jeans from the 20-something week pic made it look like you could bounce quarters off of it, these pants make it look like I'm trying to steal a couple of plates of pancakes from IHOP (note: ignore the dripping syrup coming out the bottom). Be assured that the 34-week and 38-week pics will be taken in my jeans, whether they cut off circulation to my bladder and kidneys by then or not.

On another note, I have begun drooling tremendously. Not during the day, thank goodness, this would be a quick way for me to lose all of my friends, but at night. I literally wake up in a puddle of drool every time I wake up and have to flip the pillow over in order to get a dry spot. I'm worried that I will die by drowning in a pool of my own drool. Is this the worry that Bulldogs have to live with constantly?

Love,

Catwoman.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Go Ahead, Try to Tell Me My Kid Ain't Talented

In case you don't know this about me, I'm not athletic. And when I say that, I don't mean that I'm out of shape, even though I am (well, being currently pregnant, I do have a shape, I'm round like a Weeble, but normally, I have no shape). I mean that there isn't a single sport that I'm naturally or unnaturally talented at. And even though my husband is a kick ass golfer who is almost good enough to have gone pro, an awesome skier who has the bad knees to show for it, was a kick-ass soccer player and can probably play any sport known to man well, I just assumed that our kids would inherit my lack of talent and when we found Little Man was a boy, never did I think "oooh, maybe he'll be an athlete and be really rich and buy me a convertible!"

Especially when it quickly became clear that Little Man is sharp as a whip. Now, don't get all mad at me here, I'm not saying that athletes are dumb, there are many brilliant athletes, I'm just saying that for our kids to be both athletic and smart, they'd have to go and pick genes from two sides of the pool. Not that Sweetie Pie is dumb, it's just that I'm smarter, I mean, he didn't skip two grades in school or challenge himself to read the entire dictionary before his fifth birthday.

But in June, Little Man took a soccer camp at school for a week and I'm telling you, the kid can bend it like Beckham. And then, while hanging out at my in-laws, he began using this torpedo-shaped nerf toy as a baseball bat and my father-in-law threw a soft baseball at him and taught the kid to hit his pitches in under 10 minutes flat. I'm not making this up.

See this kid? He's not even three yet. Check out his freaking stance and check out the strength of his hit with a foam ball.


Baseball Player from Catwoman InTexas on Vimeo.

And yes, I've already picked out my convertible.

Love,

Catwoman.

Friday, August 22, 2008

It's My World, People Just Live In It

I've always been someone who lives by the rules. Having been raised in a tyrannical household, where the tiniest hint of thinking of maybe breaking a rule would get you spanked and/or grounded, depending on your age, I've always been a rule follower. I'm not claiming to be perfect by any means, and there have been exceptions to my rule following, like that time in 12th grade where I skipped 135 law classes (yet I still made a B+, so there!), but the exceptions are few and far between.

I'm the person who would never think of cheating on my taxes, because the anxiety I would feel for the rest of my life at the thought of getting caught would totally not be worth the little bit of money I'd have saved. I'm the person who sits at a red light at 3 in the morning, even when there's no one comig the other way. There are rules. I follow them.

But lately, I've found that I still follow rules, I just don't do other things. Like tell people things. I make decisions, and then fail to tell people who are also impacted by these decisions.

Like take yesterday, for example. I've decided to start using a cleaning lady every other week. We can afford it, really, it just means paying off my car not as quickly, and since I begin to spot every time I try to clean the house from top to bottom, my body obviously feels that I should leave the cleaning to someone else. Some of you might ask "aren't you married?" And I'll laugh and laugh at you because really? Have you met my husband? It's not that he's not willing to clean, he is. It's just that he's completely incompetent at it. I mean really, I love the man, I do, I've put up with him for 9.5 years now, and he has many, many talents. But cleaning? Isn't one of them. If I left the cleaning up to him, I'd probably find him dusting the fan with the toilet brush. I'm serious. I once caught him "cleaning" the kitchen, and he was using the dustbuster that I use to pick up cat litter to clean crumbs off my counter. And when I flipped out and told him how disgusting that was, he didn't understand what my issue was.

His jobs include rinsing and putting away the dishes in the dishwasher. Which means that I have to come after him and reorganize the entire dishwasher, because if you ask my husband to put in an empty dishwasher a teaspoon and a mug, he will somehow manage to place them so that the entire dishwasher is full and unable to hold anymore dishes. I swear to you, I have never seen someone fill up a dishwasher so badly before. The man has two years of an engineering degree. How is this freaking possible?

But back to the topic at hand. So that the house wouldn't fall apart, I decided that I would get someone to clean the house for us.

And she was coming for the first time yesterday morning. I told my boss that I would be working from home in the morning, which he couldn't care less, he's of the belief that I'm an adult, I do more work than most people in this company combined, no problem there.

As the cleaning lady is working her ass off (which made me feel really uncomfortable by the way, this is the same reason I have trouble paying someone to give me a pedicure, who am I to make someone else do my dirty work???), time ticks away. Apparently, we live like pigs, because it took her from 8 a.m. until almost 1 p.m. to get our whole house done top to bottom.

My original thought was that she'd be done by 11, I'd get Little Man to school in time for lunch and then head to work. But since nap time starts at school between 12 and 12:30, 1 p.m. put me in a conundrum. If I drove Little Man to school now, his nap would be all sorts of f'ed up. So I made the decision to put him down at home and work from there the rest of the day.

And promptly forgot to tell anyone at work.

The funny part? No one noticed. Since I was online and responding to emails and am usually in meetings a good part of the day, no one noticed that I hadn't been in my cubicle all day. Maybe I'll just take off next week and go shopping and see how long it takes for anyone to worry I've gone into labor...

And then in the afternoon? It got to be the time where Sweetie Pie and I usually check in with each other. And that's when I realized that I? Hadn't told him that 1) I was hiring a cleaning lady 2)That the cleaning lady would be coming yesterday and 3)I'd be working from home.

So I called Sweetie Pie from the home phone and he's all concerned when he sees the number. And I proceed to lamely tell him "oh yeah... I think I forgot to tell you... We have a cleaning lady now!"

He took it surprisingly well. Well, I don't know about surprisingly. At this point in our relationship, he's kind of used to me not telling him things like bringing strangers into our home.

Love,

Catwoman.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Minus Two Months: My Letter to Tiny Man

In exactly two months, I will be holding you in my arms at this time. This idea thrills me to pieces, one because it means that I can finally start to get to know you, and second of all, because it means you won't be lodged in my ribcage anymore.

Not that I blame you for being in my ribcage, after all, you're definitely running out of room in there, with you being on the large side and me being only 5 foot 3, really, where else would you be able to go?

I have to give you kudos, kid. You definitely make me look good. I felt great when I was pregnant with your brother, but my body, unsure as to what it was supposed to do made me look like I had a beer gut. Not until my last month did strangers start referring to my pregnancy. But with you, I've got the beach ball look down, and I love it. I love that people compliment me on my bump. I love that people hold doors and elevators for me, no matter how far away I am, even if it does mean that I have to haul my big tush because I feel bad for holding them up.

Like your brother, you seem to be pretty mellow. You only kick a few times a day, but when you do, they're strong, powerful kicks, strong enough to push my hand away if I'm holding it on my belly.

I'm still able to mostly sleep on my stomach, thanks to my body pillow, and I figure that you just like to be cocooned, smooshed into my intestines.

I've learned that you can't stand letting me do to much. I've had to hire a cleaning lady, because every time I would try to seriously clean the house, I would end up with some spotting. Some might think this is a complaint, but I actually thank you for giving me all that time back and ensuring that my house is always clean.

In only two months, I'll get to hold you. I anticipate that it will be the same as when I saw your brother, I won't let the nurses take you away and I'll ask if I can hold you all day and all night, because once I see your face, I know I won't want to let you go.

In the meantime, I'll keep singing Justin Timberlake's "Sexy Back" to you and feel you get your groove on against my lungs. But know that I'm counting the days, the minutes, the seconds, until we really meet.

Love,

Maman.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Dr. Not-So-Bright

Recently, I got my act together enough to get Sweetie Pie and I dentist appointments. This was long overdue and necessary, for me, because I hadn't been in three years (put down your spears, people! I'm not the only one! AndreAnna was the same way!) and I was getting some bad gingivitis because of the pregnancy, which can be a cause for premature labor; for Sweetie Pie, it was even more crucial, because he broke an old crown on a peppercorn a few days before.

So I dusted off the dental insurance card and went on the Web site to find a dentist nearby.

I found one, whose last name is a synonym of smart or bright, hence the title of this post (and now you know where this is going...)

I went first, the day before Sweetie Pie. When I got there, the wife was working behind the front desk, and she was the prettiest, sweetest woman ever, about my age and from chatting with her, we had kids only a few months apart and she was trying for baby number two.

I get taken back, where I meet her husband, Dr. Not-So-Bright. And at first, I love him too. We talk kids, he's really nice and I think to myself "man, we need to become friends with this couple, they're really cool!"

Only one small red flag, Dr. Not-So-Bright said to me "let's go take your X-rays now."

I look down at my protruding belly, and back at him and casually smile and say "this isn't a beer gut, I'm pregnant." He looks confused.

So I clarify. "I'm with child. (pause) Uhm, I've been told pregnant women shouldn't have X-rays."

Dr. Not-So-Bright then proceeds to tell me that many pregnant women go ahead and do it anyway.

Right.

Just like some pregnant women choose to continue to drink excessive amounts.

Or smoke crack.

Or go sky diving.

But that doesn't mean I'm going to do it.

I politely tell him that no thanks, I'll just wait six months and be on the safe side.

Dr. Not-So-Bright then tells me he won't be able to see if there's anything wrong with my teeth without the X-Rays, to which I tell him I'm fine with that.

But other than the X-ray incident, I liked him. He was nice, young, personable and found me to have no cavities, despite my refusal of the X-Ray.

Fast forward to Sweetie Pie's visit for the installation of his temporary crown. And where Dr. Not-So-Bright tells Sweetie Pie that they'll be working on tooth #19 today. Sweetie Pie tells him "I don't know what tooth #19 is, all I know, is this one hurts", pointing to his tooth. Dr. Not-So-Bright proceeds to argue with Sweetie Pie that he's pointing to the wrong tooth, and that tooth #19 is on the other side of his mouth.

Sweetie Pie proceeds to argue with the dentist for 10 minutes over which tooth is the tooth that needs to be fixing, until the doctor, to prove that Sweetie Pie is wrong proceeds to put some putty on the tooth that Sweetie Pie is pointing to, that supposedly causes extreme pain if the tooth is cracked and the nerve is exposed.

Cue to Sweetie Pie being in so much pain from said putty that he practically leaps out of the dentist's chair and ends up stuck on the ceiling a-la-Spiderman.

Dr. Not-So-Bright is then confused. "How weird!", he tells Sweetie Pie. "We must havev written 19 instead of 18 in your file."

Oh really? How interesting! Our not even three year old knows the difference between 18 and 19, but apparently, they don't teach you that in dental school.

Dr. Not-So-Bright then proceeds to numb Sweetie Pie. Or I should say, attempt to numb him.

Because instead of pricking him in the gum of the tooth that needs to be worked on, Dr. Not-So-Bright does it in Sweetie Pie's cheek, which Sweetie Pie has never experienced in his long history of dental work, and that I, with my once-in-my-life cavity have never experienced either.

Dr. Not-So-Bright comes back 10 minutes later and asks Sweetie Pie if the area is numb yet. Sweetie Pie tells him that his cheek is numb, but that he can still feel the cheek.

Dr. Not-So-Bright thinks Sweeetie Pie is wrong, and proceeds to tap him on the tooth, sending Sweetie Pie into another fit of agony.

"How strange!", Dr. Not-So-Bright says. "Let's try that again!"

Cue to Dr. Not-So-Bright giving Sweetie Pie a second shot in the cheek. Ten minutes go by, cheek more numb, tooth not.

Fast forward to two hours later, where Dr. Not-So-Bright has now given my huband eight shots in his cheek. And Sweetie Pie looks a little like Michael Phelp's bull dog or Walter Matthau at this point.

How Sweetie Pie, the man with no patience didn't speak up this entire time, I'll never know. I didn't think to ask, because I was laughing so hard when he told me the story, that I was trying to not send myself into labor from lack of breathing.

Dr. Not-So-Bright is extremely confused at this point and asks Sweetie Pie if this always happens. Which Sweetie Pie tells him that no, the first shot always works, but that it's usually in his GUM. Dr. Not-So-Bright then proceeds to tell Sweetie Pie that they're going to have to send him home, because they're only allowed to give him two more shots.

This is when Sweetie Pie loses it. He tells him like hell he's leaving without his temporary crown. He orders Dr. Not-So-Bright to give him another shot, but that this time it has to be in his gum.

Somehow, Dr. Not-So-Bright listens. Sweetie Pie, mere seconds later, has a numb tooth (and the right side of his face is paralyzed from the 8 shots in his cheek, but that's a different story) and the installation of the temporary crown is a success.

Last night, Dr. Not-So-Bright called to say that Sweetie Pie's permanent crown has arrived and that he should call to get it installed.

Yup, that's right folks, my husband is going back there one more time. He figures the crown is paid for and how badly can Dr. Not-So-Bright mess up under his surveillance?

Considering it took 24 hours for him to get feeling back in his face last time? I'd say the odds are pretty damn good myself.

Enough to say, I will be cancelling our January appointments that I'd made for Sweetie Pie and I and will be looking for a new dentist in the fall.

And please keep your fingers crossed that Dr. Not-So-Bright doesn't somehow make me a widow when Sweetie Pie goes back next week.

Love,

Catwoman.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

And I'm Back...

So first? I have to say that those of you who read me and have kids who are just over a year apart? You guys are either completely insane or the toughest beeyotches ever. Because having had an almost two-year old and an almost three year-old in my house for only a week, I don't know how you guys do it day in, day out.

Don't get me wrong, Little Man had fun with his cousin. The proof is here.


Falling Down is Hilarious from Catwoman InTexas on Vimeo.

But when they weren't having the best time together, they were spending the other 90 percent of their time fighting over the same toy or crying because the other one had committed some horrible toddler crime. My niece is returning to Canada with a very expanded English vocabulary, which includes "mine," "get away," "she touched me," and "she being mean."

Of course, when I dropped off Little Man at his school yesterday before driving my mom and niece to the airport, he begged me to let his cousin come to school with him. When I told him she couldn't, he freaked out and had to be physically dragged into the school crying and kicking, all while screaming his cousin's name, which just broke my heart. Last night, he kept asking for her and his grandmother, and it made me feel sad for him. Sad that she doesn't live closer, because they really do get along pretty well.

But right now, as I'm sitting here at almost 7 a.m. and can enjoy the silence, I can say that as much as I miss everyone, it's so nice to enjoy quiet again.

Oh, I'm sorry, did your head spin because I wrote that I missed everyone? Yes. I wrote it. Maybe it's the pregancy hormones. Maybe this is an improvement in my relationship with my mother. I don't know what it is, and I'm sure the trolls who previously wrote that I must be the problem are snickering, but this visit was actually fine. Seriously.

The only real incident, besides the sink one I posted about earlier in the week was when my mother answered the phone on the first ring during nap time without looking at who was calling on the call display and tossed me the phone. Which I HATE. There's a reason I won't give up call display, I must know if I want to talk to you before I answer (Yes, I'm talking about you, US Bank and your call-in offers of credit cards). And I got annoyed with her and she got pissy.

Other than that, it was surprisingly smooth sailing thanks to two toddlers and The Young & The Restless and backgammon games during naps. Oh, and the Olympics in the evening, so that Sweetie Pie and my choices of television entertainment couldn't be criticized like they normally are. Maybe it was just lightning in a bottle that all these factors combined to keep the fuel from the flame. Or maybe there has been growth on both sides, I don't know.

Either way, I'm happy it went well.

For Christmas, everyone's coming down, since Tiny Man will just be turning two months old, and I'm not traveling by plane during flu season with an infant who will have only had one round of shots. If he was just a month older, I'd be ok with it. So the parents are coming. My sister and my niece is coming. My crazy sister (you know, the Finding Nemo one) is also coming. Both my 87-year old grandfather and 82-year old grandmother (one maternal, one paternal, and they can't stand each other) and my Godmother are coming. If you can count that high, it means we have 8 people coming for Christmas. Five of them will be staying at our house. Not everyone will be here for the full 10 days (only my parents and crazy sister are staying that long, bring on the vodka), but there will be an overlap of six days where our house is filled with 11 people, two dogs and a cat.

And right now, I'm actually looking forward to it. Yes, you can mock me endlessly on December 29th for having said this on August 16th.

Love,

Catwoman.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Surviving

So far, I have not been led to drinking. My mother even stated that I looked good and had a ton of energy.

You might remember that I spent so much time cleaning last week, staying up late at night, waking up at 4:30 in the morning from stress and cleaning some more until 5:45, my usual wake up time, to the point that I had some spotting again.

Most people would think that the house was clean enough to eat off my floors, considering they were mopped twice a day for almost the week before my mother came. That even the insides of cupboards were washed and rearranged.

But apparently, not quite enough. Last night, when I asked my mother to wash some lettuce, she said to me "which of these sinks is the least dirty, because they look the same to me."

Yeah, I'd cleaned them both yet again yesterday morning, but whatever.

Little Man is going to be awful lonely when his cousin leaves, because they've been having a ton of fun when they haven't been getting on each other's nerves because my niece hasn't mastered the concept of sharing, unless you consider sharing to be to hit the other child on the head with the toy.

But they do look cute together when they get along.



Love,

Catwoman.

Friday, August 08, 2008

This is the Part Where I'm Really Going to Miss Booze

My parents are arriving today. Tonight, to be exact. Which means that really, by the time we get home from the airport, it'll be bedtime.

Did you see how much dread I typed this with? Is your computer screen flickering to convey the twitch in my eye right now?

Of course, when I speak of my parents, those of you who've read me long enough know that I have no issues with my dad. My dad is one of those people everyone loves, someone I strive to be like, so that when someone doesn't like me, I'm in total anguish, because damn it, they. must. love. me.

My mother, however, leads her life in a way that most people don't like her. And she's always surprised that she leaves mangled corpses in her path who then come back to life only to tell as many people as possible they don't like her.

I have spent every waking moment this week when I wasn't at work cleaning. Those of you who know me know that this is not typical Catwoman behavior. I've cleaned so much and stressed so much about this visit, that I had some mild spotting last night, freaking me out enough to make me decide to cut it out and decide that moving the couch to clean the carpet under it would have to be deemed unnecessary. But 10 dollars say that the first thing my mother does when she comes over is lift that couch and tell me that she can't believe I'd allow my child to live in a house that has dust bunnies under the couch.

Of course, that comment will come after she tells me that I've put on way too much weight for my pregnancy and how if I'd just lose 20 pounds, I'd be cute.

And I have to put up with this, with raging hormones, and no alcohol for seven days. And when I eventually snap, which will only be a tiny bit of the snapping I would do to anyone else, my mother will tell me that I'm so oversensitive, and that she's just telling me these things because she loves me.

Anyone want to trade places with me?

To make matters worse, my father, who at least acts as a buffer with his mere presence is deserting me on Tuesday and leaving me alone with my mother.

It's at times like these that I'm grateful that I have a child and that my parents are bringing down my two-year old niece. Because at least, this way, their shenanigans together might give my mother something else to focus on.

Why am I telling you all of this, because I'm sure your eyes are rolling in the back of your head by now? Only because my posting will probably be on the short side until next Friday, as I will be blogging when my mother is showering or busy inspecting my fan blades for dust.

But I will post all crazy comments for you, my favorite Internet people.

Please pray for me.

Love,

Catwoman.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Signs Your Toddler May Be Sleep Deprived

Last night, Little Man began screaming for me around 2:30 in the morning, which is not an ultra unusual event around here, as ever so often he will wake up to pee and since he won't get out of bed without permission (another one of his self-imposed rule, but one that I feel I can't complain about when BurghBaby reads this blog), he'll usually wail "MOOOOMMMYYYYYY! I HAVE TO GO PEEEEE PEEEEEE!" Which nothing gets a pregnant woman out of bed faster, running up the stairs than a toddler who's only been potty trained three months screaming those words. What's that you say? My husband? Why doesn't he do it?

You're not serious, are you? I challenge you tonight to get up at 2 in the morning, go to the other side of your home, say in a very childish voice at the top of your lungs "I NEED TO GO PEEEEEE PEEEEE!" and then wait to see how long it takes your better half to get there. Bonus points for you if he ever wakes up during your screaming. Extra bonus points if he shows up in under 10 minutes.

Last night, however, was different. This wasn't a normal wail about needing the bathroom, this was my name (well, my Mommy name), screamed over and over in the kind of anguish that makes your blood turn cold. I ran up the stairs, rushed into his room and found Little Man still sleeping on his tummy with his knees pulled in, thrashing and calling for me.

As soon as I began shushing him and touched his back to let him know I was there, he jumped up, latched onto me like a spider monkey with arms and legs aroung my torso and just trembled in my arms, his heart pounding so hard against me, that his baby brother began to kick back.

I held him for a long time, soothing him, part of me curious to get into his brain to find out what dream an almost three year-old can have that would be so traumatic, but most of me too afraid to ask and make him relive the terror. Eventually, he was calmed down enough, we both went to use the restroom and I decided to let him sleep with us for the rest of the night, because I know that as a child, there was nothing scarier than having a bad dream and then just being left in my room alone afterwards.

This morning, we were all exhausted from the incident, Satan's Dog shuffled around wishing he was human and was allowed coffee, and Little Man refused to get up. I finally coaxed him out of bed and this is where meltdown after meltdown began. I first made the mistake of giving him Fruity Cheerios, something he's had for breakfast for weeks now. Apparently? This was not an acceptable breakfast today, and I should have cleared it with him first.

So I offered him a fun yogurt. What's so fun about this yogurt, you ask? Nothing. It's just what I call 'toddler marketing.' It's the same technique I used last night when he wanted to eat ice cream before dinner and I sold him on raspberries instead by calling "The yummiest raspberries! In a bowl!" See? You probably want raspberries too, now don't you?

By the time I'd brought the yogurt to Little Man, he was entranced in Little Einsteins and was eating his cereal like he hadn't gotten upset 30 seconds before. And deep breath... No point in letting blood pressure rise when I'm six months pregnant.

While I was getting ready in the other room, I begin to hear wailing, like Little Man is seriously hurt. I rush into the living room, thinking the whole time that the dogs, who are usually the perpetrators of crippling toddler injuries, which include but are not limited to a light tap on the toddler's arm because of a wagging tail, are outside sniffing blades of grass, and couldn't be the cause of this screaming.

I find Little Man in a heap on the floor, the weight of the world on his shoulders too much for his little skinny legs to bear. I pick him up and hold him and ask him what happened. He is sobbing so hard that I can't understand anything, until I finally calm him down enough to find out that the television set? It had the gall to show a preview for a show he can't stand after the episode of Little Einsteins ended.

All I could say was "Are you freaking serious right now?"

Not my proudest parenting moment, but seriously. There is not enough alcohol in the world to deal with this, especially when even if there was enough alcohol, I'm not allowed to drink it for 2.5 more months.

Love,

Catwoman.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Total Inappropriateness

Last night, I made steaks for dinner. Little Man has started this slightly irritating habit that he will sit with us, eat most of his food, announce that he's done, be granted permission to go play, and a few minutes later, decide that he'd like to join us again.

Last night was no exception and after playing golf by himself in the living room for a while. He then came back and announced "I want to eat some beaver now."

Sweetie Pie and I giggled, because we're immature like that.

"Little Man, it's not beaver, it's beef."

Little Man ignores me completely as he settles into his chair.

"I like to eat beaver!"

Sweetie Pie: "Well good for you, son!"

Me: totally losing it and choking to death, while slapping Sweetie Pie in the arm.

Little Man: "Beavers don't make noise when you eat them."

Sweetie Pie: "Only if you do it wrong."

Me: "STOP IT! BOTH OF YOU!!!!!"

Love,

Catwoman.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Thirty-Five Months: My Letter to Little Man

I just realized that this is the last monthly letter that I will be writing before your third birthday. And you'll probably roll your eyes when you read this and you're older, because no one likes their mom to get all mushy and sentimental (which means you'll hate most of these letters, I guess), but that thought made my heart tighten and brought tears to my eyes. You're growing up. And with your third birthday looming over our heards, it's hard for me to deny it any longer. This is the part where people pat me on the head and tell me it's ok, that soon your brother will be here and I'll have a baby again. But the truth is, I don't want another baby to replace you. I want you to stay little and be able to pick you up whenever I want to and have you kiss me every time I ask you, even if it's twenty times in a row.



Some people hate the terrible twos. And at this point, I'm baffled by that. Maybe we just got off easy with you, I don't know, because except for the odd tantrum, it's never anything that can't be resolved with a good old time alone. Maybe we're just lucky, or maybe you feel bad for how terrible of an infant you were, when you refused to sleep, ever, and I would sit in front of your bouncy seat crying, begging you to fall asleep, because I had no idea what to do with a blob and couldn't find anything online besides playing peek-a-boo. Do you have any idea how hard it is to play peek-a-boo with a one-month old? It's the most mind-numbing task ever. And I won't even talk about the nights. So maybe, as you got older, you thought to yourself "you know, I almost led my parents to go insane, let me make it up to them by being the coolest toddler ever."



And we are lucky, because you really are the coolest toddler ever. You're funny, you're articulate, you're smart as a whip and you're the sweetest, most gentle person I've ever met. Sure, you're a little bossy and you constantly tell your father and I what to do, like you're the possessed director of your own play and we are simply the puppets in your life, put on this Earth for you to control every second of the day. But you have such a way about you, that you never come off as over-bearing.



Your teachers love you, because no one loves to enforce rules more than you. They've repeatedly told us stories about you firmly telling the rowdy kids to sit down during library time or nudging kids along who aren't cleaning up after painting. I wouldn't be surprised to show up one day to pick you up and find your teachers in the back of the school smoking, while you run the class.

You love rules, in fact, you regularly make up your own, like when you told your Aunt S. that you're not allowed to touch babies, so that you wouldn't have to be slobbered on by her friend's six-month old.

I'm always amused when we're out to eat and a kid at a table nearby won't stay seated or begins to scream. You get this horrified look on your face, like you believe that this single child will give toddlers everywhere a bad reputation. It's a little like I feel when a Canadian news story threatens to damage the perfect image of the country. You always turn to us to tell us why that child's behavior isn't acceptable, and how the child's parents need to put them in time alone. I'm giving you a few months, before you get the courage to get up and tell the child yourself that their behavior is not acceptable for a restaurant. Which is exactly why you will be starting Tae Kwon Do as soon as possible, because being the enforcer of rules also means that you can get your ass kicked on a regular basis. You might as well be a black belt rule enforcer, so that you have a chance to survive middle school.



Earlier this month, you saw your first fireworks display. It was something that your teachers had talked to the class about, and your teacher told me that she hoped we were taking you to a fireworks show for the Fourth of July, because you were apparently the most excited at the idea in your class. You talked about it all day and when it was finally time for the fireworks to start and the "booms" began, you got this uncertain look on your face. You never cried or asked to leave, but instead you kept quietly chanting to yourself "there's no need to be scared," like if it was a personal mantra that your teachers had taught you to get through it.

You love to test my creativity by telling me random statements like "the elephant swims up the tree," followed by the order to "sing it, Mama!" So I've become a lyricist now, adding to my ever-growing resume as a mother, which includes skills like animal sound imitators, storyteller, boo boo remover and recorder of shows that you might suddenly decide you like.



I once got into a huge fight with one of your aunts, because she had the gall to tell me that you shouldn't change your life for your kids. To some degree, I believe that, as we've dragged you to all sorts of places, on trips, to restaurants, since practically the day you were born. What made me mad, was that she insisted that any sacrifice made for your kids was something to scoff at. She obviously has no children, which is partly why I wanted to beat the crap out of her. Because really? You have changed our lives, and we've had to adapt. Although you allow us to skip the occasional nap, we do have to ensure that you get your sleep. I don't consider it to be a "sacrifice," but rather it's my responsibility as your parent to make sure that you get the rest you need to be at your best and be able to suck in all of the knowledge you can.



But as I was thinking about this again, the other day, I came to a realization. As much as I try to teach you things, complex language, French, counting, addition, why yelling "BUNNY!" while chasing one is not the best way to approach one, I've come to the realization that you have taught me so much more. Because of you, I try to be a better person. I try to keep the house a little tidier, knowing that you like everything in its place. I laugh more, and I'm happier when you're around. Earlier this month, we were playing outside and you asked me "do we have to hurry?", a heartwrenching reminder that it's ok to slow down and just enjoy life, that showing up for work five minutes late is better than making you rush constantly. You've taught me that the quickest way to turn around the worst day is a cuddle on the couch with a bowl of ice cream.

Most of all, you've taught me unconditional love. The kind of love that I didn't think my heart was capable of feeling. The kind of love that engrosses your every thought, your every fiber, your every being. No longer can I watch shows about people who lose children, because they literally shake me to my core. The very thought of losing you is so unbearable that it leaves me unable to breathe. And this is when I know that no matter where life takes you, no matter what decisions you make, I will always support you and do my best to understand you. Because nothing, I mean absolutely nothing you do would make me want to not have you in my life.



I loved you the day you were born. But every day for the past 1,064 days, that love has grown exponentially. Have you changed my life? Absolutely. And I can never be grateful enough to you for doing so.

I love you my Little Man,

Maman.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Starting Rumors Without Even Trying

Last night, my sister-in-law was in a fender bender. She wasn't injured, she'd simply failed to stop herself from smashing into the back end of a Mercedes convertible driven by a rich Plano cheerleader, who was, like, totally devastated, because, like, OMFG!, her dad, was, like, totally going to kill her.

My sister-in-law's vehicle wasn't driveable, and I was asked by Sweetie Pie to go rescue his sister, which considering she's our free babysitter, I was more than happy to do, even if it meant that I wouldn't be able to watch Project Runway until Friday night now, a whole two days after it has aired, and when someone shows this kind of sacrifice, surely they get put at the top of Saint Peter's list, despite a slutty summer in Barcelona when they were 18, right?

I picked up Little Man first, and told him that we had to hurry because his Aunt had an accident. I didn't want him to worry, so I assured him that she was ok, but that her car was broken.

The accident happened in the cheerleader's neighborhood, so she had my s-i-l follow her to her million-dollar home. When we got there, the tow truck hadn't even arrived, so I decided to take Little Man to the nearest park. Which for any of you who live within 50-miles of a wealthy neighborhood, holy crap, you totally need to hit their parks, because DUDE! They have fancy toys on springs and things that spin your toddler upside down and all sorts of other fancy things and there's no gum on any of it!

We played for close to an hour (and by we, I mean Little Man, because I was wearing black dress pants and a long sleeved dress shirt and simply sat in the shade where it was probably a cool 102 degrees (40 Celsius), sweating copious amounts of fluid while Tiny Man kicked me to beg me to get inside the freaking air conditioning.

When my s-i-l finally called to say that her car was being loaded on the tow truck, I told Little Man that we had to go get her.

As I was strapping him into his car seat, he said to me "Aunt S. went pee pee in her pants?"

Confused, I asked him "What? Where did you get that idea?"

As toddlers are wont to be, his answer was simply a repetition of his question "Aunt S. went pee pee in her pants?

- Uhm... No, baby. She had an accid... OOOOOH!"

Because when you're two? You don't so much no about car accidents. But you sure know about wetting yourself in front of all your friends because you whispered to the teacher in a loud gym that you had to go and somehow she didn't hear you over all the screaming.

So now, Little Man is probably thinking that for her next birthday? We totally need to give his Aunt all of the Pull-Ups he no longer uses.

Love,

Catwoman.