Thursday, June 29, 2017

Ella's Deli, Paw Partol, and the Price Is Right

 Best summer parenting tip so far:  WATCH THE PRICE IS RIGHT WITH YOUR KIDS.  It's our best hour of the day (not really b/c that sounds super sad, but kinda because there's no fighting, and we're totally hanging out.)

Last week, I wrote a whole bunch of posts in a row and scheduled them, but I wasn't totally happy with that because they were all just kind of meh and not really connected to our life.  But this week, I have had zero time to post anything, and that's not ideal, either.  So, who the hell knows.

I do know that my work/life balance is off and skewing all to the LIFE side.  Which is troubling because we need to do things like PAINT THE BASEMENT.  Also, I need to work on my book and my HUGE spring class prep and finish fall hiring, etc.  I am going to have to actually go to the office after the 4th.  But!  The thing I am actually working on right now-- teaching my summer class- is going great and I am using all of my work time for that, which is not necessarily a bad thing.  I just need a few extra hours in my day.  Every day.

On Sunday, Ben did some light yard work (he is obsessed with trimming the bushes in a non metaphorical way) and some BASEBALL because everything we do is baseball these days, and I took the little kids on an east side adventure.
 We NEVER venture east of the capitol, so everyone was excited.  And by everyone, I mean me.
 First stop: kosher deli with crazy ice cream drinks and a carousel.
 Dorothy opted to ride on the bench because merry go rounds still freak her out.  BUT she was all super brave and rode behind me, which was huge.
 LOVE seeing a fire extinguisher in the middle of a rickety old wooden carousel.
 The restaurant itself is a bit of a hot mess, full of all this weird stuff running on cables overhead.  THEY LOVED IT.
 Also the food!  Perfect for kids and parents who care not for nutritional standards.
 Jack was torn between chicken noodle or matzoh ball and then realized he didn't have to decide.
 My bagel and lox came with a soup bowl of french fries (?)
 The cotton candy drinks were the highlight of Dorothy's meal-- maybe life so far.

 After lunch, we rode the carousel again, and Dorothy thought she was brave enough to try the pink horse, which was clearly scary as hell.
 She held my neck the whole time, so I got to do some squats as the horse moved up and down-- multi-tasking.
 Seriously, this was a successful stop, and I haven't been here since Harry was a baby.  I promised the kids we could go back for the last day of summer break, which Dorothy has confused with the last day of swim lessons, so I look forward to that tantrum soon.
 Next, we went to a Paw Patrol Meet the Pups event at a bowling alley and the bowling alley had an awesome lady bowler hall of fame wall that reminded me of the sorority composite pictures that used to hang (and I mean still do hang) in the Chi Omega house at Bradley.
 The Paw Patrol hour was a lot of fun.  The kids saw the pups up close and personal
 There was even a story time,
 and they played games.
 Plus! Dancing!
 And it closed with the all-important photo op:

 We needed to make a super crucial stop for angel food cake on the way home, and Dorothy rammed the shit out of everyone's ankles with a tiny cart.  We also listened to a bunch of NPR's Wow in the World, and the kids LOVE it.  I highly recommend it next time you are in the car and sick of screaming at everyone to shut up.
 In other news, I continue to be totally obsessed with Aldi and am sad that I ever shopped anywhere else.  I ran in for just a few things the other day and then suddenly found myself struggling to push a bursting car to the checkout line, and ALL OF THIS STUFF, which included 3 bottles of wine, organic produce, dairy, and snacks, and forty-four cent local eggs (plus so much junk that a random dudebrah asked me if I was having a 4th of July party.  Twice.) was only $160.  WHAT THE HELL?!
 You guys!  We are slaughtering the library reading program.
 And it has been su[er cold here (like 50s and 60s), so we had a FIRE.
 Ben is great at FIRE.
 Cooper and Dorothy were just in it for the s'mores.
 Harry got a lil sticky.
 I cannot remember if I have already complained about this or not, but the heater broke at our pool, and the weather is so crappy that the water is too cold to swim in, so we have no events (besides The Price Is Right) to anchor our days.  So, we are religious about our commitment to story time.
 This week, they came home from the library, grabbed ice cream cones, and immediately read their books.

 And they were still into their books the next morning.
 Jack made dinner last night, and it was THE CUTEST.
 He also made chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter cups in the center and PB frosting.  They were so good that Beatrix licked the wrappers in the garbage while I cleaned the kitchen.  To which I said SOLIDARITY, SISTER.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Major facial injury and so many kids they can have their own sleepover with no guests necessary

We actually had a really fun and great weekend, and we did some things we don't usually do.  BUT.  I cannot even right now because I am still ruminating on the events of Friday.


The heater is broken at our pool, and the weather is NOT cooperating.  It's a high of 65 here today, and that's how it's been for a week (we are wearing jeans and fleeces, people).  Normally in late June a broken pool heater wouldn't be a big deal, but this late June is cool (which means it'll be 95-degrees in October and the kids will have outgrown all of their clothes, and the stores will only have winter wear on the shelves, BTW), so the water in the pool is below 77-degrees.  Swim lesson have been cancelled, and I haven't been able to take all of the kids to the pool because Dorothy HATES the cold water-- who can blame her?  (New heater going in on 7/3-- something about casting a new fire block?  IDK)

On Friday, though, I packed a lunch and my laptop and took the 3 boys over there at 11, planning to stay all afternoon and meet friends around 2.  I figured I could do the rest of a project I've been working on, update my online class a bit, AND read the excellent library book I was devouring all before my friends showed up, at which time it might be late enough in the day for a glass of wine. (This is why I am fat, by the way.  Thin people do not eat 2  desserts after dinner-- strawberry shortcake and then dark chocolate caramel candies-- or fries twice a day, and they also don't start drinking wine in the late afternoon.)

I got my work done before lunch, and the boys worked on their flips on the board.  Now that harry can back flip (thanks diving lessons!), he and Jack are a little competitive.  We all had a picnic together by the tennis courts, and then we came back inside the pool around 12:45, them excited to flip some more, and me ready to read my book for a blissful hour in the sun.

I was just setting up my towel when Cooper came screaming over to me, and I noticed that the lifeguard was standing up on his chair, craning his neck toward the diving well.

Because Jack back flipped too close to the board and smashed his face on the board!

Luckily, he did not pass out and was able to pull himself out of the water.  I walked with him to the lifeguard room where he was swarmed by guards who brought him ice backs and had him sit down.  We all started in horror at his face.  Right between his eyes was swollen so huge he sort of looked like a rhinoceros.   His nose was also swollen and the top of it was bleeding.  The man who had been sitting next to me came up and told me he was a plastic surgeon.  he examined Jack's nose and said he thought he just needed ice and a bandaid.  I was like WHAT THE BLEEP EVER, BUDDY and called the pediatrician who said we should go straight to the ER.

(We stopped home to out on dry clothes, get snacks, and jettison 2 kids.  I am really good thanks to Harry and his effusions at packing up for the ER: phone and charger, iPad and extra battery, book for me, book for the kid, granola bars, water bottles, a sweater for me and sweatshirt for him, and socks and shoes for both since ERs are gross. 5 minutes and I am ready to go and stay all day).

On the way there, I noticed that Jack was sniffling a lot because his nose was dripping a clear fluid that could have been pool water or could have been BRAIN FLUID, who's to say?

We got right in, which was awesome/scary, and we saw a radiologist and an ER doc in like 5 minutes.  They kept Jack there for observation for quite some time, but we made it home by 4:15, which was perfect because Ben had to leave for Harry's baseball practice, other baseball practice, and hockey, meaning me and the little 3 were on our own.

Final analysis: Jack is fine and maybe I should have heeded the advice of the pool doctor.  I texted Ben "Good news no stitches.  Bad news: Possible spinal fracture" and he freaked out.  I meant to say "possible SINUS fracture" but it turned out to be a hilarious good news/bad news text if you think about it.  And no fractures they don't think-- definitely no spinal ones or sinus ones.  Just a banged up face and some freaked out parents.  Phew!

Beatrix, doing what she does:
 Jack checked out a cookie book from the library and wanted to make these brownie/cookies-- and I was thrilled, of course.  They were delish.
 Horsing around after baseball:

 In the ER:
 I was not my usual meal planning self on Friday night, so I made this for the kids and then let them have a slumber party in the basement.
 And the snow cone truck drove down our street, red-letter day FOR SURE.

We woke Jack up and brought him into our room in case he had a head injury, and he was so confused when we were moving him that we almost took him to the ER.  The next morning, he was like HOW DID I GET HERE? and we were concerned again, but then we realized he was legit confused since he didn't go to sleep in his bed and didn't wake up where he went to sleep.  Poor kid.  It's Monday now, and his face looks almost normal.  What a lucky fall, I guess?

Friday, June 23, 2017

Summer daze

It should surprise absolutely no one that Dorothy is wearing her recital costume basically every damn day.
 Harry is seriously the best kid in the word.  He bought all of his siblings gifts with his birthday money just because they asked for something when they were shopping with him.  What a sweetheart.  He also bought a left-handed hockey stick and luckily discovered it in the parking lot because oops.
 Cooper opened the fridge, and a container of salsa flew out and shattered and went everywhere, including the ceiling.  Which of course the kids thought was HILARIOUS. And then as soon as I had returned the laundered kitchen rug to its spot in front of the fridge, I opened it up and onion dip flung itself out and splattered, not quite as dramatically.  This is because our fridges and freezers and cabinets are BURSTING with food because we shopped at ALDI this week and spent $150 less than usual on ALL OF THE THINGS.  I will probably not have to go back there for at least 10 days except for some fruit and some more Rosé.  It's insane, and if you are NOT shopping at ALDI, I want to know (like Sally Field in Steel Magnolias) Whyyyyyyyyyy?  Seriously, it's worth it just for the grapefruit sparkling water.  I am not even going to mention the 1.69 ORGANIC grapes or the $6 ORGANIC beef or even the $.44 LOCAL EGGS.

Anyway-- salsa on the ceiling-- that's what Ben's cleaning.
 Sweet Bea.
 OMFG the WRAPPERS.  They are everywhere.  And so are the dishes.  This haul come from downstairs AFTER I asked everyone if they had cleaned up all of their wrappers.  And the Kit Kat wrapper jammed in the water bottle?  Doubly annoying because SOMEONE  **cough cough Cooper cough cough** ATE ALL OF THE KIT KATS from the huge Costco-box of Kit Kats I was keeping in the freezer to take to the pool, so I don't have to pay $2/Kit Kat at the snack shack.
 Movie night!  We watched Speed.  I think they liked it, but it;s hard to tell because I fell asleep.
 Oh, Cooper.
 Harry can back flip!
 Cooper made a towel fort with space for his shoes, hat, and fidget cube.

 We went to an amazing farm that is the home of a ridiculously delicious local bakery that makes gourmet pizzas and serves cookies and wine and hippy soda and ice cream.  Basically heaven.
 Wine in the grass on a quilt.  Perfect hispter wannabe summer.

 Raspberry mint ice cream that tasted like weed.
 Hipsters/hippies/posers like us.
Want to hear even MORE (Of course you do)? Check out my latest Madison Moms Blog post here.