Sunday, May 31, 2009

I'm a good daughter...

VOTE for my mom's blog! It is not hard to do, and it will make her very happy which, in turn, will make me happier when I go visit her for two weeks in July and she can talk about how many people were nice enough to vote for her, instead of how I was a bad daughter by not telling my friends to vote for my mom. We all win! So vote for Swaneesinger! (That's her blog.)

See? She's used to winning stuff! (Don't make her mad!)

Sti-sti-sti-sticker Face, Sti-sti-sticker Face!

Monday, May 25, 2009

At a Loss

Here's the scenario: it's 11:30 PM, everyone's asleep but me, when all of a sudden both twins begin screaming at the top of their lungs. I rush into the room and am not sure what to do. I go back and forth between each screaming girl and find nothing noticeably wrong. The diapers are dry, it's not too hot or cold, no one's leg is caught in the crib slat. They are both half asleep and just happen to be experiencing the same nightmare at the same time. Normally, in this circumstance, Ben takes one baby and I take the other and the problem is solved. However, each time I go to comfort one girl, the neglected one cries even harder. I even try taking them both out to sit on the couch with me, but that fails miserably. So what in the world do I do? I finally had to leave the room and I just turned off the monitor. I can hear the screams and thumps upstairs and I'm just hoping it subsides. Seriously, does anyone have any suggestions? I've got 8 weeks to go and it's bound to happen again!

This single mom gig is a bit out of control. I don't think mixing it with twins necessarily makes the best formula for a sane person. Please try to avoid it. And please let the girls not learn to climb out of their cribs until Ben comes home again.

Wish me luck...

P.S. Ethan begged to sleep in my bed and so I finally gave in. About an hour ago, I hear a loud thump and he has fallen out of the bed on to the hardwood floor. He doesn't cry but is incredibly disoriented and keeps walking around in circles and making jerky movements. Not only that, but I find that he has peed in my bed. He is so banished back to his own room, and could this night BE any more awesome? Mila just needs to have to throw up, and it will be one for the record books. Sidenote: Mila is hilarious when she throws up, screaming "Oh no! I can't take this! Anything but this! I've got to do this alone, Mom!!" DRAMA EXTRAORDINAIRE. I think the whole neighborhood wakes up.

Good night?

Friday, May 22, 2009

The Awesomeness of May

Yeah, so I'm not good at blogging these days. I'm starting to put it into the same category as sending out cards and making crafts and doing kids' hairdos, that category having the title "Things I am Horrible at Doing." I don't even make comments any more--too much work. And remember when I said I was going to make my blog private? Yeah, WAY too much work. I still might, some day...

You know who is a serial blogger? My mom. She wrote this in honor of me being born and she has tons of comments from strangers who now know really random things about me. She LOVES leaving comments and I admire her passion. I do! I just live in the blog world vicariously through her. It's much easier and just as exciting. None of the work and all of the glory!

But, blogging or no, May is still awesome (except for the part that I am a single mom for 10 weeks-blergh.)

Here are some exciting pictures for your May viewing pleasure:

When the kids had a day off of school, we headed to the zoo, of course! The Demings were there as well.

Extreme Giraffe Close-up

The Elephant Show

A giant elephant sculpture

Mila and Ethan, on the train

Lucy found this turtle shell and took it as her own. She actually manhandled some older children who tried to play in it.

Partying at the Clarks. I believe this was taken while "Poker Face" was playing...

My favorite new shoes. I had my toes painted to match them, natch.

Birthday dinner at Bangkok Grill--I ate Thai food for 24 hours straight--heaven!

Breakfast on the patio. Lane's the nudie.

Tanya and I as Rosalind and Celia. Our costumes are to die for. And yet quite heavy and cumbersome. I've stepped on Tanya's train and ripped it more than once. Clumsy!

April and I--she plays my evil mother in the show. Her wig is a character all on its own.

Pagey and I as smokin' shepherdesses.

With Cody, in our wedding get-up.

Blushing brides.

The whole gang. Love them! Only one more show to go!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

"Where's Daddy?"

I think that having Ben gone for this Mother's Day has kind of made it the best Mother's Day yet. Before you accuse me of lying or taking crazy pills, hear me out first.

In the past, Mother's Day has sometimes sort of frustrated me because I don't like holidays that are accompanied with unrealistic expectations. Birthdays ceased being that awesome to me some time ago, when I realized that I was constantly setting myself up for disappointment when I would expect it to be the BEST. DAY. EVER! You always think it's going to actually feel like a different day, in the same magical way it always felt when you were a kid. But really, you just kind of do the same things you do every other day but then secretly think things like, "Why didn't that cashier smile at me more? Doesn't she know what day it is?" I have learned to just plan out a few semi-special things that I want to do, and stop looking for the parade to come down my street.

Mother's Day is much the same. People will constantly say to you, "I hope you're not going to do ANYTHING on Mother's Day!" And I want to say, "Really? Is that what you do? Nothing? Because I do not believe you for one second!" I just don't like to go into Mother's Day with silly ideas of lounging around, surrounded by quiet, obedient, non-argumentative children that magically transform for a day. It ain't gonna happen.

What does happen is that, because of all of these ridiculous expectations that other people create for Mother's Day, we can end up feeling grouchy, unworthy, under-appreciated, and overwhelmed. We become Mother's Day martyrs. "Woe is me, I'm a mom, and no one knows it--where's my mani-pedi and birthstone necklace? Waahhh!" And then we end up placing all of the burden on our poor husbands, who barely see it coming: "What did you get me? Why haven't you dressed the kids for church? Why can't you keep those kids quiet during my four hour nap? What's for dinner?" We become entitled, whining pains in the neck.

And so the frustration comes for me because while I find myself giving in to the Mother's Day blahs, I recognize the irony in the situation at the same time. Shouldn't Mother's Day actually be a day to celebrate being a mother, perhaps by enjoying our children rather than trying to flee them? Isn't that maybe where the problem lies? Instead of creating all of these unrealistic ideas for this day for ourselves and others, why don't we combat them by actually saying, "I chose this job, it's pretty dang awesome, and here's how you do it!"

Ben's in New York today, leaving me with no one to nag. And so because I had no choice about the whining (kids don't care), I only had one choice left. My attitude. I could be super-awesome-single-mom, or super-sad and full of self-pity. I chose the former. I made sure I took plenty of time this morning to get everyone ready, including myself. I wore my cute dress a la 1940's and curled my hair and added a flower headband. I made the cookies for the Primary kids for singing awesome for their moms, loaded up my kids, bags, and Primary props in the car, and arrived at church 10 minutes early. Even though I had asked a teenage girl to sit with us beforehand, neither Lucy nor Lane would go to her because they both wanted me. So both girls sat on my lap. It was a balancing act, and if Ben had been there, you better believe I would have put on my drama queen hat and rolled my eyes and sighed with exasperation. But he wasn't. And so I didn't. And you know what? The girls were super cute and I really enjoyed them. I don't tell you all of this so you'll think, "Wow, Hailey sure thinks she's super awesome!" Believe me, I don't. But I like to choose to feel super awesome.

We did have to go out into the hall eventually, after my lap became too small and the girls' crying too loud, and when we did, Lane came over to me and asked, "Mommy, where's my Daddy?" I told her he was in New York and then, in true Lane fashion, she went and stared out the window, with the biggest, poutiest bottom lip I've ever seen. I could have easily resented Ben at that moment. I could have said, "I don't know, where is he? Certainly not here!" But instead, I found myself appreciating him even more for all that he does to help me when he is home on Sundays. A tiny shift in attitude goes a long way, folks.

And so I might even ship Ben off every Mother's Day, because I think maybe it's exactly what I need to feel grateful, valuable, and incredibly humble. I wonder what he would think if I proposed a get-away for me over Father's Day?

And speaking of Ben, he just called to say he was trying to figure out how to FedEx me some cupcakes from Crumbs Bake Shop. And I didn't even have to roll my eyes or whine once.

***Latest update: I ended up spending part of Mother's Day evening at the Urgent Care with Ethan, who needed stitches after gashing his head open on a metal bridge at a playground. I figured you can't get more mother-in-the-trenches than that! Thanks to Rachel, who immediately abandoned her own Mother's Day festivities to come and stay with the girls.