Thursday, May 31, 2012

Where do babies come from?

For most of my adult life, I didn't think I wanted to have any kids.  In all honesty I never really gave it much thought.  I continued on with the idea of offspring hangin' out somewhere in the vicinity of Mars...until we got married.  Then pretty much every single person I knew started asking when we were going to have kids.  I had a very standard answer:  I have a bar, a dog and a Travis.  No need for more things to take care of.

And then 3 years later we were in Platteville.  And I went to the bathroom.  And there were MatchBox cars in the bathtub.  And in a split second, something changed.  When we got home that night, I casually mentioned to Travis how cute I thought the cars in the bathtub were.  He looked up kinda suddenly and I saw it in his face.  He saw the cars too and something changed for him too.  In that moment in a bathroom in Platteville, looking at MatchBox cars that were forgotten when the house was being cleaned, we each realized we wanted MatchBox cars in our bathtub.

Enter Alex T. Julius.

Last night, after the hectic hours between getting home and getting the beast to bed, I went to turn the light off in the bathroom, and on the floor mat between the sink and the tub, two little wet footprints took my breath away.  Now I can add wet Alex footprints to the list of things I never knew I always wanted.
Alex, Trevor, fart noises.
Stay classy.


Alex still loves loves love to be naked.  He thinks it's hilarious.  And if you try to put clothes on him, he runs away squealing and laughing like a crazed piglet.  He asks if he can be a "naked booooooy" about 6 times daily on average.

This was his response when I said he needed to not be naked anymore the other day.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Sure, why not?

The amount of mental energy getting spent on the excretion processes of my child's body is just getting annoying.  He is still doing great at daycare.  He is also still fooling me into believing he has any interest in using anything other than his pants for bathroom activities when he is not at daycare.

I had pretty much given up on trying to make him use the bathroom at home for now and I was ok with it.  Pressuring him into it is not gonna do anything other than irritate both us, so why do it right?  He'll get there.  He is not quite 3 years old.  We'll figure it out.  I was ok with this.

Then yesterday when I got there to pick him up, the teacher got all excited and asked if he wanted to tell me about his day.  And he did!  No accidents!  Yay!  Let's jump and down and high five!  Another accident free day at daycare must mean he really is ready and we should totally not put a diaper on!

He invited me to play with some trucks and I happily accepted for a couple minutes.  Then I told him I was going to get his stuff and we should get going.  He agreed.  Good good.  I came back 39 seconds later and his shorts were soaking wet.  Really?  Are you kidding me dude?  You went 8&1/2 hours without pissing in your pants, but you just couldn't manage to maintain that ability this last time?  It is seriously like he switches off Potty Training Mode in his brain when he sees me.  

I took a deep breath to soothe my frustration and reminded him to tell me if he needs to pee.  He assured me he didn't need to go.  Well no shit.  Your soaking wet shorts and now also pee-soaked socks were pretty clear indicators that your bladder emptying needs have been fulfilled.  We went into the bathroom and in all of my brilliance, I figured since he just peed, we could replace the soaked underwear with clean ones and be on our way to a single accident day.  Is anyone else impressed with my level of stupidity?  We were home for maybe 30 minutes, my phone rang and distracted me from asking him if he had to pee every other second.  I ran into the kitchen, grabbed my phone and came back outside to see him on all fours, but with straight knees and elbows like some sort of Pee Monster Bridge, with pee pouring out of his shorts.  I am now convinced we need to set up some sort of savings account to pay for the therapist we are going to need to help him learn how to deal with the embarrassment of wearing diapers to prom.

I was looking for my sanity, but then I realized it's swishing around in the wash machine with every pair of shorts my son owns.  Hopefully it will come out pee-free and refreshed.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Shoulda Had a V8

Yesterday, while trying to coerce Alex into leaving the super duper exciting toys in the baby room to go potty and then leave, I called him Alan.  Just straight up called him the wrong name.  I didn't even stumble over it.  Just, "Alan!  Let's go!"  I don't even know anyone named Alan.  And it took me a couple long quiet seconds to realize I called out the wrong name.  While my brain synapses were sloooowly firing and giving me a What the Hell Was That signal, another mom just looked at me and was like, "ummm...did you just call him Alan?"  Yep. Sure did.  Impressed?

I get to work from home today which means the mutt gets to go with in the car to take Alex, not Alan, to day care.  Alex loves it because he gets some quality time with his "friend dog Aiden."  Aiden loves it because she can stick her head out the window for a split second, bring it back in suddenly, conduct a full body sneeze orchestra, and then stick her head back out the window.  Lather, rinse, repeat.  I love it because I have a furry little companion with me on the ride home...and I don't have to close all of the windows to make sure she doesn't bust through a screen while I am gone.  Oh, and I don't have to load my bed up with various household items to make sure she doesn't jump up there and pee on my new memory foam mattress topper.  So basically, wins all around.

On the way home this morning, I actually pointed out a school bus to her.  To the dog.  I said to my dog, "Look!  There's a school bus!"  That is how well this child has me trained.  Now if I could just remember his name we would be in business.

I. Am. Losing. It.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Baby Blues

On Friday evening, Alex was playing on his swing set so I took the opportunity to paint my toe nails for the wedding we were attending Saturday.  I figured since he was busy loading and unloading fish to his "boat" I would have ample time to make my little piggies pretty.  Yeah.  He played for about .4 seconds after I opened the jar of polish.

I got one nail done and suddenly he was standing next to my hunched over body asking what I was doing.  I thought the painting project was blatantly obvious and required no explanation, but still informed him I was painting my toe nails.  He bent down to make sure my work was adequate and quickly stood up, stuck his foot out and declared he wanted blue toes too.

I think I did a pretty good job...and they totally accent his motorcycle, no?  He, by the way, is super proud to show anyone and everyone, and excitedly tell them "Mama did it for me!"

Tuesday, May 22, 2012


This morning I reached a huge milestone in parenting.

All was going smoothly this morning, Alex snuggled up on the couch while I got ready, and aside from feeling like crap I was running right on time.  And then I sat down to get Alex dressed.  And I pulled off his pj's top and saw what I thought was a smudge of chocolate on his chest.  Nope.  Not chocolate.  A freaking tick!  And it was just me, Big Al, and the mutt...and she is useless unless you need someone to be barked at.  Pretty sure the tick wasn't coming out for that.  Hold it together Julius, you cannot curl up in a ball in the corner and gently rock until this thing goes away.

I stopped myself from freaking and went and got the rubbing alcohol.  I soaked that little sucker.  Nothin'.  Legs didn't even wiggle.  And it wasn't all full of MY CHILD'S BLOOD.  The stupid thing was dead.  But still stuck in his chest.  I swear someone somewhere told me you are not supposed to pull these stupid things out, so when the alcohol didn't work, I called Travis.  His only idea was to Google it.  Which I did and landed on the CDC website and they told me to pull it out.

While I was surfing the web to figure out how to care for my child, Travis asked if I was feeling any better.  Thank you for asking honey, but no, I do not feel any better, but I cannot deal with that right now.  There are bigger things afoot.  Like a TICK IN MY SON'S CHEST.  He apologized profusely for not being there to deal with it.  Which again is very nice, but doesn't solve the situation at hand, so I got off the phone and armed myself with a tweezers.

I instructed Alex to hold still and just watch Mickey Mouse and I started pulling.  And pulling and pulling and pulling.  His skin was all stretched out and I was on the verge of freaking out and finally the little bastard popped out.  Deader than a door nail.  But I did it!  I sucked it up, put on my Super Mom cape, and took care of the nasty little thing.

After it popped out, Alex just looked up at me, "Fanks Mama."  You bet kiddo.  I will always be here to remove horrible nasty disgusting parasites from your tiny little body.  And I will do my best to wait until you are out of ear shot to freak the fuck out.


Monday, May 21, 2012

Super Bodily Fluid Sunday

Potty training is going great!  At school.  At home?  Still not so much.  Every day I pick him up from school he has a sucker in his hand as his reward for staying dry all day.  We come home, he goes to the bathroom once and then every other time I ask him to sit on the toilet, it ends in a screaming fit.

He also is juuuust about over his cold.  Still some coughing here and there, but no substantial sickiness.  Me on the other hand is another story.  This one got me.  I still feel like poo and cannot get rid of the cough and sore throat.  Lamesauce.  I am working from home today...well this afternoon any way.  When I got home from taking Alex to day care, I laid down on the couch for a minute...and woke up 3&1/2 hours and 4 missed calls later.  Whoopsiedoodle.

Yesterday we went to a fun plant store that has some chickens and goats and peacocks to feed.  Alex had used the toilet instead of his pants twice and he said he wanted to wear underwear, so I gave it a shot.  On the way to the store he slammed a bunch of juice and then had a mini coughing fit.  And then puked all over himself.  Luckily we were right near a gas station so we pulled over, cleaned him off with the super sanitary and soft paper towels that are hanging above the windshield washer thingys, changed his clothes and got back on our journey.  We were having a great time feeding the fat little goats and then Alex turned around and had that long stare in his eyes.  And immediately had pee running down his legs.

Not really sure how he had any juice left in his body since he had puked it all over himself and his car seat 30 minutes prior, but there we were, headed to the car to change him once more.  Me with an exhausted, sickly look on my face and him looking like he just got off a 7 hour horseback ride he was walking so bow legged so his pee pants wouldn't rub together.

Needless to say there is some laundry being worked in to the daily grind today.

Thursday, May 17, 2012


With Alex being sick and Travis having a completely inflexible job, I spent an awful lot of time with the beast Monday mid-morning through Wednesday morning.  By the time we got home from daycare yesterday, I could feel my patience running real thin-like.  But he wasn't doing anything to use up my patience, so I couldn't figure out what my problem was.  I feel like shit due to his excellence in germ spreading, but that wasn't quite it either.

And then I figured it out.  During the sick-kid time frame, I heard the word "mom" no less than 10,918,347,892,837,492 times.  No joke.  Every single time I wasn't within his eyesight, "MOM!"  Every time I went to the bathroom, every time I went upstairs, every time I let the dog in or out...MOM!

The thing is, he wasn't trying to be obnoxious.  For the most part, MOM! was followed with, "Will you come watch TV with me?" or "I want you to hooooooooold me."  But the tone he uses...all it reminded me of was Will Ferrell in "Wedding Crashers."  For two and a half days, I had a miniature Will Ferrell in a silk robe screaming at me for meatloaf.  I have never felt this strong of a desire to change my name.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012


I have turned a corner.  I am ready to have this kid potty trained.  Mostly because he now just takes his diaper off whenever he has made a mess of it.  Doesn't matter what it is, if it is dirty, he takes it off...and more often than not leaves it wherever he has removed it.  Which is just super.  Especially when he has pooped and I have to then go on a turd hunt.  You would think/hope the turds would stay with the diaper, but no... for two reasons.  First, he poops like a rabbit.  It's weird.  Second, his removal process is not exactly fine tuned.  He undoes the tabs, stands with his feet apart and bounces until the diaper falls to the floor.  Efficient?  Yes.  Poo flight-avoiding?  Not so much.

This whole process has also taught me there is absolutely no accomplishment that I won't be glowingly proud of.  I cannot stop a completely goofy smile when he pees in a toilet.  So there we are, in our minuscule bathroom, me sitting on the edge of the tub, his butt firmly planted on a potty seat of train decor.  And as soon as he pees, my inner sappy cheerleader comes out.  Yay!  Pee!


Aside from a linger cough and stuffy nose, the boy is back in action.  He was happy to see his friends this morning and only slightly disappointed he wasn't going to have an entire day of tv again.  

And now as I sit here at my desk, I can feel it.  Whatever the hell he had is creeping all up in my system.  The throat.  The sinuses.  The whiney.  Yippee freaking skippee.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Fever, coughing, runny nose and puking.  Add it all up and what do ya get?  Backyardigans!

Friday, May 11, 2012


BOOM-Shakalaka! is a phrase that is used on a fairly regular basis in our house.  Mostly when one of us have proven the other wrong, or if something cool happens.  I love this phrase.  I love it even more when it comes out of Alex's mouth after mastering something like successfully jumping through a hula hoop like a circus lion:

"I did it!  BOOM-SHAKAWAKAAAAAAAAAA!"  (said as loudly as possible with fists raised up over his head in triumph, and feet widely planted for stability)

My second favorite phrase he has picked up?  Let's DO this!

Good Morning!

Since I'm pretty sure I haven't mentioned it before, I'm gonna say it now...I love Alex's daycare so much.  They are just so nice and willing to help and teaching-ful and good stuff all around.

We got there today and as I was putting his stuff away, his teacher called him over.  I had my back to them, but I heard her whisper something to him and then I heard MOM! from him.  I turned around to find him standing behind me holding a plate with a piece of apple cinnamon coffee cake, two strawberries, and a piece of melon. He looks up at me beaming and says, "Happy Mothers'!  Look!  It's your favorite dinner!"  And then he swiped one of my strawberries.

So yeah, they made special breakfast plates for all the moms addition to two other Mothers' Day art projects I have been watching evolve this week.  I realize all schools/daycares do stuff for Mothers' and Fathers' Day, but it's just the extras like a surprise breakfast that makes a difference to me.

Warm fuzzies for everyone!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Teary Eyed

I just got a text from one of the teachers at daycare:

"Alex just informed me that he is so happy.  I asked why.  He said because my mom loves me."

And he apparently left free play time to go to the office where she was doing some paperwork to tell her that.  Just straight up out of the blue.

If you need me I will be just sitting here crying while holding my chest in an effort to stop my heart from exploding.


I am a joy to work with...

Me:  Maaaaaaaan, the little thingers on this pen hurt my fingers.

Coworker(with a "really?" expression): .....


Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Still askin'

Alex asks why more often than...I don't know, I can't come up with something apropos that happens as often as this kid asks why.  I try so hard to answer him.  But there are only so many why's I can answer.  More often than not, after about 7 why's, I land on "I don't know."  The other day we were in the car and he was on a roll.  Every single time I answered a question, he would ask why, and I would answer.  But that answer would only produce another why.  After I was certain a death of drowning in a never ending black hole of why's was imminent, I said, "Duuuuuuuude.  You are killin' me with the why's."

And he just looked at me in the rear view mirror, and with a I've Got a Good One smile on his face and a tiny naughty giggle he said, "Why?"

It terrifies me that he understands that is funny already.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Team Gear

I forgot this in my Nashville photo post.  These were the shirts we had for the race.  Kari was green, I was orange, Mariah was blue.  Apparently my shirt was so dark with sweat at the end of the race, it looked like a totally different color and Kari almost walked right past me while I was sitting/dying on a curb.  I will now only answer to Super Sexy Runner Lady from here on out.

No More Sass!

This kid is reaching an absurd level of sassy.  Then you mix in tantrums over anything and everything and you get one frustrated Mama and one frustrated kid.

Mornings have proven to be particularly difficult.  He doesn't want to get dressed.  He wants to be the one to turn off the tv, but he doesn't want to turn the tv off, MOM.  He doesn't want me to put the remote control away, but I don't dare hand it to him!  He wanted to do it!  My favorite so far was when he turned to me and yelled, "But you're being mad at me!"  Yes, yes I am.  

It's all very typical 2-3 year old shit, but holy's gonna be a long slow uphill gravely road.

But then he goes and does something that smooths out the pavement juuuuust a little bit.  Last night I was putting him to bed and he reached up and asked me to bring my head close to his face.  He pet my head and said, "You my best friend Mama."  And instantaneously I forgot about all the sass.  

Don't worry though, my memory was jolted back into reality ten minutes later.  I heard him playing with a hula hoop in his room and I told him he better get in bed.  His response?  I am in bed Mama.  I could hear the eye roll through the door.

Holding Pattern

So I thought he was ready for potty training.  Based on this past weekend's performance, I thought wrong.  He might be showing signs of potty readiness outside of our house, but after 4 pairs of soaked pants and shit on the living room floor, I gave up.  It also seemed like he was getting frustrated with it and the mere mention of going to the bathroom was causing mini-fits.  So we deemed it diaper time.

We'll get there...just not this weekend.

He's loose

The toddler bed thing...was going great...until yesterday morning.  I accidentally turned the volume all but off on the monitor at some point on Saturday.  Not usually an issue since our house is not large and we can hear him if he calls for us even without the monitor.  Him calling for us is kinda the big factor in hearing him though.

Yesterday morning, he didn't call for us when he woke up, and since the volume was down, we didn't hear him rustling around in his room.  We didn't hear anything in fact, until we heard little feet creaking their way up the stairs.  And then a giant smile peeking around the banister.

He came running over, stopped dead in his tracks a couple feet shy of the bed, and said, "You guys.  There's big mess on the floor.  Cream eeeevvverrrrryyyywwwhhhheeerrree."  And good morning to you!

I thought for sure he was talking about diaper cream, and was terrified of the mess we were going to find since I bought a brand new tube of A&D about two weeks ago.  Alas it was not.  That kid got out of bed, went into the kitchen, took a container of heavy cream out of the fridge, took it back to his room, and poured it all over the floor.  Because, why wouldn't ya?

Thursday, May 3, 2012

That's new

When I got to daycare to pick Alex up yesterday, one of the teachers that has known Alex since he was 8 weeks ago came up to me with a very concerned expression.  She paused to tell a kid that was trying to get attention to hang on because she had to "talk to Alex's mom for a minute."  Awwwwesome.

She had to talk to me to inform me that Alex administered a choke hold on a kid earlier in the day.  I'm sorry...what?  Yep.  A full-on choke hold.  He apparently let go right away when they told him to stop and said he understood that that was not an ok thing to do.

So I asked him why he did that.  "He tickled my feet Mama."  Yeeeeaaahhhh...a choke hold may have been a wee bit over the top in response to foot tickling there buddy.

A Nashville Photo Narrative

Arrival day, taking a quick look around:  
(I was blown away by how much the AT&T building on the left looks like Batman.)
Morning pre-race dance off:
Three girls happy to be done running and onto drinking:
We found the most interesting man in the world:
Mariah got her Greek on:
Kari got a new tattoo:
I did too:

And then I held an eagle:
And then we came home.


The crib has been removed.  Alex now sleeps in a toddler bed.  A toddler bed that he can get out of whenever he so chooses.  So far, all's good.  He has slept through the night without getting or falling out.  I am a bit concerned about the falling out part.  Only because if he does in fact vacate the bed, he will abruptly meet the bare hardwood floor.  A sensible person would put a nice rug down next to the bed to soften the blow.  Yes yes.  But a sensible person wouldn't have an asshat for a dog.  We have learned our pee-soaked lesson with the rug in his room.

Yesterday he stayed in his bed in the morning and only got out once he successfully beckoned me to his bedside.  This morning, not so much.  I could hear him rustling around in there while I was getting ready, but I figured I would let it play out and see what happened.  He finally called for me once he had collapsed his clothes hamper on himself.  I went in expecting a scene straight out of Twister, but was pleasantly surprised.  He had his little Cars futon unfolded and aside from his leg being stuck in said collapsed hamper, everything was as it should be.  Who is this child and what has he done with Alex?

In other My Baby Is No Longer a Baby news, we are starting potty training like for real.  I am taking underwear and eight pairs of pants to daycare now every morning.  I have a hard time believing this is going to work since that kid will sit in a completely soaked diaper for hours if it means he doesn't have to go inside.  But apparently at daycare he immediately tells the teachers when he needs to be changed.  Another indicator...when he was at my parents' while I was gone, he called for Grandma saying he needed help.  She found him in the living room, standing in front of the tv with his pants down, no diaper.  The diaper was sitting next to him on the white carpet with poop in it.

So although he doesn't seem to be ready at home, he is obviously ready.  Now he just needs to find a mom who's ready.

Already itchy

At the end of the race in Nashville, I threw my head back in relief and thought, "Cross that off the list!"  Done and done.  Thank goodness!  I was so satisfied.  I set a goal and achieved it.  And not a small goal either.  Not one of those things where you make a list of things you have to do and add stuff you already did just so you have stuff to cross off right away.  A for real challenge I made for myself and then kicked its ass.  I set out to do it and sweet sassy molassy it was done.

And now, not even a week later, I am looking at local half marathons this summer...

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

What's that now?

Apparently burning a zillion and five calories while running 13.1 miles doesn't make up for gluttonous consumption after said caloric burning endeavor.

Yeah, I gained 4 pounds in Nashville.  Miller Lite, margaritas and yummy food will do that to a girl.

Ah Nashville

We did it.  We ran a half marathon.  Did you hear that?  We ran a HALF MARATHON!!!

The first three things I learned about Nashville?  1.  It's hot.  2.  It's humid.  3.  It's gots some hills.  Holy man.

I was all nerves and smiles at the start when the sun was still waking up and it was a little overcast and a lovely 70 degrees.  But then the sun woke up and it was really excited to see all the runners!  I believe it hit 85 before we were done and it was so so so humid.  And I don't know how they managed it, but I swear that entire course was uphill.  It was really hard, but with a little help from Gu, a lot of help from the awesome people at the water/Gatorade stations, and a little walking here and there, I finished.  It took me 2 hours and 36 minutes.  I was shooting for 2:30, but I will gladly take a finish time 6 minutes off my goal.  And they gave me this at the finish line:

I will say, it made me feel so much better on Saturday evening, whilst eavesdropping on a table next to us at dinner, to hear a woman say, "This is my 10th half marathon, and this is the first time I have ever had to walk."  That took the feeling of wussiness due to walking down a couple pegs.

After all the race stuff was over, we got to hang out in Nashville for a couple days.  Ummm, yeah.  Why haven't I gone to Nashville before?!  Every bar on Broadway Street has live music pretty much from open to close.  And there are a lot of bars on Broadway Street.  All the bars and restaurants and lights and's kinda like a mini Honky-Tonk'd Vegas, and I pretty much never wanted to leave.
So, I'm betting you've guessed tomorrow's letter is "H".  While pondering I thought of herbs.  What is wrong with me?

G is for...

Last week Thursday's letter was the letter "G".  All I could think of for the longest time to send was a gnome.  Alas, I didn't.  I sent grapes...'cause, ya know, I'm not a total asshole.