Monday, May 7, 2012

When Vacations Attack, Part 1 of Several

So, WE'RE BAAAACK! Yes, we survived Hawaiipocalypse 2012 and the island continues to stand proudly, although had you asked me that the day we left I would have told the lovely people there to flee in terror. We didn't have many toddler-based incidents on this trip, but the few we had were not fun at all and the first one came from Mia as we boarded the plane. Yes, perfect timing! She was, let's just say "fussy" ( I said a-hole but whatever, potato-potahtoe) because she had woken up with a stuffy nose and possible molars coming in and as we were about to board, I realized to my horror that someone (not me) had packed her medicine in the checked luggage and not the carry-on. I repeat, the medicine that will make her NOT SCREAM FOR THE NEXT 10 HOURS, was not accessible until we landed 4000 miles away. We frantically searched the airport for a replacement (note to airports: stock Benadryl) but got nothing and finally had to get on the plane.

She started in her seat (for about 11 seconds) but then wanted to be on my lap but we had purchased her the crazy harness thing so Jeff got it out and hooked her up, locking her in the seat. She was outraged. We hadn't even left the jetway so I went into panic mode and started giving her snacks, hoping it would distract her. This worked slightly until we got into the air, at which time she decided to begin her whine/cry, which makes me want to claw out my eardrums with a fork after about 3 minutes. This was all academy award worthy and I was bracing for more but thankfully she wore herself out within a few minutes and passed out with half a cracker in her mouth and only one shoe on. This bliss didn't last long and we spent the last hour or so playing the "please don't scream" game while showering her with gifts and snacks that she threw aside like an angry Marie Antoinette. We finally gave her an iPhone and it shut her up until we got to LA.

After a brief layover we were off again and I was much more anxious this time since we kinda blew our wad with her entertainment package already and we still had another 5 hours to go. I'm no mathematician but that doesn't sound great for our odds of success. We sat down and immediately the fussing began so we started with snacks as before and then after throwing her Hello Kitty sticker book on the floor in disgust, we moved back to the iPhone. These things seem to have special magic powers that attract small children like raccoons to rotting chicken. She was SO THRILLED to have this phone that she actually sat in her seat and played with it. She also got so excited that instead of screaming, she would occasionally shriek out in joy over a sweet Angry Birds move or a cute picture of herself. Well, this was unacceptable to some people, and by some people I mead the d-bag and his wife sitting across the aisle. Look, I get that no one likes to fly with little kids, especially their parents, but there is only so much we can do. I don't like to fly with people who smell bad or want to talk or insist on leaving their light on when everyone else is sleeping including the person next to them, but you know what, it's like a bus with wings so you just have to roll with it. Be thankful neither of them pooped.


I'll post more later...................

Friday, April 27, 2012

This was a good idea 10 months ago.

So, I know it's been like crickets around here but it's been a little busy. In between preschool, therapy and god knows what else, I've been preparing us for our first Official Kimchi Central Family Vacation and we leave tomorrow. Where am I taking two fidgety and loud toddlers, you ask? Well, Hawaii of course! Yes, I'm taking two toddlers, who can barely make it through a trip to the bank, 4,000 miles away to a volcano in the middle of the ocean. Go big or go home, right? I've been in a mild state of panic for a few days now as the reality of taking them on this trip is setting in and it doesn't help when people find out they're going and they're eyes get all wide like I just told them I sleep in a bed of angry bees, but the kennel would only take the dog so we will persevere. The nice part is that the flight is broken up so they will have time to run around LAX like little feral cats and get out a little energy before the big leg over the ocean plus we have grandparents in tow to help when shit gets real. My sister is already in Maui as I write this and will also be meeting up with us so I'm hoping that between 6 grown adults, we can manage to not completely destroy Hawaii.

Also, do you know how much crap you have to pack when you bring kids? A SHIT TON. My dreams of packing light went out the window a few days ago and now I'm just hoping I don't have to pay extra baggage fees. I also had a wonderful  fantasy where Max had his own little carry-on he could wheel through the airport like a little man but then when I bought one at Target, he immediately started swinging it around like a lawn mower blade so for the safety of everyone traveling with us, he now has an elephant backpack with a leash. Yes, leash. Ditto for Mia. These rascals are fast and I'm not taking any chances so people can put their judgement filled eyeballs back in their heads and clutch their pearls elsewhere.

I'm going to try to post some pics as we go but if not, aloha for now!


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Mega Bed

So, as many of you may know, my glorious children don't have the best track record when it comes to sleeping. They only sleep when it's absolutely necessary and for the least amount of time possible. They just don't seem to need, like or want to sleep. I, on the other hand, have very few marketable skills but sleeping is one of them. I remember the glory days when I would set my alarm on a Saturday morning just so I could turn it off, laugh in it's face and go back to sleep. Getting up early used to mean "sometime before noon" and sleeping through the night was a normal occurrence, not a special treat that we might get once a year. While Max has had his own special brand of sleeping issues over the last couple of years, Mia has really taken it to a new level because she not only hates to sleep, she won't sleep alone.

For the first couple of months home, she slept physically on me in our bed and if you even thought about moving or getting up to pee, she would read your thoughts and totally flip her shit until you knocked that thought out of your head and accepted your fate. I eventually learned how to roll her off so we then moved her crib into our room and would put her in after she released her death grip on me. That only worked for a week or so because then she would wake up and scream at me from behind the slats like an angry macaw so we put the crib back in her room. We then spent several weeks sleeping in the twin bed in her room with her, which wasn't much better than being in our room but at least it was progress. Not long after that, we started putting her in the crib and we could get her to go to sleep if we stood there rubbing/patting/scratching her back until she fell asleep and then we would use ninja training to exit the room as quietly as possible. We kept this plan up for a while until we decided to really go for broke and instead of patting her to sleep, we tried to get her to learn to self soothe so we (I) would lie on the twin bed with her in the crib until she fell asleep. This actually went okay after the first week or so of her screaming at us until she fell asleep from fatigue.

Once she realized we weren't going to leave the room (as far as she knew anyway), she was okay with this new plan. I would put her in the crib and play mahjong or angry birds on my phone for the 20 minutes it took her to drift off and then I would creep out and enjoy the rest of my evening. However, as it went on, it took longer and longer for her to fall asleep (like a damn hour) but then she was only sleeping for about an hour or so before waking up and it was then VERY difficult to get her to go back to sleep. And by difficult, I mean impossible. We would inevitably end up with her back in our bed anyway and I realized that I was wasting all that time playing dumb games on my phone trying to get her to sleep just to have it all blow up so we decided that we would just start her in our bed and then be able to at least do something at night like watch a TV show or eat a meal. This has been the plan ever since and is usually fine (or as fine as this shit can be, amirite?). USUALLY.

Since Max has also been watching this go on, he has decided that he also wants to sleep with us so he will use any excuse necessary to get in our bed. Some are legit, like when it storms or he pees in bed (yes, double fun!), but other times it's just flat out toddler ridiculousness that I have zero energy to deal with at 8pm at night so in he comes as well. Neither of these children understand the concept of personal space and will spread their bodies out as far as humanly possible so that Jeff and I have about 6 square inches to sleep on. Total. Not only that, but they move around constantly so you are always getting kicked, punched, kneed, farted on or hit in the face with a bottle. Throw in our mental patient of a dog and you can understand why this is not ideal so last weekend Jeff had the best idea he has had since deciding to marry me. After we came into our room to go to bed only to see the dog and both kids spread eagle again, he was like "I HAVE HAD IT WITH THIS SHIT." and he went in and broke down the twin bed from Mia's room and dragged it into our bedroom. The kids were like "wha?" and soon he had constructed the greatest thing in the history of mankind, The Mega Bed.

Oh yeah, this bed is amazing. It's our old king and the twin bed pushed together so it's about 98' long (not really) and takes up 80% of our freakishly large bedroom. I remember reading years ago that Prince had a room like this at Paisley Park, although I'm 99% sure his was used for certain adult activities and was probably a lot more fun than ours but you know what, I don't care. I HAVE MY BED BACK. Yeah, they're still right there and this is all more ridiculous knowing we have a four bedroom home but I can put up The Great Wall of Pillows and pretend like they aren't. They've been really good about staying on their bed and if they try to cross the great divide, I SHUT IT DOWN and expel them immediately. Who knows how long this will last but sweet lord I can't even fathom what will come after The Mega Bed. I think at that point I will have to have them surgically implanted in my body so we will never be apart. Hopefully the mental hospital will give us a group rate.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

TV is my friend.

So, earlier today I was making lunch and as I stirred the Target brand mac and cheese, found myself humming "I Was Country (When Country Wasn't Cool) by Barbara Mandrell and then I was like "SELF, WHY THE HELL ARE YOU SINGING THIS SONG, considering not only my searing hatred for country music but because we are on a near constant stream of k-pop up in here and that stuff stays in your head like an unwelcome ear worm from Kahn so how this popped up I don't know. I was trying to remember how I even knew this song and then I remembered that Barbara and her two sisters (Louise and Other Mandrell) had some ridiculous variety show on in the 80s that I used to watch with my grandma. Now, sometimes Jeff will be watching Saw Dogs, which is a show about people who carve shit out of wood with chainsaws and I'm not kidding at all, and I will say "you know, they will make a show about any goddamn thing these days. ANYTHING. Saw Dogs? What's next? Extreme Napkin Swans?" and then he will remind me that there is also a show called Hillbilly Handfishin' and then I just sigh and make a comment about the world going down the toilet and then I go on my lawn and yell at passing children to stay off.

Seriously though, as I thought about the Mandrell Variety Hour or whatever fresh hell they named it, I started thinking about all the other dumb shows I watched in the 80s. Back then I was a typical latchkey kid so I watched a lot of TV before and after school which is why I can't stand new parents who are all "my child cannot watch even 7 seconds of tv or else he will melt into a pile of goo and I will look like a terrible parent (because it's really about ME isn't it?) and he will never learn math or any other useful skill." Look, I watched a ton of TV back in the day because our parents weren't so up our asses and actually had lives and didn't worry about every little second of our childhood being filled with "learning moments" so TV wasn't the devil. Case in point, I'm a pretty smart lady with a wide range of skillz and a brain only half made of goo. In fact, the day we got cable was a momentous occasion because not only did we get MTV, but the cable people actually came to your house then and we got little metal buttons that said "MTV" on them that we could pin to our jackets as souvenirs and to show people that we had cable SO SUCK IT, non-cable havers. Anyway, these are some of the weird and wonderful shows I watched while eating my Jell-O Pudding Pops (bring them back, Jell-O. I'm serious. They were delicious and nothing compares.)

Dance Party USA - this was on USA Network (duh) and we watched it after school before Jem. It was like American Bandstand but way less classy and with more chicks dressing up like Prince and Madonna. Also it was from Philly so I thought they had foreign accents.

Small Wonder - Vicki the Robot. That is all.

Out Of This World - Evie, the half alien half human teen who could stop time with her fingers. Her mom was a mayor or something and her alien dad lived in a glowing box by her bed and would talk to her from his alien land.

Battle of the Network Stars - bizarre "sports" competition show with TV stars who played for their network team in many forms of spandex. This was serious business, we're talking the top stars of TV here, and we would watch and root for our favorites like it was the Olympics. I vividly remember Charlene Tilton in her shorty shorts and braids. Run Lucy Ewing, run!

Dance Fever/Solid Gold - I put these together because they were on together and I adored every disco filled second. Also, Madame. (Somewhere lodged in the back of my brain is a memory of a Dance Fever episode but with giant puppets instead of people. However, this may be a hallucination but I'm pretty sure it happened.)

Benny Hill/Bizarre - I put these together too because they were on waaaay late at night (like 11pm!) and might have shown boobs. We weren't really supposed to watch either of them.

You Can't Do That On Television - my first introduction to the exotic people known as Canadians and the best show on at the time. Except the old man used to gross me out.

Out Of Control - Cut. It. Out.

That's Incredible! - Yes, it was.

Anyway, feel free to add more in the comments. I could list this all day but I don't have that kind of time. I have to go watch Bizarre Foods.

UPDATE: So, as I've gotten more suggestions from facebook and my brain here is another list with the biggies added:

Love Boat
Knots Landing
Dallas
Gloria
It's A Living
Mr. Belvedere
The Facts of Life
The Golden Girls (which remains TO THIS DAY my favorite show of all time and I watch it regularly and I have seen every episode including the pilot with the gay male housekeeper.)
Empty Nest
The Sunday night Disney movies
Family Ties
321 Contact
Wrestling at the Chase
Kate & Allie
Who's The Boss?
The Cosby Show
Jem
Night Court
Falcon Crest

I'm sure I missed many, many others.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Don't read if you're eating.

I hate you people. - Zoey


So, it seems like a lot of what I talk about here has to do with pee, dongs and poo. There is a reason for that.

You know what's never good? When your adorable toddler daughter walks up and hands you a piece of poo, origin unknown. I thought she was coming in for a hug because she was smiling and holding out her arms but instead she plopped this little turd in my hand, smiled warmly and walked away. As soon as my brain registered what I was holding, my face turned to horror and disgust I'M SURE, and then Zoey and I locked eyes and she took off so I assumed, based on the fact that a few minutes prior I saw her dragging her ass on the carpet, that she was the culprit. I chased her down the hall with a piece of toilet paper, hoping to get whatever else was hanging off (once it was a hairball (she eats her own fur but we can talk about that another time) and I didn't know it and when I tried to pull it off her butt, let's just say it was like that magic trick with the scarves. You can probably figure it out from here.) but after inspection I saw she was clean as a whistle and was probably just scratching her butt. She has no hands, you know.

Anyway, after she was cleared I went back to the living room where I found Mia standing by the back door with a very strange smile on her face and her little hand down the back of her diaper. Uh oh. Oh please no. Did I mention SHE WAS CHEWING SOMETHING? I looked down and saw that the rest of the contents of her diaper had been neatly placed on the TILE floor in a little pile like cannonballs. My brain was trying NOT to put the pile and the chewing together but it couldn't help it and I was like "HOLY LORD MIA, OPEN YOUR MOUTH!" and to my utter delight, saw half chewed waffle stuck in her cheek like chewin' tobaccy. YES! I decided that worrying about where she got the waffle since they had eggs that morning would have to wait, I'm just so glad it wasn't poo, and after a Silkwood shower for the both of us and a Swiffer cleanup on aisle 10, she was clean, dry and wearing packing tape around her waist. I'm not taking any chances.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

This is not a nudist camp. Usually.

So, I forgot to tell this story here. I told it on Facebook so if you read it on there, spoiler alert.

Max had a little party at preschool for Valentine's Day. I helped out with the other stay at home moms and after an hour of crafts gone wrong, icing overload, games no one would pay attention to and several doily mishaps, I went home to wait out the next 90 minutes until pick up. Since it was party day, everyone got out at the same time so when I went back, the lot was full and the hallway was clogged. There are a group of moms that have kids in the same class a year ahead of Max and they're kind of bitchy to those of us not in their little clique AND they like to stand in the middle of the hallway having their overly loud conversations so they were causing much of the traffic jam I walked into.

As I looked through the moms and above the sea of kids, I saw Max's teacher standing in the doorway of his class looking, um I guess distressed is the right word and suddenly she locked eyes with me and I knew that her distress probably had something to do with me. Before I could react, I heard Max yelling through the crowd.

"HEY MOMMY, I HAVE AN ISSUE."

Oh sweet baby jesus. This is not good.

As I looked down, I saw him busting right through the crowd heading right for me and as he walked closer, I saw that his pants were falling down with every step. Then I noticed that he wasn't wearing a diaper. My son was in the hallway of his preschool, surrounded by his peers, their parents and the staff and he had gone FULL DONG. Once he got to me, all I could do was shake my head and reply, "yes Max, you do."

He yelled again (why do little kids yell every goddamn thing? Seriously. He hears just fine but everything must be told through a bullhorn.) "I DON'T HAVE ANY PANTS ON" as though this was our little secret. At this point, his teacher had made her way through the crowd with a pull up and an apology for why my son was running around commando. Apparently he had decided just as class let out to chuck his diaper in favor of the sweet taste of ass freedom and before she could lock it down he saw me and made his (in)famous walk. So there I was in the crowded hallway, diapering my almost 4 year old non-potty trained son, who is completely comfortable being nude (he is right now, in fact) so he will have a full conversation with anyone walking by as though nothing was awry which he did, while his teacher and the preschool director watched in amused horror. As the bitchy moms passed by, I got a mix of HAHAHA IDIOT MOTHER eye rolls to condescending faux smiles saying "I've been there (but not really, my child keeps his clothes on in public you neanderthals. Why don't you take this hippie fest somewhere else.") so we made a hasty retreat to the van as soon as that sucker was on.

When we finally pulled away Max said, "hey mom, I wasn't wearing pants. Did you see that? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA." Sigh. Oh yes honey, we all saw that. And I do mean all but bless his little naked heart anyway.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Amy Playing Dress Up: Vacation

So, as I mentioned before, I have (had) another blog called Amy Playing Dress Up where I would would play dress up via online virtual shopping but both blogs were giving me the vapors so now it's just this one. Anyway, this is my first style post here. If you hate it, read something else. The internet is a big place.

We're mere weeks away from our first official family vacation. WEEKS. It's the whole family including my mom, stepdad, sister and brother in law and it's going to be quite epic as we're going to the place I hope to call home some day, the glorious island of Hawaii. Why am I taking two toddlers on an 8 hour flight to Hawaii, you might ask, because quite frankly that sounds like a TERRIBLE idea for everyone involved? One, I am a glutton for punishment and clearly have no sense but just think of the glorious tales I will have to tell. Two, momma needs a break. FOR REAL. I need a goddamn break involving my toes in some sand and someone else cleaning up my mess for once. I can't explain in human words how excited I am about this trip and you know what else makes me excited, shopping so here are some exciting (not really) things I have on my vacation wish list.

This dress reminds me of zipping along the Italian riviera on a Vespa with a scarf barely holding on my head. That has nothing to do with tropical Hawaii vacations but that means nothing to me. It's adorable and with some coral jewelry it will be even cuter and islandier. (from Ruche)


This is everything I love in a shoe and the wedge means I might actually be able to get my gnarly old man feet to walk in them.

This scarf will be a nice accessory for sightseeing with khaki shorts and a white tank. (from Target)

I love a maxi dress and this one should be called The Dress Amy Is Taking To Hawaii because once The Gap throws me a sale (do it, Gap), this baby is mine.


Also SO CUTE and I j'adore the draping in the front so I can eat massive amounts of kailua pig and no one will be the wiser.

This is very oceany and I think an orange or red belt would polish it up. OOH, or maybe neon yellow. That would be wicked.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Happy Gotcha Day, Mia!

So, as we already know, I only have my act together about 3% of the time anymore, so it should come as no surprise that this is post is a day late. A year ago yesterday, we met little Mia. I will never forget walking in and seeing here there with her foster mom. She looked exactly like her picture, down to the rosy cheeks. When we walked into the room, everyone stood up and then everything got all swirly and overwhelming and everyone was trying to talk at once and I just stood there like a deer in the headlights staring at Mia until Jeff made me sit in a chair. The next hour went by in an agonizing blur of questions and awkwardness and tears and all the while Mia wanted nothing to do with us. Nothing. Not even a wave. I tried to bribe her with food but it only lasted a minute and she was clamoring back to her foster mother. I knew that this wasn't going to go as it did for Max and I started to get really scared. She was SO PISSED that we were there and she was sick and I knew she just wanted to go back to her home.

Soon they told us to follow them downstairs so we could see the doctor and it was just a chaotic mess of foster moms, babies and workers and holy lord it was SO HOT and I had on a wool sweater and it was itching and I was sweating badly and probably smelled like a foot. We met the doctor, asked a few more questions and then suddenly we were handed all this medicine and paperwork and bags and a howling baby and plopped into a waiting cab. Mia was beyond upset at this point and I struggled to get into the cab with her. The social worker leaned in and with a worried look said she would pray for us (not a feel good send off, fyi) and soon we were stuck in the never ending clog of Seoul traffic with a wailing baby. I tried everything in my power to calm her (blinky monkey! bouncy leg!) but she didn't stop until she passed out about 3 blocks from the hotel (which is about a 20 minute drive in traffic. For real.). The lovely cab driver, who had spent a good deal of time yelling "KOREAN BABY NUMBER ONE!" at us during the ride, helped me out with her and gave me an oddly comforting little hug and a sympathetic smile before he sped off. We took her in the hotel and as we made our way through the lobby, she woke up, realized we were not her foster mom and that this shit was real and proceeded to lose her marbles again. There was a Buddhist monk convention going on (of course) and so there were like 10 monks in the lobby while this was happening and they all bowed their head a bit as we walked through this sea of orange and red robes and I was like "please let them be joining forces to help us" because that is a lot of monk power right there. MAKE IT HAPPEN. When we got upstairs, she was so tired from crying that she reluctantly took a bottle, let us clean her up a little and posed for a few pics before passing out for the next 13 hours until she woke up and it all started over again. And again. And again. For weeks.

But, if you had told me that a year later, this same kid would be showering us with kisses, dancing to sick beats and chasing her brother around laughing like a lunatic, I would have rolled my eyes and called you a liar. She is one of the happiest, joyful little scamps I've ever known and is truly like a little ray of sunshine. Part of her birth name means "grace" and it couldn't be more fitting. Her turnaround has been remarkable and I can't imagine her not being here now. I am in such in awe when we see her smile and laugh, knowing the pain she went through a year (and a day) ago. These are two tough little kids we have here and their road may be rocky at times but we're all walking down it together.

Mia, 2011

Mia, 2012
Love you, baby.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Deep in my Seoul

So, like I said the other day when we were catching up, we're in attachment therapy with both Max and Mia. What is this, you may be asking? Well, we go to a therapist who helps us learn to "attachment parent" which is a complicated way of parenting when your kids have a rocky start and may have some issues to sort through. Adopted kids fall into this category fairly frequently and as they've gotten older, we've seen behaviors that required we turn off our blinders and address them. When we were just starting our process with Max, we had to take these classes about parenting and adoption and they tell you about all the fun stuff that can go awry and about attachment and quite frankly it's all a little overwhelming because you haven't even gotten the kid yet so your brain kind of puts it somewhere and you go on about your day. You figure it probably won't happen to you because you're going to love the shit out of this kid and that they won't have issues. I mean, they're just babies and babies don't remember stuff, right?

Right?

Well, as we've come to know, babies DO remember, especially when they've dealt with stuff like foster homes, medical issues and being taken 6000 miles across the world where nothing and no one is familiar. As our therapist Oprah (not her real name) explains, all this stuff is stored in the nervous system and then it gets unleashed when you least expect it. For instance, birthdays can be difficult when you're adopted and we noticed that there was a 2 week period around Mia's birthday when she was totally out of sorts and acting like a huge jerk. I thought she was sick or something but she was fine, just sad and pissed off all the time. When I told Oprah about this, I asked if this could be her reacting to her birthday, although I didn't really think it was, and she said yes. Jeff and I rolled our eyes silently thinking that this lady was whackadoo and that there was no way Mia woke up, got out her Yahoo calendar and thought HOT DAMN IT'S MY BIRTHDAY. She is a BABY, not a robot. We talked on the drive home about how hard this concept is for us to grasp and that it was probably something else, partially because it does seem ridiculous and partially because we really didn't want it to be true.

However, I started to notice something in myself recently. I've been feeling this restlessness about the kids, like I'm obsessed with them knowing how much I love them and junk (they think I'm insane and wish I would leave them the hell alone) and I keep thinking about their birth moms and their foster moms and planning our fantasy trip back in my head and then yesterday my friend Connie sent me an article from Time Magazine about a girl going back to Seoul to find her birth mom and I lost it. I LOST MY SHIT FOR 30 MINUTES. I was sobbing and I called Jeff and he was like "um, are you okay, crazy wife?" because I was crying and babbling on about this article and how he should read it but not at work because he might do the ugly cry like I was but then I remembered that he isn't a lunatic and could probably handle it which he of course could and did. (If you're interested, it's http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,997807-1,00.html. Grab a hankie.)

So what does all this gibberish mean, blog lady and why aren't you writing about something FUNNY? Well, my nervous system was remembering that it was a year ago today that we left for Korea to bring Mia home. I honestly knew it was coming up, I'm not that horrible, but it wasn't in the forefront of my brain but then it all made sense. On the surface when we talk about it, we talk about the fun stuff we did and seeing her and all that jazz but it had actually been so much more nerve wracking then it was with Max because we were clueless then and now we knew all the stuff that could go wrong and as we all remember, did go wrong, and it was also the first time I had that overwhelming feeling of dread knowing you were leaving your child. We had gone away for short trips but when we put Max to bed that night and I knew that I wouldn't see him again until we got home, after a 12,000 mile round trip, well all I can say is it felt like someone ripped all my insides out, threw them on the ground, stomped them like grapes and made human wine. Couple that with the issues we had in Korea and so yeah, I kinda get it now. Oprah isn't crazy after all and deep down your body does remember this stuff, especially when shit gets real, even if your brain pictures are showing you something different.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

A Fish Tale

So I mentioned the suicidal fish before so I'm now going to talk about our betta fish Gene. Gene, or Gene, Gene the Dancing Machine as his official birth certificate states, has been with us for a little over a year and in that time I've brought him back from the brink of death FIVE times, and quite frankly he's been a very stressful pet to have, plus he eats blood worms which are really disgusting and get all over my counter. Prior to Gene, we had Fred, who met his untimely demise due to a water ph problem (my fault) and after we gave him his porcelain burial, I felt super guilty for my bad fish parenting and decided to right my wrong with Gene. This is a bad idea for life in case you were wondering.

First I had to cure his popeye, which is exactly what it sounds like, the fish's eye was POPPED OUT and totally freaking me out and after consulting the lady at Petsmart who said I needed a $20 antibiotic for a $7 fish (um, no), I used magical holistic methods (the internet) and somehow it went away. Then, when we returned from Korea with Mia, we saw that Max had been allowed to feed Gene, which meant he got the entire container of food in one dump. The tank was so thick with food sludge that you could barely see him so the first thing I did when we got home was clean out the tank while wearing my new baby and he once again, lived to see another day. However, in the course of the next few months, every time I cleaned out his tank I would find he had leapt out of the cup and onto the counter presumably to end his life. This happened three times and I was about to call a therapist but then I remembered it was a fish.

Anyway, the other day, I noticed he wasn't eating and floating kind of sideways and even though I would give him a poke now and again to see if he was still with us, I assumed he was finally meeting his fish maker but then it just went on and on and I was like "what the hell Gene, are you going for an Oscar or what?" and then he just kept on living. We moved him into some fresh water and he kind of perked up but was still swimming like he was half paralyzed so after playing Dr. Google Fish Version, my diagnosis is that he has swim bladder disease and probably fin rot. OF COURSE HE DOES. So now we're yet again trying to cure this goddamn fish as if I have nothing better to do and I read that they can live for 10 YEARS. If this is true, I may need to find him a new fish home. Any takers? I'll even throw in the blood worms.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

The Queen of K-Pop

video

A Merger

So, as I mentioned before, I have another blog called Amy Playing Dress Up and if you haven't checked it out yet (you jerk!) it's about clothes and junk but having two blogs is more than my small mouse brain can handle so I'm merging them into this one blog right here. That means that you will occasionally see style posts mixed with the poo talk. I hope you can handle it.

Catching Up Part Deux

So, Max is going to be 4 this spring and I almost can't believe it. The last year has flown by and I feel like an old person telling my kids they're growing like weeds but THEY REALLY ARE and he's literally less than 24" shorter than me. He is a wonderful, sweet, hilarious, gross and half deranged kid most of the time, with occasional bursts of supreme loviness and feral cat-like tantrums to keep it all fresh and interesting. Little kids are just really a whole other species, aren't they? They're just so weird and he's learning a lot right now and it's all jumbled up in that big brain with the energy of a medium sized power station so he's like a crazy little firecracker looking for a spark at all times. He is a great big brother 76% of the time and the other 24% is spent yelling at Mia to leave him aloooooooone, he's TRYING TO PLAY. He's super smart and I'm amazed on the daily at the stuff he says and does that seems years beyond him. He also acts like a rebellous teenager which is why we are currently on behavior lock down right now and much like the boys from "Talladega Nights" learned, it's time for Granny Law in this house before we get a visit from the Supernanny.

Since Mia came home, Max has had a bit of a rough go adjusting to all the changes and one of the things that kind of fell by the wayside, and by wayside I mean it fell off the face of the earth into a fiery pit along with The One Ring, was his potty training. He was never super excited about it to begin with as he's inherited my extreme laziness, but at this point we're still full on diapers only. Yes, I said diapers. Not even pull ups. Sometimes I can get that going with the promise of some M&M's but not often. We've tried it all, timed intervals, toilet targets, rewards, letting him sit in poo, etc. and at this point everyone tells us to just let it go and he'll figure it out eventually, that he knows what to do but now it's a power struggle and blah blah blah. He will go at school, of course because why would he want to make Miss Patty upset, but the minute we get home it's pee pee in the pants time and let's remember he eats a FULL DIET. He's also pants optional pretty much all the time so you will usually find him running around here in a shirt, diaper and nothing else. Did I mention he's almost 4? Just this morning I asked him if he wanted to try the potty and he said "mom, is it because my diaper isn't a personal toilet?" I have no idea where this came from but it was wise so I said yes but then he proclaimed I was wrong, his diaper was indeed a personal toilet because he was in fact peeing at that very moment. Touche', Max.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Catching Up

So, let's start with Mia. She turned 2 in December and overall she's made a lot of progress from last summer to now, amazing progress actually, when you remember how she was when she came home. She quickly went from walking to running and and spends a lot of her time trying to annoy Max in new and exciting ways. She's a happy little bugger and it may have taken almost a year, but we're finally seeing her sweet (and sometimes ornery) personality come out and I feel like we finally "know" her. On the "still working on this shit" side, she is still SUPER attached to me, although to a slightly lesser degree and while I can usually walk freely around the house without issues, leaving her with sitters, even those she knows very well, can erupt into World War III in an instant so we're in attachment therapy (we'll get to this later) to try and figure out how to unlock her sweet little claws from around my neck because we're literally together 24/7. OH GOD, BUT IT'S SO SWEET, everyone says! Yes, but only for 5 minutes! Not being able to go to Target or take a poo alone is not sweet. Mommy needs her time!

In addition, she doesn't talk. For real. No words. WE'RE ALSO WORKING ON THIS. She's in a special program and we start her therapy for that in the next week. We kept thinking she would just start talking one day but then months went by and more months went by and MORE MONTHS and then I thought, hmmm...this really isn't happening, is it? She has one glorious word (YEAH!) and she uses it for everything. Trying to figure out what Mia wants is like a never ending game of charades where the only clue you have is possibly place, because she may or may not point to what she wants to throw you a bone (usually not), hence, there is a lot of raptor like screeching in our house, along with some grunting, high pitched squeals, babbling that sometimes sounds like a word and then I flip out and we have a big celebration but then I realize it wasn't a word after all and then it's a total let down, pointing, pointing and yelling and a then more yelling. She attempts a few words like bye bye or mama but yeah, not so much overall and everything sounds like BAP-BAP. They think most of her issues have to do with her mouth so I think that's where they're starting. Considering I was never able to teach the dog a single thing, lord help this child who has to learn to talk from me. The WORST part is that since she doesn't talk, you kind of forget that she understands every damn thing you say and as we know, I've never met a swear word I didn't like so let's hope her first word is fork and not....well, you get it.

Oh yeah, she also co-sleeps. Every night. Every. Damn. Night. You may recall our sleep adventures with Max. I now laugh in their face. Mia takes sleeping issues to an entirely new level, like an extra circle of hell no one knew about until now. There's no crying it out with this one. Unless you count my crying. This is why the lord made Arbor Mist.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Grand Re-Opening! Rev up your reading eyes!

So, it's a new year and if there are any readers left out there that aren't my mom, you will be happy (or maybe not, your choice) to know that we're getting back to business here at Kimchi Central and I'll be posting weekly. If you are my mom, you already know this crap anyway so kill time doing something else, okay? Anyway, it's been quite an.....interesting.....6 months since we last left each other and I'll be recapping it for you this week. If you need further convincing since I'm the world's worst blogger and your expectations are probably pretty low, I have two words for you: suicidal fish.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

HELLLOOOOO???

Long time no blog, eh?! I know, but I never said I was reliable. If you are interested, I've started a new blog but it's not about my crazy kids, it's about clothes and junk. If you haven't run away screaming, it's www.amyplayingdressup.blogspot.com.

Adios Amigos!