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
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
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.