I just remembered…

..why I do not take all three girls with me to do even the smallest amount of shopping.  I mistakenly decided to give them one. more. chance. this evening.  At the end of a long school day. They were tired and hungry. I was tired and hungry. Why did I do such a ‘normal’ tasks with three circus monkeys in tow?  I am asking myself that very same question, as I sip my second Chimay and listen to the girls, upstairs, fighting off sleep.  Now that I have reentered the work force and they are all in school, I have less time with the girls that I once spent every waking moment with.  Nine years I stayed at home, answering thier every call.  On the one hand, I am glad to have something to call my own.  When I am meeting clients for the first time, they do not know me as ‘Halie/Catie/Rosie’s mom’ or ‘DH’s wife’.  I am simply ‘Erin’, there to massage their tired, sore or injured muscles.  I cherish the opportunity as much as I miss being available to volunterr in thier classrooms and discuss thier school days.  After a full day away from each other, my daughters seem to seek out opportunities to drive each other to the brink of meltdown… WHY?  Within five minutes of picking them up from After-School Care (thank you Mom) and sharing with them my plan to head to Sprouts to pick up fruit and vegetables and Daddy’s favorite chicken-kabobs to grill for our dinner – they were shrieking in the back seat.  Grrrrrr.  So before we even got to the store, I was growling between my gritted teeth for them to ‘cool it’.  What did you say? Oh.  No, growling at the girls was in no way an effective deterrent and no, it did not make me feel better.  On a loooooong day like today, my best parenting rapidly takes a back seat to utter frustration.  I know that not many of my fellow parents would care to share similar stories, but for goodness’ sake, please tell me how you turn the day around!  I do not like being upset with my daughters as I regrettably send them to bed thirty minutes early, just because I fear saying the wrong things to them out of weariness…

Even now, 45 minutes after their bedtime, I can hear them upstairs still bickering, fighting the sleep that I know thier little bodies would welcome if they would just. be. quiet.

Tonight, I will follow the routine I have religiously repeated for the last eight-plus years: When they are finally asleep, I will go to check on each in her respective bedroom.  Only then, when I listen to their deep and relaxed breathing, will I step out into the hallway and breathe a heavy sigh of relief.  Everyday that the girls and I survive reminds me that I did not have to dial 9-1-1 even once. I don’t know how we managed to make it through in one piece, but I am going to repeat it all tomorrow, for certain!

Monkey Spray…

As is routine on Sunday mornings, I am awakened at least three times by our daughters: each requesting a ‘snuggle’ in our bed.  I love it.  This morning, our daughters were in a particularly goofy mood: pretending to be babies, then puppies and finally circus monkeys ( those of you who know me also know that I refer to the girls as ‘Circus Monkeys’ often, and with much adoration).  After a while, DH and I felt like we’d had enough sillyness, so we asked the girls to leave.  I applaud thier responses: instead of “No” they pointed out the advantages to allowing them to stay.  Among the offerings: back rubs, singing us a romantic lullaby, even promising not to make a sound.  Yeah, right!  As our daughters continued further protest, I reminded my husband of our stash of repellant Monkey Spray in the garage. He agreed and then headed to the garage to retrieve the spray bottle of water that we use, on ocassion, when the grill flares up. 

My husband gave our daughters one more chance to retreat, but they stood their Tempurpedic ‘ground’.  The girls got doused with water and made a hasty retreat, screaming all the way, with thier dad on their heels.  DH and I had sore sides from laughing so hard! We congratulated each other on our superior parenting creativity, then laughed at how silly we are in reality! The girls returned in a few minutes, toweling themselves off urging me to blog about the adventure.  Here it is!

It’s HOT.

Yes, I know it’s Texas.  Yes, I’ve lived here all but the first four years of my life (yep, Chicago-born).  I might not have been born here, but I got here just as fast as I could. I consider accumulations of snow to be a more novel experience than the occasional meteor shower.

That said, this year has been unseasonably cool in the DFW area.  We didn’t even reach the 100 degree mark until this month.  For days on end since the first of August, we’ve enjoyed stifling 100+ degree days.  I joined my daughters on a walk around the cul-de-sac this morning.  About 20 minutes worth of leisurely walking, then retreated to the cool A/C inside our house – soaked with sweat.  Another shower for me!  During that shower, I wrote the chorus to Weird Al’s    future parody of Justin Timberlake’s ‘Sexy Back’:  “I’m bringing sweaty back.”  🙂

Who knew Moms were so valuable?

I DID!  Having been a stay-at-home mom for nine plus years now,  I’ve learned my value.  My roles include, but are  not limited to: maid, cook, CEO, entertainer, bank teller, teacher, owwie-kisser, chauffeur, MC, nurse,  stylist for wardrobe/ hair, personal assistant, and human coat rack.  I can’t even begin to count the number of times I’ve been asked, “What do you do?”, only to be followed by “No.  I mean what do you DO?” after I have answered that I am a full-time mom to three daughters.  I have much respect for working mothers – my younger sister and I were effectively raised by one ( love you Mom).  I also know that every mother is a working mother, and we deserve respect.  Now, Salary.com has put literal dollars to our value, both mothers who sat at home and those who work outside the home in addition to raising children.  Check out what I read recently over at MSNBC!

Update: I am now a working mother.  I have taken a weekday position at a new local professional day spa named Spa Synergy.  The pace is relatively slow while I build a clientele.  Just right for me, just starting out.   I’ve decided to take an extended break while my family and I adjust to the new schedule.  I know, I know. All three of you (my faithful readers) are thinking: Didn’t you just take an extended break?  The answer would obviousy be: YES. Yes I did.  I have now replaced, effectively, blogging as my only outlet as a stay-at-home-mother.  I am confident that those of you who truly know me will feel free to contact me at any point in time.  Will I still be reading my pals’ blog? Oh yeah.  Commenting from time to time, even.  So if you’d like to know how I’m really doing or how my family is really doing as currently as possible, shoot me an email!

I love you guys 😉

Erin

So, it’s been a while since I posted…

…for a good reason: WE HAVE BOUGHT A NEW HOUSE!!  No worries.  It is less than five miles from our current house.  The girls will stay at their wonderful schools with their fabulous teachers. It adds a few minutes to DH’s drive and a few to mine.  This house is large enough that I will now have my own Massage Suite (a bedroom with a full bath attached) to practice in!  Of course, my business cards will sill read ‘Have table, Will travel!’  We close in mid-April, then clean our ‘old’ home and prepare it to be listed after that.  Very exciting.  Will keep my readers (all three of you) updated as the move draws closer.

Just a reminder ( for you and for myself): DH and I will be headed to Austin on March 24 for me to take the Practical Exam for my Massage Therapy License.  The girls will be out of school the previous week on Spring Break: good time for a road trip to visit loved ones in two different states, right?  I promise to come back with photos of our daughters having a grand time at the farm!  It will be a hectic, fun-filled week. Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers.

I’m spoiled. What’s new?

 My DH has me driving the demo program vehicle that is his privilege after working for the company 6+ years ( lots of cars… you might even say they’ve maxxed out their inventory *wink, wink*).  Any vehicle he wants to take for a limit of one month.  I also have the privilege of driving said vehicle.  Right now, I’m in a Ford tank with all the power and safety I count on, plus a few safety features. Love the vehicle.  HATE the safety features! I’ll explain later on in my tale.

You may not know this if you live under a rock elsewhere in the U.S.,  but Texas doesn’t get a lot of cold weather.  The last week, however, in the DFW area where WE live, there’s been freezing temperatures with precipitation.  Rain, sleet, ice.  Overnight? SNOW! In the hottest state in the union!! My kids were marveling like I’m sure kids did the day Velcro was introduced…

I did what any loving mother would do:  I braved the frosty weather to start and warm up the ‘tank’ for my three girls.  I left it running and dashed back inside to bundle up my tiny Eskimos.  When I was ready to drive them to their respective schools, I found that the stinking SUV had locked me out!  See why I hate the ‘safety features’? Bad news: we only have one set of keys at the house.  The plus: well, it might be a plus if we knew the stupid code for the coded entry on the driver’s door… another safety feature, or a trigger for rage? You decide! I called DH (already at work 45 minutes away), who came to my rescue, but not before telling me that this particular situation is something easily avoided by always being sure to roll a window down.  In the ice and snow: riiiiiight. I bit my tongue, but what I was really thinking was: That is information I could’ve used ten minutes ago, thankyouverymuch! Grrrr.

Wouldn’t be the same if my kids were already inside the SUV – they know how to unlock the doors. They were NOT inside the SUV.  I sent them back into the house and seated them in front of the 60-inch TV, placated them with some Japanese Anime rated Y7 (c’mon, Rosie’s a mature 3 year old), which they spent the entire time pointing out how the lip movements did not match the patterns of speech.  Yes, my girls are observant – they RAWK!!

So when Prince Charming arrived with the keys to freedom, we headed off to school.  I promptly delivered the oldest two to the elementary.  As we walked into the office, the principal greeted us and said, “No tardies for you today, ladies!”  SWEEEEEEET!

I dropped Rosie off and rushed home to share my adventure for today!

Da Bears & Da Kids?

Just a random thought:  Anybody know where I can purchase tranquilizer darts that can be jettisoned from a long tube?  I’m thinking of an Aboriginal Dart Gun.  I dreamed of this overnight.  I can see it now: My husband and I have everything on our bodies crossed, intently watching Da Bears vs. The Colts  when our oldest daughter stomps into the living room, whining, “Mom! Rosie’s trying to take my…”  Thwack.  A tranquilizer dart hits her in the neck before she can even finish the sentence.  Her eyes roll back in her head as her body quietly slumps to the floor.  DH says: “Oh, look.  Did we forget that it was naptime? Damn!”  I kindly place a pillow under Halie’s head and throw a blanket over her and am not disturbed by her sudden lack-of-consciousness.  That’s the point where I wake up.  With a smirk on my face.

Do me a favor, those of you who do not know my daughters: pry your hand from your precious pearls and listen to me carefully.  I do not refer to my girls as ‘Circus Monkeys’ in my blog to insinuate that they are anything less than joyful.  They have that much curiosity and that much energy and yes, that much mischevious spirit.  I allow them to intimidate me…maybe push me to the limits of my sanity.  I love them, and if my house is a zoo, then so be it!

 I know that my dream of using tranquilizers is far from noble in regards to loving parenthood. My own mother and I laugh at stories about our yearly two-day train trips to Chicago in the 80’s, of which I can only vaguely remember the first of, thanks to Benadryl (or as I call it: legal pediatric sedative).  I have to tell you the truth of our plan for watching the Superbowl next weekend.  Our three daughters (8, 6 and 3, respectively) will most likely sit in their pre-ordained spots on the sofa, not because they are so thrilled by watching grown men in tight pants handle a pigskin, but mostly because they know they need to be seated close to the half-time snacks to even hope for a bite or two. 

Most women dread football season.  The females in my house LOVE it.  It is almost guaranteed that DH will make something to feed us all!

It’s all over after Da Bears win the Superbowl next weekend. At least until next August!

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