Friday, March 16, 2007

Snapshot of Life - March 15, 2007

1:00 am - It's the middle of the night and I'm awake again. It's starting to be a habit, and not a good one. I don't think I got to bed before midnight, which never bodes well. As I'm thinking how hard it is going to be to fall back asleep, I fall back asleep.

2:52 - I'm up, and go to the bathroom. A friend of mine and I were reminiscing about the catheters we each had during labor once (me with #1) which sounds gross but actually, when you've gone nine months of sleepless nights because of 2 or 3 trips to the bathroom per night, it is great to have one less thing to have to get out of bed for. I get back in bed, but I'm trying not to think about anything interesting for fear that it will keep me up, so of course, I've got all sorts of interesting things going on in my head. I try my parents' trick of listening to an audiobook on the ol' ipod but the book I've just started is too interesting itself and I have a feeling that I'm going to want to stay up to listen to it. So I switch to music, George Winston, nice soothing piano music, but it's not enough to keep my attention and there I go thinking again. The light from the ipod I think might be bothering DH because he's moving around a lot, so I decide to get up and hopefully get tired enough to go back to sleep.

3:25 - I head down to the kitchen to grab something to eat. I am standing near the sink and glance over at the fish tank, to make sure the fish is still alive. It's a reflex you develop as a fish owner, one that cat and dog owners don't generally acquire, unless it's a really old cat or dog I suppose. Anyhow, I can't find the fish. That's a bad thing, as fish generally can't escape, and this one has shown no tendencies towards becoming a jumping fish. I knock on the glass, hoping that it is just hiding inside the skull that is in there for the fish's enjoyment, or maybe it just fell asleep somewhere I couldn't see it, but no dice. I unplug the filter and walk away, thinking maybe something happened to the fish while I was gone last night and no one told me. A minute later when I looked over, I saw the fish, floating limply underneath the filter - my suspicions were correct, it was sucked up against the filter and stuck there. This would be the 4th or 5th time that's happened this week, and I don't know if there is a more serious phrase than "bad sign" but man, this fish's days are numbered. I don't want to look again, because I really hate being the guy to find the dead fish, and then have to tell Boy #1 about it (they are his fish) but I also hate to have him find it too. But I pull a Lot's Wife and give one last glance over my shoulder and luckily, the fish is hanging out near the top of the tank and it's fins are moving. Whew. The thing about fish is that when they die, they don't float belly-up at the top of the tank, you find them laying on the gravel at the bottom, which means to get them out you have to put your whole arm in the water and scoop it up with a measuring cup (because we don't have one of those handy dead-fish-scoop nets) and inevitably you've got a scoop of gravel in there too, but that's the price you pay.

3:45-4 - I'm burning my latest audiobook acquisition onto cd for a friend, and it is causing my computer to absolutely chug while I try typing this as the same time. It's taking many seconds for my typo's to appear and it's starting to make me nuts. I love my laptop, but once you've got a little money in your pocket it's easy to say, why the heck didn't I get the upgraded version of this laptop? Because I couldn't afford it at the time, but if I were to buy one today I might spend a little more in the muscle department. Same with the minivan - if I had known, I would have ponied up the extra many thousands of dollars to get the next model up that comes with automatic sliding doors. I can't tell you how many fights have broken out because no one (read: Boys #1 and #2) wants to close the door. Boy #1 tries to be especially sneaky by leaping out of the car first, climbing over the other boys in the process, or getting out on #3's side, because I always close that door. But I am grown-up enough to know that automatic sliding doors, while seemingly the answer to all of my problems, wouldn't actually be - they would find something else to fight about I'm sure. Like whether or not somebody has to/gets to push the button. My friend has the auto doors and says that her kids constantly leave the door open, assuming that it will just close by itself. What kind of world to we live in, where we have to teach our kids that not all doors close on their own?

4:16 -I'm finished eating, signed my corporate tax returns that have to be mailed today, and wander around the house listening to my book. I'm scarily awake right now and not sure what to do about it. I want some ice cream but it is outside in the garage freezer, and I am not craving it enough to go out there in the middle of the night. I think I'll go lay down and keep listening to my book, and see if I can't drift off at some point.

6-7:30 - I sleep until the alarm clock goes off, at which time I nudge DH awake and go back to sleep for one more hour.

8:30- I'm awake for real and not as tired as I imagine I will be at, say, 2 this afternoon. #3 is crying for no reason, DH reports that he has been very tempermental today. I'm glad that I have nowhere I need to be today - it looks like the right day to sit at home and catch up on my tv watching (Amazing Race and American Idol).

9:00 - I take #2 to school and drop off the cd's I burned at a friends house. I get home and read the newspaper. At 10 #3 wants to go outside and play, which is fine although it's a little chilly this morning, so we bundle up a little and head out. I bring my breakfast, which is leftovers of last night's dinner, since we have plenty of it due to the fact that no one ate it except me. Grrr. why do I cook again? I also bring my ipod and listen to my new book, Twilight, which I am loving.

10:30-12 - #3 is bored so we go back inside. He is content to watch Barney so I sit on the couch and listen to my book. Turns out the audio version is just as captivating as the paper version of books usually is, and I don't do anything other than sit there and listen. Usually the advantage to audiobooks is that I am so much more productive, but not today. Also I'm sleepy, which doesn't help with the motivation. I'm already halfway through the book and the only thing that makes me not so disappointed at how fast it is going is the fact that the sequel is already out, and I'm willing to fork over another 2 credits for it.

12:15 - #2 comes in, obviously in need of lunch because the first words out of his mouth (practically) are "Can I play Lego Star Wars?" to which I reply, "Sure, after you eat your lunch" followed up with "No!! I don't want to eat lunch!! I'm not hungry!!" He starts to stomp and tries to grab the couch cushion to throw it, but I stop him, so he kicks the bag that the newspaper came in, a fairly ineffectual display of anger but frustrating nonetheless. He asks to watch a movie, I give him the same answer, and he yells "Fine!" in his best disgruntled-teenager, I-can't-believe-my-mom-is-doing-this-to-me voice. He decides on a bowl of cereal which I have to ask him to ask me nicely to get for him (I won't let him yell orders at me, especially when he is perfectly capable of doing it himself). His friend across the street comes over after the first few bites are taken, and after just a few more #2 decides he's done. I still won't let him play until he eats more because half a bowl of Cocoa Krispies is not going to lead to a decent afternoon for us. He isn't happy but controls himself in front of his friend, eats some crackers, and I finally let him go play. I have a feeling that the lack of food is going to be an issue later, but I can't worry about that too much right now.

12:45 - #2 and friend are playing Lego Star Wars and #3 is watching, so I'm off to take a shower and hopefully the house will still be standing when I get out.

1:00-2:30 - Still standing, thank goodness, and I go down to the craft room to get some actual work done while I watch Judge Judy. I reply to some emails, send some of my own, call my insurance company about some charges that I thought should be covered (apparently I thought wrong, the result of a $5000 maternity deductible not being met last year). I also called the plastic surgeon who is going to be operating on me next week, because the basal cell carcinoma that was removed from my neck is growing back, or so my OB and I think. So I want to see if he will remove that one at the same time instead of having to schedule a second surgery. This is going to be a very expensive medical year.

2:30 - #1 comes home from school and is immediately sulky when I tell him I'm going to check his homework today. #3 wants to go outside to play so I open the front door for him and let him go out for a minute by himself while I go to the bathroom. When I get outside to watch him (I don't really trust him quite yet to be by himself, not that he's ever done anything like leave the cul-de-sac but I hear the tv announcer saying "The 2 year old boy was outside by himself when..." which if I heard that I would immediately judge the mother as horribly neglectful) I find him standing on the front porch of our neighbor, ringing the doorbell which has a note next to it saying "Doorbell broken. Please knock." So I knocked, and the kids were in the backyard with their cousins, so they invited us to come back out there. I sat with my neighbor and her sisters-in-law and mother and chatted while the kids played.

3:30 - #1 calls me from our backyard and tells me his math homework is done, can I come check it? So I go over it with him - some are careless mistakes, no decimal point in a money problem, missing a zero, etc, but he's got a serious stumbling block in multiplication, especially when it involves several numbers. I think I really need to go over this more frequently with him, but I just dread the sulking, the sullenness, the moping, the bad attitude.

4:00 - I consider what I'm going to make for dinner, and I decide to give last night's dinner another chance. I wasn't home last night, so DH is not up for a battle over a meal, especially when he doesn't have a horse in this race. I give both kids fair warning about what dinner is going to be, they agree to eat it (which is kind of a joke, I recognize that) and settle back down to my audiobook, after switching the laundry again.

5:30 - DH comes home in the middle of a tantrum thrown by #3, who has just started to figure out this whole cry-really-loud-for-no-reason thing - the other kids were tantrum pros by this age, I guess #3 is just a slow starter. I have a feeling he'll make up for hit in quality of tantrums, and maybe he's just scheduling his peak tantrum throwing season to collide with us having a new baby in 3 months. Kids are crafty like that. Anyhow, he's angry because I had the audacity to put half a sandwich on a plate at the seat at the table where he normally sits. An insult tantamount to slapping him in the face with a pair of gloves, I recognize my folly now. So DH comes home to #3 sitting on the floor crying, and #2 eating his absolute minimum required amount of sandwich, which is half. #1 is outside playing with a boy his age who is going to be driven to pack meeting by me later, along with his brother. The crying gets on DH's nerves, not that I blame him, but how is it that my nerves are able to handle so much more? Well, I take #3 down to my craft room to continue crying behind closed doors. The nice thing is that when #3 flips the crying switch to "off" and walks out in a perfectly pleasant mood 5 minutes later, I'm comfortably ensconced in my lazy-boy recliner with my earbuds in my ear and my audiobook turned up just loud enough to be heard over the racket. I turn the volume back down now that it's quiet and stay down there until it's time for pack meeting.

6:30 - I take Boys #1 and #2, plus neighbor kids 1 and 2 over to the church for pack meeting. We have an awesome cub committee - they are all super dedicated and do just a fantastic job on the meetings, the den meetings, getting the boys to reach their awards, etc. So my complaint is not with them- my complaint is the enforced cheesiness of the cubs program in general. The songs, the cheers, the jokes, just a total cheese-fest. I figured out that we've got 3 years with Boy #1, a 6 month break, 3 more years with Boy #2, another 6 month break, and then 3 final years with Boy #3. It could have been planned better, the timing, could I not have maybe overlapped our nine years of cub scout purgatory? Although that means that I would have had to buy 2 uniforms, and as it is we can get away with just one for all 3 boys.

7:30 - We head home where the boys both promptly break their kites that they made at scouts (the string just comes off, it's fixable) but of course leads to a potential meltdown. I distract #2 (the potential meltdowner) and he asks if he can have a popsicle when we get home. I happen to know for a fact that there are two popsicles in the freezer, but I have three children. There is no need for the spinning red light to start going off in my head to warn me about what is about to happen here - this one is a no-brainer. I tell #2 he can certainly have a popsicle after #3 goes to bed. Which is in 15 minutes. Which means 15 minutes of me trying to get him not to ask me again, so that he won't say the word popsicle in front of said younger brother, who is not stupid and will immediately ask for a popsicle if he hears it mentioned. Finally I put #3 down to bed and popsicle eating ensues.

8:00 - Scriptures, 24 verses tonight. Yikes. I try to be enthusiastic and say "Just think how many blessings we are going to get for this!" but no one really wants to hear it. I'm reminded of the scripture that talks about a gift given grudgingly and does it still count (obviously I'm paraphrasing here). I don't really want to think about that, let's just get this done.

8:25 - DH has put #2 down to bed, #1 is at the table coloring his kite, and DH heads out the door to Walmart to get his allergy prescription refilled, plus a birthday present for the party #1 is going to on Saturday, plus a new transformer that #2 has saved his money for (birthday money plus leftover token money, which he did not waste at Chuck E Cheese's like #1 did, so he actually has $12 whole dollars). I'm instructed to go to bed super early tonight to combat the whole awake at 3 in the morning thing. I've got a copy of the business plan for the team I'm mentoring for the Utah Entrepreneur Challenge that I said I would review and make notes by tomorrow, so I decide to go over that quickly and then head up to bed. My tv shows will have to wait for another day.

8:45 - A member of the UEC team calls to ask some questions about their website and plan. I discuss it with him for a while, and can't help but think that at some point someone is going to figure out that the emperor has no clothes on, or in this case, the business plan competition winner has no practical experience and therefore no reason to be giving anyone advice. So I try to couch all of my advice with a caveat that, you know, this is just my opinion, this is how I'd do it, or I've seen it done, or whatever.

9:15 - I get off the phone and get back to the business plan. DH comes home and puts #1 to bed, then rewinds the tape of tonights new Scrubs episode to watch in the other room. I try to keep reading with my fingers plugged in my ears (which makes scrolling through a word document difficult) because I need to drown out the show and DH's laughing, which is what I'd much rather be doing right now. Eventually I close the laptop and head upstairs and listen to my audiobook while I get ready for bed. This is a mistake, though, because the book is slightly engrossing, as you can tell, and I don't really want to put it off. I sit in bed for about 10 minutes listening to the book and hear DH going through the house, turning off the lights and locking the doors. Well, there's no reason to start reading scriptures now, he's going to be in here in a few minutes to read also, so I use this as an excuse to keep listening to my book and say I'll turn it off when we both read together. Of course, this is going exactly opposite of DH's suggestion that I go to bed at like 8:30 so I can finally get enough sleep in a night, and when he finds me listening to my book he is, I think, a little disgusted at my lack of priorities. Or lack of discipline, I'm not sure. He's never been captivated by a book before, I don't know what I can compare it to for a non-reader, that need to keep reading and the difficulty in putting down a good book. I'm expecting my family to back me up on this one - certainly I'm not the only one in our family to stay up all night reading a book because it is just that good, right? Or in the case of Sphere by Michael Crichton, because I'm so scared by the book that I need to finish it to ensure I don't have nightmares!

10:30 - Scriptures have been read, and lights are off. I think I actually did pretty well for such a bad night's sleep, let's hope tonight is better.


GrandpaFred said...


I have so many thoughts that I think I could concievably write an entry as long as the original.

1am - We've all been there. I've found that watching a MST3K is almost a guarenteed sleeping pill. Why? Don't know... But it almost always works.

2:52 - This catheter thing brings back a discussion I had with a cousin that worked for my families business. We had a similar discussion but its just too gross to talk about.
Also Mom and I both listen to audiobooks. I've found that I can find one thats only moderately interesting, kind of a throw away book if you will, so I don't waste valuable ipod time on a good audible. Music never does it either.

3:25 - Though we never had fish in the family I still remember having one when I was a kid. I think it lived a long time, multiple months, but ended up floating on its side... Down the toilet and I was crushed.

3:45 - Won't bother with CD's anymore. Its too much trouble. If you can't buy some version of mp3.. you just aren't in my serious.

4:16 - Has the entire world done thier taxes before me? I'm always the first to get them done but this year the whole office, we get a 3 month automatic extention for some odd reason, has done it. In past years guys were complaining about finally getting them done in September.

9am - I have a serious attitude about breakfast. I don't think its the perfect thing to start the day. Maybe it is for the rest of humanity but not me... So be it. My dad said that he liked to get up, milk the cows (took a couple hours) then he had an appitite for breakfast. What do I do when I get up at 5am? Surf the web, not much of an appitite generator that. I do like when this blog has an update hot and ready to be read, opined on, cackled at etc.

12pm - I agree with the 2 credit thing. Man they suck the 24 credit thing dry in like no time. At some point in the distant past audible changed the thing from buying say 24 books to 24 credits. It does add flexibility as I can now say use 1/3 of a credit to hear Sarah Vowell's left wing propaganda on PBS, hating 50% of what she's saying all the while, but totally loving the other 50%. But it also meant that you could charge more than one book's price for a book. But it its worth it... pay and don't look back.

3pm, ish - Mom has to get a second mamogram done and this cancer thing frightens me. I had a bcc on my head so don't sweat that too much. So when Kim asked me what I knew of this thing.. I felt like the worst parent in the world. Oh yah, Emily had one but its a nothing. All I could think was that Kim, the poor child, thought. "I must have gotten the only good Mudgett!" Mom is going to York to have a second opinion or something done on a recent mamogram and that has me scared. These internal things can grow without any outward signs (I guess that's why they are internal, no?) so when they give any indication blast them with utmost vigor!

Tim just called and needs to gotten from a friend's house. So of course I will drop everything I'm doing to thunder to his side. After all nothing is too much for our children, or is it anything is too good for the children.

Hey I have some opinions about your children observations by the way but they'll have to wait.

GrandpaFred said...

Opinions continued:
3:30 - Oddly enough multiplication was one of the few sucesses in a dreadful academic life. In 4th grade my teacher thought that I'd memorized the tables, which I of course hadn't, but he had me tutor other kids on memorizing them. voilia! It proves something, I don't quite know what but it seemed to work. That's probably the only sucess story I have for math.

Dinner time - You and your mother are both great cooks so I wonder what the answer is to this not eating stuff. I've read that this is all about control and your kids are not blimps like some of the children today, I guess don't sweat it. When I see the Opera cases of children that are 250 pounds and 5 years old...