Thursday, January 6, 2011

I'm Back

So, it's been a while.  I've been gone...and I've been busy. Well, really I've just been lazy, but either way I'm back.  Since it's been so long I figured I should at least write a quick update as to what I've been up to so we can get started again.

Mid-December Alex and I piled the three kids and the dog into our van and traveled 1100 miles to Indianapolis to spend the holidays with my parents and my brother's family.  Yes, we drove to Indiana.  We're nuts.
I envisioned hours upon hours of screaming children, me soaked in my tears of anger and frustration, Alex cussing under his breath and Indiana expressing his anal glands the whole way so that the smell is the only thing worse than the screaming.

But, it was easy on the way there.  Seriously, no problems.  No screaming.  No tears.  No cussing. Ok, there were some anal gland issues but Indiana is a very disturbed and gross, yet wonderful, dog.

We arrived to snow and cold weather which my little Texas children enjoyed for the first 3 or 4 days.  They went sledding, they made a snow man and they fell in deep piles of snow and laughed.  They loved it....then they hated it.

I would like to send a serious shout out to moms of little kids living in cold weather climates.  The amount of time I spend begging my children to put on large puffy jackets, hats and gloves was ridiculous.  The amount of time I spent trying to strap them into their car seats with said jackets on was simply painful.  They cried when their gloves fell off, even in the car.  They requested hot chocolate almost every day because they were simply freezing.  We were indoors....a lot. 

We went ice skating, which was really me ice skating while trying to hold up my children.  It killed my back and honestly I kept having visions of Aiden or Cole falling and someone gliding by and slicing off one of their fingers.  It was pretty fun. 

I learned some valuable information about my parents.

I learned that I will never be as good at being frugal as my father.  I watched him rinse out and reuse plastic bags (including the two he used as his over night bags on our road trip.) He uses junk mail for note paper.  He stores Christmas decorations in boxes from the early 80s in order to avoid purchasing $5 plastic tubs. My Dad doesn't have trash service to avoid paying the monthly fee and it is a huge pain in the ass.  The day before we left we weren't allowed to throw anything in the trash can other than paper.  He kept smuggling the dirty diapers out somewhere.   I don't even know what he does with all of it, but I'm sure he's committing some sort of waste disposal crime.  Maybe he slowly distributes the trash in the neighbors' trash cans?  Maybe he carries small bags of trash to the grocery store each time he goes?  It was annoying however it works....but he certainly has more money than I do.

I also learned my Mom has a wealth of information gathered from scary emails forwarded to her by her friends.  She is much cooler than I am though, owning both an iphone and an ipad. She can rock a baby while humming longer than I could do anything else in the world, particularly that, because I find it exhausting and annoying.  She spoiled my daughter, but I guess that's ok.

My kids usually are over the moon to be at Grandma and Tractor's house for weeks on end.  Leading up to Christmas and Christmas were wonderful.  Immediately following the holiday though, my kids were ready to go home.  Too many hours spent trapped inside.  Too many nights staying up late and then trying to sleep in sleeping bags on the floor.  Two out of the three kids were sick and Alex flew home the day after Christmas, so it was too long without Daddy. 

Yes, you read correctly, my husband flew back alone, which means that my parents were left with us.   So on the fourth of January I climbed back into our minivan with Aiden, Cole, Stella, Grandma, Tractor and Indiana for the journey back to Texas.  Other than me feeling sick, throwing up at the Comfort Inn in Arkansas and some serious screaming from Stella, it went well.

Now we are back, enjoying our time with Grandma and Tractor here.  I feel better-ish (though still haunted by a brief moment of thinking my nausea could be due to pregnancy, which is a terribly  frightening thought).  Aiden and Cole are happy to be sleeping off the floor.  We are all happy to have Daddy around again....and no one is missing their puffy jacket.  We even can throw all our trash in the trash can, but can't afford much else because we do.

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