I had a mind once. Now I have small children.

Monday, February 28, 2011

On the Wagon...Again

The other day I went to get my hair colored. As I was sitting in my stylists chair, I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror. I hardly recognized myself. When did I get so....well, for lack of a better word--FAT? As we discussed the color of highlights to put in my hair, I couldn't take my eyes of the pudgy girl sitting there staring back at me. My rockin' stylist, the Divine Ms. M, said she would like to add some caramel color. Mmmmm, caramel, I thought to myself. I could totally go for some caramels right now. Wait. What??? We are talking hair, here! I scolded myself and tried to stop thinking about the ooey-gooey goodness of burnt sugar treats.

I'm not sure when and how this happened. I used to be skinny. A long time ago, in the pre-baby era. Then came Mario and an additional 60 pounds. Right before Luigi came along, I joined a program--you know, the one with Points--and lost it all. Back to skinny jeans and tight sweaters. It was awesome. Then, Peach surprised us all and the pounds started to creep back on. Apparently when I am pregnant, I think it is ok to eat not just for 2, but 200. After Peach's arrival, I just never really lost again. It was just too much work and I was just too overwhelmed.

I actually thought I was doing ok, until I saw the spare tire that sits around my belly mocking me in the mirror. My first clue should have been that I still actually wear some of my maternity tops. Did I mention I have not been in the maternity way for more than 2 years now?

Since the birth of Peach, I have been on and off the diet wagon several times. I can do great for about 3 days. Then, when Thursday rolls around, I have to have a couple of drinks with our favorite shows. Since I had a couple of glasses of wine on Thursday, I decide that it would be ok to take the kids to Chick-Fil-A on Friday (and eat all of the waffle fries that they leave at the table when they go play). Of course, you can't have a Friday night without a beer to celebrate making it through the week. The next day is Saturday. Bowser is off for the weekend, the kids are home from school...might as well have donuts or pancakes for breakfast while we relax and watch cartoons. Do you see where I am going with this?

Then, by Sunday night, I feel gross and bloated and any weight that I might have lost in the first 3 days of the week is back. Usually accompanied by an extra few ounces. Yes. I count partial pounds. I might have a sickness.

Yesterday, I decided to get a new perspective on what I look like from someone else's point of view. So, I put on leggings and a tight tank top and had Bowser take my picture. I won't gross you out with details, let's just say there were tears involved.

Did you know that back in the Renaissance, curvy women were desirable? Big bosoms, wide hips and rounded bellies were all the rage. When did that change? Why can't we just be ok with our natural bodies? I want to embrace my curves, not hate them.

Alas, I do not live in the Renaissance period. I live in the new millennium. So, these curves are going to have to go. I am counting points again. I might--I said MIGHT!--even start adding exercise, which I LOATHE. Then again, maybe I should stick with baby-steps. Don't want to go totally crazy or anything.

This isn't going to be easy. I am already cranky just thinking about not being able to have a candy bar after the kids go to bed tonight. And my darling Doritos...I'm so very sorry to have to let you go. But, I can do this! I can! Right?


Monday, February 21, 2011

Grapes on the Floor

There are few things in life that I actually hate. The h-word is such strong verbage, that I really don't like to use it. In fact, it is a rule in the Mario house that you are not allowed to say you "hate" anything (or anyone, for that matter). But, there are a few times that the word pops out of my mouth and I actually, really, truly mean it. One of these most loathed instances is when there are grapes on the floor.

Ooh, this really gets my goat. This afternoon I was talking with a dear friend on the phone and I needed the two smaller Goombas to just hush for a moment. "I know!" I thought to myself. "They are hungry for a snack so I will set them at the table with some grapes. That oughtta keep 'em occupied!" I gave them each a large bunch of grapes and went about my telephone business. They were quiet, which should have been my first clue that something was up, but I was relishing the silence and the opportunity to actually hear what my friend was saying on the end of the line. About 20 minutes passed, I said good-bye to my buddy and I turned back towards the kitchen table. "Hey kiddos! Thanks for being so good while Mommy was--" SMOOSH!

AAAAAAAK! I just stepped on a damn grape. When I lowered my eyes to the floor, I saw an overabundance of grapes rolling around under the table, under the chairs, heading towards the living room and down the hallway. What had the Goombas done to occupy themselves? Instead of EATING the grapes, they pulled each one off the bunch and tossed it to the floor. I closed my eyes and counted to ten. Then I chanted to myself, "I love being a Mom, I will not sell my children to gypsies. I love being a Mom, I will not sell my children to gypsies..."

Do you have any idea what a pain in the tush it is to clean up grapes? It is like trying to sweep up thousands of tiny little balls into one pile. Ok, thousands might be a small exaggeration, but really, try it sometime, you will think thousands as well. And since the sweet little orbs like to roll all over the place at the slightest nudge, you are sure to always end up with at least one under your foot. It goes a little something like this... Sweep, sweep, roll, sweep, smoosh. (repeat) Then, when you finally manage to corral all un-smooshed grapes, you look around and realize there are several little squishy piles of grape goo that you now have to wipe up. Wonderful. I have to ask myself...was 20 minutes worth of a quiet phone call worth it?

I think now it is time for Mommy to enjoy some grapes. The juiced, fermented kind that you find in a bottle and pour into a fancy glass.


Thursday, February 17, 2011

I Will Never...

I was totally hit with it out of the blue the other morning. I am officially THAT Mom. I didn't even realize I was doing it until Mario looked at me in pure embarrassment and disgust.

Allow me to set the scene for you. It happened in front of the school. We walked up to the doors and I gave Mario a hug before we went into the building. Wouldn't want to humiliate him by having his Mommy hug him inside where his friends are. When I leaned over to kiss him on the forehead, I noticed that he had a smidge of toothpaste on the side of his mouth. So, I did what any good mother would do. I licked my thumb and reached over to wipe it off. By the look of horror and distaste on his face you would have thought I covered a rag in acid and tried to actually wipe his face off of his body. He cringed away, put his hands over his face and said, "MOM! What are you DOING???"

I looked around, a little embarrassed myself, to make sure no one else witnessed the incident. I didn't even realize I was doing it! It was as though some crazy reflex overtook my body and forced me to do it. Before kids, I used to say that I would NEVER be one of those disgusting mothers that licked her kids face to clean it. What are we, animals? Apparently so, because now I am licking my kids and eating my words.

It's so funny isn't it, how many things we swear we will never do before we actually have kids? And then, when we have them, it all gets tossed out the window and we develop a severe case of amnesia that wipes all of those, "I will never" statements out of our minds.

Let's look at some examples from my own parenting experiences. Before children, Bowser and I were adamant that they would NEVER sleep in our bed with us. Our bed is for us. They have their own beds. Now, in the pursuit of precious sleep, it is not uncommon to wake up with a Goomba (or two, or three) tangled up with us under the covers. How or when they got there is usually a mystery to me, but there they are. And, if truth be told, snuggling with those little boogers in the sleepy early morning hours isn't actually so bad.

I also always said that I would NEVER use the television as a baby-sitter. Ummm... Yeah. Ok, then. See, the thing is, a mama just needs a shower once in a while! Who better to look after the Goombas while I do that than the latest episode of Dinosaur Train?

Or how about the "I will NEVER make separate meals for my kids, they eat what we eat" statement? You know what we had for dinner last night? Bowser and I ate tilapia, Luigi ate mac & cheese, Mario and Peach had corn dogs. Whatever. At least they all had full bellies, right? RIGHT???

There are so many of these little "I will nevers" that come back and slap me right in the face. But, really, what did I know back then? Apparently not much about parenting. Oh, Luigi and Peach have milk dribbling down their chins...time for some finger-licking, spit-cleaning, face-washing fun!


Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

Ok, here comes another confession. I am a slave to Hallmark. I am their perfect target. And I love Valentine's Day. A day dedicated to the people you love? Sure! I'm up for that!

I realize that some people say you should make time to tell your loved ones how you feel every day. And I know that you shouldn't be romantic only one day a year. But, here is the thing... When life begins to take over and you are driving kids to sports practice, running errands, taking the carpool both directions and trying to keep track of everyone's appointments and belongings, well, the truth is, we sometimes forget to be romantic and appreciate the ones we love. I personally think it is nice to have one day a year where we can be cheesy and mushy. Everyone could use a little nudge in Cupid's direction now and then.

I'm so thankful for all of my Valentine's this year. My Bowser, Mario, Luigi and Peach. Sweet Mario made cards for each of us, without being asked, and hid them for us to find as surprises. Luigi has been walking around all day saying, "Happy Balentime's Day!" And Peach's breath was taken away by all of the hearts on the table at breakfast this morning. Bowser and I had a lovely dinner last night in our own kitchen after the Goombas were in bed. They also all surprised me with this totally awesome cake, which just might be one of my favorite Valentine's EVER!

My life and my heart would never be complete without my darling Goombas and my dearest Bowser.

Happy Valentine's Day!!! xoxo


Thursday, February 10, 2011

New Obsessions

I can hardly believe it, but after nearly 3 years of a love affair with the greatest Tank Engine on Earth, we might be moving on. I know, I know...this is crazy!!! Don't get me wrong, 90% of our day is still spent playing with, talking about, watching and reading about Thomas and Friends, but the other 10% is now being devoted to a new love. And it's awesome. Mostly. The new obsession in Luigi's life is...(drumroll please...) PUZZLES! And, I have to tell you, the kid is a GENIUS at them!

It started with a Thomas puzzle that he got for Christmas. It is one of those gigantic floor puzzles that has 30 pieces. He asked for help with it. I told him to get the pieces out and get ready and I would help him when I was done folding the load of laundry. By the time I got back into the living room, he had done 3/4 of the puzzle all by himself. What? I looked at Bowser and said, "That was nice of you to help him!" He stared back at me blankly and said, "Help who with what?" I looked at Luigi and asked him if he started it all by himself and he said, "Yeah, Mommy! It's a lot of hard work!"

Ok, so it wasn't a 5,000 minuscule piece puzzle, but hey, it was the first time he had ever even looked at it. I must say, I was pretty impressed. And my sweet baby was so proud of himself. He made everyone in the house come look at his masterpiece. Then he tore it apart and did it all over again.

The next puzzle was a dinosaur one I found from when Mario was smaller that was never even opened. We got it out, spread out the pieces and with the tiniest bit of help from me, he had it finished in 20 minutes. Then at Grandma Bowser's house, he finished--get this--a 60 piece puzzle, with regular size pieces, all by himself! Grandma Bowser said she didn't help at all! Holy cow, this kid is a puzzle maniac!

Yes, I realize I am bragging just a little bit, but come on... How many 3-year-olds do you know that can put together a puzzle like that? Not many! I tried to get Mario interested in them a long time ago, but it just wasn't his thing. Luckily I have a few stored back that my little Einstein can open and put together.

I only have one small issue with this latest fixation. There are puzzle pieces EVERYWHERE! I am desperately trying to keep track of which pieces go with which puzzle. As of right now, they are all fairly easy to figure out what is what, but I think I will be marking the backs with different colors or shapes very soon. And those little buggers can hide in the weirdest places. I find them under the couch, in the bathroom, scattered around the kitchen, and I even found one in the dryer yesterday. Interesting...

Some other new obsessions in our house...

~Bowser has a new crush. It is his new phone. He got a Droid and he loves it. He has spent hours updating it, adding apps, and playing games. I think I am actually getting a little jealous of the time he is spending with it.

~Mario is still in the afterglow of the Packers' Super Bowl win. I think I know just about every single stat about the team and his favorite player. I have to wash his 3 Packers shirts over and over again, because that is all he wants to wear when he isn't in his school uniform.

~Peach... Well, little Miss Peach is still infatuated with Disney Princesses. And biting me to get my attention. I have these little welts all over my thigh because she will walk up and nip me on the leg and get that tiny bit of skin that hurts so bad! Then she bats her little eyes at me and says, "I MISS you, Mommy!" As if that is going to save her from time out. Grrr... This girl is gonna turn me gray before I'm 35.

And now, it is time for me to go help with another puzzle and avoid Peach's chompers.