Thursday, April 21, 2011

A Love Story? No, I don't do that.

At the risk of reading like a Hallmark "romantic" card, my post today will be about my hubby.  Blech.  I know.  I will try not to be too sappy.

I cannot remember ever writing about him - even though sometimes I think he is convinced that my blog is some twisted rant about married life with him???  AND, I don't think he's ever actually read the blog, so I should be safe.

It's not going to be long....just two reasons why I am still married after 20 years.  And, mainly I am doing this for posterity (huh? - look it up.).  So that when I am stinkin' mad at him (like, possibly later today), I can go back and read this post and remember that I really do like him.  ;o)

1.  Baby is a stink pot at the BMX track.  And, I can't say I blame her.  It's not Chucky Cheese for a two year old.  It is dirty, dusty, filled with sweaty older kids, and not-much-fun.  So, we usually are at the track Thursdays when there is no school Friday.  This morning I told hubby that I wasn't going to the track tonight.  He said, "Aw, man." 

He likes me to go to the track (I think) even though sometimes we don't say anything to each other the entire time we are there, or sit next to each other???  I know.  I don't understand it either, but I will take that as a compliment. 

I said, "I have too much to do."

Now, here's where the "like" comes in.  He has seen me sit on my a$$ all week and watch TV, blog, be on Facebook, randomly find things that need to be done (other than my actual work), and basically Procrastinate Like Only I Can.  AND yet, this is what he says,

"I'll take baby to the track with me tonight so you can work.  I just won't practice or race.  I'll just watch baby." 

He says this without the least bit of sarcasm in his voice.

SAY WHAT???  Wow!  He would watch our stink pot baby at the track for three plus hours while the older three ride and race and baby gets filthy dirty, whines for a "fish stick" (which we finally figured out last Saturday means "popsicle" - I know, she's weird), and tries her best to find new parents???  While he knows all the while I have procrastinated ALL WEEK and am staying home under the guise of "having too much to do"???  Yeah!  I like this guy!

Reason Number 2.  And this one is more serious, so try not to throw up and I will do the same.  He has the most generous heart of anyone I know (except possibly, Jesus or Mother Teresa).  Which I am finding (the older I get) is really, really hard to come by in this materialistic world of instant gratification.  I will not tell you what he did on the Internet, because he wouldn't like that.  So far, I think he has only told me.  But yesterday he was in one of those situations where any other person that I can think of would have just walked away and pretended they couldn't do anything to help.  Instead, he made a simple decision (for him) which was - basically - I have all I need right now, and this person doesn't.  So, I am going to give this person what he needs to make it through this moment.  Sounds easy, but I don't think it is.  He not only is generous he is generous without expectation, without judgment, and without announcing his generosity through updating his profile status (if he had one). 

If I was into mush and gush, PDA, and love I would end with "I love that guy."  Lucky for you I am not into those things.

There is a man and a family out there who could rest much easier last night, and there will be one dirty, bored, mischievous baby at the track tonight. 

Hubby - thank you!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Don't panic. Mom's having (another) midlife crisis.

Today I decided to get on a bicycle.  I know.  What's the big deal, right?  Well, I am going to tell you The Big Deal.  I haven't been on a bike in about 15 years, it was a BMX bike, I had a full face helmet on (very attractive), and my hubby and my kids expected me to go up and down these wild dirt bumps (that if they had SNOW on them would be moguls) called "rollers" on our pump track out back.

You are probably thinking, "Sheesh.  Whose idea was that???"  Right???  Well, it was mine.  Call me crazy (I have been calling myself that all day).  I have been trying to figure out why in the HELL I would want to do this.  And, I can't quite put my finger on it.  Here is my list so far:

1.  I am having a midlife crisis (another one).
2.  I am going insane.
3.  I have a death wish.
4.  I have become obsessive about fitness.
5.  I want to conquer a fear I have of anything that might hurt.
6.  I have a competitive heart (I know.  That one is REALLY a long shot).
7.  I haven't been able to roller derby or write a book so I figure riding the hell out of a bike and not killing myself could quite possibly be the next best thing.
8.  I want to spend more time with my hubby and the kids (say what???).
9.  I thought about taking up knitting, but the bike and the helmet were here already.

So, enough about WHY.  Let me tell you what happened.  I think a timeline would be good.

10:00 a.m. - I was confident that I would be able to do the rollers after a little practice on the rest of our 100 foot loop pump track.  I happily put workout pants and a long sleeve t-shirt on and headed out back.  I wore hubby's full face helmet (which is really HEAVY) and used one of his bikes (more about the bike later).  It took me a few minutes to maneuver the bike back to the track.  When I put the bike on the track (which, sadly, is the first time I have looked at the track from the track) I realized there is NO SAFE PLACE to practice on the track.  My six year old told me the best way to start was to get on the top of a bump and just ride down and start riding up and down.  It took me a while to actually get ON one of those bumps (which, I have to say at 10:00 in the morning - and from the top - looked more like small mountains). 

10:05 - I was finally at the top of a roller ready to start my first ever ride around the track when I just froze (in fear) and began to tip right over.  This was really crazy (and very funny to my kids, apparently) because I wasn't actually going anywhere.  I just tipped over - not all the way.  I caught myself and hubby very gently said, "Babe.  I think it might be good if you practice a little in the cul-de-sac."  I did not take this condescendingly and promptly got off the track and onto the pavement out front.

10:15 - It took me a good 10 minutes to maneuver the bike off the damn track and back to the front where it was safe.  I had done NO ACTUAL RIDING and I swear I could have downed a Gatorade, and I am pretty sure I was sweating under that 20 pound helmet.

10:17 - I was on the PK Ripper in the front wondering how in the hell you ride a bike when hubby said (a little more forcefully), "Go, babe!"  Now, the PK Ripper is a tiny little (clown) bike which has an actual technical name (that I can't remember) and is used for an actual technical purpose.  (That purpose is not to have a mother of four riding a bike for the first time in 15 years.)  Before I could take off I had to show hubby that my knees were hitting the handlebars of this clown bike and that I thought it was too small.  "It's supposed to be like that, babe.  Anyway, you don't sit down.  Just ride standing upGo!"  I think it was at that point that my nine year old chimed in, "Mom.  Are you sure you know how to ride a bike???  I mean, did you learn when you were a little girl???"

Meanwhile, I am thinking that I am not really up to testing the adage, "Once you learn how to ride a bike....blah, blah, blah."  Not to mention the fact that I was not sure I remembered how to  RIDE STANDING UP???  At this point I was sure I had not fully thought this midlife crisis out.

10:19 - I did my first spin around the neighborhood on the PK Ripper.  Well, technically it was just about 20 yards to the mailboxes, but the kids were all cheering for me (and I am pretty sure hubby was rolling his eyes at me behind my back).  I did not fall down...but, I did not stand up. 

I must digress to tell you readers that I distinctly remember as a child riding standing up most of the time.  It took little to no effort.  HAVE YOU PEOPLE TRIED RIDING STANDING UP LATELY???  Jeesh.  Not only is it a trick of balance (of which - I have NONE), it requires strength.  Now, funny story about strength.  This midlife crisis has been building up for quite a while, so I have been working out.  I have been working out with Kim Kardashian (KK), some Reebok lady, and with my 30 pound baby, her 30 pound stroller, my Nikes and the hills right here in my neighborhood.  Well, none of this prepared me for standing up on the damn bike.  It was hard.....when I finally did it.

10:25 - After I felt I had mastered "to the mailboxes and back" I decided to try standing up.  It didn't work out too well.  I was really wobbly.  Hubby told me to get off the PK Ripper and get on the cruiser.  It would be safer he told me.

10:30 to around 10:40 - I rode around (standing up) on the cruiser on the pavement in the cul-de-sac.

10:40 - The kids got tired of cheering me after my first ride and started racing each other and trying to "stay out of mom's way."  My youngest biker (who is 6) started asking me if I was ever going to ride the track.

10:41 - I felt fairly accomplished and so my six year old and I headed back to the pump track.

10:45 - 11:00 - I tried to do the rollers.  My six year old coached me.........very patiently.  I started to tip many times and then finally I did one side of the rollers (well, if you don't count all the times I put my feet down because I was SCARED).  Just to feel accomplished I did the rollers three times while all the kids and hubby breezed around me.

11:10 - I took the helmet off.  The nine year old said, "Mom, are you done???  You are really sweaty.  Are you okay?"  

11:15 - I came inside and promptly fell sound asleep on the hardwood floor downstairs while the kids screamed and played around me and baby peed her pants.

So, where do we go from here?  I have no idea.  I have a deep desire to conquer the rollers, my butt hurts, my kids are less enthusiastic about me riding a bike than they were before today, I think hubby thinks I am a little nuts, and KK is going to be pissed at me when I can't work out with her tomorrow because I can't lift my arms.

Check me later.  I will either be racing at the actual track or knitting a large afghan.  Either way - another crisis down.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Not a total waste of time...

Hello again.  It's been awhile.  Not much how 'bout you?  Blah.  Okay, done with that 70's song.  ;o)  If you didn't get that, don't worry.

I am just going to check in briefly (because the stack of prints on my desk - which I can scarily see from here - is downright FRIGHTENING) to tell you..............BABY IS POTTY TRAINED.  I have NOT been doing jack..........rabbit.  I have been POTTY TRAINING A VERY STUBBORN AND THICK HEADED TWO YEAR OLD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Can I get an amen???

You might ask (and if you do - bite your tongue) potty trained "Officially?"  Or "just a phase?"  And my answer is:  I don't know and I don't care.  I have not changed a pee diaper in about five days and I am ecstatic.  AND......hold on to your horses now..........she POOPED tonight on the potty (as opposed to the floor, the carpet, the concrete slab out back, her beautiful new panties, her old training panties, the neighbor's front yard, etc., etc.).

So, all this time I've been away, my friends, I was not drinking margaritas living the high life.  I was busy dealing with............well.......................pee and poop.  It's that simple.  AND (if you've ever potty trained a two year old) it's that...........complicated.  My life these past few weeks has been reduced to the bare necessities.  I have been unable to blog, run errands, exercise (well, only in brief 20 minute spurts), or basically be away from the princess potty (which stopped working about three weeks after we bought it) for more than a few minutes.  Now, I can begin to ease back into normal life.

So, want to know my secret?  Why did it all of a sudden work for me?  Did I get back my nazi mojo?  Well, no.  I had to resort to new tactics this time around.  Baby now has a weird concept of tiny marshmellows actually being FOR going potty.  But, I am too happy to care about its possible mental implications.  Funny sidenote:  I left her home with dad one full day and he gave her the large marshmellows everytime she peed.  Say what???  I promptly told baby that those marshmellows were only for roasting the smaller ones were for potty.  Daddy got it wrong.

AND baby also does not want to spend vacation with grandpa and auntie (sorry, grandpa and auntie).  Hmm.  That's weird, too, right?  Well, not really.  See when I booked our summer vacation to Great Wolf Lodge I told her that there were no diapers allowed there and that if she was not potty trained she would have to stay with grandpa and auntie.  MIRACULOUSLY she started a full fledged effort the next day.  ;o)  Should I start a potty training boot camp?  I just might.