Because Kim did it, and it did not require jumping off a bridge

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I have a post in my draft folder. The potentially pending post is not one of my happier posts. (Please take a moment and re-read that last sentence with the alluring alliteration. Lovely.)

The post currently residing in my draft folder was penned by my alter ego, Grumbling Gus. I sent the post to one of my blogging buddies, Pleasant Penelope. She was kind enough to say the blog is mine and the rules pertaining to my blog are mine.

While wondering whether or not to publish the draft, I read my friend Kim’s latest post, which was inspired by Just Jennifer, which was initiated by The Good Life. (I’m feeling a little dizzy.) Continue reading

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Itching With Inspiration

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I am itching with inspiration. Itching. And the inspiration comes from an actual itch and Facebook. The itch can be scratched. Facebook? It will be the death of me, if I don’t learn to keep quiet.

I find myself funny; unfortunately, I don’t keep the ‘funny’ to myself. (I don’t keep anything to myself.) Moreover, as I share what I find funny, I soon realize the rest of the world does not see things the way I see things. Amazing. Really, it’s a shame. Poor, poor world. I have a friend that says ‘you might as well laugh as cry’, and I try to remember that sentiment when things get crazy.

Yesterday, I posted what I thought was a funny poem on my Facebook status. “Too much info I sometimes share; here’s an example in case you care, My kid Joe does not have rabies. Nah. Instead this kid has scabies.” Well, the humor in my poem went over like a lead balloon. *THUD* (Actually, my neighbor found it funny, as she literally called me on the phone seconds after I posted the status.)

Other Facebook friends? Not so much. One FB friend, who has a child in my son’s daycare class, proceeded to contact the daycare provider. She was not amused with my mentioning my child and scabies in the same poem. [I admit, ‘scabies’ sounds horrible.] She wanted to request my child not be allowed back into daycare until the scabies was cured. Ok. Fine. I understand her concern. I understand her wanting to protect her child, as well as the other children in the class. But – Charlie was not the one with a rash. In fact, Charlie is rash free.

Again, I understand the Mom’s concern. As a Mom, I experience the same concerns, and I certainly don’t want to expose other little ones to my sick little ones. However, as a Mom of two, my knee-jerk response to illnesses has lessened. Greatly.

When my oldest was a newborn and throughout his first three years, I freaked whenever he was sick and/or was thought to have been exposed to someone else who was sick. I freaked to the point of becoming a freak. (Rumor has it I am still a freak, but for other reasons.) Then, when I had my second child, I found I freaked less. I found juggling childcare and my paid gig was tough, especially when a child was sick and had to stay home. Hmm . . . maybe the kid isn’t sick. Maybe he just has allergies. No fever. He’s fine. Off to daycare you go.

Yes,  juggling work and two kids eased my freaky “Oh my gosh! My kid is sick! Quick! We must go to the Urgent Care Center STAT!” nature. Juggling parenthood and employment eased my freaky “What do you mean he was exposed to chickenpox? What kind of Mom takes their child out in public when they have chickenpox? Argh!” nature. Just like being a Mom of two eased my “He fell! Is he breathing? Is there blood? Do we have to go to the ER?” knee-jerk reaction. Now, if one of my two falls the reaction is more like, “I can’t see any blood from here. Shake it off. Rub it. Move along.”

I admit, my neighbor and I still call each other (immediately) when we fear one of our little ones is battling a scary illnesses or has just experienced a serious bonk of some sort. She and I will talk each other off the ‘freaking out’ ledge.

Back to the rash. I’ve discussed Charlie’s lack of rash, which brings me to Joe. Joe doesn’t have scabies. However, the pediatrician thought it best he (and Charlie) be treated for scabies because our neighbor’s kids had scabies. The rash on Joe’s arm is actually dermatitis, and we are treating it with a steroid cream. Still, last night, we did the scabies treatment, too, which consists of lathering the child in a special cream before bed and washing the cream off in the morning. Treatment also includes washing sheets, towels, etc. Done, done and done. Joe is enjoying a normal day at school, and Charlie is enjoying a not-so-normal day at home.

And Scabies? Yeah, it’s a scary name for a mite that is similar to lice. Scabies mites typically thrive on the body below the neck, whereas lice thrive on the scalp. Scabies is far easier to treat than lice; plus, unless you are sharing a bed or rolling around naked with someone suffering Scabies, Scabies is harder to transmit than lice. You can access the MayoClinc’s website for information about Scabies by clicking here.

I’ll work harder on keeping things to myself, while holding my humor in check. Still, tonight I may have to create a new poem for my FB status; many words rhyme with ‘flu’.

Whose Phase Is It Anyway?

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When I created the category ‘Phase 3 of X on my blog’, my intent was to focus on the phases experienced by Joe and Charlie. The boys have traveled through the infant phase and toddler phase, and now Joe has entered the Kindergarten phase. As a result, I wanted a place to write about the various cycles and developments. However, as the 2nd week of Kindergarten comes to a close, I can’t help but ask, “Whose phase is it anyway?”

Joe’s first day was uneventful. The days that followed his first day were equally uneventful; that is, the time he spent at a new school and in a new environment were uneventful. At home? Not so uneventful. And, this is the part where I step in and realize, I have entered a new phase; it is called the ‘My child is home with me more’ phase. Um. How long will this phase last?

Yeah, I’ve already written about having to adjust to working at home with a child in the house. But, what about not working at home with a child in the house? Though I am readily available for my boss and coworkers 8hrs a day Monday – Friday, I have a great deal of ‘free’ time to tackle chores and – frankly – do nothing.  And, when my kids were in day-care, they spent a full day in day-care (8am – 5pm). When I got the boys home, I’d have them in bed within 3hrs. So, aside from weekends, there wasn’t much time (or cause) for trouble and discipline.

Earlier this week, I went out to dinner with a friend of mine. She was laughing at me and teasing me about my cushy (time-wise) life of having the boys gone a full day, while I was home working a flexible job. And now – NOW I have a kid with me from 2:30 until bedtime. ACK! What?! I actually have to take care of my kid more than three hours a weekday? Seriously? I suppose you are going to tell me I have to interact with my child, too.

Thank goodness, at least for one more year, I don’t have to pick up my 2nd child until 5pm. I cannot imagine being home with both boys for for so many hours prior to bedtime. I mean, after I give my job 5hrs in a day, I have enough flexibility to do whatever I want with the remaining day (provided my boss can reach me). Just last month, I spent many hours watching and enjoying several movies in the afternoon before picking the boys up at daycare. Now how will I get through my queue of 314 movies on Netflix? Huh? And, they are just about to release the 2009 season of Dexter! When am I suppose to fit that in the schedule? Hmmm … is it wrong to have a 5yr old child watch a drama about a serial killer who only kills serial killers? At least Dexter is killing mean people, right?

And Oprah. This is Oprah’s last season! How am I going to watch O-o-0-o-oprah, when my kid is home with me?! Craziness people. Whose phase is this anyway? And, how long does it last?

Now if you’ll excuse me, my son has homework. We have to read a book together; rather he has to read the book, and I have to observe. You’d think the school would send home something more interesting like “Kiss Me If You Can” by Carly Phillips. But no, we have to read “Babe, the Big Hit” about an elephant in a circus, and I’m guessing there will be no romance. Maybe next week?

One of the Hardest Parts of the Job

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Dear Blogary,

I need to vent, please. Yesterday afternoon, I told my son he had to stay in his room, because he did not follow directions. Though I repeated the directions a second time (with the ‘staying in your room’ warning), he decided to throw a toy at me and not comply with the directions.

Blogary, I haven’t a clue where he gets his temper. Oh wait. Yeah. That would be from me. Thanks.

I told my 5yr old he could come out of his room once everything was picked up and put away. Though fits could be heard through the shut door, he did complete the task. When he came out of his room, he went to the kitchen, where Daddy and Charlie were making pancakes for supper.

“Daddy, will you make me some chick’n nuggets?” Joe asked. (Point of fact: We eat soy nuggets. VeggiePatch brand. Quite tasty!)

Daddy said “No.” With Daddy’s response, down went Joe with another fit flare-up. Joe claimed we asked Charlie what he wanted for supper, but we did not ask Joe. Blah, blah, blah, Blogary. And, no, we did not ask Charlie what he wanted for supper.

While Joe is in the midst of another fit, I will share with you, Blogary – Joe misses his naps. He has not adjusted to a full day of school without a nap. Last Monday was another example of several melt-downs, triggered by exhaustion. I am quite confident, Blogary, Joe’s behavior last night was directly tied to a weekend of fun, followed by a full day on Monday with no ‘down time’.

Anyway, Joe’s fit continued. “Joe.” I said. “Get up, and go back to your room.”

“No!” He said.

“Joe. Get up now, and go to your room, or you will go to bed without supper.”

Blogary, I knew Joe was tired, but I also knew this kind of behavior needed to be addressed. This kind of behavior is – to quote Super Nanny – “Unacceptable.”

Again, Joe said ‘no’. So, I got hold of his arm, stood him up and started walking him to his room. As we passed the fridge, he took his other hand and brushed off the magnets and pictures in a huff. I stopped.

“Joe. Pick those up.” Blogary, you already know what Joe’s response was, eh?

“Joe,” I continue, because he said ‘no’. “You will pick them up now, or you will go straight to your room when you get home from school tomorrow.”

Cue Joe’s response: “No.”

“Joe. I’m setting the timer. You will pick up the mess and get to your room before the timer goes off or you will go to bed without supper tomorrow, too.” Too much perhaps, Blogary?! Meh.

Crying, Joe started to clean up and head to his room. And, he stayed in his room the rest of the day. Though, that was not the last we heard of Joe, as he continued pitching fits in the privacy of his own room.

Blogary, at one point, I went to Joe’s room, letting him know there would be consequences if he continued to slam the door on his captain’s bed. Then I went back to join Daddy and Charlie at the dinner table, with dinner already in progress.

As I sat down, I smiled at Rob and said, “Have I earned an excuse to drive to P-U-B-L-I-X?” (Publix is a grocery store chain that sells Ben &  Jerry’s S’mores ice cream. And, I spelled it, because Charlie would understand what I was wanting.)

Rob smiled back at me and said, “Not only have you earned it. Your ‘Gopher’ will gladly go get it for you.”

Now please understand, I am not trying to say that I earned ice cream because I reprimanded and punished my child. The purpose of getting the ice cream was to calm my frazzled nerves. I don’t know a Mom in the world that enjoys hearing their child pitch fits. And, in my opinion, whether the fit is warranted or not – the crying and sadness tugs at my heartstrings. I’ve heard the saying several times, “You are only as happy as your unhappiest child.” Well, my child was not happy last night, I was not happy last night, and ice cream could have served as a numbing agent (for both of us, actually).

Joe eventually calmed down and fell asleep, and I worked my way through the emotions without resorting to food. This morning, Joe and I started the day fresh. He will go straight to his room when he gets home from school. However, he will be invited to join the family at the dinner table for supper. I don’t want to go through two nights (in a row) of missed dinners.

Anyway, thanks for listening, Blogary.

Love,
Me