You Know You’re A Mom of At Least Four Children

July 17, 2011 at 5:43 am (Uncategorized)

You Know You’re A Mom of At Least Four Children When:

  • You can’t believe how easy it is to run errands with “only” three kids.
  • You buy two packs of the two packs at Costco.
  • You consider going to get your teeth cleaned “me time”.
  • Having “only” one kid sick is no big deal.
  • Having all the kids sick takes a month to recover from.
  • You find yourself, every day, asking everyone to “Just stop all talking at once” more times than you can count.
  • You don’t even consider flying anywhere on vacation.  Road tripping is the way to go.  You can drive a long way on the price of six airfares.
  • You know packing for a short three-day trip will take a full twelve hour day.  And another full day to unpack.
  • Your last child actually wears out the baby clothes.
  • You keep a running tally during routine tasks like bathing, bedtime, or haircuts.  “Two down, two to go.”
  • You have to continually recalculate how many children you are in charge of.  “Okay, dropped off two at school.  Just have Greta and Willa to watch now.  Two, Two, Two.”  This math is getting harder and harder as my boys maintain a fuller social calendar.  “Okay, Auden’s at a friend’s.  Just have three until 3pm.  Then Parker has a friend coming over at 4pm; I’ll have five.  Then Mark is taking Greta on an errand.  Now I have four.  Wait, Auden is tagging along.  I only have two, no wait, with the friend that’s three.  Who am I again?”
  • There isn’t a recipe you don’t double.
  • There isn’t a day you don’t run a load of laundry.
  • You wonder what in the world you thought was so hard back when you just had one (or two in my case).
  • You’ve owned fourteen carseats.
  • You’ve owned seven strollers.
  • You’ve owned ten baby wearing devices.
  • Celebrating each and every kid’s each and every birthday gets to be a little much.  Every other birthday is enough celebrating for a kid.  That said, each kid is shown love each and every day.
  • You’ve had your kids generally succeed at enough things to know you’re an acceptable parent.
  • You’ve had your kids fail at enough things to not be smug at your parenting skills.

I asked Mark to fill in “You Know You’re a Father of At Least Four Children When…”  His reply:  “You graduate from fifths to half gallons.”  Wellll then…

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A Children’s Books Game

July 12, 2011 at 5:45 am (Uncategorized)

As I read Greta a book about picking blueberries tonight, I basked in the wholesome glow I feel every time I read that story to my children.  I briefly considered a quote as Facebook update, and then rejected it as not the medium to convey my contentment at lying with Greta, analyzing the illustrations, reading a book we’ve read hundreds of times.

And look, we actually do (did) pick blueberries (and I need to plan when we can pick this year):
I am all kinds of in love
Greta, July 2009 (near the top of my list of favorite pics of my G girl)

And then I recalled a baby shower game revolving around children’s book quotes which I enjoyed playing.  Frankly, because I was pretty damn good at it.*  It is clearly a game biased at those who already have games, but then most baby shower games are.  So here’s my version**,***, to remember all our favorites (and in case you need a quick baby shower game that’s not “Guess Which Yucky Jarred Baby Food This Is”):

1. “Little Bear and Little Sal’s Mother and Little Sal and Little Bear’s Mother were all mixed up with each other among the blueberries on Blueberry Hill.”

2. “The moon is high, the sea is deep, they rock and rock and rock to sleep.”

3. “I have one more request.  Pick up this freight train.  Because during the night I’d like to refrain from taking an unplanned trip on your train.”

4.  “I hate salmon croquettes in wine sauce.”

5. “And NOW do you like my hat?  I like it, I like that party hat.”

6. “And while I was punching Nick for saying “crybaby” my mom came back with the car.”

7. “Still, there was the little bowl of milk, just waiting.”

8. “She did everything she could to show how unhappy she was.  She went boneless.”

9. “Bedtime!”

10. “Goodnight nobody.  Goodnight mush.”

11. “Oh, ruin to wrack”

12. “Presently Granddad said, ‘Let’s go for a walk.’  And they walked to the top of a high hill.”

13. “And all of the hair fell off of the bear.  The giraffe bent in half, and the alligator’s snout turned inside out.”

14. “One morning at breakfast, she knocked over a glass of juice, just like that.”

15. “Now the girl who answers the telephone called up the next towns of Bangerville and Bopperville and Kipperville and Kopperville and
told them what was happening in Popperville.”

a. Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst

b. The Terrible Thing That Happened at Our House by Marge Blaine

c. I Saw an Ant on the Railroad Track by Joshua Prince

d. Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale by Mo Willems

e. Mike Mulligan and his Steam Shovel by Virginia Lee Burton

f. The Bedtime Book by Sandra Boynton

g. Kitten’s First Full Moon by Kevin Henkes

h. Harriet, You’ll Drive Me Wild! by Mem Fox

i. Mole and the Baby Bird by Marjorie Newman

j. Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown

k. Go, Dog.  Go!  by P. D. Eastman

l. I’m Taking a Trip on My Train by Shirley Neitzel

m. Ten Minutes Til Bedtime by Peggy Rathmann

n. “Stand Back,” Said the Elephant, “I’m Going to Sneeze!” by Patricia Thomas

o. Blueberries for Sal by Robest McCloskey

*God knows I need something to be good at today.  It ain’t parenting, marriage, paid work, friendship, or housework.

**I have decided to include multiple bedtime books so that it’s not 100% obvious as a matching game by title.  But I will also here air my pet peeve that fully half the plethora of books for young children are about bedtime.  I get it, we need them to go to sleep, we long for them to go to sleep.  Perhaps if I buy just one more bedtime book they’ll get sleepy tonight before I collapse in exhaustion?  But silly me, I also like to read to them during the day, without having to shelve away half the books as nonsensical for that moment.  Anyhoo…

***Also, most of this I pulled from memory, so they could be off, but I don’t think by much.

Answers: 1 o, 2 f, 3 l, 4 b, 5 k, 6 a, 7 g, 8 d, 9 m, 10 j, 11 c, 12 i, 13 n, 14 h, 15 e

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