Monthly Archives: January 2016

Everyone told me so.

A year or so ago, two of Liam’s buddies came to Pennsylvania for a weekend in the summer to play some golf. Both guys are fathers of young boys, and I can remember their astonishment when—after spending several hours with us at our house—they remarked about our daughters’ dispositions. 

“You mean, they just sit here and play like this all the time?”

Yep. (Well, at least mostly.)

“You don’t have to chase them around and keep them from harming themselves?”

Nope.

Well, ever since we found out we were having a boy, parents of sons everywhere have been warning us to be prepared for the difference. ‘Just you wait and see’ they all said.

Let me just say one word about this: Truth.

Those parents were right.

I spend my days these days either holding onto my son, strapping him into a chair, or trailing about behind him and cleaning up in the wake of his destruction, or else making sure he doesn’t accidentally injure himself doing something foolish.

He’s just recently upped his game too. It’s like he’s grown an inch taller just this past week, and so now—even though he’s not yet walking—he can pull up to standing and knock down child-sized glasses full of water stored on window ledges and small tables, something he never thought to do before. Those surfaces had once been safe. No more.

And everything, EVERYTHING goes in the mouth. I know, that’s how babies explore the things around them. We rarely had problems with the girls putting small pieces in their mouths. I can remember playing with marbles with Nora before she was two. And small beads. 

Not this kid. He is especially fond of tasting plant leaves, small wooden dollhouse parts, stickers, dried up food scraps mommy hasn’t cleaned off the floor, paper (paper towels, tissues, receipts, etc.), and dust bunnies. And oh, he’s not above dumping over the trash and trying to sample a dirty diaper or two. 

I will give him credit though. When he sees me coming or hears me yell, he will jump a mile—or maybe just an inch—and wildly toss whatever is in his grubby little hand, like he knows he’s been caught, but is trying to get rid of the evidence. It’s hysterical. 

The boy is into climbing stairs too, so we have to be vigilant about putting up the gate. A couple of weeks ago we forgot. I thought Liam had been keeping an eye on Rowan, and he thought the same of me. All of a sudden I sensed things were a little too quiet.

“Where’s the baby?” I asked aloud, to no one in particular. 

“I thought he was with you,” Liam said.

“No. He’s not with me,” I said, sounding slightly alarmed. 

We frantically looked all over the downstairs, including the front hall bathroom where a week prior I had caught him splashing about happily in the toilet water. No baby.

Then it hit me. The stairs! I found him playing merrily on the landing after he had scaled the first eleven steps, resting presumably, until he was ready to tackle the last three. That stealthy ninja! He was so proud of himself, too. 

I can’t help but love his squishy round face. He is just delightful. The happiest baby. But when he upends the girls’ set of 48 markers and sends them scattering all over the dining room floor, or rips every last book off the bottom bookshelf when I’m not looking, or keeps going back to the TV and Internet wires and cables behind the chair in the living room over and over and over again, no matter how many times I remove him and firmly say ‘no,’ he has a tendency to make me a little batty, you know?

And let’s not even get started about cleaning up after him at meal times. I think he secretly enjoys flinging grains of rice off the side of his tray, and rubbing yogurt into his hair. It’s like some kind of a challenge for him to out-soil his clothing, his face and hair, and every surface within a three-foot radius with food matter every time we eat. It’s just disgusting. 

To all of you moms out there with multiple boys—I tip my hats to you. One is enough for me. 

 

Love this little guy!

  

Practicing his soon-to-destruct mode whereupon everything on the table will vanish lest someone remove him from the scene.

  

Sneaky boy.

 

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Yes, we too have succumbed to Lotto Fever.

We hardly ever play the lottery. But last Saturday night, we threw financial caution to the wind and purchased five quick pick tickets. Why five? Because my spouse suggested we get one for each member of the family, of course. Little baby Rowan needs his own quick pick. Totally reasonable. And ten dollars seemed like a decent—if not impossibly unlikely—investment for a potential windfall return.

Alas, you know: we did not win. And now the fortune is in the billions. Isn’t it fun to think about winning? It’s gotten to the point where we actually feel like we have a good chance of doing so. What a laugh!

Just tonight, during dinner, Liam and I were talking about how we need to purchase five more tickets tomorrow before the next drawing. And then we got to talking about what it would be like to win. 

How would we share the money with everyone we knew? 

Would we give out cash? Or just buy gifts for everyone? 

Who wouldn’t love an iPad? Or a flat screen? 

Give equally to family and friends? Give more to those we liked better? Like some kind of sliding scale based on preference? 

Or reward based solely on need? Like, give our struggling friends and family money to pay off debts, but only buy a coupla Dunkin’ Donuts gift cards for those who seem to be doing quite nicely?

Then we got to talking about what we’d do for ourselves. I mean, after donating to the requisite charities, getting the nation out of debt, and ending world hunger and homelessness.

Liam would like to buy several houses. And travel for the rest of our lives. I can’t say I’m not on board with that. Also, hiring a nanny and a professional house cleaner and laundress would be paramount. I imagine I’d still like to cook if I didn’t have to mind the children 24/7 and keep up with the housework. Oh, and I’d buy fresh flowers every week to display in abundant bouquets in vases featured around our new house(s). Not a mansion, mind you. I’d say three thousand square feet should do nicely. With a pool. And a jacuzzi.

Before we knew it, we were getting quite carried away. Well, at least one of us was.

Liam: “But then we’d be famous. We’d hate that. We’d be on the news for winning the largest jackpot in history. Everyone would know about us. And we’d have to make an appearance on the Today show. That would be awful.”

And that, friends, is when I decided we had carried on long enough. Mention of our family’s guest spot on the Today show, as if it were an impending event, is where I draw the line.

We want to wish you luck if you’re playing too. But just so you know, friends, should you win and decide to use our need-based sliding scale to dole out a little extra to your loved ones, we are definitely not in the Dunkin’ Donuts gift card camp. We need all the help we can get. Be generous, please. ☺️

One year. And four days later.

The blog just celebrated an anniversary. Wahoo! And, it even has a proper address now. Instead of living at the free wordpress.com site, it now resides happily—for just $18/year—at http://www.restlessroost.com. You’ll find the old address still works too.

On January 1st, the people at WordPress sent me some interesting stats from the past year. Included in the report was the below graphic, which I thought was pretty interesting. And humorous, if not at the same time depressing.

Screen shot 2016-01-05 at 6.39.04 PM

It’s sort of like a pictorial insight into the craziness of our lives, and specifically, the frenzied state of my mind. Last January, I posted every day for thirty-one days. In February, I missed just one day (gotta love that resolution time of year!). Even March was impressive. Of course, there were just two children then. And the hubs came home for supper; his work had yet to crank up into crazy overtime.

Then, in early April, the baby came home. I still enjoyed some leisurely writing, it seems, up until about July and August. That would have been the peak of planting season and Liam’s hours at the co-op. September brought with it the reality of back-to-work. Poor October. Poor, poor October. The month of working and packing and moving. November and December haven’t fared much better, I’m afraid.

And January 2016? Well, that remains to be seen, I guess. I’m hopeful the blog will continue. I’m also hopeful that I’ll pick up a rhythm once again. We are mostly settled into our home and Connecticut routine. However, our days these days are so full, and so noisy, I find it hard to find the time and the quiet within which to think about writing. I only think about and stress about how I’m not writing.

So here’s to a new year. And new inspiration. To being kind to myself. To writing when I can. And being OK about it all when I can’t .

And to you out there reading—thanks for being along for the ride!