Saturday, August 12, 2006

I Never Should Have Asked

So tonight at dinner we are talking about all kinds of things. Animals, colors, sounds, and then the conversation turns to numbers.
"How old is Ava?" I ask.
"Two," they both respond.
"How old is Carter?"
"Four," he replies.
Of course the next logical question that comes out of my mouth is, "How old is mommy?" Silence. Confusion. Stares.
"Seventy" Carter says confidently.
"No, mommy is not that old." ( Do I look freaking 70, he's just a child I remind self, he has no idea.)
"Eleven?" he tries again. (Better)
"Thirty-one," I say. I am okay with my age. I'm in my thirties, get over it, I think to myself.
"WOW, that's a REALLY LONG number! I can't count that HIGH," he retorts.
And then he proceeds to try. He makes it all the way to thirty-one and continues to thirty-two until I quickly stop him.
When your four year old counts to 31 it does feel like a REALLY LONG number. I kept seeing the years tick on by as he slowly counted up.
He was proud of his accomplishment and I just felt depressed.
I never should have asked.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Sweden/Denmark Part I

We were lucky enough once again to piggy-back a vacation with Bill's work. And why not? If Bill gets to go to Stockholm (for work), so should I(for pleasure), and Carter, and Ava, and my mom. And while we are there, let's stay a little longer and go to Denmark as well. What's more exciting than taking a European vacation with the family? Eventful would definitely be the word.

So here's some highlights from our trip:

*Plane Ride- Funny look from flight attendant when I ordered a Bloody Mary. What I wanted to say was, "Look lady, if you want to watch 2 young kids who would love to scream, run, jump, and bounce all over this plane be my guest otherwise give me the d&*# drink so I can stay calm, cool, and patient while I make my kids behave." It worked, because my kids honestly did a pretty good job. Carter was great and Ava only cried for about 1-2 hours. Not bad for a 14hour trip. :)

*Carter and Ava fall asleep AS SOON as the plane touches down in Stockholm. Lovely.

*Tantrums in Stockholm because they have been up for over 24 hrs.

*Carter falling asleep under his chair at breakfast on our 3rd day and puking in the hall just before I can open our door.

*Ava not wanting to stay with me in the Palace we were touring. "No me do it," walking away, stepping off special carpet, and under ropes meant to keep us out of the rooms . I decided to pick her up and carry her outside all the while bribing her that we will soon be out. Carter, of course, wants to come with me too. We make it out to where the line to get in begins and our strollers are parked. That's when the real fun begins. There is no way I can hold Ava AND push 2 strollers. As I proceed to put Ava in her stroller the high pitched screaming ensues. I have to hold her down and strap her in because she won't sit still. Everyone is staring at me, giving me THE look. Carter is doing a great job helping to push a stroller and stay quiet beside me. The screaming continues into the courtyard. In the farthest corner I wait patiently for my mom to finish her tour and come out so we can go. I don't make eye-contact with any of the accusing faces that keep walking by. Oh to be invisible. After an eternity (10 minutes) Ava calms down and my mom comes out. Saved.

*Dinner Boat Cruise - just Bill and I. And a boat full of people from his conference. Fabulous.

*Traditional Swedish dinner - just my mom and I. 3rd people to come in and order LAST people to get our food after it fills up. Great food, worst service.

*Walking 3-4 km (3 adults, 2 strollers w/ kids) ON the 2 lane major roadway with no sidewalk or shoulder to speak of, to go to Egeskov (a fabulous castle). And then because we thought we would miss the train, RUNNING back along same said highway. Turns out MOST people take the buss which goes directly to the castle instead of the train. Wonder why?

*Ava's Bad Day: while sitting in her stroller crossing the street, Grandma, who is pushing her, hits a curb and Ava falls out. While at Egeskov Ava is stung by Stinging Nettle. She has welts up and down her arm. Moments after that, the goat she is trying to hug, hits her in the head with his horns. Needless to say at this point Ava is in tears. As if that's not bad enough combined with our chicken on the highway routine. On the train that night going back to Odense, ( the one we ran to catch) Bill, while playing with Ava, bonked her head on the hard arm rest of the chair. As she is crying she says, "Goat hurt me, plant hurt me, train hurt me too."

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Sports Camp

Carter has sports camp this week which is fantastic for all. Carter gets to run around all week from 9 am to noon playing basketball, soccer, and baseball while mommy and Ava get the quiet house all to ourselves. So far today has been a good day. Carter woke up at 8 ( yes, I know my life is good) and we cuddled for a bit and then we all ate breakfast, Bill and Ava included. Halfway through breakfast Carter decided he wanted something else and proceeded to yell and scream. Well, he was in for a surprise because I had just watched Super Nanny the night before (in tears mind you because yes, it's true, I saw myself) and I had the Thinking Blanket (time-out corner) all ready. 4 minutes later peace was restored. We quickly got dressed and raced off to Sports Camp. We watched from the sidelines a few moments and then Carter was hesitantly ready to join in. A couple minutes after that Ava and I waved good-bye. Ava and I were able to play legos together. She was building quite a tower with me handing her the pieces. After about an hour Linda, Olivia, and Sophia came over to play. I left to pick Carter up, we came home, ate lunch, played some more, and then did art. Finally at 1:45 it was nap/rest time. Thank goodness. It's quiet. Bill will be home around 5:30 so I can go to my District 9 Advisory Council meeting and then to my hip-hop class. My battery will be recharged.

Let this be my warning to all with young kids: 4 is a hard age. My sweet, compliant child is acting like he's sixteen. He is talking back, telling me no, calling me a "fool", and testing the limits not to mention my patience, which seems to be waning completely. Ava on the other hand, thank goodness, is in a nice listening phase. Just yesterday when Carter was in his room for a time out for hitting me, she tells me, as I'm playing Little People with her, that "I no bad choices, Carter bad choices, I good choices." Yes, I think she's getting it. It's like I tell my kids on a daily basis, you decided what kind of a day you have. You are the only one in control of your life. You can decide to make good choices or bad. Everyday I have to tell myself the same thing too.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Well, you all have inspired me to write, to document, to explain, to show you my wonderfully exciting life as a stay at home mother/wife, homemaker, social experiment, domestic goddess, neurotic mom and so much more. So here goes. Now you won't have to ask yourself, "What does she do all day?" or "How does she do it?" or even better "She does WHAT?!" Ahhhhh, my life. So please check out the Ava, Bill, Carter, Daniele Thompson Family Blog. Hopefully I will actually make entries and they won't bore you.