A few requests

Mom with the kid throwing the tantrum- He was throwing it before you even pulled open the door.  I was outside with my own tantrum thrower.  Not only are you late.  Not only are you going in during the story.  You are bringing in a screaming, kicking, punching toddler.  Thanks.  So next time, why don’t you wait until your son is chill or just turn around and go home?

Mom with the kid running around- I’m sure I’ve been through this before.  Maybe you weren’t there the day I glared at the other mom who let her kid run around.  Your kid makes our kids want to run around.  It makes our jobs a billion times harder.  So why don’t you call the person back you’re talking to and actually parent?  Thanks.

To the moms talking- Would you like to explain what example you’re trying to set for your kids?  Like the rude person who doesn’t give a shit about the performer that said person came to see?  There are times and places to talk to fellow mommy-friends.  Like the park, McDonald’s, or even the parking lot.  So why don’t you stop talking so I can hear the thrilling conclusion of this riveting picture book read by a gentleman who talks down to us all?  Or just whisper, softly and quietly?


The mom who’s so busy talking to her friend that she’s failing to notice the bully of a son hitting other children- Especially my child!  Especially since your son pushed my son to the ground and climbed on top of him and wouldn’t get off.  Luckily my son has an older brother and took it in stride, even if I wished my son would clobber yours.  Then once your little brat was on my radar I watched him try to take my son’s bean bag after he pummelled another child with his own bean bag.  So you can thank me for grabbing your kid off mine.  You can thank me for scolding your son for stealing bean bags and using them for weapons.  But now that I know who you are, next time I see your brat being a bully to my kid I’m going to march him straight up to you and explain, polite but firm, that your son’s behavior is out of line.  And yes, I took great glee in watching him run and stick to your side for the last five minutes of storytime.

Preschool Story Time vs Toddler Story Time

Toddler Story Time

The Pros:

Before lunch.

Plenty of time to look for books before lunch.

Knowing your kids are the best in the bunch.

Cute babies.

The Cons:

Two out of control kids whose mothers never dealt with them.

Bossy nanny who insists my son hit her charge; completely false.

Texting moms and nannies.

Librarian who talks down to the kids.

Preschooler Story Time

The Pros:

More stories.

Children the age of Tornado E.

No texting moms and nannies.

All children are sitting and listening.  (Except Tornado S who I have to tell to sit down.)

More time to get things done before story time.

The Cons:

At our lunchtime.

Same librarian, but hey, at least the kids like him.


Seriously, how do you expect your children to listen and be a good audience if you aren’t?  I understand a comment here or there, but there were at least three conversations going at all times.  During the songs, there were like six conversations going on.  We all need our social time with our friends and other moms, but this is not the time or place.  I can’t believe I would prefer the texting moms to you, but at least they were quiet.

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Emerging Bookworms

The silence that descended on the house is deafening.  It truly is the most terrifying sound for young mothers because you just know the children are up to something or, worse yet, in trouble.  As this is not the first time I have lost my children in my house (yeah, I was surprised I could lose them in the house, too), I have a system.  I run around the downstairs, checking the bathrooms, the locks on the doors, and the corners as I call the boys.  I race then upstairs to the master suite to make sure they are not in my make-up and jewelry, not in the bathroom, or suffocating in one of the dry cleaner bags my husband refuses to throw out.  I run down the hallway to check the other bathroom and the guestroom, and I find them in the corner of the nursery, the one you can’t see from a quick glance as you run by, quietly flipping through the books.  They look up to give me the look that I can only imagine Jesus gave his parents when they found Him in the Temple.  “Where’d you think I’d be?”   Um, right here, of course, not drowning in a toilet, not running down the street naked, not coloring the walls with my various shades of eyeliner, not ordering new toys online with my credit card.  You both would be sitting nicely, not trying to wrestle, reading the nursery books.


It’s a shock to me to have both boys so interested in books, and I live with the constant worry, one of many, that one day they will decide it was all a phase.  My brothers and I despised reading as young children, and only I developed a strong desire to read in my pre-teens.  But I think life would be much easier for the child, the parents, and the teachers, if the child enjoys reading.  I have done everything I could to foster this love.  When I was four months pregnant with Evan, I would sit and read picture books out loud, believing that he was swimming around learning about fairy tales and warrior women before he even took his first breath.  Before every naptime and bedtime, we read a book, sometimes two.  Then there are the wonderful moments when they bring me a book to read instead of watching TV.


We have books every where in the house.  Not only do I have an ever growing library in the office (and no, I don’t plan on downsizing that any time soon), both boys have a book case, which are ever expanding as well.  Of course, I do not recommend letting your child just pick a book at the bookstore because Evan always picks the most expensive and then doesn’t want to read it when he gets home.  (Why are there $20 picture books?  Really?)  Then downstairs in the family room is a large basket filled with the more stimulating educational books, which would just make story time twice as long if I kept them upstairs.  (Let me touch it.  Let me see it.  Where’s the purple flower?  Is it there?  No.  Is it here?  Is it in this general direction?  Evan, you know that’s not a flower; it’s a sheep.  Now stop being silly; you were suppose to be a sleep an hour ago.)  But these are the ones that Sean pulls out and hands me, saying “peeeaaase.”  If they are the feel and touch and Mommy is trying just to entertain him while she is talking on the phone or perhaps vainly trying to watch the news or even Oprah, he pushes the book harder in my hand to let me know that he knows there is more to the book than touching, there’s an actual story with words Mommy is suppose to be saying. 


In hopes to cure Evan’s fear of my appetizing nature to whales, I checked out a couple of whale books.  And bless my soul, the boy took to them, asking to be read the books several times a day.  Not only am I please that he wants to read so much, I am excited that he has chosen a subject that I can be interested and excited about too.  Not to mention, I can share my own knowledge on the subject.  I have visions of Sea World and whale watching museums and trips.


Last night after assuring Evan for the third time that he did not have spider web sheets but dinosaur sheets, I went downstairs, only to hear the pitter-patter of little feet running into the hall as soon as I took my first step off the stairs.  Great.  I wait to listen for the tiny “Mommy,” which will be followed by “can I have some water please” or “my bed’s too hot.”  Instead I heard, “WOW!  Look at this!”  I went upstairs to find Evan lying on his stomach in the hall, using the light to look at the whale book.


“Look, Mommy!  That’s a blue whale!  That’s baleen!  That’s so cool!  Do you know how whales eat?  They open their mouths like this!  And swallow fish!  Isn’t that cool?”


Instead of showing my excitement, I place my Supernanny face on and told Evan it was time for bed and to put the book away for tomorrow.


This morning I was woken by Sean making a different “aaahh” noise.  As I entered the room, he saw me and pointed to the floor of the nursery, repeating over and over “Uh-oh, peeeaaaase!”  So I picked him up, and he squirmed out of my arms to the floor, where he raced over to the books.  Picking one up, he said “peeeeaaase!” and handed it to me.  It was a Halloween book were one could raise the mask and spy a different baby Looney Tunes character.  I sat down; Sean sat down next to me, scooting closer than the five inches his seating action caused him.  When I finish reading the book, Sean forced it back into my hand, saying “peeeaaase!”  When I finished reading it again, he handed back the book, saying “peeeaaase!”  When I finished it yet again, he handed back the book and said “peeeaaase!”  After the sixth time, when I couldn’t hear my own voice over the sound of my stomach, I kissed Sean on the head and ran before I could succumb to the magic word of “peeeaaase.”


When I was in high school, my mom forbade me to read anything outside the assigned reading material, as my A’s were starting to drop to  (hold on your hats, folks) to B-‘s.  Of course, it didn’t help that I was in trouble for reading in class instead of paying attention to the teacher.  But now I wonder as I check on Evan’s nap, who is reading yet another whale book, that maybe I created a monster.  Well, I guess it’s better than video games. 

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Just an Average Day with a Bi-Polar Three-year-old Tornado

Waking up to a tiny voice asking me if he can sleep with me, I looked up to check that it was indeed 6 am and that it was Thursday.  As I tried to keep my hand away from Evan who wanted to pull at the loose skin and mangle it, I made a list of everything needed to be done.  As this was an other day, it meant to empty the dishwasher during the boys’ breakfast, doing the morning exercises, and where did my husband leave the remote.  Since I made French toast yesterday, all I had to do was pop it in the microwave.  I love easy breakfast.  As I tried to return to my dream where Ben Affleck, Harrison Ford, and I saved the world from aliens (It WAS a good story in my mind.  Too bad I’m not a script writer), I heard the crib music from Sean’s room and his babbling.  I stretched and went to retrieve the baby, who yelled “Mama” as soon as he saw me.  Today was going to be a good day.


As it was Thursday, I realized today was the preschool story time at the library.  As I buttered the French toast and liberally sprinkled the powder sugar, I debated whether to stay home or not because Evan was trying to stay up later the last few days (with I need my blinds open {what crazy kid sleeps with their blinds open?}, I need water, it’s cold, can I sleep with you, can you take my pillow and put it in your room), and I wondered if it had to do with the late naps he’s been getting.  Well, I had to discuss this possibility with my advisors, but I waited for a more decent hour, though they are now an hour ahead and it’s cooler in Arizona so they probably wouldn’t have minded an interrupting call in the early morning.


My advisors assured me that late naps weren’t the issue.  My mom insisted that I should wake Evan up at 2 or 2:30, not letting him sleep more than two and half hours.  I watched my already behind blog reading disappear as I remembered that I was suppose to make some calls for my husband today (Hmm, I wonder if I could push those back to Friday).  My dad pointed out that we kids did the same thing off and on for weeks and that this could possibly be a phase.  Thanks, Dad.  So story time it was.


But when it was time to get the boys dressed, I met with some resistance.  As I tried to get Evan to choose a shirt, he ran around naked yelling, “I’m a pink chocolate skeleton!”  Um, well, then pick a shirt, Mr. Pink Chocolate Skeleton.  “I can’t.  I’m going to be a cotton candy skeleton, and those shirts are not cotton candy.”  You’ve got me there.  Since I couldn’t catch Evan, I caught Sean instead, quickly dressing him.


With the pouncing skills of a lion, I grabbed Evan and wrestled to get some underwear on him.  I swear I could enter the rodeo for hog tying.  Threatening to choose the shirt if he didn’t, I wrestled a pair of shorts on Evan.  I wonder if girls are different because nine times out of ten I can’t get Evan to pick a shirt much less put one on.  The only person that can get Evan to dress himself is my Mom, but I think Evan just wants to impress her on how big a boy he is.  So I chose the shirt and threw it on, and I lost Evan when I got the toothbrushes ready.  Let’s just say that fifteen minutes later, Evan’s face was washed, teeth were brushed, and hair was combed, which led us to the battle of making the bed.


When all was said and done and both boys were presentable to the world, I had two little tornadoes cruising and crashing through the house.  When I asked if Evan wanted to go to the library, with visions of trying to control two boys who would be railing against their quiet fate with body heaving from The Exercise as I murmur bribes and threats in their ears, Evan yelled, “NO!”  and ran off.  Fine, I didn’t want to go anyway, so there.


So as any mother with young tornadoes, I threw open the doors so that they could reek destruction on the land and not my home. 


But as I got ready to make lunch, Evan demanded to go to the library.  Excuse me?  Yup, he wanted to go to the library, and he had the tears to prove it.  Are you kidding?  And I did the rookie mistake of trying to reason with a three-year-old, explaining how he didn’t want to go earlier and story time was over and we’ll go to the library next week.  (Good job, Mom; is this your first?)  All of this was met with a building temper tantrum.  Usually I just throw him in his room until he calmed down, but Sean had passed out playing with toys and was now sleeping in his crib.  Ok, fine, what do you want to do at the library?  He *sob* wanted *hick-up* to read *sniffle* boooooooks.  Fine, we can do that.  *Whine*  But we can’t go to the library *sob* right now because Sean is sleeping *sniffle* and it’s lunch time.  *so- “Ok, Mommy, can I have a peanut butter sandwich?”


So this is how it feels to live with Sybil.  Awesome.



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Update: Today’s Story Time

So we tried today’s story time for pre-schoolers.  And other than chasing them out of the house, racing through the grocery store for eggs (And you’re asking for banana?  Just as long as you eat them.), racing back to the store because Evan decided he needed to pee as I was about to load the boys in the car, and rushing to the library to make it in the nick of time (No, no time for the fountain today.  After.  If you’re quiet in story time.  Sean, eat your cracker faster.), the boys did well.  Ok, Evan did great, listening, singing, voicing his opinions, and volunteering.  Apparently I haven’t taught Evan what rhetorical questions are.  Why would ANY ONE ask a rhetorical question to a bunch of pre-schoolers?


Sean started loosing it after ten minutes, trying to squirm off my lap and to freedom.  When he realized he couldn’t get out of the mommy prison, he resorted to biting his way out, and I resorted to my secret weapon of a pacifier.  He still squirmed a bit, but he was more content.


Afterwards I wasted no time in dragging the boys upstairs to the nonfiction section to find the books I wanted.  Wouldn’t you know they didn’t have the book I wanted?  Luckily they had a computer right there where I could look up a few more books as the boys played drums on the stools.  As I finished writing down the call numbers, Evan informed me he needed to use the bathroom again.  This time I was able to rush him to the bathroom without any accidents.  But the toilets were a little high and I had to help hold him so he could be which was funny enough for me to start laughing.


So I got the books I wanted, and Evan insisted they were for him and didn’t need any other books.  Fine.  So I am almost finished with The book and will report on it tomorrow.  And of course, I am starting to read books mentioned in The book.  And tonight is the town’s trick or treat celebration, so I have to go and see what this is all about.  With hilarious results . . .