Monday, August 17, 2015

The Good Ship Emotional Wreckage

I dug through the internet to make sure I posted the creepiest picture of a one room school house ever. You're welcome.

Morning Readers,

Well, it's happened. The twins are at school.

But how did that happen? Those of you who've been here since the beginning know it was only a few short years ago I was complaining about changing three hundred diapers a day. Now I'm the mom who rolls down her window and shouts at the girl pushing a newborn down the street, "Enjoy it! They grow up so fast!"

Kidding. I'll never be that lady.

Still, I had to push that lump in my throat way down as I waved goodbye to my two, nervous five-year-olds.  Who will they make friends with? Will they like it? Are they the kids who eat glue and I'm not aware of it yet? I'm drowning all these unanswered questions in multiple cups of coffee and waiting for any concerned calls from the school. So far, so good. Twenty more cups to go.

Of course, I still have Doc at home, as well as the gestating Kellerman who, I'm almost positive, will weigh fifteen pounds when she's born. Twelve more weeks, and I should just barely be able to fit through the front door. The mailman holds his breath every time I clear the front porch and waddle across the lawn, bent on retrieving the day's collection of flyers and bills.

Will this be the day I have to call The Jaws of Life in for her? he asks himself.

If she births the baby, will I have to mail it to the hospital?

Should I ask USPS for a different route?

All possibilities.

No, I've got plenty to keep me busy while I get fat. Making books and babies is time consuming, but it doesn't mean I won't miss my Double Trouble while they're away. Don't get me wrong, the modicum of quiet will be entirely welcome, but there will be a few, signature occurrences missing from my morning.

Waking up

Just as the twins are finally sleeping in like normal people, it's my job to go against every screaming instinct I have and wake them up. We're on a schedule now, and need to be on time. After four years of trying to get them to sleep past 6am, I find this to be the Universe's sickest twist of fate, to date.

Casual breakfast

Breakfast now has to be eaten in a certain amount of time. And I have to make sure they actually eat it, lest I receive a concerned phone call from the school. "Mrs. Kellerman? Yes, your children just explained they're starving. Are there problems at home? Your daughter hinted that you may have given them food three days ago." No more throwing waffles at people during random times in the morning.

Putting on pants

Granted, on the first day, I walked the twins to class. Knowing I was getting ready to wander amongst other parents was great motivation to find my sports bra and dig up a pair of shorts that just barely stretched around me. Thankfully, as I waved goodbye to my children, I only heard two of my seams burst.

By the end of the year, I'll be the mom in the pickup line wearing her nightgown. Please check in periodically for updates on this slowly building horror.

Random thoughts

Yes, I know I've built my writing career on complaining about how I can't get a second to myself in the bathroom, and the fact I'm followed by short people pretty much every second of my life. But I will say I'll miss the twin's interjecting their oneliners into my morning.

"Mom, are you sure you put on deodorant today? You said you did, but I don't know."

"If your belly gets any bigger, you won't be able to drive us in the car. So far, so good."

"A good mom would give us Skittles for breakfast. Why do you hate us?"

"I saw a car at Target, yesterday. It was really clean inside. Why doesn't ours look like that?"

"This is probably the best day ever." (Anytime I buy popsicles)


Oh well, I guess it's time to start a new chapter. Still not happy about the pant thing though.


Until Next Time, Readers!

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Monday, August 3, 2015

Making Books and Babies


The circles under my eyes are brought to you today by a toddler who likes to party at 3am and no makeup.

Afternoon Readers,

Last night, right before Husband I launched into season two of Game of Thrones, we had to do a quick check.

"So, how many months do we have before the baby gets here? Four?"

I grunted and heaved myself up from where I'd sunk through the cushions, into the springs, and desperately clawed back up to the surface of the couch. "No, only three months."

He looked shocked. "Wow, this is going by fast. You know, when you really think about it, nine months isn't that long to get ready for a baby."

One of my ribs cracked as I shifted my belly to the left a bit. "Oh, I don't know. By the third trimester I'm pretty much ready to give birth or be hit by a car, so I suppose it's all relative.  Nine months is actually ideal. Anything less, and you have no time to waffle over eight different colors of paint for the nursery. Any more, and the human race would cease to exist."

"I doubt it."

"Really? Women are extremely understanding and resilient creatures, but we'd be a much tougher sell if pregnancy came complete with charming catch phrases like, "Pregnancy: It's only a Year." Or, "It's like the Twelve Days of Christmas except its twelve months and you're fat for all of them." Do you realize, it took me two months to decide if I wanted to sign a year's lease on a Honda when I was twenty-two? And that came with heated seats and an ash tray."

He stretched his flat stomach out on the other end of the couch and bemoaned the heat before he said, "Nope, I think women would still have babies.

"I think I might un-invite you to the birth."

*** 

So here we are in week twenty-six. I'm successfully avoiding the Kansas summer and watching my stream of ill-fitting clothes dwindle to a trickle of just barely fitting shirts and a pair of shorts with a seam that just started to rip, yesterday. What Husband was right about is that this pregnancy is going extremely fast. Mostly because I have two big things to keep me busy.

1. The twins are going to school

I'm sure I'll have a lot more overwhelmed thoughts on this later, complete with a full-on emotional meltdown, after the first day. Anyone who'd like that event live Tweeted, please inbox me.

2. Books

It's a fact that when the blog slows down just a bit, it's usually because I'm in the thick of book production. This time is no different. That's right, guys, The Beer's Folded and the Laundry's Cold: Mostly-True Adventures In Housewifery, is making its debut in October!!!   

It's been two years since Cankles came out, so I'm pretty darn excited to share this new project with you. So stay tuned for more...

Announcements

Cover Sneak Peaks

Giveaways

And me trying to birth a book before I birth a child. I really hope this baby knows I'm on a schedule.


Until Next Time, Readers!

Like what you read here? Buy some Cankles
And now that I've awkwardly made you my friend, come hang out with me on:

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Nothing Like A Good Lecture

"You know what I love more than summer? Abandonment! Whee!"

Afternoon Readers,

You know what's great about summer? The refreshment, hands down.

Refreshing drinks, refreshing dips in the pool, refreshing cucumber salad you lovingly peeled and stirred while toddlers hung off your knee caps, all of it delightful.These things culminate in one, giant emotional symphony wrapped in a delicate summer's eve breeze that find you asking to yourself, "Life is truly a gift. Can it get better than this? Did I really just say "summer's eve" without laughing hysterically?"

And then you remember that, yes, it can get better because you have yet to get a nice, refreshing, summer lecture.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Unanticipated Side Effects

"Say what?"

 Afternoon Readers,

Just checking in during what looks to be our fine state's 800th rainy day this season. I'm about to build a sturdy ark, equipped with separate rooms for all the children, and go ahead and call this summer a wash. As my weight is also at a very respectable 800 pounds, it will be a very sturdy ark. Seaworthy.

Cresting week twenty-three in this fourth child journey, I'm most assuredly moving into the part of the program where clothes are no longer my friends, feet sightings are scarce, and the feeling of being a slowly stretched-out beach ball reigns supreme. Some women slip into pregnancy gracefully, shrugging each week on like a delicate, silk suit. Whereas, I tend to stumble into each, successive month like a rhinoceros wrestling itself into a corduroy jacket. That's not to say this pregnancy has been entirely hum drum. On the contrary, besides the usual side effects of being impregnated, some new, surprise bonuses popped up in the last week.

"I'm pregnant, just like you!"

Friday, July 3, 2015

The Top Ten Things I've Learned In Six Years of Marriage

On my wedding day, I learned it's almost impossible to put a garter on under eight feet of tulle.

Afternoon Readers,

I'd like to start today with a public service message. Heading into this weekend, undoubtedly, you've already been briefed about using caution with fireworks, not drinking and driving, and thinking twice about a third helping of Aunt Helen's famous Baked Bean Extravaganza, but there probably hasn't been a warning about cookies.

To the point, if you insist on opening a bargain pack of thirty off-brand Oreos, propping them on your passenger seat for the ride home, and trying to eat them in heavy traffic, the results will be disastrous. It only takes one,good slam on the breaks to avoid a Ford Windstar.

You ever see it rain cookies in a car? I have. And it's terrifying.

Friday, June 26, 2015

The Happy and Sad Club

"If you're happy and you know it, cry for no reason."

Afternoon Readers,

Another week gone, another three billion dishes and loads of laundry done. Along with those, I drank about seven hundred cups of coffee, so everything has pretty much evened itself out before the weekend. What have you guys been up to?

Besides riding the everlasting wave of housework, I'm loathe to admit the rest of my time has been spent lounging in the exclusive area I fondly refer to as the Happy and Sad Club. It happens every time I'm pregnant, each day of each trimester punctuated by huge surges of elation, followed very closely by a crashing surf of sadness. Frankly, it's a roller coaster ride I'd completely forgotten about, but it's back with a fury. Some call it hormones. Others, a variation of prenatal depression. I call it a huge pain in my usually happy ass.

The hardest part is the unpredictability. For example... 

8am: Well, the kitchen's pretty cleaned up. Only two dirty pans left and the counter needs to be wiped up, but, no sweat, I'll tackle that after I eat second breakfast.

10am: Why did we even buy a house? This counter is disgusting. If I can't even keep a counter clean, how can I possibly raise these children to be functioning adults? Who lets someone who can't wield a washcloth have children? Honestly. Hoooooooonestly. *Eats third breakfast in the bathroom and cries for ten minutes.*

11am-2pm: All right, that's two whole emails I've responded to. I'm pretty much the most organized person ever. Ice cream for everyone!

3pm: *This spot reserved for crying for no reason*

3:30pm: Hmm, where'd that drink I poured for myself go? It's gone. Why's it gone? The toddler's running away, a sure sign of guilt. Ugh, and I'm too big to run after him. It's like I can't even have a drink to myself anymore. Then again, if I catch him, what am I going to do, squeeze it back out of him? *Cries while pouring more diet cream soda*

4pm: Ok, the bills are done and we even have money left over to rent a movie on demand. Wow, I should've been an accountant.

5pm: You know what we don't have money for though? Renovating the entire house. Don't most people renovate their whole property a month after they move in? Probably. Then again, maybe that was a Tom Hanks movie I watched.

5:10pm: Holy crap, did I plan anything for dinner? Yes. No. Yes!

6:00pm: What do you mean you don't want casserole? I bet the Pioneer Woman's kids eat her casserole. Then again, she makes blueberry lemonade from scratch and curls her hair before she makes pie. Maybe if I'd broken out the curling iron this morning, my kids would be eating a shit ton of this potato monstrosity too.

6:05: No, wait. This is actually a terrible casserole. That's the next time I take a recipe off a flyer pinned under my windshield wiper.

6:30pm: I think I'll randomly try on this pair of shorts that fit me before I was pregnant. *More crying*

7:00pm: Ok, baths, clean pajamas, prayers, bedtime. Only have to put the kids back in their bed fifty-two more times and Husband and I can have a conversation.

8:00pm: What the heck would we do without TV? Time to bury my emotions deep down while living vicariously through Scrubs and Game of Thrones. I should've been a doctor... or royalty. *Quietly re-examines life choices too closely.*

10:00pm....

Me: Time to go to sleep.

Brain: You know what we didn't think about today?

Me: What?

Brain: All the other stuff that makes you cry.

Me: Great. Let's do this.  *Cries softly about over-priced milk and the hairbrush I forgot to clean out*

It's not the most fun in the world, but I've done it enough times now to know it'll pass. Most days pass pretty well, and the pots in the sink eventually all get washed. Crying about everything will definitely blow over, but I can't say as much for my casserole skills. Those are actually really bad and will be a constant in my life forever. Just like the laundry and my coffee.

Until Next Time, Readers!

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Friday, June 19, 2015

The Cost of Friendship Is Seventy-Five Dollars

I'm sorry, toilet. For what we did, and also because the former owners put you in a blue bathroom that looks like a faded pair of Wranglers.

Afternoon Readers,

I speak often of my penchant for hermitude. Part of me really enjoys hanging out in a public setting, while the other, greater, part of me gravitates towards closing the doors, retreating to my bedroom, and making a tent out of my comforter. After which, I crawl under said blanket for three hundred years and read until the one missing person's report filed on behalf is crumbled up and put in the recycle bin.

There's absolutely nothing wrong with being a homebody, but, occasionally, solitude can turn into its own special sort of isolation, and the rogue call from a friend is embraced by my untoned arms.

Last week's message read as thus:

Hey Paige!

I'll be in town next week and want to stop by. Will bring coffee.

Sincerely,

Old College Friend

Noting the coffee pledge, I quickly added this friend I hadn't seen in ten years to my living will, accepted the offer, and made plans to make it look like I cleaned my house more than once a fortnight. Things were slow around Kellerman house, and I needed someone to chat with. Pregnancy had curbed whatever appetite I had for social situations, and there was a very distinct possibility I'd gotten tired of my own voice shouting, "For the love of all that's good and holy, stop opening the refrigerator."

By the time the knock came on the door, I was so cooped up with little people's requests, I simultaneously hugged my friend and tried to give her two or three children to take home. This was a bad plan because she has four of her own and was enjoying her own special brand of escape.

I played the gracious hostess. "Come in! Sit down! Never leave me!"

Making good on her promise, I enjoyed a gifted iced coffee as big as Volkswagen while we waxed nostalgic about when we were single and didn't where pants with panels. The great thing about visiting with mom friends is their inability to register the dumb things your kids are doing while you two carve out adult conversation. Any parent worth their salt who's been left in charge of kids but decides to have a visitor over anyway, knows it goes something like this...

"So, like I was saying, I only shop at ni... Hey, did you hear that noise?"

"Yeah, it's fine."

"You sure?"

"Yep. It's probably just the kids doing something extremely destructive in another part of the house. But tell me more about that new app you found that locates the nearest donut shop."

"Right, so it's called Tasty Tracker."

It's the time old cost of social interaction for those of us constantly watching children. You may have friends, but unless you want to fork over money for a babysitter and head out the door, you're going to end up staying home and paying in one or more of your worldly possessions. This is especially true for the parent who stays home. You're habitually the built-in babysitter for the other person's work, errands after work, or last minute social calls because you're already there. That doesn't really ease the blow when they get home though.

Before he got back, Husband hadn't been adequately prepared for the scenario. He walked and and looked unsettled. "Hey there. What's going on?"

I waved and smiled, hours of conversation having wiped the stress lines that inhabit the area between the bridge of my nose and my hairline away. "Hey, honey. This is my friend from college."

He nodded. "Nice to meet you. What are the kids doing?"

Shrugging, I pointed up the stairs. "Plaaaaying... I think."

I felt a small twinge of guilt, but that's the price of friend time, guilt and not knowing what the hell your kids have been doing. Screaming in a way which suggests someone has been stabbed hadn't occurred, so that was good. Although, the baby had brought me my toothbrush, deodorant, and leave-in conditioner, so, upon reflection, that should've been some sort of red flag.

His shoulders tensed and he headed upstairs. I continued my visit while I made dinner, served said dinner, and emotionally saw my guest back out the door. For the first time in weeks, I was happy.

"Um, why is all my stuff missing?"

Shit. Time to pay the piper.

I looked away from the door and innocently back at Husband. "What stuff would that be?"

"My toothbrush, deodorant, shaving cream, toothpaste. Pretty much everything I keep in our bathroom."

"I might have all that stuff down here."

He sighed. "Were you watching them this afternoon?"

"More or less."

As it turns out, it was a little more than I thought. The baby had taken it upon himself to not only sneak in the bathroom, but flush some unknown objects down the toilet. A quick call to the plumber, seventy-five dollars later, and the additional news that water is also leaking into our garage from that same toilet, and we were back in business. (Sort of. More on that as it develops.)

So, would I do it again? Of course. I'll simply be locking my bedroom door next time. Moms have to find sanity somewhere. I just hope the total comes in under seventy-five dollars next time.

Until Next Time, Readers!



Like what you read here? Buy some Cankles
And if quick bathroom reads are your friend, grab The Big Book of Parenting Tweets: Featuring the Most Hilarious Parents on Twitter!
And now that I've awkwardly made you my friend, come hang out with me on: