Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Power of the Magic Golden Hair...

...and Other Warnings You Won't Find in the Parenting Manual

On a recent trip north I visited my niece who has a 3 year-old daughter. Almost instantly my 3 year-old and her second cousin were "the two best friends that anyone could have"... No joke, we actually heard them say, "Let's hold hands and jump!" It was all very charming.

During the visit we were staying at my sister's house which is filled with amazing toys that we don't have at home. However, some of said toys are not amazing, at least not to mommy. The girls found a Rapunzel wig amidst the pile along with a super sweet Joe Dirt mullet wig that coincidentally doubles as a second Rapunzel wig, AKA, Magic Golden Hair or, MGH for short as I like to call it. 

Upon discovery of the MGH there was no stopping the "Rapunzels". My daughter was fortunate enough to sport the mullet version and for the next several hours we all took turns climbing the MGH. 

At some point the wig sisters were instructed to lose the hair so we could go outdoors where it was at least 90 degrees and "Magic Golden Hair" was not to be worn in the extreme heat. We didn't need the sun for the meltdown that took place. However, we all needed a break from climbing the tower of hair a total of 2 inches at a time every 4 minutes. The MGH was hidden and all was right with the world... or so I thought...

Of course we're visiting family and therefore every night we stayed up late and woke up early. There may have been a bit too much wine, I can't be sure as the memory is clouded in the strands of MGH that can still be found in my luggage, but at about 4am my daughter woke me up frantically crying. She seemed incredibly upset and since we're not at our own house I was blasted into a sober, wide-awake-not-going-back-to-sleep state. After a few minutes I finally get her to calm down enough to tell me what's wrong. "Mama, I can't find the Magic Golden Hair!" These were the words I heard at 4am and this was the battle I had for the next two hours until finally my sister woke up and found the hidden MGH. I will burn that MGH! BURN IT!

The bright side in climbing this tower of torture? The photos may prove to be a great weapon when the teenage years hit. No respectable 14-year-old girl wants a mullet photo on the loose so I'll add this to my arsenal...

Friday, September 14, 2012

Path of Destruction

In a rare moment of silence, while two children soundly slept, I took a phone call. A real phone call in which I could solely focus on the caller. Due to the ridiculous reception inside my home I decided to sit outdoors and sip my freshly brewed, French pressed coffee. It was all so peaceful... 

Unbeknownst to me, the three-year-old was not soundly sleeping. She was, in fact, creating a small path of destruction. After my 20 minute phone call, yes, just 20 minutes folks, this was what I encountered... 


Alas, don't worry. There was still a bright side to this trail of terror. The explosion of toys offered a perfect opportunity to play the clean-up game, which is another post entirely involving bribery and lost sanity...

Monday, September 10, 2012

The Disney Challenge

A Grueling Tale of Mom vs Pull-UP

Shortly after turning two my daughter was potty trained… during the day; night came with “sleeping pants”. Initially I wasn’t worried about this phase as every parent on the planet professed, “one day she will magically wake up dry.” She soon turned three and the so-called “magic dry-pants” theory remained a theory. It was time to pull out the real magic, Disney bribery.

Read closely potty-training parents because this plan worked like a charm cast by a Disney fairy. Here’s how it worked:
Step 1: Promised to take my potty trainee to Disney if she could go seven consecutive nights without peeing in the sleeping pants. Hence, the Disney Challenge.
Step 2: There is no step 2. Within 12 days of proposing the Disney Challenge she conquered it. 

The problem with my brilliant plan was that I proposed it in JULY, in FLORIDA! All I could think was at least I wouldn’t have to trek the park dressed as the Beast character. That poor bastard better get bank because there is nothing magical about that costume in 97 degrees and 80% humidity. Nothing.

 In any case, my husband had a conference in Orlando a week later and again I have a stroke of brilliance… I will take my two kids to the park ALONE while he is at the conference because afterwards we can all stay with him at the Marriott with the cool pool!! I’m here to tell you right now, that pool was not that cool. 

We live 2 hours from Disney so I dragged myself magically out of bed at 5am to pack. I have both kids up and ready to go by 6:30 to beat the heat and the crowds. We arrive at the Magic Kingdom early, but not before the sun or the crowds. Damn.

Below is a lovely sequence of events that followed:
1)      Park and pack both kids into the double-wide (D-W) stroller and hike it to the tram which will take us to the park, sort of.
2)      Arrive at the tram pick-up point and wait 8 minutes for it to roll up.
3)      I soon realize the D-W stroller is too large for the tram and there is no way I can manage both kids even if I could cram it on.
4)      Hike it 10 minutes in the scalding sun on blazing hot pavement to the park entrance.
5)      Wait in line 15 minutes for someone to ram-shack through all my crap and confirm I’m not a terrorist.
6)      Enter the park and hike with my D-W stroller to the ferry to really take us to the park.
7)      Wait in line to board the ferry for 15 minutes. We are the very last people to board.
8)      The ferry moves at the same speed the earth rotates.
9)      At 11:15 we are FINALLY entering the park!!
10)   Within :30 seconds of park entry the Disney Challenge Winner “has to go pee pee.” 10 minute bathroom line.
11)   Thankfully the Disney princesses are housed right by the entry so we do what we’ve done the entire morning, get in line.
12)   Wait 1 hour and 14 minutes to see three princesses.
13)   We arrive at Cinderella first who is followed by Belle and Rapunzel.
14)   After a full morning of waiting the daughter rolls up to Cinderella and asks the obvious question, “Where’s Aurora?” Honestly, where the “H” is Aurora?
15)   We finish the magic princess moment and find a shady spot to eat the cheap lunch I packed at 5am. We are quickly surrounded by the only 7 people on the planet that still smoke. Awesome.
16)   Get in line to meet Tinkerbelle.
17)   Wait 47 minutes when the daughter proclaims the famous words, “I have to go pee pee.” Another less than magical moment.
18)   Got in line for ice cream.
19)   In excitement the daughter drops her sundae into the stroller.
20)   We got the “H” out of Disney by 3p. It took a full 52 minutes to get back to the Marriott with the cool pool where my husband asks if we want to go back to the park at 6 and stay for the fireworks. He has to dodge my right hook. 

And the bright side is… we’re done with sleeping pants… magically. It’s that easy folks.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Mountain of Lies...

Sippy cups. Why. Why do you play these games with me?! I thought I was done with the lies and games when I said "I Do." But no. The sippy's seduced me with their lies and unfulfilled promises.

Mountain of Sippy Lies...

At about $9 each, I really want to believe you and your "guaranteed not to spill" professions. Damn you sippy cups.I've been played. And many times over.


Sippy Spillage Situation

Seriously, is it user error? Or does anyone else come upon  this all too familiar scene on a fairly regular basis? PS - If you have, I don't recommend throwing the sippy. It actually doesn't help and unfortunately leads to more cleaning. Go ahead and learn from my mistake on this one. A little pearl of wisdom I'm happy to share.

I suppose if I were to search for the bright side of the sippy spillage situation, it would have to be the fact that it does force me to clean the hardwood with real wood cleaner. Like a real adult. I will fully disclose that this overly-stretched, under-caffeinated mother could clearly overlook that little task if it weren't for those pesky, meddling sippy cups!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Sorry to the Trees...

Sometimes I'm all like, "Why my toilet keep backing up, YO?"

Then I'm all like, "Oh..." 

What's the bright side of this little dull surprise you may ask? Well, I found a really great plumber. Then, when a pipe burst in our wall the following week, I knew just who to call! Isn't that fabulous?

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Camp Pee Pee

A Campfire Tale of Potty Training Triumph

Once school lets out many kids are shipped off to summer camps with fun sounding Native American names like, “Kamp Kawaga,” “Camp Chippewa,” or “Camp Idontwannago”… or something like that. At least that’s where my friends went each summer while growing up in WI. Unfortunately, or perhaps fortunately (not sure), I never did get sent to camp.

In any case, every parent tries to give their child more than they had and I’m no different. My lucky little one was blessed with the opportunity to be the one and only attendee of “Camp Pee Pee.” Camp Pee Pee has only one counselor, me. Camp Pee Pee has only one mission, operation Pee Pee in Potty. As all parents know, a mission to be equally welcomed and feared.

My little camper had just turned two when my son was born and she was quickly sent to Camp Pee Pee. The timing may sound insane but turns out it was perfect. Working full-time there is no good time to stage a coup against the diaper, but while home on maternity leave, I was ready for battle. Additionally, older siblings are always put-off by the attention paid to the new arrival. But trust me, your child will not feel forgotten when you ask them to go potty every four minutes, possibly more.

How it worked was simple. I locked myself, my camper, new baby and the brand-new potty chair in the front room of our house along with a TV and DVD player. I threw caution to the wind and decided it didn’t matter how many movies we watched or how much “screen time” was logged. (Ok, I admit there was a little guilt over the screen time so I added some crafts and coloring into the mix).

For four days my daughter colored and watched Disney movies while sitting on the potty accepting bribes and M&Ms after each accomplishment. She loved it! For four days I did not sleep, shower, or eat. It was very much like REAL camp. However, the bright side of this campfire story is that Camp Pee Pee was a grueling yet epic success! In the end there were only 4 or 5 accidents – and thankfully, all number one. Bonus! My new slogan may be, Visit Camp Pee Pee! Effective, Affordable, and a Pissin’ Good Time!