I am writing before tackling the day’s dishes because I think it will afford me more optimism. Today in general seemed more optimistic than yesterday, maybe it was not going to the doctor and not arguing over tiny plastic toys. Either way, today was nice. I prepared for the day last night, or at least I thought I did, but somehow it still took me an hour to get ready this morning, I’m not even sure why. I need to create some kind of routine for unpacking and washing, then cooking and repacking for the next day. It takes a lot of time and work to eat almost everything homemade from scratch! Add in grain and sugar free and there are only so many smoothies and bean creations I can make! Time to look at the Paleo kids blogs for some ideas.
We drove Mo to work, then headed down to the Miami Science Museum where Ben went to summer camp last month. We always have a great time there with all the hands on exhibits and space to roam. I found it challenging today because Ben and Ella wanted to look at different things. There were a few “OHMYGOSH where is s/he!?” split seconds until one of their blondie noggins popped back into view. Ben seemed wound up, constantly urging us to “Come on!” and scanning past most of the exhibits. He has spent enough time there that he has a few favorites and is unimpressed by others. He isn’t as interested in peering into glass cases with branches and greenery trying to decipher which creature is hiding under the fake rock. He is more interested in the touch screens and in making me lift him with the giant lever outside. I can’t blame him. Ella still looks into the turtle terrarium with awed eyes and an “Ooohh…” so we all had to make some compromises in our wandering preferences.
We left the museum around 1pm which is past Ella’s naptime, or whatever I guess it is now that we are somewhat recovered from jet lag. She cried half the way home, I talked to her sympathetically, Ben offered some creative suggestions for how to get her to stop crying that shall not be shared here. She finally fell asleep so Ben and I had some quiet time to chat. I opted to go to Target to wait out the nap in the parking lot rather than go straight home. Target with both kids was a risky bet, could have gone either way. I try to give Ben clear expectations before we go into any store, along the lines of “You can get a book but no snacks.” or “One snack, no toys.” If I plan not to get him anything at all, I try to at least offer him a piece of gum from my purse so he feels like he’s getting something special out of the temptation and boredom of a shopping trip. Today I said Ben could get a book at Target, partly because I love books and I never feel like buying books is spoiling, and also because he was very agreeable when I gave him my usual no toys from the museum gift shop answer earlier. The trip through Target was successful, I got everything on my list, plus a few extra things (Why Target, why!? How do you beguile me even when I am set against it?), we picked Mo up and headed home.
Are you bored yet? Here’s where the day gets really good. Mo took Ben for a swim, I hung out with Ella, then Mo took BOTH KIDS for a walk outside and I had a phone appointment with my therapist. He says I should accept myself as a work in progress. I’m working on it. Then we ate dinner, I gave the kids a bath, they ran around like maniacs, Mo read Ben’s new book to us in bed in an epic movie narrator voice, and we tried to snuggle the kids to sleep. The sleeping arrangement is new so the bedtime routine is still shaking out. In the past, I would take Ella into what was ostensibly Mo’s and my room (grammar help with that one please!?), and Mo would take Ben into what was Ben’s room, then we would both end up staying there for the night. I got tired of the boys vs. girls sleeping arrangements so we moved both beds into our room. At first I had wanted to move both kids into Ben’s room but Ella is still nursing during the night so this is the best option for now. The immediate goal is to get both kids into the same bed. Cosleeping is amazing and totally worth it, but it had started to feel like we were all a bit distant from each other. Tonight was the first time I felt like my idea to put the beds together is paying off. I nursed Ella in one bed, Mo snuggled with Ben in the other bed. Mo left, Ella rolled over and eventually dozed off, and Ben snuggled into bed next to me, then I left and he fell asleep next to Ella. The time spent snuggling nose to nose with Ben is the sweetest moment I’ve had in a long time. His soft face, his hand in mine, he is still my little one. It can be so hard with a littler one around to treasure how small he still is and that he still wants me to cuddle with him. I lay there thinking that if I had to choose between this and anything else, I choose this. Peace, in a bed. sandwiched between my sleeping kids.
I’ll try not to get my hopes up for tomorrow! Ha.