Thursday, January 31, 2013

Sleep Gamble

Sometimes I fall asleep during the day.  I'm tired.  It happens.  Jack is usually pretty good about playing on his own and not getting into too much trouble while I doze.

Eventually, though, he will want my attention, so he will wake me up.  It's inevitable.

Sometimes he will wake me up very sweetly by softly saying, "Ma ma ma" and giving me a kiss.  A slobbery kiss, but a kiss nonetheless.

And sometimes he will wake me up by yanking my eyelids open with the sharp little claws at the ends of his fingers.

It's unpleasant.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013


Today I am grateful for garages and Little Caesar's $5 Hot-n-Ready pizza.


It is beyond cold in my neck of the woods right now.  I have not seen the temperature above fifteen degrees for the past week or so.  It's usually been much closer to zero degrees.  If you know me well at all, you know that I hate, hate, HATE the cold.  I start to shiver when it hits the low sixties.  This weather and I are not getting along.

Luckily, I have a garage.  It's a separate building from my home, so I still have to go outside to get to it (someday that will change), and it's not exactly toasty inside, but it does stay warm enough that I don't have to scrape my car before I need to go somewhere.

On Sunday Lewis and I had three bags and a toddler (each of which weighed in at about twenty pounds) to lug to church.  Combine that with the frigid temperature and a kid that likes to take his mittens off at any possible moment and we decided to drive.  Lewis had to stay after for a meeting, so it was just Jack and me for the drive home.  When I opened the garage, I discovered that Lewis had parked his car the previous night in such a way that made it difficult for me to get my car in too.  I probably would have been just fine, but we were leaving for dinner at Lewis' parents' house as soon as he got home, and then Lewis could put my car away, so I just parked it on the street.

Except we didn't end up going to his parents' house.  And I had a doctors appointment the next morning so I couldn't just leave my car be until Lewis could deal with it.

I know it's pathetic of me to complain about having to scrape my car.  But to be fair, I have really poor circulation in my hands and am kind of OCD, so it's not like I could just scrape a little hole to see out of and call it good.  Don't judge me too harshly.


I like to think I'm a pretty good cook.  I prefer baking, but I can keep my family well-fed.  I really enjoy learning new cooking techniques and making as much of my food from scratch as possible.  What I'm trying to say is, I know my way around the kitchen.

Except when it comes to fried chicken.  I don't know what my deal is, if it's my pan, ingredients, or what, but quality fried chicken just eludes me.  It's not something we care to have very often, but every once in a while I'll give it another shot.  Usually I can at least come up with something edible.

The time was ripe for another kitchen catastrophe, so last night I put forth my best effort to smoke out our kitchen.  I fell just short of setting off the smoke alarms, but my contacts are still a little fuzzy from the work.  Dinner was ruined, in every sense of the word.

Thankfully I have a Little Caesar's just five minutes away, and a husband willing to venture out into ten-degree weather to save our supper.  Besides, pizza goes much better with the BCS national championship than fried chicken anyway.  I mean, if I had messed up hot wings... now, that would be a different story.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Jack the Foodie

Jack in the pickiest eater in the world.

This is especially problematic because he has food allergies, so I'm already limited in what I can give him to eat.

If he had it his way, the five basic food groups would be:

-Rice milk
-Oatmeal (the baby food kind)
-Whatever Mom is eating

It's a battle every day to get something healthy in him.  Most days I am just grateful that his milk and oatmeal are fortified with SOME vitamins.

Protein has been one of our biggest challenges.  Jack just doesn't like to eat anything that has any protein in it.  His usual source of protein is the ever-healthy option of chicken nuggets.

Friday night is pizza night in the Young home.  Lewis has perfected his own pizza recipe - dough, sauce, everything.  One of our favorite pizza toppings was discovered by chance.  When my mom was with us around the time Jack was born, she bought a large bag of honey-battered chicken nuggets, which she left behind when she left.  One Friday night found us without any pizza toppings, so Lewis cut up a few of the nuggets and tossed them on, just to see what would happen.

Ohmygoodness, so delicious.  I never would have thought that chicken nuggets - even high-quality-all-white-meat-kind-of-expensive chicken nuggets would go well on a pizza.  But they do.  So, so well.  Especially with bell peppers, Roma tomatoes, and mushrooms, if you were curious.

One day I was trying to come up with something - anything - that Jack would eat.  Or even just taste.  So I popped a couple of chicken nuggets in the microwave and, miracle of miracles, Jack ate them!  All of them!  And then even asked for more!

Except these were high-quality-all-white-meat-kind-of-expensive chicken nuggets that Lewis and I happen to really enjoy on our pizza.  And if I'm resorting to feed chicken nuggets to my kid, what difference does it make if they are cheap or expensive?

The next time I was at the store I picked up another bag of chicken nuggets.  Lower-quality-animal-shaped-cheaper chicken nuggets.  No fancy honey batter, but why should that matter to a one-year-old?

Well it apparently matters when your son is a chicken nugget snob.  He completely turned his little button nose up at these chicken nuggets.  They were decidedly unsatisfactory.

But you know, sometimes Jack loves something one day and completely abhors in the next.  Maybe this was one of those cases.  Maybe it wasn't the lower-quality-animal-shaped-cheaper chicken nuggets.  Maybe it was just chicken nuggets.

We tested that theory by giving him a few of the high-quality-all-white-meat-kind-of-expensive chicken nuggets, with a single lower-quality-animal-shaped-cheaper chicken nugget mixed in.  Each chicken nugget was cut into three pieces.  At the end of his meal there were three pieces left sitting on his high chair tray.  All three of them put together made a complete rhinoceros.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Bits of Tid

See the watches in the picture above? Lewis bought me the one on the left for Christmas 2011. It was lost within a few months (based on the time it showed when we found it, it went missing sometime after daylight savings started). So Lewis lovingly bought me the watch on the right for Christmas 2012. We found the missing watch not one week later, stashed away in our storage ottoman as we were cleaning it out. This is why my watches are purchased at Walmart.


Christmas break makes me even more grateful that Lewis is a teacher. Having him home for two whole weeks? Divine. Jack, however, did not appreciate having his dad around as much as I did. The last few days of the break found us with a whiny Jack that needed to be in his mothers arms AT ALL TIMES. Talk about exhausting. I was not at all looking forward to Lewis going back to school and leaving me with alone with our precious little imp.

But back to school he went. And something amazing happened: Jack and I had the best day! We played lots of games, read a bajilion books, he ate all his food without a fuss (and some of it even leaned towards healthy), he took a decent nap... Oh, it was the greatest.

Until Lewis came home. Then clingy Jack was back. Clingy Jack likes to scream when Mom and Dad are near each other and have a complete melt down if they actually touch each other. Forget about hugging and kissing.

Clingy Jack hung around until I left for a church meeting. Then happy Jack was back and had a blast with his dad until bedtime. We are pretty sure that Jack, the world's biggest Mama's boy, thinks he has to compete with his father for my affection/attention, especially since Lewis was around all the time for break. But if it's just him and Mom, he has all the attention he needs and he's fine. If it's just him and Dad and neither of them have Mom's attention, he's fine, the little stinker. Heaven help us all when his baby sister arrives.


Jack loves football. His first (easily discernible) word was, "Go" which he yells repeatedly at the TV screen whenever football is on. Obviously our commitment to keep the TV off around the kid does not extend to this, the greatest sport of all the sports. And with the college bowl season in full swing over break, Jack got used to watching football (which he lovingly calls, "go, go, go") all. The. Time.

Well, with the bowl season winding down, football is not on nearly as often as it was before. So when Jack brings me the remote to the TV, asks for "go, go, go," and I have to tell him that it's not on, bad things happen. Tantrummy things. Which escalate when, not five minutes later, he hands me a sock, holds up his foot, and I put the sock on, which was apparently very much not what he wanted(?).

I was at just about my wits end when I had the inspiration to pull out a bag of marshmallows. Jack goes wild over marshmallows. Like, peepants wild. Good thing he's still in diapers. I put a little bowl of them out on a kitchen chair, he gave me a snot-nosed kiss, and has been running back and forth between the bowl on the chair and his sound-light-table thing with a big, silly grin on his face ever since. So today I thank you, Jet-Puffed. You saved my bacon.

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