Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Stare-itis Floyd Style

We just got back from Floydfest, where we let our inner hippies out to dance to Michael Franti and eat vegetarian burritos and walk around with no shoes on. It was grand, my friends. Downright amazing. Lady Baby stayed at home, and we camped for two nights with good friends. We ate cookies and charged our smart phones with the car battery and washed our hair in the sink because there was no shower. Really roughing it. No offense to the nice coworker of my husband's who let us borrow his dog tent two man tent, but that mess was tiny. I felt like I was sleeping in a cloth coffin built for 1 person and 1 midget. I am pretty sure it was actually the demo that they set out at the store that you point to and say, "I would like that one." It was so small, I had what can only be called a pre-panic attack panic attack. There was some definite shortness of breathe and sweating. But that could also be attributed to the fact that we were sharing the oxygen and space meant for one labradoodle. But I digress...the festival was lovely and we really enjoyed our time amongst the unwashed masses. I felt it was only fair that you too should enjoy this time. That is why I had a team of five on the prowl for people who are worth an open mouth stare. And find them we did. So sit back, kick your feet up, and commence to gawking.

1. This handsome fellow is making a statement. It says, "I love Willie Nelson and jean shorts and suspenders and plastic ties that I can play washboard style." He was a bit of a side show, playing the spoons upon his cheek, inner thigh, and elbow. Then he would ziga-zaga up and down his crimped plastic tie. One man band, that one. He is not as cheery here, waiting in line for the bus as he was earlier in the day, posing for pictures with college girls. Understandable. And his inner thighs probably hurt from being smacked by spoons all weekend. 

2. Hmmm. What should I pack to wear to Floyd fest? Bra? Check. Dress? Nah, too hot. Shirt made of cotton? No. Too normal. Hey, wait a hot second. Here is my stretchy lace nude camisole that is two sizes too small. Perfect! This woman was all. over. the. place. Everywhere I looked, there she was. Mixing it up, flirting with middle aged hippies, rocking those motorcycle boots. In 100 degree weather. Guess the lack of shirt balances them out. And the skirt wasn't short enough either. So she rolled it up a few times. Just in case anyone wanted a glimpse of her crotch and thong. Which if I could have taken the pic closer, you would have seen the top of through her shirt. Nothing says available and looking for fun like see through clothes. And sister was looking for some fun. 

3. Why hello there Herr Fesitvarian. Where did you wander in from? The alps? Y'all know that das lederhosen are made of suede. Cause that's cool and breatheable. Again let me reiterate. It was upwards of 100 degrees in the heat of the day. These lederhosen would not be my first choice for comfortable festival wear. However, the boxers underneath that were playing peekabo with every step really set this look apart and made it all worth it. Cause they had flames all over them. I bet he had to refill that water bottle every 7 minutes for fear of sweating to death. One must hydrate when preparing for the pretend yodeling competition. This outfit makes me yearn to see what gems are hanging in his closet. I can not begin to imagine the fashion wonders in there.

4. Floydfest is a very ethnically versatile place. Here we have what is obviously a Native American. Holt up. Is that a highlighted bob? Hmmm. Fringed dress, fringed bag with detachable animal pelt, fringe boots. All in summery white suede. Well, it is after Easter, so well done there. Sadly, you loose points for the fact that it is hideous and an embarrassment to any person with a drop of Indian blood. Which I have, so I am allowed to judge. The 1/16 bit of Indian Princess inside me is screaming and crying. And again with the suede people. Did no one get the memo that it was the dead of July when they were packing? At least she opted for her sleeveless white leather sioux maxi. Well played. You wonder what kind of husband lets his wife out of the house like that. Then you notice that he is wearing fringed boots. Obviously fringe is their fashion platform as a family. 

5. I love a beard. Actually that is a complete lie. I find them to be nothing but a place for insects to burrow and food to get stuck. Lordy, I just heaved a little. Anywho, I do insist if you are going to rock a beard, it should be something interesting. Jaunty if you will. Please direct your attention to exhibits A and B below. On the left, we have Mr Tumnus from Narnia. I am quite certain he has a little flute of same type in his pocket next to his smokes. And of course hoof feet. I bet it was a long walk from the land of Narnia. The fellow on the right in the ill fitting sunglasses went for a real conversation started. The best way to get this party started is to bead up your beard. I know it worked because I stood in line in front of this gentleman, whose name is Bob, and listened to a very intoxicated woman badger him with beard-beading questions. Surely not the conversation he was envisioning when he was picking those out at Michaels. 

6. And last but not least, we have this guy. I think he came to Floydfest via time machine from 1986. There were lots of dudes with no shirt. There were lots of dudes in flip flops. There were lots of dudes with necklaces. There were even a few in jean shorts *sob*. There was only one guy who pulled all that together into one amazing cohesive look. This guy. My friend Jenn kept calling him the American Gladiator. Most of the time in the south seeing Hippies with dreads and scarf shirts and dirty feet are out of the norm. Seeing over 40 gym rats with curly mullets, tans, and bad sports glasses is pretty normal. I am sure he felt like he was in total bizzaro world. Not to mention he was probably blown away by all the smartphones and lack of shoulder pads. And the recycling. I bet he stole some hippie composting to fuel his time machine. 

There you have it. A few of the many people that I spent my weekend staring at. So many weirdos, so little battery power on the Droid. Please remember, suede is for the cool months, shirts should at least cover part of the body, and beards are only acceptable if they step outside of the box. If you learn nothing else from me today, please know that it is always acceptable to have your clothing double as percussion instruments. 

Feel free after you have seen this feat for the eyes, check out the stare-itis from last year at Music on the Mountaintop. Classic.

Monday, July 30, 2012

The World Remains the Same

I am going to take a minute to get up on my soap box. I promise my next post will be all happiness and light, but this comes from a place of being tired of hearing that our world sucks. And so much worse than "the good old days." And I just don't believe that. If you want to know why...read on. Otherwise I will see you later in the week for some amazeballs pics from the festival I went to this weekend where my stare-itis almost made my head blow off...

With the recent happenings in Colorado, I worry for my children, my family, my friends. I worry that we are not safe anywhere. Everywhere has a potential mad man waiting with a gun and a scheme. I tell myself, "T, this is why you don't watch the news. It is too painful, too sad, too disturbing, too frustrating." At this point in my life, with a young child, everything I see touches the exposed nerve of motherhood. I cry too easily to watch the grieving families holding each other and the friends gathered with candles. I despair that my children may never be truly safe in this world. Breathe, calm down, take a minute.  I remind myself the world has always been this way, and it will always be this way.

I believe that there is not more violence in our world, there is more access to information. The same amount of bloodshed has aways existed. Some times may have had a little more, other times a little less. I imagine the Inquisition was a scary time. Since the dawn of time, there have been crazy people. People who only want to strike others down. People filled with rage and hurt and darkness. Our history as a human race is filled with wars, killings, and torture. The lone gunmen, the gangsters, the posses, they have always existed. They have always wreaked havoc on our feelings of safety and security. Every person at every point in time has understood that there are bad people in this world who only care about doing harm. The difference in today and ancient Egypt, or the great west filled with cowboys, or the 13th century London, or the New York of the roaring 20's, is information. We live in a time when information is king. A person gets their purse stolen in Dubai and it is possible for a mother in Minnesota to know about it. Within minutes. Information can travel lightening fast and there is no stopping it. This is why we feel that we are surround by terrible things happening. Because we are, in a virtual sense. We are steeping ourselves in the negative of the world. I refuse to believe that the human race is getting worse. I can not be convinced that every day that passes means we are closer to losing our humanity and sympathy and empathy. Nothing that the news or the internet or my neighbor tells me will crush my faith that people are inherently good. We are not worse, we are informed.  

My wish is not to dimish the tragedy in Colorado. Every person living that nightmare is justified. This is most likely the single worse thing that will ever happen  in their life. The diffence between what happens today versus 100 years ago, is that we are all living through it together constantly. The positive side of us all being connected, is that we form a world support system. Today it takes mere seconds for the world to come together in shared disbelief and outrage and love and concern. It is a different world superimposed over the same world that has always existed. The same things are happening for good and bad, but we are living with the ability to stay informed constantly. With these advancements we are allowed to be part of each other's lives in all aspects.

I cannot believe that every day the world becomes a more terrible place. If I believed that, I wouldn't have been able to have a child, or leave the house, or even smile. I will use the heinous things that happen in the world to explain to my child why we need to be positive and honest and loving. Good and evil will both always exist. History has taught us that over and over. Because there will always be a bad in the world, we must be the good

Thursday, July 26, 2012

The Solidarity of the Apron

Today, I had a revelation in my kitchen (normally they happen in the shower, but I am not choosy). I was busying around and decided to fry some bacon. My parents are staying with Lady Baby for the weekend and I wanted to have some bacon for BLT's. That's what you do in the south for guests in the summer. You stuff them with BLT's on toasted bread with fresh tomatoes. Anywho, I slip on my apron so as not to splatter grease on my fine shirt from Target circa 2010, and I start frying. I wander back and forth to check on Her Highness, who is happy watching TV and eating a tootsie roll pop (Don't judge. It keeps her quiet for like 30 minutes. Try it and you will thank me.) Then I finish up the bacon and empty the dishwasher. Instead of grabbing a towel as I normally would, I reach for the hem of my apron without thinking, and wipe the dishes dry as I put them away. I wash my hands and dry them on my apron. As I am reloading the dishwasher, I have the aforementioned revelation. Here I am, standing in a kitchen, talking on the phone, rinsing out a coffee cup, wearing an apron. I thought about my mom standing in the kitchen of my childhood home, wearing an apron over her work clothes to make dinner, talking on our phone, with the curled cord stretched across the kitchen. Then I remember my grandmother at Christmas, wearing one with a ruffle and a poinsettia on it, barking orders about setting the table. And I had a vision. Generations of my women, stretched back as far as I could see, all wearing their aprons. All of the sudden I felt it. The solidarity of the apron

I ponder this newfound sisterhood as I stroll between frying bacon and my laptop, talking to my office on my cell phone. I am a woman of my times. In 2012, many of us balance it all. Work, kids, home, volunteering, socializing. But really, we are not any different than the women that came before us. I am a woman who is getting it done. Just like the woman standing in her kitchen 50 years ago baking a pie, watching her kids play outside, and planning her day in her head. Or the one wearing her apron while she gets water at a well 150 years ago. We are all the same, us mothers. Yelling at our kids not to get lolly pop in their hair and talking to friends and washing dishes. Staying busy, getting it done. Wearing our aprons. Cause that's how we roll.

Lucy's in the club. She's down with the apron.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Turn of Phrase, Toddler Style

Time and time again I have talked about my child's verbal abilities. They are pretty amazing. Other things, like walking, took her a while to get down. We are still working on listening. But talking, that is her jam. She chats, she conversates, she monologues, she discusses. The things she tells us are often hilarious, at times profound, and often make zero sense. At different stages of her short little life, she has had phrases that she uses repeatedly. Ad nauseam, if you will. They start to wear thin, after the 7,000th time you hear them. 

I Fine. This was the first phrase she really understood how to use. She still rocks it. Constantly. The great thing for her is this can apply to any situation. It conveys her meaning while (in her mind) leaving zero room for discussion.
   Me: What do you want for breakfast/lunch/dinner?
    A: I fine.
   Me: It's time for bed.
    A: I fine.
   Me: Lets put on clothes so we can run errands.
    A: I fine.
   Me: Please go sit on the potty.
    A: I fine (cue peeing on the floor.)
So versatile. So final. So frustrating. So hard to argue with a two year old that she is in danger of being very "not fine" if she doesn't do what I ask.

Watch This. My least favorite because it often leads to possibilities of danger and bodily harm. It is normally followed by jumping on the bed, jumping on the couch, attempted somersaults, or flailing in the baby pool. These are relatively safe-ish. It is the visions of future Lady Baby, all grown up, saying "watch this" as she flings herself off cliffs, jumps cars on a motorcycle, and does that crazy downhill ski jumping that gives me palpitations and the cold sweats. I can only assume that is coming in the next 3 to 5 years. I see lots of helmets in our future. 

I just...This is the newest and most frustrating. When I say something like "Toodles please stop throwing tiny pieces of neon pink play-do into the dining room rug," her retort is "I just making something." Or "Don't put your hands in the toilet" and she says "I just washing them." No matter what follows "I just," it is going to enrage me. Time and time again, Her Highness has proved that whatever she is "just" doing is going to be the opposite of what I want/need/expect her to do. The worst part is the way she says it. With a certain tone and shoulder shrug, that implies my request is not only a mere suggestion, it is redonk that I would even bother her with it. *insert mommy head explosion here*

I am sure there will be more of these little nuggets the better her grasp on vocabulary becomes. I am sure she will come up with more phrases throughout her life that drive me crazy and make me want to lock her in her room, smack her with a newspaper, and or ground her for at least a whole year of highschool. Can't wait to see what she comes up with.

My head. This happens at some point everyday.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Ooops..Sunday, Sunday, SUUUNNDDAAYY

Try not to be shocked, but one week in and I forgot to do the weekly Lint Trap wrap up. I am sure you were all so disappointed when you came to the blog to read my wise words and there were none. My bad. So here we are on Sunday. Commence the wrap up.

Here at the manor we have spent the last two weeks redoing Her Highness's sleeping chamber. Several coats of paint, a few different colors, a lot of sweat and some, ahem, disagreements, and it is 99% finished and beautiful. Bonus: we are still married. Go us. Per usual, we had a mad race at the end because I had 15 ladies coming for a baby shower on sat at 11am, so we finished the room at midnight on Friday. Cause that's how we roll.

And now, I shall photo bomb you.

This is what your house looks like right before your marriage almost spontaneously combusts due to chaos in the home. Never fear, we got it all put back. Poor Lady Baby was forced to sleep in her pack in play for over a week crammed in the guest room with all her stuff. Now if she doesn't want to go to bed, we threaten with a night in pack n' play. Totally mean and totally effective. She lays right down with nary a peep. Its a bit like threatening the rack to someone in the 1300's. They become very agreeable.

This started as a Mommy project. I was all, "no sweat, I will have this painted in a week. Check me out." I did the first two coats of primer on the brown built-ins and that took three days and after that Daddy took over. I like to think I outsourced to a very organized and efficient subcontractor. Never fear, I maintained all creative control.

This is just funny because she a.) was super pumped to help Dada sweep proving once again that she has a lot of his DNA and b.) she put her own nightgown on and refused to let me turn it around. 


The finished product. The back of the shelves are raspberry, not red, and the walls are icy lime sherbet. Nothing is hung on the walls yet, which is killing me, but we at least got the bed up and the shelves relatively put together. I still have two more tubs of stuff to go through and stick up there. ETA on that: the year 2015.

And this is what you look like right before you loose your schmidt and your head blows off because you are so excited about your new big girl room. 

And that is how we spent the last week. 

Saturday, July 21, 2012

The Summer of Change

Last night my sweet Lady Baby slept in her big girl bed for the first time. I cannot believe it. I do feel like it was a long time ago when she was an infant and colicky and only liked to sleep when someone was holding her. That seems like forever ago. But the rest of the time, the other 3/4's of her life has flown. She is now officially a big girl. Big girl panties, big girl bed, big girl attitude. 

Freeze frame to remember forever. Love those legs.
I am not one to bemoan my child growing up. I have said it here before, I am excited for each new stage. This one just got here so fast and it feels like a lot at once. This is the summer of change. She has run head on from being a toddler into being a little girl. I worry so often that I will forget what she was like as a baby. When we were at the beach, and I was watching her play, I tried to memorize every detail of what she looked like. I know that next year she will be totally different and this summer will be just a sketch of recollections, with some color photo memories showing through. But you can never truly remember every detail the way a parent wants to. It makes me sick I cannot remember so much of when she was tiny, and that was only 2 years ago. Just a little here and there, and that is mostly because we have so many pictures. I want to freeze frame each moment in time and file it away to look at later, when she has left the nest and taken on the world. I want to be able to pore over what her little chunk legs looked like in her bathing suit and the way her face looked when she saw her big girl bed. Maybe I will remember, but chances are, after we have one or two more kids, it will all blur and meld into one big fog of toddlers and life. 

I am so glad that I started this blog. I have written about so many things that would have been vague recollections. Having them here means that I can reread and remember. Also, someday Her Highness can read them and know what she was like as a baby, a toddler, and a girl. It is a gift to both of us. The human brain can only hold so much information. I wish there was a way to clean out some of the stuff I really don't need, like patients' names and every person I have ever seen in a movie. Then I could store and catalog every precious memory with my Lady Baby. Alas that is not how the noodle works, so I will have to be happy with pictures and blog posts.

There's my baby.
Last night when I was tucking her into her new bed, this is what I saw. Right when I think the baby part her has all but faded away, I see her snuggled into her blankie with her favorite paci. Just like she has slept every night of her life. And I realize that there is still a little bit of baby left in my girl. And I feel a little better, not quite so rushed. And I tuck her in and turn out the light, knowing that she is really not such a big girl just yet.

Friday, July 13, 2012


I have decided to try to do little weekly wrap ups on Fridays over here at The Trap. I have three reasons: I feel like y'all might like to read something that is not my long winded blathering; so many little funny things happen that I never get to mention in regular posts; and Lady Baby is watching Bambi and it is giving me severe anxiety. Seriously Disney. Is this the best you can do? What about a little Cinderella or some Lion King. I will even take An American Tale. There we were, watching Doc McStuffins, coffee in my hand, milk in hers. And BAM. Bambi the sweet baby deer. Who gets orphaned and is forced to wander the forest alone with the name of a stripper. And she wants to watch it. Curses. I must have distraction now.


1. We are putting together Her Highness's big girl room. Therefore my house looks like a toddler's room EXPLODED everywhere. How can one person who doesn't even have any money amass so much crapola in two short years? I will probably do a before and after of this later.

2. Potty training is, well, going. Still having accidents. Some days none, others 4. Yesterday she told me she had to poop and trotted herself to the potty. She then stood between the regular toilet and her tiny toily and shadoobed up her panties. All the while squirting shampoo onto her hands and the floor. She has also peed on the couch, the rug, and her dad. That last one was the only one I didn't have to clean up. Yeah me.

3. Yesterday Lady Baby stepped in dog poop in her cute little white sandals. Which were left on the front porch after a cursory wipe/rinse by Hubs. When I took her outside to have a post-dinner Popsicles, she picked up the shoe. And. She. Licked it. Right where the poop was still all in the tread. Oh. My. God. She will probably need some sort of shot after that. 
This will obvs be on her sweet 16 gift.
4. Hold me. Bambi's mom just got shot. *sob* Thank the sweet Lord my child is busy making a card out of stickers for Dada. He can't find his mama. Cue the stress eating. I think I may have PTSD from being forced to watch Lassie once when I had friends over. 

5. We have started a new verbal chapter. To hold our attention Miss Priss launches into long monologues that involve words and phrases like "I remember," "I have an idea," "every time/all the time/everywhere," and "my grandparents." She usually also throws in a day of the week. It sounds something like this: "EVERYday my grandmutter plays pinano all the time. I remember, hmmmmm, next year I see Suzanne at the pool. Hey guys. I peepeed in potty. Don't have accident. Don't peepee on floor at vet. I love ALL my FRIENDs (insert sweeping arm gesture.)" Didn't you follow that? It is a bit like hanging out with a person who learned English from watching soap operas remixed with a crack head that has recently had a psychotic break. The phrases all make sense but have nothing to do with each other. It is, however, incredibly entertaining. 

6. Lady Baby ate 18 strawberries for dinner night before last. I still can't believe it . That is a whole pack.  I just want y'all know because it is crazy. 
I felt that you needed a visual. Srsly. That's a lot.
7. I am slowly doing a little blog maintenance. See the new tabs? Up there at the top of the page under my banner? I added in a little "about me" info. JIC you were interested in what makes me tic. You're welcome.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Marriage Negotiations

There I was, sitting on the beach with my Dad, enjoying being peaceful and reading. Both of these things were made possible by the fact that Hubs was cavorting with Lady Baby at a comfortable and safe distance away from me.  As they frolicked through the waves, Dad commented, "he is such a good dad, spending time playing with her." To which I quickly, and possibly sarcastically, replied,"I surely hope so, considering y'all were gone all day playing golf yesterday." This brought a gasp and look of horror from my father. With that I rolled my eyes and let him in on the following little secret: We have a marriage of negotiations. I do something, he does something, we both make little notes in our secret score-keeping-books, then we compare what we did and judge each other. Repeat as needed. And as I told my Dad, I am perfectly fine with that. It is what we do. It is how we work. It is why we work. It's like Trump Tower over here at the Manor.

The better part of every one of my days is spent monitoring my child's eating, pooping, peeing, playing, and sleeping. If I am not personally overseeing these things, I have arranged a trustworthy and competent (except for that one time) person to do so in my absence. Because of this, I do not feel bad handing her to my husband upon his arrival home and saying, "this mess is all yours." I hate working on the weekends, but I don't feel bad leaving the two of them. I go out with someone somewhere usually about once a week, and I have no guilt. It's his turn. We be sharin', yo. I do all day and he does whenever else I ask. Mama needs a break and he gets time with Lady Baby.

We have always had a "favor for a favor" relationship. I am always asking him to turn a light out that is shining in my eyes (I'm a migraine induced vampire) and in exchange I will scratch his back. Symbiosis at its finest. When he gives Her Highness her every-other-night scrub, I do the dishes, even if I made dinner. He mows the grass, so I vacuum. See how this works? Give and take. Some people say tit for tat (*giggle*) but that has such negative connotations. Call it whatever you want. Just know that if you see him at the grocery store I am probably at home cleaning a toilet. Seems fairs.

Call me insensitive, a non-romantic (I am sure there is a word for that), but I have no interest in doing everything for a spouse who does nothing. And by nothing I mean over and above his job, because we both have one of those. Part of mine I get paid for, part I do not. I am already taking care of myself and one other. I need help with everything else. So we trade favors. We haggle. We take turns. And that is okay. I don't expect everything for nothing, and neither does he. Some of you are surely judging us right now, saying we do things because we love each other. Because his happiness is vital to my well being and vicey-versey. While that is true, and does happen occasionally, it is unrealistic. Just this morning he carried the ladder upstairs for me. Such a gentleman. Yesterday, I bought him pop tarts at the grocery store. Because I care. But for the day to day business of life, it is a constant board meeting. We both get what we want and everything gets done. You scratch my back, I will scratch yours. You pick up my dirty dishes, I will wash your clothes. I wipe child's poop hiney, you can clean up dog barf. Everyone is happy. Win-freakin-win.

NYC Vacation. I let him give me a kiss at the train station and he let
 me buy a black market bag in China town. Or something like that.

We have been married for eight years, so we must be doing something right. (Read here for the story about all that.) 

Monday, July 9, 2012

The Pantie Chronicles: The End is Just the Begining

To wrap up this little series on potty training a honey badger, I thought I would provide some highlights of what I learned. If you need to catch up on the fun, read this little nugget The Pantie Chronicles: Chapter 1 and this other little nugget The Pantie Chronicles: Part Deuce. Then come on back and get learn-ed on how the professionals do the potty training. And by professionals I mean hubs and myself who have made it through on paper towels and prayers. Professionals. Minus the pay and the respect but with all the responsibility and cleanup duty.
The potty essentials.
Books and chap stick.
~ Accidents are ok. Unavoidable. I tell Lady Baby all the time I don't care if she has an accident. However, if my request to try is met with a dismissive hand wave and an "I fine," then I will be mad when she takes a leak on my natural sisal rugs that are a bee-otch to clean. Saying "it's okay Mama, no big deal" does not  comfort me when she should have sat on the potty like I asked 2 seconds before. Take note: toddlers are terrible little liars. Not to be trusted.

~We recently had a zero accident road trip (except for the beginnings of a deuce, but I am not counting that.) I believe it is because for once in my life I was prepared for anything. My in-the-car-bag held 5 pairs of undies. An extra dress. An extra pair of shoes. There was a plastic target back cut open and put in her car seat with a soft lap pad on top. I had her potty in the backseat and a container of Lysol wipes. I had a baggie of regular wipes. I had 3 extra bags pre-cut to go in the seat and an extra lap pad. I had several plastic bags to hold any dirty clothes. I was ready for shadoobie Armageddon. And I didn't need any of it. Not. A. Thing. However. Had I not had these things Lady Baby would have flooded her car seat; had serious cha-chas; had to pee hunkered on the side of I-40 while 18 wheelers whizzed by her naked tush; had to drip dry in a dirty open-to-the-outside bathroom in a tiny town in the middle of nowhere; had to ride nudie because her clothes were ruined; or had to wear panties fashioned out of a paper napkin from Bojangles and some gum. Plan for the worst and things will go perfectly. Plan for nothing and you will have a shite-storm with heavy flooding for sure.

~Don't be afraid to leave the house. From my extensive (1 month) research with potty training 2.5 year olds (really just one) things actually go better outside of the homestead. Her Highness has no issue a'tall with peeing on my furniture. She does not seem to be quite so keen to pee on the floor of the Teeter or on her aunt's couch. At home it is easy to get lazy. Out, both parties must remain ever vigilant to avoid public humiliation. While you may get to screech through the hallowed aisles of Target (read it here), there is that desire to not let others see a potty spectacle. Even in the early, 3-8 pairs of panties a day time, she had much fewer accidents in public and at friend's houses. I also have learned to carry a big Ziploc with an extra dress, panties, and a plastic bag. No reason to tempt fate, my friends.

~There is no shame in bribery. Find the great motivator. In our case, m&m's are the currency of choice. We tried a sticker chart, which resulted in a hysteria when I would only let her have one sticker. Some kids, those that are not prone to passionate rages, love getting a sticker for every successful visit. Maybe your kid would work hard for one big prize, like a doll or truck or an ipad. Whatevs. Reward the heck out of them. Some kids don't need any reward, they are happy to make you happy. Those rare and amazing specimens that only want to please their parents do exist. Just not in my neck of the woods. For the rest of us, find what works. Once she stopped asking for her m&m's every time, I stopped offering. Pretty soon she seemed to think not having wet draws was reward enough. 
My fave glass PB jar (don't be jealous)
filled with bribery.

~Don't feel pressured to do what everyone else was doing. I tried really hard to skip the mini potty and pull ups and go straight to the big potty and panties 24/7. Because that is what a few of my friends were doing. One hour into day 1 and I sprinted to the basement to get the little potty in hopes that it would be more appealing. Indeed it was and she was able to take control of when she needed to go and do it herself. I have not used pull ups and stuck to that because I know my child and she would treat them as another diaper. I felt like, "What's the point?" Do what works for you and make sure both parents are on the same page. 

~Don't make it all a really big deal. Kids are like bears. They sense their prey's stress. If you are freaking over every incident then so will your offspring. On vacation Lady Baby was using a toilet in a sea food restaurant and managed to aim her stream directly between the seat and the toilet. Therefore she filled her panties and shoes with pee. I just pointed out that she should lean forward and took the rest in the stride. I am not sure she realized what even happened. I was just happy she told me she had to go and made it to the potty. I was also happy that I managed to hop backwards when I realized what was happening so I didn't have tinkle feet. One evening on the beach, she told me she needed to peepee. No one was around so I let her drop trow right there. I think she got her signals crossed because she actually took a big dump right in the sand, but I didn't bat an eye. At least she told me that she needed to go. If I would have gotten upset, then she would have been upset. Instead, we cleaned it up and went about our walk, happy and a few pounds lighter. Once I let the stress go (the first three days had me in tears) we were much better in every way.

Two peed upon pairs of Toms drying out.
 Thank goodness for Crocs. Wash, dry, and wear.
Repeat as needed.
So there is my not-really-professional wisdom. Godspeed. May your couch stay dry and your nerves intact. And keep in mind, they will be potty trained at some point. Maybe not the first day or the seventh day. But definitely by the time they walk across the stage at graduation.

Friday, July 6, 2012

The Pantie Chronicles: Part Deuce

You have read the story of the early days of potty training Lady Baby. You know what took place. The triumphs, the defeats, and the many, many accidents. If you know not what I speak of, promptly scoot your boot over to here. Read. Laugh. Cry. Then come on back. 

Now, lets us venture into the nuts and bolts of how things went after we the people of Lint Trap Manor understood how this was going to go down. Translation: as long as I don't bug, Her Highness will refrain from peeing on the floor on the regs. Got it. Mommy and Daddy are trained. On to part deuce. If you don't like talk of fecal matter. Stop now. There is going to be a lot of mention of the poop from here on out.

I have not discussed it much here, but we have a little problem called constipation. And by we, I mean my delicate flower. When one consumes only dairy and carbs with the occasional fruit washed down with approximately 30 ounces of whole milk a day, there ain't a lot happening in the shadoobie arena. And what is happening is achieved with great effort and little to show for it. Even with twice daily doses of Miralax, there is sweating and gnashing of teeth and much hand wringing. And it all happens huddled in a corner of the den or her room, set to a chorus of "Move. No Mommy. You go away. NO. Move. I pooping. MOVE I POOPING." Not to mention the delights of having to give her an enema every once in a while. So you can imagine how I was feeling about the prospect of getting her to go number two in the potty. I had my own sweating, gnashing of teeth, and wringing of hands every time I dared to ponder it. If I can hardly get near her to change her diaper, how would I get her to take it off and poop sitting down? The answer? I wouldn't. Dada would. *Insert angry mommy face here.* 

The first day of training there was no pooping. Not uncommon in our house. The second day of training, she pooped in her panties and steadfastly refused to even come in the bathroom. Super fun removing 2t panties filled with poo while the wearer is flailing in the living room. Along about day four I got her in the bathroom halfway through a 30 minute push session. I wrestled her draws off as soon as she was done and then set her down on the mini potty. Sounds reasonable. And it was in theory. The actual scene was straight from the potty training hall of horrors. Terdlets on the floor. Terdlets smeared all over the tiny bum. Terdlets squished all over the potty. Terdlets on my hands. As she watched me clean all this, Her Highness casually pointed at the floor and said "Mama. There is poop on the floor." As if I didn't notice. As if I wasn't trying sanitize the bathroom while she stood there naked and gloating. I swear if she could, she would have given me a lecture on why it is better to just poop in your pants. All I could think about was that I had gone to four years of college, managed a successful medical practice, and now I am picking up someone else's poop up off the floor. And they don't even appreciate it. Ain't that some shit. (Pun very much intended.)

Toward the end of the week, I was wearing down. Some may even say desperate. I decided upping her fiber was the obvious answer. Maybe if the pooing was less uncomfortable she would be more apt to sit and chillax and let nature take its course. I gave her a Fiber One bar for breakfast, thinking that would get things a'moving. Per usual, anything left unprotected that is edible gets eaten by our dog. Come to find out, Fiber One bars included. So now I have to worry about the dog and the child crapping up my living room. Awesome. I dispensed 2 m&m's for a tinkle job well done to Lady Baby and headed to the shower, concerned with the state of my child's and dog's bowels. Doing my post shower rituals, Her Highness trotted up to the bathroom door. I glanced over and saw poop. Hands, pee-joms, face, mouth, paci. Poop everywhere. Commence extreme freak out mode. I alternated between rapid fire questions to determine how this happened in the three minutes I dared to leave her alone and utter dumbfounded panic. I had not the time nor the patience for this. I somehow determined in my panic that it was not her poop. "Is it the dog's poop?," I screamed. "Dog poop?," she parroted back. I saw this as confirmation. Has the dog sprayed my IKEA couches with Fiber One induced cha-cha's? This cannot be happening. The whole time I am freaking out, which was actually only about 30 seconds, Lady Baby is staring at me like I am bound for the institution. Seeing poop on your child's precious face will do that to even the toughest mama. Then, in a flash of reasoning amidst the chaos, I smelled her hand. Sweet relief washed over my taught nerves. Twas not poop smeared all over my child. Chocolate. Freaking Chocolate. She did not scarf her reward m&m's down in .2 seconds, like she normally does. She carried them around. Melt in your mouth, not in your hands, my foot. Crisis averted. Both the child and the dog lived another day.

Poop face. Perish the thought. 
Fast forward a few days and to the weekend. Mama has flown the coop and Daddy is manning all things potty. I get a call that everything is going well, she pooped in the potty. Stop. Back up. I am sorry. Surely I misheard. She pooped in the potty? On purpose? Without physical duress or tranquilizers? You, the father, got her to do this? While I should have been pleased, I must admit I was outraged. After all the hard work and having to scrub shadoob out of Minnie Mouse's face, she sat on the potty and pooped, like it weren't no thang. For someone else. I have let it go (can't you tell?) and am now glad that it is over and done. If I was a lesser person, I would still be a little bitter. Ahem. I said I am over it. Stop judging me.

We have had no more poop incidents, save the end of a road trip, when she started it in the car and finished it up on the potty. Actually, things seem to be moving a little better. More happening with less stress and angst. I chalk it up to the sitting position and being relaxed, versus being hunkered down on the defense every time someone gets near. Another battle won, though the potty wars are far from over.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

The Pantie Chronicles: Chapter 1

Like all things parenting, potty training has been a learning experience for both  Lady Baby and us. I feel I should share my knowledge. These posts are going to be a series,  because if I went through the last three weeks all at one time, your head would probably explode. Mine has come too close for comfort my friends. Way. Too. Close. Not only will it make it easier to follow our diaper-to-pantie journey in segments, if you need to reference this in the future for "what not to do's" it will be easy to locate the exact predicament you need. I was extremely nervous about potty training. I should have known what I think/feel/believe doesn't matter. I should have just given her the book to read. It would have been easier.

Nothing that I think mattered when it came to potty training. As Joe Dirt says, "It is not about you it is about the consumer." My suggestions were ignored. My advice not heeded. My directives were met with screams and stomping. For the first three hours of potty training boot camp, Her Highness sat on the potty everytime I asked. For the other 15 and a half days we have been sans diapers, my insistence on her sitting on the potty has resulted in one thing: excrement where it does not belong. It was a hard lesson to learn, mostly for me. Every book says to repeatedly ask the child if they need to go. Every thirty minutes. After a meal. When you wake up. Before bed. After snack. What the book does not tell you is what to do if she vehemently denies the need to go then takes a piss on the couch. So I will tell you exactly what to do if you have a child who is adverse to suggestion. Here is the big secret. STOP ASKING. In our case, this immediately lead to her telling me she needed to go or in most cases just going. Basically, the more I was sweating her, the more she was resisting. Too bad I did not figure that out until day three. Hard lesson learned. Once I gave her the control, she did great. She gets that whole, I have to be in charge of everything all the time or I will loose my shiz, from her Daddy.

Heaps O' Wet Panties
Day one of potty training was, for lack of a more precise word, wet. I call it the day of eight panties. That is a whole pack of Minnie Mouse undies from Target. Plus one. And that was all before 5pm. I had no idea that we would whiz (see what I did there?) through so many so fast. FYI: panties are not much of a blocker when there is wee gushing forth from a child. According to some hasty web research, a two year old's bladder should hold 4 ounces (age+2). If you would like to relive our first day of potty training walk around your house and dump four ounces of the liquid of your choice in various and sundry spots. Alternate that with rinsing out panties and trying to convince a mouthy Honey Badger to sit on the potty while changing its dress every 30 minutes. Mix in excessive carpet and floor scrubbing and running the washing machine several times. That is my day. Except the badger probably provides less sass talk and does not exclaim "I peepee'ed" every time it drowns Minnie Mouse. Which is very, very often. Eventually, we were out of panties, so I let her run around in just a dress. That day she peed on the floor three times in fifteen minutes. Surely some kind of world record.

I would rather pee on this floor than listen to you.
Day two showed improvement until I asked Miss Priss to sit on the potty before we went to Wendy's (only the best for us). Commence a 30 min power struggle. I was literally begging her to sit and try and she was steadfastly refusing. What's the problem, you ask? The problem is that my child thinks I am a dumb mommy with dumb mommy ideas. Like sitting on a tiny potty to see if any pee-pee will come out. As opposed to sitting down and standing up 2 seconds later, and declaring "all done." A two second try does not a happy mommy make. I was very worried she was going to pee in the car. She was very worried that if she does what I ask once, then she may have to do it again sometime her career as my child. She was crying and I was so mad I had to walk into my room and shut the door, with tears in my eyes. I couldn't let her see me wavering. When wild animals sense weakness, they attack. I never got her to sit and we were 20 minutes late to meet our friends. I drove the 8 min drive at 85mph, for fear the milk she was chugging would run straight through her and onto her car seat. We rushed into Wendy's, straight into our first public toilet experience. I did a cursory wipe of the potty and plopped her down. My beautiful little delicate flower had her hands and untarnished toush on a public toliet. Breathe. She looked at me with a little smile and said, "This is my most favorite potty." Cool. Now pee. She didn't pee then. In fact she did not go until she was back in that bathroom after lunch. Watching her early and amazingly easily potty trained friend Sam go Her Highness promptly peed on the floor. I suppose the sound of tinkle were too much. That was before I knew to carry both panties and a dress in a ziplock in my bag, so she rolled into the pool that day panties-only. Stayin' Classy.

Day three had to be better than day two, which ended with me rethinking if I was doing the right thing. I wasn't sure either of us were ready for potty training. After near tears and a pep talk from Hubs with rousing phrases like "don't let her beat you," I pressed on. Discouraged but hopeful. We started the day with a trip to Target for all things potty. I bought enough panties for a set of triplets with a UTI, added in Training Panties (poorly cut but heavily padded), and a book on pottying featuring Abbie Cadabbie that makes a host of annoying sound effects. We were on the home stretch of our Target circuit, working our way up through cosmetics and sunscreen. All of the sudden she let out a fart that a grown man at a truck stop would be proud to claim, and giggled, startling a very nice lady perusing the hair dye. Then Lady Baby uttered the phrase that will make mothers move mountains. "I have to pee-pee." As soon as I heard the sacred phrase, I dropped the nail polish I was looking at and started swiftly moving towards the front, frantically trying to locate the restroom. Her Highness, sensing the inevitable tinklage, starts screeching, "faster, faster, faster Moommmeeyy. I have to PEE PEE." I am pretty sure there are still cart tracks where we skidded out in front of the registers to make the turn. You haven't lived until you have run through Taret, dodging carts and praying to the potty training gods. But make it we did. And that was when I knew that we were going to be ok. We would both live through this ordeal. I would not die from stress and I would not kill my child in the process.


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