Enunciation

“Awamahnkee.”

“What?”

“Awahmahnkeepeezmahnkeemama.”

“WHAT?”

Sigh (<—that’s the two year old sighing, not me.)

“Awah.”

“Are you saying ‘I want’?”

“Yup.”

“Well, then say it like that. Say ‘Iiiii’.”

“Iiiiii”

“WaaaaaaanT.”

“Waaaaaant.”

“Say ‘I waaaanT'”

“I waaaaaan.”

“Close enough, DragonMonkey. Now, what do you want?”

“Wan Man-key.”

“Monkey?

“MAN-KEY!”

“Blankey?”

“Yup.”

“You want your blankey?”

“Yup.”

“Well, then say it right. ‘Iiii waaaanT my BBLLLLLLLLLLLLankey, please.'”

“Mahnkey.”

“Say it right or you don’t get it. Say ‘Buh’. “

“Buh.”

“Say ‘LLlllllll’.”

“Lllllllll.”

“Say ‘Bllllll’.”

“Bllllll!”

“Say ‘Blllllll-ankey!’.”

“Blllllll…Mahnkey!”

“BLAAAAAAAAANKEY, DragonMonkey! It’s BLLLLLLANKEY! Not Bull-Monkey, not Man-key, BLANKEY!”

“Yup! Yaaaay, Mama!” Clap, clap, clap.

SIIIIIGH. I’m so glad my two year old approves of the way I pronounce ‘blankey’. It’s good to know he thinks I’m doing at least one thing right.

Where’s Becky, and Why Hasn’t She Updated?

Yawning, I drag myself out the front door and sit in my car. I’d like to lean my head back against the headrest, just for a moment, but I know that’s too dangerous. I need to keep moving or I’ll fall asleep.

It’s early- just a little after 6:30 in the morning. I’m not due at work until 7:30, but I could use the extra 30 minutes to catch up. I know I’m salary and the time is not paid, but it’s worth it for my sanity.

Through sheer force of will I bypass Starbucks. I love them, but I’m never going to lose the baby weight if I keep downing 300 calories worth of coffee several times a week.

I pull into the parking lot at ten to seven….. and my cell phone rings.

The Caller ID is my boss.

“Hey, Becky, have you left work yet?”

“I’m in the parking lot right now.” I wait for this to sink in – that I’m a wonderful employee who has arrived thirty minutes early.

I wait in vain.

“Oh, good. There’s a problem with our latest project. Call me when you’ve got your computer up and running.”

I stare at my cell phone with a sinking feeling and sigh. There goes my extra time.

The next few hours pass by in a blur– by the time I surface I realize I’ve missed my pumping time. Again. My gigantic fridge stockpile I was so proud of is dwindling slowly by a few ounces every day and it’s starting to stress me out.

I stare sightlessly at the computer screen as I strap two plastic sucky things to my breasts, which has got to be the least sexy thing ever and let myself be milked like a large, overweight white cow politely powder my nose. It feels good to surface for air.

Of course, as soon as I’m done I hit the ground running again. Frantically-typed emails, phone calls, shuffling paper, mailing items, more emails, more phone calls, more emails, errands, more paper.

I surface again hours later and realize that I barely have time to pump before I go home. Great. I’m probably going to end up two or maybe even three ounces short again today. Perfect.

Like always, I leave work about ten minutes late. I really need to speak to my boss about my salary. I can’t keep giving away my time for free like this.

The drive home is nice, but sadly a little too short. I’m probably the only person in Southern California who would like a longer commute home, but those precious minutes in the car are the only time I have to myself all day.

I try to sneak in the front door, but the DragonMonkey sees my car pull up.

“Mama car! Car! MAMA CAR! MAMA CAR! MAMA CAR! MAMA CAR!”

Before my mom can stop him he has bolted out the front door and is flying down the walkway to my car. I’d be flattered, but he’s being pretty literal. Sure, he’s glad to see me, but that’s not why he’s excited. He’s thrilled because my car is home. Crawling around the inside of my car and pretending to drive is the highlight of his day. Normally I let him do it even though I generally get elbowed, bruised and generally beat up as he clambers all over me in the front seat, but I can hear Squidgelet whining. He sounds hungry.

“Sweetie, I need to get inside. Mama needs to feed Squidgelet.” I’ve tried nursing on the street before, but every time I do I end up flashing a neighbor. So now we go inside.

It’s really quite amazing how quickly the DragonMonkey can shift from ecstatic joy to rage.

NO! MAMA CAR! NO INSIDE! MAMA CAR!” I sigh, and scoop him up. He thrashes against me, back arched, howling his rage and frustration. I drop him unceremoniously just in the front door and manage to slam it behind me only milliseconds before he can dart back outside.

His screams doubly in intensity and volume. When he sees me hanging my keys on the keyring, he kicks me in the shin.

“CORNER. NOW!” He throws himself wailing into the corner, bemoaning his very existence.

I sigh, and grab the Squidgelet from my mom. I toss the baggies of milk in the fridge then sit on the couch and pop him on to nurse. Despite the ear-deafening screams from the corner, the moment turns almost peaceful.

The DragonMonkey notices my attention has wandered, so he decides to up the ante. When his screams stop abruptly I look up, just in time to watch him spit. On the floor.

I hate the spitting.

But I am just SO tired.

“Mama,” the DragonMonkey sings out. “Mama. SPIT.” He ineptly sprays the floor again, deliberately showing off just how bad he is.

I know negative attention is still atttention, and I should probably just ignore it… but I really do hate spit.

“NO SPITTING!” I dislodge the Squidgelet and lay him on the floor. He begins to wail at being at his sudden abandonment and is joined only moments later by the DragonMonkey as he sees me approaching. He does his best to stick his nose in the corner, but it’s too late.

“You spit, you spend time in your crib. Time out in your crib, NOW. NO SPITTING! EVER!”

I plop him in his crib and close the door behind me, doing my best to ignore the furious screams.

I return to the living room and rescue the screaming Squid from the floor.

Ah, peace at last.

I leave the DragonMonkey in there for about ten minutes two very brief minutes before I return. He’s a snotty, tear-filled, disgusting mess.

“Hug?” he says miserably. “Mama up? Hug?”

I use a towel to mop up his messy face, then lift him from his crib. He lays against me, exhausted from his rage, arms encircling me.

“Huuuug,” he says warmly. “Huuuug Mama. Mommy. Huuuuuuuuug Mommy.” He deepens the hug and I return it. Ah, finally. A sweet moment with my son.

He leans back, breaking the hug, and places a hand on either side of my face, forcing me to look at him.

“Hi Mama.”

“Hi, DragonMonkey. I love you.”

“Hi, Mama…..” he trails off, then smiles a little too wide and a little too bright. “Mama, car?” he asks sweetly.

I sigh. The idea of going out to sit in my car for forty-five minutes is just not appealing. I’d really rather skip it for a day.

“Sweetie, not today. Mama’s tired.”

The sweet expression slips off his face. “Mama. CAR.” It’s pretty obvious he’s not asking this time.

I put him down and sigh again. I seem to sigh a lot when I’m around the DragonMonkey. “Sweetie, I said no. No car. Not today. I know it’s disappointing, but you’ll just have to learn to deal with it.”

He stares at me in fury for a moment, and then spits on me.

You read that right. He spits. On. ME.

It pretty much goes down like this:

Furious, I scoop him up and drop him in his crib again.

Rinse, Repeat. Rinse, Repeat.

The rest of the evening passes in a blur.

Spit, scream, love, hug, scream, laugh, scream, nurse, bath, nurse, scream, laugh, hug, scream, love, warm up bottle, blankey, kiss, nurse…

AAAAAhhhh.

Both kids in bed. If I’m lucky, I’ll get an hour or two before the Squid starts crying. I hate teething.

I get less than two hours before the Squid’s pained cries wake me up. For the rest of the night, every forty-five minutes, he wakes me up crying. I can’t get mad at him – he so very rarely complains that I know it really hurts him.

Still.

Rock, rock, rock, nurse, sleep, scream, rock, rock, rock… nurse. Sleep. SCREAM. Rock, rock, rock, sleep….

BEEEP BEEEP BEEEP BEEEP BEEP!

The early morning light streams dimly through the window, painting the bedroom grey.

Morning. Again.

Time to start the whole thing over.

Now *THIS* is Riding

First and foremost – bullfighting sucks. I don’t condone it. I can understand why people might be interested in it, but you could manage the same thrills, excitement and competition without harpooning the bull and slitting throats and whatnot. Why not use the velcro system? Why not make it all about touching the bull, kind of like an Indian counting coup?

So, yeah. Bullfighting sucks. This video shows some of it, so if it bothers you, you might not want to watch it.

That said – holy crap. WOW. I didn’t even know horses could move like this.

I don’t know who the trainer is from 5 -19 seconds, but WOW. I’d like to be able to sit/train/ride a horse like that. And…just…. wow.

The horse’s name is Merlin, and he’s 7/8 Lusitano, 1/8 Quarter Horse… and he can canter (gallop?) at a sidepass. I didn’t even know horses could do that. This is like watching some strange, hybrid version of cutting/dressage on steroids.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go hit play again.

Favorites

It’s only a little over a mile from my house to the beach, but some days that mile seems to last forever.

“Go beach?”

“Yes.”

“Go beach?”

“Yes.”

“Go beach?”

“Yes.”

“”Go beach?”

“Yes.”

“Go beach?”

“Yes.”

“Go beach?”

“Yes.”

“Go beach?”

“NO.” <–me, annoyed at answering the same question and changing my answer.

“GO BEACH?!” <– The DragonMonkey, sounding incredibly distraught.

“Yes.”

“GO BEACH?”

“Yes.”

“Go beach?”

“Yes.”

“Go beach?”

“No.” (what can I say? It gets boring saying the same thing 300 million times in a row.)

“GO BEACH?!?!?!?!GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH?GO BEACH? GO BE–“

YES!” I interrupt. “WE ARE GOING TO THE BEACH. I HAVE SAID NOTHING BUT YES SINCE WE GOT IN THIS CAR. I HAVE SAID YES. I HAVE SAID NO. I HAVE IGNORED YOU. I HAVE ANSWERED YOU. YOU SEE THAT WE ARE ON THE WAY TO THE BEACH. WHY DO YOU KEEP ASKING?

Silence.

“Go beach?”

And then once we do get there…

Run! Run! Hahahahahahhahahaha! Run! Run! Run! Run! Hahahahahahaha! Run!

Trip. Fall.

Wait.

OMG. Sand. OMG. He has SAND. SAAAND. On his hands! SAND! Wash. Wash them repeatedly! Holy crap, another tiny speck of sand!

“MEEESS! MEESSSS! MESS! MESS! MESS! MESS!”

He flaps his hands frantically at me, wails tinged with hysteria. His face reddens as he tilts on the edge of a complete breakdown.

Meanwhile, The Squidgelet smiles up at me placidly from the Ergo, patiently waiting for me to notice his smile so he can grin even wider.



Who says you’re not allowed to have favorites?

Tiiiiiiiimber……

My boss honks from the street in front of the building. I stand up quickly from my desk, gathering up the package of dictation, emails, messages and various other half-finished projects and throwing open the back door to the building. Today has been one of those days – everything that can go wrong HAS gone wrong, but I’ve somehow managed to keep it together. Still, we are desperately behind schedule, and I catch myself trotting down the hallway and skipping steps in an attempt to get down to his car faster. His plane does leave in a few hours, after all.

Puffing and out of breath, I take a moment to regroup before I push open the side door and emerge into view.

Crisp brown slacks: Check
No wrinkles? Check.
No stains? Check.
No cat hair? Check.

Brand new, unstained, unfaded black work blouse? Check.

New glasses that help give me an intellectual, thoughtful, intelligent air? Check.

I take one last moment to smooth the flyaway, escapee hairs behind my ears and step out into the sunlight to approach his Lexus.

“Mr. Boss – here’s your phone. I’ve updated it to sync seamlessly with the computer. Here’s the list of messages that came in while you were gone. I’ve printed off your project list for the upcoming business trip, as well as a listing of important contacts and reminders. ”

I hand it to him, feeling more than a little proud of myself. When he left, the office was chaotic. In the few hours he’s been gone I have tamed the craziness down into a neat envelope and tidy little travel folder.

“My flight?”

“Your flight is confirmed – the boarding passes are in your package. Your driver will meet you when you land.”

“And the foundation project?”

“I’ve notified the appropriate personnel and they’re standing by. The city called regarding the offsite bonds – I referred them to the project manager and they are taking lead.”

“Okay, sounds like you have everything under control. I’ll see you next week.”

I give him a cool, professional smile. I’ve come a long ways from the gawky ex-bartender I was when I first started this job. I am cool. I am cultured. I am confident and capable. “Have a great flight, Mr. Boss.”

I turn on my heels to head back inside.

My sudden turn causes the wide cuffs of my crisp, brown, unwrinkled slacks to flare out, entangling my foot as I try to step forward.

I’m snagged.

There’s no way for me to catch myself, not with one foot effectively hogtied to the other – I crash to the ground, my fall cushioned by a slope of grass.

Humiliated, I try to bounce back up, hoping nobody has seen.

Unfortunately, the slick bottoms of my penny loafers were made for office floors – not for clambering up grassy slopes. They catch just long enough to let me stand halfway up before slipping out from underneath me. Down I go again, this time catching myself on my hands and knees.

With my ample butt poking up high in the air, I’m pretty sure I look like a cross between an angry stinkbug and a skunk giving warning.

So much for my newfound confidence.

Sigh.

Tuesdays: They’re the new Monday.

Lazy



A picture’s worth a thousand words.

So that means a video’s worth, what, a million words?

In that case, I am totally overachieving this week.

First, the cast of characters – I thought I’d do a test run at videotaping all three of us before I got to the meat of the explanation. After all, I’m sitting in a chair, holding two kids and using one arm to take a video with my cell phone camera. I figured I should do a test run. I decided to ask the DragonMonkey a few questions showing off how cute he is and how he says “Nonope” instead of “oatmeal”.

Instead, I got a video of a two-year-old who spits and says oatmeal perfectly clear. Ah, such is life.

And now for the explanation:

Anyways, I’m off to go drag my tired carcass into bed. I’ll leave you with a photo from this weekend – Guess who I got to meet?