I really should not be posting but…Part 2

11 06 2008

We made it out of my mother and father’s little house in the big woods relatively unscathed. Except for the marks left by the throngs of vampire black flies who feasted on the tender flesh and virgin blood of me and my city kids. Other than that – oh, and the raging Fifth’s rash covering most of Roo for the last two weeks- we made it to our own little house in our new little city safe and more or less sound. I really should not be posting because we still have so much to do. Our current decor is an eclectic mix of laundry and cardboard boxes. I have lists of people and places to contact about lists of things we need to change and arrange. On top of that, we still have three kids who need varying degrees of assistance when it comes to eating, sleeping and pooping, and according to this place’s wacky laws, each child must receive at least some parental attention on a daily basis. Even if it’s just to chuck a handful of toys out to them from behind a pile of boxes.

But I learned a few things hanging out with my kids and my parents in the little house in the big woods, and even though I have no time for pontification, I’ve managed to steal a few moments to jot down some thoughts. So, in the interest of getting this post up before a cardboard box gobbles up one of my kids…or before one of my kids gobbles up a cardboard box…here are the three most important things I learned during our stay in the little house in the big woods:

– On the 4 hour road trip from the airport hotel to the woods, I learned that I can breastfeed in a moving vehicle. Without undoing my seatbelt. And without removing Squiggles from her car seat. How, you ask? Boobs like Gumby, baby, boobs like freakin’ Gumby. If Gumby had boobs, of course. Impressed? You should be. Squiggles sure was.

– Here’s something I learned the hard way: If you are going to take your kids to visit people who don’t have kids, you better bring a bag of books and toys. And they better be interesting books and toys. New books and toys. Otherwise, be prepared to spend the entire visit chasing your nosy kids out of your host’s bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchen cupboards, fridges and basements. And doing your best to entertain them while the other grown-ups sit around drinking tea or wine and have grown-up conversations. You will only be able to pop your head in on those conversations occasionally to ask for a glass of juice or a piece of paper towel or some duct tape. Your host will probably say “Oh, don’t worry about the kids, they’ll be fine. They can’t hurt anything in there.” But they are wrong. They have no idea what your children are capable of because they don’t have any kids. If you want visiting to be anything more than a very stressful exercise in solo kiddie wrangling and improvisational entertainment, bring a bag of toys. Trust me.

– I love my husband. Not that I need to learn this, but it never hurts to be reminded. Being separated from him for the better part of a week made it crystal clear how much I love him and need him. He understands me, and our kids the way no one else ever will. He knows to be impressed by my extraordinary feats of in-transit breastfeeding. He would help me entertain and chase our nosy children out of the nooks and crannies of other peoples’ houses. He would have thought of having a bag of new toys and books to take visiting before I did. He keeps me sane and rational and calm in the face of crazy irrational chaos.

There’s lots more to tell. I could tell you about Roo’s mega-meltdown in the mall the other day. Or how Neener interrogated the school secretary when we went to register them for school. Or how Squiggles got the barfies. Or about my on-going battle with the ants in my kitchen. However all the details will have to wait, since I really should not even be posting. I should be cleaning. Unpacking. Trying to establish a semblance of normal, of routine in our new home. But instead I think I’ll go cuddle up on the couch with my sweet Mr. Blister and my kids. The boxes can wait.

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