Don’t force Sunday school on the three year old…

Look.  Let’s get real.  The title should actually read:  don’t subject your screaming 3-year-old on the Sunday school teacher.

I’m right, right?  Can I get a holy Amen in here (Whoa, now…that was a little too loud. Smile wink smile).

But, in all honesty, my three year old fled and panicked today and did not want to be left in the huge Sunday school room alone.  So I did what I needed, I scooped her up, plopped her on my lap, and sat through church with her while I got to give her a million unappreciated kisses (as she loudly proclaimed in the service to Stop Kissing Her), cuddle her in my arms, hold and dance with her in worship, and take communion with her on my hip.  

And she was happy.  And I was happy.  And the Sunday school teachers were most likely ecstatic.  

Best of all????

These lovely selfies she took during the sermon time (insert scary laughter from evil selfie).

Praise Jesus???

The Midnight Bullfrog!

Seriously.  I was having so much fun hanging out at a friend’s house that it was just before midnight when I gathered my 3 and 5 year old kiddos up and stuffed them in the van for the ride home.  We barely made it out of the neighborhood when I saw the BEST thing I could have ever seen…a humongous bullfrog hopping across the road in front of me!

I pulled the car over, put on my hazards, and then took off after the bullfrog in the dead of night.  

A car came around the corner.  I don’t think they knew what to do.  Stop and help the lady and the van or just watch as I chased this bullfrog down the street?  Apparently they figured I was not in need of assistance as I grabbed the bullfrog and let out a loud whoop of delight.  So they continued driving on. By this time I’m slightly far away from the van with my kids (bullfrogs are FAST little buggers), so I begin a quick trot back to them—a proud trot.  An “I am an accomplished mom because I have captured a bullfrog.  I am a bullfrog capturer,” type of trot!  

And just as I go to open the passenger back door to show my triumphant capture, the bullfrog squirted (urine—yuck) ALL OVER ME!  My hands.  My arms.  My legs.  The bullfrog pee was running down my leg.  I kid you not.  And, as the bullfrog’s number 1 was covering me in disgusting wetness, all I could do in that moment was hold this midnight bullfrog high in the air and proclaim, “Look what I caught for you, children!”  

The kids?!  

They squealed and laughed and just thought that a mom covered in froggy pee-pee was the BEST gift anyone in the world could have given them.  I don’t even think they even saw the bullfrog through their laughter.  

As I finally released the bullfrog in the greenway for its freedom, I returned to the car to hear Max, my 5-year-old say, “I thought you caught me a present.  I didn’t know you were going to bring me pee.” 

Neither did I, Max.  Neither did I.

But, in the end, sometimes laughter is the best present after all!  

Dzien Matki — Mother’s Day in Poland

I am pretty sure I just ate candy my son gave me from his grubby fingers—and I am not sure the last time he washed his hands.  Or went to the bathroom and forgot to wash his hands.  I am actually gagging a little bit right now.  Really.  My stomach is not feeling so well.  Hashtag “truemom”.  EATING NASTY GERMS FROM GRUBBY DIRTY FINGERS.  Sigh.

Therefore, let’s just say that I am VERY VERY VERY happy to be celebrating the upcoming day about ME in Poland.  Dzien Matki.  May 26th.  Mother’s Day.

In Poland, Mother’s Day is the same day year after year after year.  Kind-of like Women’s Day, Wigilia, your birthday, your anniversary, New Year’s … MOTHER’S DAY!  It is set in stone and NEVER GOES AWAY!

Kind of like our kids, eh????!!!! (smile and wink)

Anyhow, this upcoming Mother’s Day I think that I am going to set expectations for my kids:

  1.  I am going to expect for them to make me frustrated.
  2. I am going to expect for them to make a mess.
  3. I am going to expect for them to NOT leave me in peace when I have to pee OR merely pick up the phone—EVEN THOUGH, moments before, they had forgotten about the very existence of me.
  4. I am going to expect for them to cry over their hair styles or crust.  YES—the crust on their bread.
  5. I am going to expect for them to have a small accident in their underpants—just enough so that they will not want to wear the same pair and not enough to make a mess on the floor.  The in between stage of wet.  Enough, however, where they will then declare that they must STRIP NAKED and be.  For the rest of the day.
  6. I am going to expect for my toddler to wake me at 3am.  Or 5am.  Or 6am.  And not at all appreciate that they day is about ME!
  7. I am going to expect for the pre-teen (nastolatek) to give me grief.  I don’t know about what.  About the volume of my voice or the fact that SHE CANNOT WEAR MY SHOES.
  8. I am going to expect for them to fight and argue about the 1 block.  On the floor.  When there are 1 million and 12 other blocks right next to the 1 block.  And there are 500,000 of those 1 million and 12 blocks that are exactly the same as the 1 block that they are rowing over.
  9. I am going to expect them to stub their toes, blacken their eyes, break their teeth, or scrape their knees.  I know this because it will happen.  My three year old currently has a black eye and a huge forehead mark from tripping onto the training wheel bike tire and also falling on the side of the trampoline.  All in a day’s work.  So I am going to expect a trip to the hospital, a broken bone, or a bandaged knee.  It will happen.
  10. And, lastly, I am going to expect a gazillion times over for them to tell me that they “Love me the most!”  And fight over it.  And cuddle me.  And then fight over cuddling me.  And then fight once again about who loves Momma the most.  Because it will happen.  I expect it.

And number 10 makes up for 1-9.

As I expect it should.

So, you see, Mother’s Day in Poland is really no different than Mother’s Day anywhere else in the world.  If you come from a dirt floor or a mansion that touches the sky, being MOM is full of a million and one expectations that always start with DISASTER…But that one moment (#10) will make up for all of the tornadoes that will come in and hijack your day.

In the end, however, you don’t mind.  Because it’s a nice feeling.  Being mom.

But NOT eating the grubby food from their fingers.  Leave that behind on Dzien Matki.  I am pretty sure that is not a nice feeling.

Not at all.

Happy Mother’s Day from Poland to YOU!

Vanity will get you one eyebrow—less

Yes.  Most of my blog posting comes with utter truths of utter failures.

This one comes to you with the proclamation that I am also vain.

And that got me one eyebrow.

You know when you age?  Like, you know, are no longer 18.

It’s like chin hair pops up.  And out.

And, like, your baby belly never goes away.  But my daughter told me that my belly is squishy and comfy.  That makes it all alright, right?!

Do you remember a recent post I wrote about the horrifying “wax your mustache, madam?” ???????!!!!!!!

If you don’t, please click here.  It did not entertain me in the least (smile and wink).

Anyhow—I’m going to one up that cosmetician and post something FAR MORE HORRIFYING than mustache waxing…

And it all comes back to my eyebrows!

I say “back to” my eyebrows—because these eyebrows are ever so famous on this here blog…

If you don’t know the henna story, click here!

But let’s not dawdle on the past—it’s time I bring you present day…

To my one eyebrow.

So, I was looking in the mirror the other day.

When your children grow just old enough to let you actually shower and look in the mirror, that’s when you realize that you’re not only tired—but also…

(Insert My Big Fat Greek Wedding voice here)

“Getting old.”

Like, seriously, my eyebrows were crazy.

And I am seeing things.

Like going a bit senile.

I could SWEAR I saw some white hair.  I would like to say shiny silver…but my hair seems to be skipping that blending stage and heading for Santa Claus white.

And they were in the tip top portion of my forehead and on my eyebrows.

And they were sticking out…Like straight out.

I looked like I was heading towards the portrait of Groucho Marx, except living in Poland.  And being a woman.  And not being born in 1890—although my 10-year-old probably does think I was born WAY BACK THEN.

That is when brilliance struck me.  I didn’t want to waste precious and painful time plucking eyebrows—I would just use this super easy cosmetic razor and give them a little control zip.

So I dug it out and zipped…

That’s when I heard it.  It wasn’t the gentle hum of the razor guard.  It was the vicious roar of electrifying laughter shouting, “I’m going to get you eyebrows…zip.  Zip!”

And sure enough the razor won.  I lost.

An eyebrow, that is.

And so—I painted on eyebrows for weeks with the hilarious, tears rolling down your face, exclamations from my daughter—“Why are your eyebrows BLUE today???!!!”

I’ll tell you why, smart girl…because I never learned how to paint on eyebrows.

Or apparently groom at all…

Here’s to you and all of your crazy!  I’m here to make you feel normal and victorious each and every day!

***

And, go ahead…make your friend’s day.  Like and share.  My eyebrow can handle it!

Momma, have you ever traveled alone???

Listen, I know the appropriate answer in ALL of our mommy lives is THAT OUR CHILDREN ARE OUR GREATEST BLESSINGS!

Therefore, Pinterest and Facebook and Instagram and LIFE itself was created (of course, exaggerating on ALL of the above) for T.H.E.M.

But when you are a mommy—you FEEL as if you MUST only be mommy.

100%.

All the time.

Because, by golly, you created THAT life—you can just as easily TAKE IT AWAY (oops—wrong tangent).

No, really…You feel this gut need to be there 24/7 plus all of those hours in between that in mommy hood REALLY DO EXIST!

I know.  Because I have been a mommy for 10 and a half years.  And in the years that I have been a mommy, I have had, literally just today, A TOTAL OF 2 weeks WHERE I HAVEN’T HAD A CHILD IN MY PRESENCE since my firstborn was, well, BORN.  (And those words do deserve ALL CAPS)

That’s 365 x 10 plus 6 months which equals approximately 3,830 days where life has NEVER EVER EVER EVER been about a single moment of me since.  Now, take away the 14 days where I have been a mommy BUT not in the presence of a single child that was mine equals 3,816 days.  Forget the fact that I am Facetiming them about 2 times a day—they are not hanging on to my shirttails, so it is still deemed “free”.

Ladies—There is something utterly overwhelming about that number.   And, if you’re sanctimonious, spare me the comments, because that’s a crap load of LOTS of time dedicated to little people.  Enough of a load to make you go just a WEE BIT insane.

And, even though, I am suppose to be in ARIZONA with 1/3 of my little people right now, I wound up here (due to an expired passport) ALL ALONE.

At first I was like, what do I do???

At first it was like—lie in bed.  Don’t feed anyone.  Take a long shower.  Get coffee.  Sleep.

A little boring—because, after all, children do make our lives FUN!

But the more days I have been relaxing here, the more I have realized that I have needed this.

This moment.

To NOT be constantly thinking about scissors and rocks and crying babies and wiping my son’s bottom to save my laundry load from streaks later…

This moment.

To not be picking stuck boogers out of the littlest nostrils and convincing the oldest that it is her SWORN duty to play with the littles for ONE HOUR of the 24 WAKING HOURS she has in her day so that I can sit and stare mindlessly into a dirty house.

This moment.

To not be cutting crust off of bread—whichever parent invented that method of sandwich preparation—remind me to KILL YOU LATER, because, for some reason, my children KNOW it and CAN’T eat sandwiches with crust.

This moment.

To realize that my house is probably the aftermath of the storm—but I am ALONE in my bed without physically seeing the dirt and grime and toys and laundry—so I am SAFE FROM THE STORM!

And the longer I am apart from my Tasmanian devils, the more I appreciate being their mommy.  It’s like that Christmas chocolate you get that you put up high to only have a piece every once in a while because you want to make it last…NOT SAYING THAT I’LL STUFF MY KIDS UP HIGH SOMEWHERE SO THEY’LL LIVE (or am I????).

Simply saying—this moment of being without kids is allowing my haggard body, soul, and mind to reboot.

So I can go back and live 24/7 for another 3,816 days—upon which they will all be out of the home and I will be SOBBING for the days of insanity.

#truth

#nuttynuttytruth

To end…my advice for you, mommies, out there.  Maybe take a break from day 3,173 and go somewhere without kids and just lie in bed, be bored, drink coffee, shower, and reboot.

It’s totally worth it.

And, don’t worry, the house will be a disaster upon your return—as if you NEVER really left in the first place.  BUT OH YOUR SOUL WILL KNOW THE TRUTH!

And that truth will let you live on!

Power on, Mommy—and travel alone!!!!

 

 

 

When sanity restoration begins and you already start crying…

I have been LONGING…literally LONGING for sanity for the last several years while my head has been spinning wildly in all directions except on.

And then it happened two days ago.  I took a shower—door unlocked, of course and open, while the two littles were awake and propped in front of the TV.

The thing is…I didn’t rush.  I washed my hair.  Shaved my legs…both don’t normally happen in the midst of my “ARE THE KIDS TURNING ON THE OVEN AND BURNING DOWN THE HOUSE AND RUNNING WITH SCISSORS” showers that normally take place.  One definitely has to go.  Mostly the shaving legs.  Good thing I live in Europe 😉

It was amazing.  And I didn’t feel stressed.  I occasionally would shout out, “ARE YOU OKAY????”  To which they would respond, “We’re OKAY!” And then I would enjoy the next moment of sanity…

And just as I was beginning to get nostalgic for the moments when I had to worry and live in paranoia with the “I CANT LIVE WITHOUT MOMMY” seconds that occupy my every waking moment, two littles come running in shouting, “I WANNA SHOWER WITH MOMMY!!!!!”

Clothes are stripped.  Diapers are stripped.  And I finish rinsing my hair just in time to hop out and throw two naked bottoms in—albeit crying naked bottoms—saying stuff like, “BUT I WANNA SHOWER WITH YOU, MOMMA!”

And as much as I enjoyed my freedom and sanity for those 5 minutes in the shower—I enjoyed hearing those words even more.  Because those were the longest 5 minutes of my life—knowing that my sanity was on its way to being restored—and freedom would soon again be mine.

The freedom I have been screaming for the last many years—is on the horizon—and now I’m so sad about it.

MOMMYHOOD.

Man it’s a crazy conundrum of nonsensical emotions that keeps me screaming, crying, laughing, hugging, or spinning.

AND I WANT THEM ALL TO STAY THE SAME…

Yet I want to shower in peace, too.

Sometimes there is clearly no winner in the mom game 😉

So Forty!

nunsintorun

Like I am so overwhelmingly 40 that someone could write a book about 40 based upon my life.

I bloat—and automatically 3 people ask if I’m pregnant.

I say—“No.  I am not pregnant.  Just 40.”

One kind man looked confused and said, “Thirty?”

And I said, “No, 40…And I am not having any more  (bold and underline this, please) children.”

He went on to tell me I still have time for one more…

I went on to tell him a thing or two…(Okay—nice things 😉 ).

I have two small kids and a 10 year old.  The ten year old is an angel because she can shower and brush her teeth all alone.

The others—it’s like, “What’s that?  You need to go on the toilet AGAIN????  Aren’t you still in diapers??????????”  And then I remember that he is officially 4.  So I follow him into the toilet and wipe his little bum after he goes number 2.

The last is like “NOOOOOOO!!!!!!  I do it!”  And if you enter her presence without her permission, she is like “THIS IS MY ROOM!!!!!!”  And if she was not so RIDICULOUSLY the cutest thing walking this earth, it would just not be so cute (smile smile wink wink)  Okay, okay…It’s pretty typical 2 and cute.

And then there are those that days that my little son brings me cookies and I ask, “Did you eat lunch?” And he’s like “No, my tummy is not hungry for food.”  So I open his cookies and send him on his way just so that I can have a spare moment alone to eat my own cookies.

Friends…I am SOOOOO 40!  Beyond, totally 40.

And while I mostly handle it fine—I realize that the babcia in me is starting to sneak out (grandma for those that don’t know what babcia means)…And then I realize that these are not my grandkids but my kid-kids.  I am suppose to be MONITORING their sugar intake —NOT increasing it 😉

Oh me oh my oh my oh me!!!!!

I am Brooke.  And I.AM.FORTY.

Can I take a nap, please?????