Saturday, April 28, 2012

goodnight my precious jewel

my boys drive me crazy. i think i've mentioned that before. most days i get up with them in the morning and put them to bed at night. we spend a lot of time together. for me, a person who needs some quiet and space, all of that together time can be taxing.

sometimes i feel like a bad momma when i snarl at them to get out of my face. literally, tonight, ben had crawled into my chair on my lap and max was thrusting something in my face while they were simultaneously telling me stories. sometimes they literally run circles around me, shrieking with delight. and that's when they're in a good mood. i won't talk about the bad moods.

to say that they overwhelm me is an understatement. i think that's why i like taking pictures of them while they are asleep. quiet. undemanding. sometimes i go in and lay with them after they are asleep or stay for a bit just to watch them if they fall asleep during our night time ritual. sometimes it's the only time i feel connected to them instead of bombarded by them.

i try to be patient and kind, but i fail a lot. a lot! i know that it's not their fault. there is no human-baby, child, or adult that i would like to spend my whole day with from waking to sleep. i feel guilty a lot for my desire for space from them or for when i'm not patient and kind. i worry that that's what they'll remember of their childhood and of me.

but then there's moments that ease my worry. max has been very affectionate lately. giving me hugs and kisses willingly when i leave for work. stopping what he's doing throughout the day to tell me that he loves me. coming from the kid who sometimes (maybe often) gives me death glares, that means a lot. maybe he's not forever scarred by our battles of wills after all.

tonight i had a terrible headache while i was tucking the boys in. max spent most of the time huffing and puffing because i didn't read them a story. i finally said ENOUGH! "there i go again, ruining our time together with my hot temper."

as i quietly said our prayers, i laid facing ben with my eyes closed. occasionally i would open them to see him nodding off to sleep. when he would see we watching him, he would give me sleepy smiles. is there anything in the world better than sleepy smiles? after i finished prayers i stayed for a bit. i thought they were both asleep. i reached over and brushed ben's cheek, "goodnight my treasure." as i got up, i heard from behind me, "goodnight my precious jewel" and i felt his arms around me.

maybe they can feel the love after all.

Friday, April 27, 2012

rooster run

last thursday morning i was running late for work so i asked ben to go unlock the chickens while i finished making breakfast. several minutes later, i heard the door slam and ben crying. a scared/hurt cry. i came around the corner and found him crumpled on the floor. i was really concerned and asked him what was wrong. he looked at me with the most betrayed look, "why didn't you come help me? i was yelling for help and you didn't come!" still confused i asked him what happened again. while i held him he reported that after unlocking the chickens, the rooster chased him all the way back to the house (a distance of about 100 yards?), jumping up and pecking him, while he ran, screaming for help. i felt so terrible that he felt like i'd let him down, but at the same time, i had to suppress a smile at the thought of him being chased by the rooster. obviously terrifying for him, and i'm sure this solidifies my place in the mean mom hall of fame, but probably pretty hilarious at the same time.  i was really bummed i'd missed the show.

i got him calmed down, got him smiling by renaming our rooster bandolino from a book that we had read in which the boy's aunt has a mean rooster named bandolino, got him to eat his breakfast, and headed off to work. (i'm thankful to have an employer that is pretty flexible about when i show up, especially if there's a family emergency like a rooster attack!)

after the incident, which ben dubbed "the rooster run", ben was very cautious whenever he went outside. the chickens have free range and often hang out in the corral and forest where the boys play. whenever ben would go outside, he would take a broom with him in case bandolino tried to get him again. he would not go out to the chicken house by himself and even when with me, he was very cautious.

enter tim, dad extraordinaire, and his suit of armor. the little shield in the front allows ben to stick his hand through the box to unlock the chicken's door. after making the armor, tim took ben out to the chickens and bandolino was the one who was terrified now. it definitely put the spring back in ben's step to be back on top of the farm pecking order.

Monday, April 2, 2012


we had known that little ms. mia tortilla was growing some babies (as ben and max would have excitedly told you if you had stopped by), but we didn't known when they would make their appearance. after mass last sunday, before he left for work, tim was having a chat with mia and decided that i needed to give her some birthing advice. he then scolded me for my un-encouraging birthing advice.  

(mia enjoying a dry nap during the rainy week. i was impressed she could still balance on the rail with that big belly.)

apparently tim was picking up on mia's birthy vibes because while we were gone on sunday, she had her babies. but it was were she decided to have the little ones that made it all the more eventful!

we had made a "nest" for her using an old dog house and some towels, but apparently she didn't approve. although mia is an outside cat, she occasionally sneaks in the house if the boys leave the door open and hides under the futon upstairs. sometimes i don't even realize the boys have let her in and we'll leave the house. whenever that happens, she's waiting by the door to be let back out when we get home.

last sunday (3.25.12) was a busy day with the baptism of my nephew, a family party to celebrate, and confirmation class in the evening. as we pulled out of the driveway to go to the party, the boys informed me they'd let mia in the house. "argh! oh well, we'll just her out when we get home." between the party and class, i came home to prep for class and totally forgot about mia. it wasn't until after class, which ran late, did i remember her. the boys and i had walked out in the dark, already way past bedtime, to lock up the chickens, and as we walked back to the house, holding hands and admiring the moon, it hit me.  i just knew that she'd had the kittens in the house. why else had she not greeted me at the door when i came home to prep for class.

i didn't say anything to the boys and gave them a snack so that i could sneak upstairs to check on her. and there she was, behind the futon, with six adorable kittens. the boys quickly realized something was up and where over the moon to finally have the kittens out. although i liked the kittens, i had a hard time not focusing on the carpet that had endured the birth or the thoughts of what exactly we were going to do with this nest of kittens in our house. (i know, i'm heartless.)

we tried moving her outside tuesday but after hearing some scuffling on the deck after dark, we moved her back inside, but into the laundry room. she did not like that idea and actually pushed the pocket door off of it's track to get the door open, then moved the kittens back upstairs. we've since just let her stay upstairs and let her out when she needs a break to lay in the sun or wander in the forest. she can hop back in the house whenever she's ready through an open window with the screen off. but that only works during the day. that had been our night time plan as well, until tim noticed her sitting on the inside ledge, nose to nose with a raccoon, who was on the outside ledge! yes,  let's please add a raccoon to our little menagerie!

i have not handled this little event very well. i'm not an indoor animal type of person, mia is not litter box trained, and although i really didn't want anything to happen to the kittens, i also didn't really want them inside our house. tim's answer to most things is, "it will be fine." to his credit, he was very patient with all my analyzing and whining. he also moved the kittens outside, even though he wanted them to stay inside. he also patiently moved them back inside once i freaked out after the weird noises on the deck, making cute, reassuring responses to all of the kittens meowing. (he also does a really hilarious impression of a kitten, but it might take some serious bribes to get to see it.)

all of my kitten freak outs were not helping my case that we are ready for another baby. tim's probably right about that, but that's a post for another day that i'll probably never get to.

who could resist this face?