Don’t do yoga with your toddler

I was just lying on the floor doing the happy baby pose to try to stretch out my back and hips when Noodle came running at me, screaming, “I want to get back in!” before throwing herself onto my stomach.

I bet she does. There’s a reason they had to forcibly tear her 11-pound body out of me after 27 hours of active labor (the other 24 hours of labor don’t count, according to my husband, who had the good sense to wait until the baby was long since born to tell me his esteemed opinion). Apparently, my uterus is awesome.


She makes it sound so dirty

Noodle, upon hearing that we are going to the inn where Mama and Abbat got married:

Daddy got Mama married?




The worst way to wake up

There are wonderful ways to awaken after a blissful slumber. Maybe with some lovely breakfast in bed. Maybe with a glorious vista out of the window of your private villa in some glamorous locale. Maybe snuggling with your loved ones.

This is not one of them:

Having your seven-year-old son bust into your room, yelling, “Mama! She’s flooding with poops!!” about his sister’s diaper.



My daughter is walking around the house wearing nothing but a diaper and a dog collar, asking “I look good? I look good?”
Pray that she stops doing this before she’s in high school.

Be prepared

Let’s say Peeta has a half day and it’s raining and I decide to be super nice and take them to the movies because I simply cannot face the destruction that is my house. I don’t know why I haven’t learned that I should never take a toddler to the movies, because the same thing happens every time. I should be better prepared for this kind of behavior.

Here is what apparently ran through Noodle’s head during the movie:

1. Sit nicely through the previews while stuffing your face with Junior Mints.

2. Become bored of Junior Mints and start to demand your brother’s popcorn, yelling, POPCORN!

3. Alternate chocolate and popcorn by demanding CHOCLIT! POPCORN!

4. Scream MONKEYS! when monkeys come on screen.

5. Finish the popcorn and candy, but refuse to admit it until you have vigorously shaken the containers to make sure no more flies out.

6. Get bored and run up and down the aisle, stopping at the first aisle with people sitting in it.

7. Laugh wickedly at the people and then run back up the aisle.

8. Keel over halfway up the aisle.

9. Repeat.

10. Decide to walk up and down the rows behind your mother, putting your water bottle in every cup holder.

11. Grab your baby doll and run away, screaming, MY MARTA!

12. Poop.

13. Yell POOP! STINKY BUM! CHANGE PANTS!!!! repeatedly.

14. Try to strip off all your clothes in the middle of the aisle, while grabbing your ass and yelling, STINKY!

15. Make a strange animal noise as your mother grabs you and tries to make you sit on her lap.

16. Become very angry that there are no monkeys on screen and repeatedly demand that they return, yelling MONKEYS! MONKEYS! MONKEYS!

17. Writhe away from your mother and run toward the door, yelling, GO HOME NOW!

18. Roll on the ground of the theater as she tries to wrestle you back to your seat.

19. Sit on her lap, but chew on the seat in front of you in protest.

20. Humor your mother as she talks you through the rest of the movie, saying insipid things like, See the penguins? You like penguins! until you see dogs, at which point you scream, WOOF WOOOOOOOOOF!

21. Act like you have Tourette’s syndrome for the rest of the movie, and scream out random phrases until the lights come back on. MONKEYS! WOOF WOOF! POOP! GO HOME NOW! STINKY BUM! CHANGE MY PANTS! WHERE ARE MONKEYS? ALL DONE MOVIE!

22. Flee the movie theater as soon as the credits roll, so as not to be stoned by the other viewers.


Bucket looked at the suspicious sink and thinks the weird hole is a very strangely placed runoff drain. I can’t see where it leads, but he’s an engineer so I’ll take his word for it. At least we don’t have to send back a 40-pound sink.

In other news, the doctor’s appointment for which I had to fight tooth and nail for Noodle, has come to naught. She’s been sick for three weeks, seen the incompetent nurse in the office twice, and just gotten worse. I had to basically demand an appointment with our pediatrician (who is a rock star, and for whom I would walk through fire), and the bitchy receptionist (who is not only bitchy but also totally incompetent at weighing and measuring babies) gave me a 5:45 appointment.

After waiting for an hour, we finally left. She was still in with another family, there was no reception staff to talk to us, and the kids were getting hungry and cranky.

Now, I have to hope she reschedules us, because just now, after a day of minimal coughing, Noodle just started barking like a seal. Awesome.

Did I mention this has been going on for three weeks? At least there was no copay tonight, so we’re only out $40 for the first two appointments.

No toilet, flush or otherwise

Yesterday, Bucket let me sleep until 11. ELEVEN AM. And it was beautiful. I was so happy, and relaxed, and a virtually recognizable version of my former, well-rested, childless self.

Today, it was his turn. So I took the children downstairs and hung out while they watched “Flush Toilet,” (Noodle’s name for Flushed Away), and Peeta played Mario Baseball. Then, after asking Noodle repeatedly if I could change her diaper, I realized I could smell her from a distance and told her it was time.

In we went to the bathroom. Off came the diaper. Off ran Noodle, yelling, “Naked! Naked!”

I’ll admit it: I laughed. It was kind of cute, watching her scrawny little naked body running around the house.

Until she ran over to the couch and peed. On the floor. (Thank God, not on the couch.)

I had JUST ASKED her if she would pee in the toilet for me, and she said no. She is officially The Worst.

I bought a steam cleaner for the floor a few weeks ago. Today, it went to good use.

Nothing but the truth

Today, we rode our bikes to a nearby playground for our somewhat weekly playdate with our friend Joe and his two kids, by whom Noodle is obsessed. Joe and Peeta played baseball for a while, while I played with Noodle and Joe’s kids (read: tried to keep her from choking his baby with her hugs). After getting everyone on the field to play baseball, we eventually had to quit because Noodle was running amok. For a 22-month old, she has very little self control. It was like when one of those drunken, deranged baseball fans jumps onto the field and runs around like an idiot until he gets caught. And it was starting to rain.

We were halfway home when we had to get off the bikes to cross the street. I turned around and Noodle was casually swinging her helmet in her right hand. And so it was that I had to wrestle her, thrashing, on the bike seat, in the rain, to get the helmet on. To punish me, she started screaming, “Daddyyyyyyyy!” (which, by the way, is not what she calls Bucket). She screamed the whole way home, calling for him, and Peeta and I rode as fast as our legs would take us.

Bucket was making dinner when we got home. Noodle walked into the kitchen, wailing his name. We told him what happened and how I am The Meanest Mama In The Land for making her wear a helmet on a bike, and he told her she had to wear it too.

Cut to after dinner:

Me: Noodle, what did Daddy say about your helmet?

Noodle: Take it off.

Me and Bucket: WHAT?!

Noodle nods seriously.

Me (trying again): Noodle, what do you put on your head when you’re on the bike?

Noodle: Pants.

Then, she cackles, “Bad girl!” and cracks herself up. To try to distract us from her evil, lying ways, she takes off her sock, puts it over her eyes and starts to dance around.

Just the other day, I was saying that I didn’t think toddlers her age understood lies. Apparently, my daughter is pathological already. Is it too early to start applying to boarding schools for her teen years?

Things that happened

So in case you don’t follow the scintillating updates on my Facebook page, I have been ravaged by The Plague for the past three days. On Saturday night, I got the stomach flu and it decided to stay and play a while.

Yesterday, it seemed like there was light at the end of the tunnel, because I was able to walk and managed to spend all day without Bucket home to help me. And it ended up being an interesting day. The following things happened:

1. Noodle decided to start walking around naked. Given that it was 45 degrees and raining, I didn’t consider it an inspired choice, but she’s nuts, you know. Her new favorite game is to strip off, shriek, “SO COLD!” and then jump under the blanket to hang out with me. At first, I thought that’s what she was doing. But then she dragged the baby toilet into the living room and told me she needed a new diaper. Then, after her nap, she got naked again, dragged the toilet into the kitchen, yelled “SHINTE!” (which is Amharic for pee, you ignoramus) and then ran away. I was in the process of ruining some soup, so I didn’t notice until later that she had actually PEED in the toilet. By herself. For the first time.

2. After Peeta came home, Noodle and I went upstairs so I could take a bath, and he played on my computer. After a while, I heard the doorbell ring. Then I heard Peeta open the door. Then I heard him yell, “Mama! The mailman’s here! Don’t worry, I let him in!” fortunately, it was the UPS man coming to deliver the last of the Home Depot tile, and Peeta had just let him onto our porch to drop it, but for a moment, I was frozen in the tub, trying to figure out how to get dressed as fast as possible, or give him a show (which would probably mean we’d never get mail again). Perhaps it’s time to have that strangers talk again.

3. At about 4:30, the phone rang. It was Cigna mail order pharmacy, calling about a prescription for Peeta. Bucket had been fighting with them for days over an order that had been screwed up, for which they wanted to charge us. Clearly, they thought they could circumvent him by coming to me. They were wrong. The woman asked for Peeta. I said I was his mother. She asked for him again. I told her he’s seven, so I didn’t think he’d be much help. She then told me they were out of the refill for the prescription, but they would have it tomorrow. I decided to let it go, despite the fact that we ordered it LAST WEEK, but asked her if we were going to be charged. She said yes.

Oh, Lord, that poor woman will rue the day she ever called my house. I went absolutely batshit on her ass. I told her that it was unacceptable to charge us twice for a mistake that wasn’t our fault, and she had the audacity to argue with me. Sister, don’t mess with me on the third day of the stomach flu. I ranted and raved and finally told her I wasn’t dealing with this any more, because they had been dealing with Bucket. I gave her his number and called him to warn him they would be calling. He was pissed too, and then they called n the other line.

There will be no charge for the refill, and they’re lowering our co-pay because of some issue with the manufacturer (read: your wife is a fucking lunatic and we would rather lose money than ever have to deal with her crazy ass ever again.)

Mama: 1. Evil thieving bureaucracy: 0.

I got to end the day by going to see the Red Sox lose with two of my favorite friends. A fly ball cracked off the skulls of two people in front of us, so we ended up on NESN. The shot was (thankfully) brief and consisted mostly of me jumping up like a fool, with my hand over my mouth in horror. Bucket TIVO’d it, because you know, it wasn’t embarrassing enough that people saw it the first time.

All in all, it wasn’t a terrible day, despite The Plague. Except that when I got home, Bucket remembered we had leftover Cipro from Africa, which would have been nice to take on Sunday morning. But hey, at least I got to be on TV, looking sexy.It’s every girl’s dream to have video documentation of herself after three days of retching, right? Oh, yeah.