Sunday, January 31, 2010
Saturday, January 30, 2010
During the Summer I picked up a copy of C.S. Lewis' Screwtape Letters and found myself riveted. It was one of those books that I couldn't easily put down. The book was enough to nudge me into delving into the Chronicles of Narnia. Ages ago I picked up one of the books in that series and disliked the writing style so much that I stopped reading it about two chapters into the book and discounted C.S. Lewis' writings as not worth my time. My thirty-one year old self found C.S. Lewis to be far more captivating than my ten or eleven year old self ever could have imagined. Who would have guessed?
Friday, January 29, 2010
Thursday, January 28, 2010
2. I cleaned the bathrooms (minus the shower and tubs which I hope to clean today). It's my least favorite chore, so I try to avoid it as much as I can. Usually I'll tackle one fixture at a time. Getting all three toilets and the sinks cleaned in one day is kind of big for me.
3. I'm managing to survive Bryan's latest business trip without any major crisis. I did have a little sugar incident this morning (yelled at slow moving kid, and the child who was scattering Zingo!, the game with too many pieces, all over the family room) where I slammed the open sugar container down on the countertop in frustration. Note to self: Make sure lid is on the sugar container before picking it up to slam it on the countertop. I created a bit of a mess in the kitchen that prevents me from listing clean countertops and kitchen floor as a small success this week. Can you guess what I'll be doing this morning?
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
I've noticed over the past two years that I suffer from sensory overload. I just didn't recognize it years ago. I am all too aware of it now. I suffered from it when Ellie was an infant and I listened to her cacophonous cries mixed with Madeline's unrelenting whines, noisy toys and a television that was always on. The mix of sounds filled our living room which had cathedral ceilings and filled our small house with noise. I felt worn out all of the time and when it was quiet I swore I could still hear the noise in my head. It was enough to convince me that maybe I wasn't meant to have children and certainly I should take care not to have any more. Those early years of being a parent were organized chaos. The house was mostly organized and clean, the children were well kept, well dressed and fed, but I was living in a world where peace seemed a long way off, if not impossible.
It wasn't until we moved to our current home that I began to understand what sensory overload was and that I actually suffer from it. Maybe it's because we moved to a house with no cathedral ceilings and have more than doubled our living space. I can send my children to their rooms and I don't hear them playing as I sit in silence in the family room. If they're too loud while they play on the main level, I can send them to the basement where they can make all the noise they want and I only hear muffled sounds of playful children through a closed basement door. Peace and quiet are realities for me on an almost daily basis. Sometimes there are days when the kids want to sit on top of me, watch TV and play with noisy toys. When that happens I realize that I'm getting agitated and I either make the kids disperse or I retreat to another room for a little time so I can reset.
In the grand scheme of things, dealing with these situations is relatively easy. It's only an issue for me when I can't leave the overwhelming environment. I have found, that my parents send me into sensory overload. My mom is loud, actually, in our family we all are and it's likely due to the fact that my grandfather could scarcely hear thanks being a soldier who drove a tank in WWII. I'm loud, I freely admit it, but I'm not as loud as my mom is when she's excited to see her grandchildren. And those grandchildren are VERY loud when we have grandparents visiting. They're so excited that they shout the entire time we have company. Then add in a hyper dog who sprints around the house like a wild animal and barks and you have enough noise to drive any sane person over the edge. Then, for good measure, toss in a loud TV with either a news show featuring angry people arguing politics or an obnoxious children's show. And, if all that other noise isn't enough, toss in my dad talking in slightly hushed tones the entire time about who knows what. This is what just about every visit from my parents is like. Within twenty minutes I'm feeling overwhelmed and drained of all energy.
Today I was treated to a visit from my parents. I'm happy to see them, and I'm glad they want to come and see their grandchildren as often as they do, but I find that their visits send me over the edge. Bryan left yesterday afternoon for a business trip in Denver, CO, and my parents decided they'd do me a favor and come up for the afternoon so the kids would have a distraction to keep them from missing Bryan. It worked, but it also left me worn out.
I used to get frustrated that Ellie went into sensory overload every time we were at a family function. She couldn't handle being at parties. If we hosted a party, Ellie would either require my dad to sit in her room with her and play. Her first three birthday parties were crazy. She wanted no part of them and I pretty much had to force her to make an appearance for the key parts of the party where her presence were required. Now that I understand what she must have gone through every time we had a party I wish I had known then how awful it was for her.
So I'm thoroughly exhausted after today's events. I'm happy that the girls were entertained for the afternoon and that the dog seems to be mellow (as mellow as a Jack Russell/Pug mixed dog can be, that is). I suspect that I will sleep soundly tonight, provided the noise in my head dies down sometime soon.
Monday, January 25, 2010
Perhaps Wal-Mart has some value after all. (Comedic value, that is.)
Saturday, January 23, 2010
Friday, January 22, 2010
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Thursday, January 14, 2010
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Monday, January 11, 2010
Thursday, January 7, 2010
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
I think I've probably already mentioned that Ellie was sent home with Alvin, the class chipmunk stuffed animal the Friday before we got hit with the big snow storm. Alvin was supposed to go back to the school on December 21st, the last day before Christmas break, but thanks to the snow his return got delayed, and we wound up having to play host for twenty days. To say that I was not happy about this would be an incredibly gross understatement. Part of the chipmunk project involves the parents having to write a journal for Alvin's adventures. It is something I find rather tedious because one, I didn't want the stuffed animal in the house in the first place, and two, I dislike having to write by hand since I can be a little wordy (those of you who read this blog are probably well aware of that point). So I procrastinated for 19 days in writing up Alvin's adventures with us. In the end, I decided that I needed to type it up and then paste the story into the journal. I probably could have filled the rest of the book if I had decided to write it out by hand. Bryan found the story rather amusing and thought that I should share it online somewhere, so what better place to share it than here on the blog. The following is told from the perspective of Alvin, the unwelcome mascot of Ellie's Cheery Chipmunk's pre-K class:
On Friday December 18th I got to go home with Ellie. I was pretty psyched because the last time I visited Ellie I had a blast. When we got to Ellie’s house the place was decorated for Christmas.Ellie showed me the tree decorated with ornaments made by her and her big sister Madeline, and then we went into the family room to look at the other tree. Both trees looked like a place where I could hang out.
Ellie’s mom made chocolate chip cookies and I got in trouble for trying to filch a few too many.Her mom told me I had to stop eating them as fast as they came out of the oven. I think she was just trying to keep them all to herself.
After the cookie fiasco, Ellie and I went and played with her toys. I had a lot of fun. Once her big sister Madeline came home from school, we got to have ice cream for a snack. Ellie’s mom REALLY likes playing Christmas music so we listened to that all afternoon. I was pretty happy when my songs from my Christmas with the Chipmunks album came on. Ellie kept trying to sing MY parts in the songs. That irritated me a little bit.
On Saturday morning we woke up to a snow covered world. It snowed ALL day. We couldn’t leave the house at all. The kids and I ran all over the house and we drove Ellie’s parents nuts. I was really hoping that we could play in the snow, but Ellie’s mom is really mean and told us we couldn’t go out until the snow stopped, which was NEVER!
On Sunday the snow FINALLY stopped. But Ellie’s mom told me I couldn’t go out in the snow because I didn’t have a coat or snow boots. So I got to look outside while Ellie and Madeline played in the snow. I was really happy when their mom told them they had to come inside. Later that day we made cookies. I was the official taste tester. I ate so many Christmas tree cookies that I wound up with indigestion. I was looking forward to going back to school the next day.Everyone in the house was going a little crazy since we were all trapped in the house since the roads weren’t plowed.
On Monday, the worst possible thing happened. School got cancelled. I was convinced that I was in the middle of a hostage situation. Instead of taking me back to the school, Ellie took me to her grandparent’s house. The visit was going well at first since we had pizza and cookies but then Ellie’s MomMom and her mom took out their cameras. They made us pose for so many pictures that I was pretty sure I was going to go blind from the flash. Those two are crazy!Ellie’s Pop Pop kept trying to make small talk with me, but I just wanted to eat cookies so I tried to ignore what he was saying. The drive home was really quiet. Ellie, Madeline and I got in trouble for acting like crazy people while their mom was driving on the snow-covered roads.
On Tuesday we were trapped in the house again. Ellie’s dad needed to take her mom’s van to work and we had to play in the house all day. We listened to lots of Christmas music. At bedtime, Ellie tucked me into my very own bed and read me a story called Pajama Time. It’s Ellie’s favorite bedtime story.
Wednesday saw us trapped in the house again. We played with a cool Princess and the Frog book that Ellie got in the mail the day before. We had lots of fun recreating the movie. Madeline and Ellie also dressed me up in girly jewelry. I only played along with it because when you’re a hostage, it’s best to just do what they say so you don’t get hurt. Ellie’s Gammie and Poppa Mike visited and gave everyone (except me) presents. I was hoping they’d smuggle me out of the house, but they weren’t interested in helping a hostage. They were probably afraid they’d get stuck here, too.
Christmas Eve was a lot of fun. We got to track Santa on NORAD to see when he was coming to Ellie’s house. I kept Oscar the family dog company while Ellie and her family were at Mass.He must be a dangerous creature because Ellie’s family locks him up in this prison called a crate every time they leave the house. I think they think he’s going to steal something when they’re not around.
Christmas day was great. Everyone got lots of presents. Ellie got a cool new bike and she let me sit on the handlebars. She even got a couple of Webkinz friends that I could hang out with, which is good because I figure with more hostages, I have a better chance of getting out of here. I got a few treats for Christmas, but I didn’t get that hula-hoop I sing about in my Christmas song. Santa must have run out of them. We had a big Christmas dinner and Ellie’s Mom Mom, Pop Pop and Uncle Mark visited.
Saturday, December 26th-I’m scared and ready to go home now. I see why Oscar is kept in that prison. He kidnapped a small stuffed dog and CHEWED his eyes out while Ellie and her family went out for lunch. I began to wish that I hadn’t decided to stay behind and nap. I’m trying to make sure I don’t look at Oscar. I don’t want to go blind.
After the stuffed animal assault, I decided to lay low for a few days. I spent several days playing with the toys in Ellie’s room. Ellie brought me lots of food so I wouldn’t starve to death. I’m now living in constant fear of Oscar the eyeball-chewing dog.
Wednesday December 30th- Ellie’s Nana and Pop visited. I got to eat more yummy food and hang out with her family. Ellie and Madeline got to open more Christmas presents, but I didn’t get anything. They did bring yummy Napoleons from a bakery in Staten Island, so I was happy about that.
On New Year’s Eve I got to go to Chuck E Cheese with Ellie. I hung out in her mom’s purse while Ellie played games. I got to hold the tickets she won. We enjoyed a yummy pizza, too. Later that night we got Chinese food delivered to the house. When the ball dropped at midnight, I was the only one awake. Ellie’s mom and dad fell asleep in the family room just before midnight.Madeline and Ellie fell asleep long before that. I think these people need to drink coffee or something.
On New Year’s Day I got to watch the Flyers play in the Winter Classic. Ellie’s dad and I were really enjoying the game until the Flyers let it get tied up with a few minutes to go. They lost in overtime. Ellie’s mom and dad were pretty disappointed.
I played hide and seek with Ellie on Saturday. I got in a lot of trouble when I hid a little too well behind a couch cushion. Ellie’s family searched the entire house for a while looking for me. I think they’re going to let me go soon. They seemed desperate to find me so they could send me back. The New Year has brought me hope!
On Sunday, I went with Ellie to watch Madeline’s indoor soccer game. I saw Darren from class. I was hoping that I could go home with him (I know he’d bring me back to school instead of holding me captive), but his mom and dad said I couldn’t come home with them. Next time I go to their house I’m going to make a lot of noise!
On Monday Ellie’s MomMom and PopPop came over to watch us in the morning. We played lots of games with them and had fun.
On Tuesday I got to go a few places with Ellie. We went to a little store to buy books Ellie wanted, and then we went to the parish office for Ellie’s church. Ellie got to pick a lollipop while she was there. We got Chick-Fil-A for lunch today. It was yummy. Ellie has school tomorrow.Her mom says they’re going to let me go, too! Maybe I’m not really a hostage, after all. I’m going to get a good night’s sleep tonight so I can be ready to go on a new adventure tomorrow!
Monday, January 4, 2010
- I'm a Catholic stay at home mom to four wonderful children, three girls and a boy,and a furry creature we occasionally call Oscar. Madeline is 14, Ellie is 10, Katie is 4, and Anthony is almost 2. Between the the three girls, our adorable little man and our crazy dog there is hardly ever a dull moment around here. This blog offers a peek into our lives as I chronicle the adventures that make up our lives.
All written material and original photographs are ©2016 Karen in Mommyland. You're always welcome to link back to me, but please do not copy or take any content from this blog without permission. See my Copyright Terms and Conditions for more information.Thanks for stopping by!
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- Another Catholic blogger book review program!
- Book Review: The Gargoyle Code
- Somebody's a control freak
- I'm alive!
- Face, Palm: Meet
- Small Successes-January 28th
- Sensory Overload
- Delight, courtesy of Wal-Mart
- She Knows Exactly What She Wants!
- Just thought I'd share this
- Do I really only have two children?
- What will they think of next?
- Impending doom
- Small Successes-January 21st
- Life Lesson for the Day
- The imperfections of perfectionism
- Think I'm being tested?
- Glad I'm not the only one!
- Small Successes-January 14th
- What kind of a mother am I?
- Something new to worry about
- Dismal Catechesis
- Small Successes-Back to normal
- Instances in which Mommy is wrong
- Spelling by Madeline
- Fish and House Guests Smell After Three Days
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