Saturday, February 9, 2013

Why Does Anyone Still Visit Me?

My sister and my mom left my sister's house in Virginia at 5:30 a.m. yesterday, to make the seven hour drive to Blackrock before the entirely-too-hyped winter storm* descended upon us.  They arrived at 1:30 p.m. without seeing a snowflake.

Fifteen minutes later, I left to go to the doctor.

My sister stayed at the house to help A. with the kids.  She sang Charlie to sleep for his last nap of the day and distracted Cubby with the helium balloons she brought him for his birthday.  My mother came with me to the Small City to run some errands and then sat in the waiting room at the doctor until I was done.

She also paid for everything I had to buy on those errands since I accidentally left my wallet at home.  I felt like I was fifteen years old again, asking my mom for some money so I could buy stuff.  Though when I was fifteen, that "stuff" was not five pounds of various sausages for my son's birthday party.

Anyway.  Point is, my mom and my sister are here and we're hosting a birthday party tomorrow, so I have to go now.  Stuff to do, you know.  Catch you later, duckies.

* Which ended up being a few inches of snow and about two hours without power at two o'clock this morning.  Hardly Armageddon.  Silly Weather Channel.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Understudy

Something you should know about my older son: One of his favorite playthings is our old upright vacuum cleaner.

Yup.  It's way fun.  He pretends to vacuum with it, of course, but he also pretends to ride it astride like a horse, or a tractor, or a spaceship.  The attachment tubes have been telescopes and guns (of course).  The power cord has been a snake or an eel.

The MiL bought a new vacuum a few months ago because the switch on the old one had gotten all wonky, requiring the user to fiddle with it constantly to keep it in the right position for power.  That position was sometimes in the middle, sometimes at the top, sometimes at the bottom, which is technically the off position.

Since the user is almost without exception me, I was getting pretty damn sick of the Possessed Power Switch.  Also, that vacuum is really heavy and cheap to begin with, so not really worth getting fixed.

So the MiL bought a new one.  And yesterday, it broke.

Well, technically, the wand attachment got jammed on there.  I can't get the thing to disengage, which means I can't hook up the main floor part.  I need that part to vacuum the rugs, which get filthy alarmingly quickly, what with all the mud and dog hair and hay and assorted other nastiness that finds its way into the house.

AND, we're having Cubby's third birthday party on Sunday, which means ten guests in the house.  AND AND, my mom and my sister are due to arrive on Friday and will be staying with us.

All of which means I really need a functioning vacuum cleaner NOW so I can pretend my house is kept to some reasonable standard of cleanliness.

So I used Cubby's vacuum/toy.  I wasn't even sure it would work, given the abuse it's been subjected to in the past few months.  But I plugged it in, fiddled with power switch, and . . . there it went, sucking up the filth just as if I hadn't discarded it for a newer, fancier (and defective) model.  How forgiving of it.

It just goes to show that sometimes keeping junk around just because your kids like playing with it can be its own reward.

Monday, February 4, 2013

The Face Says It All

Cubby had another brief spell of feeling unwell on Sunday.  I could tell because he consented to lie down on the couch with a blanket over him.  As opposed to running around with his pretend ax, chopping down (pretend) trees and menacing mountain lions.

I trust you don't need me to tell you the mountain lions were also pretend.

After a long nap, he took a nice warm bath and then decided he wanted to lie down in front of the woodstove to dry his hair.  And he wanted Charlie to lie down with him.

It was peaceful and adorable to see the two boys resting together.

Ah, brotherly love.

But then Cubby started to perk up.

And Charlie started to get that familiar worried expression.

Then there was some playing with the baby's ears.

Charlie knows this won't end well.

And then the head patting started.

And Charlie's face says, "Get me out of here," as clearly as a face can.

Not that I enjoy it when Cubby is sick, but I kind of enjoy the relative calm that results.  He's all recovered now, though.  And Charlie is back on the defense.