Saturday, February 26, 2011

The Local Beauty Parlor

   We moms have learned to find and take those relaxing moments in any way shape and form we can get them.  A walk to the mail box, a couple extra minutes in the shower, or if  there is a true desperation for some alone time, a trip to the grocery store.  I have been known to sneak to the bathroom with a book tucked under my arm and stay in there for suspicious lengths of time.  When the hubby starts yelling "Whatchya doin in there??" I know the gig's up.
     But my all time relaxation favorite is a trip to the local beauty parlor.  And by local, I mean right here in my home local.  The problem resides in finding a willing beautician.  I resort to all forms of begging and pleading to get my way on this one.  My boys already have caught on to my tricks, and they're not so easily persuaded anymore.  If one of them asks if there's anything to play and they see me smiling and starting to reply, they quickly amend, "except beauty parlor."  If I include payment, sometimes I'll get a passing interest, but they think a quarter per five minutes is an incredible rip off.
     If my husband is home, I will so nicely go sit on the floor next to his chair in the guise of chatting, but  like a  puppy looking for a pat, I will make sure my head is placed conveniently near his hands just in case. 
    Being  that the baby is still in the hair pulling stages of life, I'll keep her on the back burner until I wear out my current sucker, uh, beautician.  My three year old.  She is also catching on quickly to my begging ways, but  if I see her beginning to respond in the negative, I pull out my secret weapons.  Plastic scissors and the water spray bottle.  What child that age can resist the chance to thoroughly drench something?
     So the bliss begins.  She sets up shop in her bedroom and waits for my knock.  She ever so graciously has me sit down in the "chair" formerly known as the toy box, and whips out her favorite baby blanket to wrap around me.   Then comes the spraying, combing, measuring, "put your head down", "shut your eyes", and snipping.  All the while the chatter continues; "Where do you live", "What's your baby's name",etc.  For all of two minutes pure contentment reigns, and what a glorious two minutes it is. Just when the relaxation starts to really sink in, I hear the dreaded words, "Okay, look in the mirror."  Oh the let down. 
 But this has got me thinking.  I wonder how many minutes I could get out of her on massage therapy?

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Unforgettable Firsts

    Life is full of many firsts, all containing different levels of emotion.  Parenting surely is no exception!  The unbelievable joy felt when your firstborn is laid in your arms... or second, third and fourth for that matter.  It never gets old.  First smile, first coo, first step, first word, the list goes on and on.
     But there are a few firsts that I never anticipated.  Like the first time a toddler came waddling out of the bathroom to proudly announce, "Mama, I wiped myself!"   If that doesn't put a curdle to your stomach wondering what telltale signs you will find left in the bathroom from that event , I don't know what will!
     Or how about that first trip to a restaurant without any tag alongs?  Silence never sounded so loud, and granted,  though silence is much needed at times, I now realize how dull it can quickly become.
     Then, when the kids start getting a little bit older, it happens.  You are sitting in church, and you realize you made it through to the final Amen without having to get up one time. Zero.  Not even a single nose blow, potty break, thirst attack, or diaper change needed.   Another unforgettable first.  But don't get too used to this one, there is bound to be a case of the sniffles by next Sunday.
     One first that didn't go quite as thought in this house was loosing the first tooth.  All visions of gentle wiggling, string tying to door knobs, or even punching out by brotherly love vanished with one trip to a pediatric dentist.  Words like surgery and extraction were used, and we realized our efforts to pin down two squirming boys every night to brush teeth had not cut the mustard.  Needless to say when it was all said and done, the dentist had hit pay dirt, and simultainously, the tooth fairy was feeling quite stingy indeed.
     This first comes at different times for every parent, and I think it's safe to say it comes to a dad sooner.  The day you realize your baby isn't so much of a baby anymore.  I was living in careful oblivion to that particular fact until my oldest was about five.  That was the day I looked out the window and saw the skid steer going past with a load of wood in the bucket.  The revelation came to me that skid steers certainly don't drive themselves, so I honed in for closer inspection.  The blond in the operators seat was most definitely not my husband. No, he was the one directing traffic like everything is completely normal and this is how it should be.  I still am recovering from that event.
    There is also the unavoidable, unforgettable first involving losing a loved one.  When the news came their cousin  had passed from this life to the next,  I remember wondering how I was going to be "strong" for the kids sake.  I guess I should have known better, realizing what faith children really have.  They were, indeed, the ones showing me strength.  I overheard conversations of how he's "gone on to glory" now and the cd repeat button was hit over and over in the weeks and months following to hear "Ashton's song" one more time.   The chorus "To a land where joy shall never end"  filled the vehicle  and home continuosly, bringing peace and comfort with it.
      In the overall view of parenting, I'm still on rookie status, and I know there are surely going to be more interesting firsts ahead, along with the typical first car, first date (yikes!!), and the rest.  But I pray they come ONE at a time!:)

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Baffling, Indeed

       Baffled.  That is the term my third grade son used to describe the look on his baby sisters face the other night.  After getting over the fact that he even knew such a word, let alone used it correctly, I realized that is a word I could use quite often to describe the way I feel about the course of events that have taken place in my life over recent years.   I mean, who are these kids, and why are they calling me mom?
    Motherhood is something I have looked forward to since I was old enough to push my baby brother around in my doll stroller (much sturdier than the ones they make nowadays, of course)  and make up songs at the top of my lungs.  But four kids later, there are still moments when I hear someone yelling for mom, and my weary mind wonders why their mom is taking so long to answer, only to remember my long awaited dream is reality, and those are my bones that need to drag out of bed to go scare the boogy man away.
     Same goes for when there is evidence of grand times all over the floor, and after tripping on it several times wondering why no one has picked it up yet, the thought occurs to me that it will stay that way until you- know -who decides to do it.  That IS going to change, you know.
      In spite of the chaos, in spite of the curtain climbing, caterwauling,  and general zoo-like atmosphere, I wouldn't want it any other way.  Because those small fries who swing from the chandeliers- (okay, more like pull string single light bulbs)  show such big love that a few sleepless nights and toy encased floors and food encrusted tables ain't no thing...   those extra hugs from a little boy who's going to spend the night at grammy's or  a little girl who says "mommy, you look berry handsome" are the moments that make everything else minor.  ..

      Okay folks... here goes. I guess I am entering the world of blogging in hopes that someday my kids can look back on these posts, and see what royal monkeys they really were.