After 12 years of mothering, I think I can definitively say that the dirtiest thing in the whole world is a 2-year-old on a camping trip.
We went camping this weekend and it was the most bizarre thing: we arrived at the campsite squeaky clean, unbuckled the 2-year-old to let him out of the car, and then turned around and BOOM. He looked just like the tar baby. He was absolutely filthy the entire weekend, no matter what we did.
|Only 2/3 of these children are ours. We went camping with friends.|
The day we came home from camping, we were hot, tired, and most of all, slightly damp. The last thing we wanted to do was unpack. But we knew we weren't going to get any more motivated as the days went by, so we did all the laundry and put everything away that very day.
When I looked out the window and saw Phillip not only unpacking the vehicles but vacuuming them out, I've never been so in love.
Even though I did a thorough clean-out in the spring, somehow he found ticket stubs in there from visiting the aquarium in February. The van desperately needed his help.
For the last few weeks I've been working out with my girls in the morning to a YouTube video of their choice. One of their most recent picks was this one:
Power Girl fitness is a "for kids, by kids" workout so at first I wasn't sure if I'd get anything out of it, but I figured it was still together time with my daughters and they could benefit from doing a workout led by a positive role model around their age.
Little 10-year-old Jessy looks sweet, but that chick must have glutes made of iron. I woke up the next morning and my rear end felt like it was on fire.
I knew I wasn't in the best shape but it's still humbling to get your butt kicked by a 4th grader.
Our oldest girls had the time of their lives visiting Harry Potter World with their aunts this week.
When you take kids to the airport to fly as 'unaccompanied minors,' you have to talk to the person at the desk and get a boarding pass for yourself, too. Otherwise you can't get through security to bring them to their gate.
I'd brought the baby with me, who also needed a pass, but no big deal. The ticketing agent could get him one if I could just answer a few questions.
Things were going fine until she said "And what's his middle name?" and I couldn't remember. My mind was entirely blank. Was it Jacob? Lancelot? Bilbo? I had no idea. They all sounded equally possible, to be honest. I stood there for what felt like a very long time before my daughter came up with the answer.
In my defense, I was tired and have never needed to use his middle name other than to write it on his birth certificate form when he was born, and that was months ago. I can't even remember what I had for breakfast this morning.
Question: why can girls use boy stuff but not the other way around?
Soccer season is starting up again, and since we have multiple kids playing soccer we keep a giant box of cleats of all sizes in our attic. It's like a shoe store up there, basically.
Anyway, the only cleats in my son's size had a pink swoosh on them. And frankly, I'm ticked that I can't send him in pink cleats. I mean, I know I can, but he'd feel self-conscious about it and probably get teased.
Yes, I'm mostly annoyed because I'm a cheapskate and I have to go buy new cleats when there's already a perfectly good pair in the attic. But it's also about sexism. Read this article if you don't know what I mean.
It seems like women have made a lot of progress in the last 50 years, but after reading that article I wasn't so sure.
I was showering in the morning when my 4-year-old came in to tell me that her 2-year-old brother had a bloody nose.
Panicking, I fumbled to turn off the water, imagining something like this happening all over the living room rug.
"Go hold a tissue to his nose until I get there!" I yelled.
"I did," she answered calmly. "It's done bleeding now. He got some on his shirt so I put a new one on him. The other one is soaking in the sink. I'll try to remember to take it out tomorrow."
Then she left the room.
After I finished my shower, I immediately started planning a vacation to Tahiti because I am so obviously not needed around here anymore.
I was taking the kids hiking. As soon as we pulled into the parking area of a local trail, a few of the older kids disappeared to the Port-a-Potty.
I was getting the younger kids out of the van when a lady came out of the woods walking her dog and approached the car next to me. Giving my family a glance, she said, "You have four children?"
"Actually, I have six," I said cheerfully, bracing myself for the backlash because that's so crazy and don't I know where babies come from and what about my environmental footprint, and blah, blah, blah. I've heard it before.
"You are so lucky," she smiled, and got in her car with her dog and left.
And do you know what? I am lucky. It's easy to take the 6 amazing little people in my house for granted. But children are a blessing. Not much else besides family even matters much in the long run.
No matter what your family's size or shape, I want you to look right at them today and repeat after me: "I am so lucky."
Because you are.