The Silence

I got a new computer at work. The new computer has much better big brother protections. I have yet to work out how to not mess up my whole blog format thingie by trying to post from my phone. Technology and I are generally not friends.

Hmmmm. Water and I are also not friends. Water and Technology are not friends. Food for thought.

Anyway, life is pretty much the same steaming pile of garbage it usually is with a delightful young toddler thrown in for extra fun. She continues to climb on everything. I’m not joking y’all. She climbed onto the roof of the van. She has also taken to headhbutting everything very hard. It is just weird and very painful for all of us on so many levels. She slammed her head hard into the glass storm door yesterday morning, hard enough that I worried she might shatter it. I yelled at her to stop and she got sad and slammed her head on the brick entry way. What the crap dude???? Chill out! Slam your head on grass or pillows or I don’t know…STOP SLAMMING YOUR HEAD!

Work is fine but I hate it, So that rocks. Theater is starting to pick up again but that’s a sinking ship. I have a Stage Management gig starting in a few weeks for a company that just announced this is their last season. They’ve been going for 31 years so it’s about time they retired, but still. Sad.

Shelby is working on an exciting new theatre thing so that’s exciting and new.

Ummmm what else.

I have killed a total of 5 snakes in my various yards over the summer. Cuz I’m rad. And have a lawnmower. And lots and lots of rocks for the head smashing. MMMMM delicious.

And on that note!

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How Does One Do This?

Children. What the crap you guys.

This is me confirming that vacation seriously screwed everyone up and is totally not worth taking most of the time. Blah.

We took a little longer to drive to Shelby’s parents’ house than usual. Hannah was mostly OK, but syncing up bathroom breaks, gas fill-ups, diaper changes, and food requests was surprisingly more difficult than it should have been. I stopped to fill up the car and no one was hungry, so then I’d get on the road and Hannah would almost immediately destroy her diaper. So I’d pull off again and change her, try to pick up a little snack or something. But inevitably, 30 minutes to an hour down the line someone was hungry or had to have an emergency bathroom break. It was just weird. But we got there. Late. Since Hannah napped the last few hours in the car and we had just arrived in a shiny new place with shiny new people, I was pretty sure that trying to put her to bed was going to be an exercise in futility so I let her stay up until about midnight.

When we visit the in-laws in summer, we have to sleep in the same room with our delightful and beautiful young offspring. That first night, I waited until almost 2:00 to go in the room out of fear of waking her and setting our whole vacation off to a horrendous start. But she slept. I mean, only until like 8:00 the next morning, but she slept through my re-entry and bed squeaks and stayed in her portable crib the whole time. It gave me hope. Maybe she was old enough to get this travel vacation holiday thing now and sleeeeeeeeeeep. The second night, she also slept straight through. In her crib. It was amazing. And awesome. And I let my guard down.

And then no matter how worn out we tried to make her throughout the day, she never again slept through the night in her own bed. She napped well. She napped hard. We played in the pool, ran in the yard, took walks, went shopping, went out on the boat, played with toys, watched her favorite TV show, usually accomplishing all of those things once before each nap and once after. She was tired. But she wouldn’t sleep. Sometimes it was her usual brand of “nap time’s over! I’m UP! LET’S PLAY!!!!” Sometimes it was just a constant wriggling and low level whine. Sometimes it was full out screaming. Sometimes it was midnight – 4. Sometimes she just woke up at 5 so I would take her down for MeMe to play with her and she would fall back asleep for an hour or so and then her nap and sleep schedule went all bonkers and then we all suffered.

But we did have fun. At least I did with Hannah. There were certainly moments I wanted to just throw her at another adult and slam pillows over my face and just sleep until the sun went down, but there were a lot of fun moments too. Watching her play in the pool. Seeing her confidence in wandering a speeding boat and sitting right up front. Her excitement at the mud puddles the days it rained. Her delight at the bubble machine and how quickly she put together her new puzzle. Playing with my parents who came out for a quick visit. Accepting my brother in about 12 seconds and not crying when he held her and smooshed his newly bearded face on her cheeks. Offering kisses to literally everyone at the table and running to hug people’s legs. I’m so glad she is such a sweet and happy girl.

But now that we are back home, her sleep is still fairly erratic. She has slept through the night I think twice since we came back. Last night was the hardest. Last night was one of those nights we couldn’t figure out what was wrong. We each tried holding her, rocking her, singing to her and trying all the usual soothing techniques. But her body kept tightening, completely rigid while she shrieked in the highest pitch I’ve heard in awhile. And then she would flop around and try to wriggle out of our grasp and slam part of her body on something hard that would set her off again. She bit her lip playing in her stroller after dinner, and one of her particularly floppy times she slammed her mouth on my collar bone which set off a siren of cries that were definitely pain driven. She was tired. Not particularly interested in playing. Just crying. I wasn’t going to be able to sleep anyway, so I sent Shelby away to rest in case this went on all day. I would rock her, distract her, get her settled. We’d lay down together and I could hear her breathing slow. I could tell she was almost asleep, and then she would shake herself violently, as you or I might if we were falling asleep at the wheel, and then it would start over. Growing pains maybe? Her mouth still hurting? We were both there to tuck her in which is a usual trigger, so I don’t think that was the problem. I just don’t know.

Also, in other scintillating news, we are rapidly approaching the terrible twos. Hannah was informed of this milestone a little early it would seem as she is being a veeeeeery stubborn little thing, and asserts herself at every opportunity. But even THAT she is doing super cutely. As an example, she has taken to helping herself from the pantry. I’ve seen her come out with a bag of her cookies, and bag of chips, a box of crackers, and a tube of oreos. When we catch her, we tell her she needs to ask dada or momma “please?” and then we usually give her a taste of whatever she came out with. But it usually takes a good three minutes of her trying to get into the thing herself complete with whining and flappy arms and refusing to say please before she gives up, says “peet” while handing over the bag/box and then smiling very sweetly and hugging a leg. Sometimes she’ll frown and put her head on the ground BEFORE running over to hug a leg, but she always hugs a leg. Because it is cute. And it works. And she KNOWS it.

Anyway, this has gotten long and boring enough that I should probably stop and get some work done. Or take a nap. Yeah, let’s take a nap.

 

 

 

Status Update

Since I know you were all worried about me and dying to know…

My computer conversion got pushed to the 27th, so I can totes take work on vacation with me! Isn’t that spectacular?

Let’s get real shall we? Family is fun, sure. But family can also be stressful. Married into family…yeah. I love my husband’s parents and they are nothing but the sweetest people. But sometimes, you just want a computer in your face cuz you “have to check on this work thing” so you don’t have to be the one to make the decision on what everyone is having for dinner.

It also helps to relieve that constant low level anxiety. I don’t have to check everyday, but knowing that I can is just amazing. I may not ever pick it up, I may not ever log on. But if it wasn’t there, I would not be able to stop thinking about it. Would neeeeeeeeeed to check. Would neeeeeeeeeed to be in touch. So yeah, I’m already feeling better about that.

Packing on the other hand…Gah this used to be so much easier.

All the Animals

OMG that one Friday that one time. We took Hannah to the Animal Kingdom. And she loved it. The End.

Just kidding.

But seriously. She loved it. She likes animals. All shapes and sizes. All breeds and species. If it moves by itself she is entertained. And in love. She meows at the cat when she sees him at the door. She barks toward every dog in the park albeit super quietly so they don’t really hear her. Her eyes light up and her mouth spreads into the biggest stupidest uncontrollable smile the world has ever seen. This kid will have a lot of pets.

We did the ape walk. A little trail surrounded on both sides by netted enclosures of various apes. Hannah had just recently learned the monkey sound so she oo-oo-ooed at each one she saw. She pointed, smiled, hugged tightly around the neck of whichever adult took her close up to see. (The other thing she does when she gets really excited is squeeze your face. Sounds cute. Is actually quite painful.)

She enjoyed it so very much. So when we got home, we joined the zoo.

And then we went to the zoo. And she loved it.

The End.

Less Magical; Still Fun

Thursday we left Hannah at the hotel with Meme. We did not, however, leave the stroller. Oops! We received various updates throughout the day about her total enjoyment of the sand by the pool, the little boy in the sand by the pool, the sand in her shoes…just general enjoyment of the sand, much like her mama when it is attached to the ocean.

We attempted some adulting at Hollywood Studios. Of primary interest was the Tower of Terror. I just kind of love it. Shelby kind of hates it but has this weird need to conquer it every single time. Which adds to how much I love it. (Last time we were there, he almost broke my sister’s hand clutching it so hard. It was great. My mother’s experience was also priceless. I wish we’d bought the picture.) Once again we were Fastpass thwarted even though I had learned the secret of the Disney App. We’d scheduled two rides at the Magic Kingdom for later that evening but didn’t get it together in time (9:00 the night before!!!! WTF Disney?) to get fastpasses to anything in Hollywood Studios.

I suppose early March is kind of Spring Break for a lot of places. And I suppose also not the best time to schedule a trip to a giant kindergarten – college age suckhole of a money suck, but it was a chunk of time I knew would work with Shelby’s theatre schedule so that’s when we were there. With everyone else on the planet apparently. Despite half the nation boycotting Disney (which clearly wasn’t enough cuz OMG lines just go away.) Even the lines for the bathroom were long and winding. And by the time you wormed your way through the bathroom line, even Star Tours had increased the wait time to 90 minutes. FOR STAR TOURS!

We waited in line for 80 minutes or so for Tower of Terror first thing when we arrived. Next to some profoundly depressing college girls. Who made me want to stab their eyeballs out and also teach them all of the things and reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeally really hope my daughter is better than that when she gets to be that age cuz OMG you guys do you even remember I HAVE A DAUGHTER? OF THE FEMALE VARIETY? crap.

We then looked up the wait time for the Aerosmith ride which I am sure has a real name but is and forever will be referred to as the Aerosmith ride. 2 hours. NOPE.

We proceeded to saunter around retired old people style. Shelby wanted a beanie so he didn’t look so I don’t know what in the pictures other people might buy of us on no other rides ever because lines. But the one we found on a cart close by didn’t have a tag and the doofus didn’t make up a price but said he couldn’t sell it to us and then hung it back up on the cart so he could NOT SELL IT TO SOMEONE ELSE IN A MINUTE.

There was just way too much profound stupidity at the Hollywood Studios that day, so we bought our Christmas ornaments and meandered to the parking lot after lunch. Because we’re 60 now.

We drove over to the parking lot for the Magic Kingdom and debated whether to ride the ferry or the monorail because you can’t just go to the Magic Kingdom you have to stand in line first. It was just chilly enough to make the prospect of the ferry horrifying so we waited for the monorail. Then waited on the monorail. Then were trapped inside the monorail once we had made it to the park for all of 2 minutes but still, I was done with the monorail.

The sun was warm enough. We did a bit of walking. A bit of talking. We had some time before we could use our Haunted Mansion ticket so we headed over to Tomorrowland which is apparently our jam. We shot imaginary lasers on the Buzz Lightyear ride. I was totally kicking Shelby’s butt but forgot about the last little bit and gave up too early and he creamed me. Whatever makes him happy. The Haunted Mansion was next, but it was stopped like 3 times while we were on it, to include a complete termination of the soundtrack which did not restart immediately with the ride which is a really weird experience. I mean, how can you pass the busted busts without hearing them sing???

We toodled around some more. Rode a few more rides. Bought a few souvenirs. Ate some food. And then got really tired and did not feel like hanging out until 10 for our Space Mountain fastpass so headed to the front of the park. To wait in line.

Don’t ask me why, but we opted for the ferry this time. Something about the length of lines, logistics of the correct monorail, loss of will to live. I felt a very strong urge to punch a woman who was clearly having a worse day than me and accused me of judging her children who as far as I could tell were being remarkably well behaved for the hour. Instead I smiled sweetly and told her that I was just surveying my future and missing my two year old daughter at home. She gave me some other snarky remark and I just laughed and then dragged Shelby to another pocket a little further ahead in the throng. A short while later, we heard a dad shouting as he walked in the opposite direction of the crowd now pushing and throwing elbows to get on the boat. “Owen?! OWEN!! OWEN?! Has anyone seen a little boy in a black hoodie?” My heart plummeted. I really hope they found Owen. I really hope Owen didn’t get in too much trouble. I’m really glad I’ve never (knock wood) felt the gut punch of not knowing exactly where my child is.

We made it back to the hotel without further incident. Hannah was sleeping though not for long. I enjoyed a glass of wine with my feet up sitting in the kitchen next to my husband happily tapping away at his computer. I looked up a few things and began to get excited about Hannah’s adventures to the Animal Kingdom the following day. I had high hopes for the Animal Kingdom.

We Interrupt This Program

To talk about my hair. What the ever lovin GRAY!?

I decided to be a big bad grown up recently. Do a thing I have never really done before in my whole grown up life. I went to a hair salon and dyed my hair. I mean, I only sorta went adult about it. I did go to Aveda and paid very little to have a student dye my hair but shut-up. Baby steps.

And I’m GLAD I didn’t shell out a billion dollars for a dye job and slice up (also known as a cut and color) because DUH DUH DUH…drumroll please.

The amount of gray hair that has crept out around my temples is obscene. And and and, I have generally straight hair anyway, pretty long and thin and limp and boringly mousy brown. It just kinda lays flat against my head no matter what I try to do with it. But these three hairs. Directly in the front. In what would be the widow peak area if I had a widow’s peak. Are short. Gray. And standing at direct attention ALL THE TIME! NO MATTER HOW MANY TIMES I YANK THEM OUT.

I’m thirty five this weekend. 35. I hate it. I don’t want it. I don’t think gray makes me look distinguished. I don’t think laugh lines and sunspots make me feel accomplished and mature. I am vain. And old. And elderly by theatre standards. And I just want boring mousy hair that lightens in the sun but grows all the way down my back without splitting and breaking. And a flat if not toned tummy that looks less like the blob in a bathing suit so I can be concerned about the roll when I sit and not the jiggle and muffin top when I am standing as straight as can be sucking in as hard as humane and covering with as much strategic hand and towel placement as possible. And two separate legs at the top when I stand AND when I walk. And smooth clear skin like I had when I was 20 and did not appreciate. That is what I want for my birthday. Make it so. Miracles people, it’s not that hard.

Florida Indeed

We took Hannah for her first (of what I assume will be many if my husband has anything to say about it) Disney experience. She loved it.

We drove down to Florida. We split the drive on the way there kinda for our own sanity in case the little dumpling had a meltdown and couldn’t make it the full way. I was mostly glad we had opted to stay in Georgia overnight, but in the long run I don’t really think it mattered much.

We arrived in Orlando Monday evening. We started to get all settled in our room and then I sent Shoobs to go pick up his mother at the airport. She had agreed to join us on our trip to be a live in nanny of sorts for when we wanted to have a more adult experience. It couldn’t have been a nicer arrangement.

Tuesday, Hannah stayed with Meme (pronounced may may) while the Huz and I saddled up and headed to Universal Studios. It was cold. Much colder than we had expected. But the lines were still long, and we had foolishly decided to purchase tickets at the gate rather than in advance. Rookie mistake. Miraculously, they opened up a new line that started with us and we got to skip about 45 minutes of waiting to get into the daggone place.

We purchased the Park to Park pass, mostly because we wanted to experience both sections of Harry Potter. We started with the park most familiar to us and wound our way to Hogsmeade. Apparently everyone else in Orlando was also only interested in  HP because what was a roomy if congested walk earlier in the park became shoulder to shoulder Mardi Gras style elbow throwing slow and steady snake by the time we got even remotely close. That said, the only real roller coaster in Hogsmeade (the Dragon Challenge) was only a 35 minute wait so we stowed the tiny amount of stuff we had in our pockets and hopped in line. I’ll spare you the drama of the locker situation.

Or maybe I won’t.

So they make you store everything in a locker. I’m not real clear on why. Like everything; chapstick, cell phones, glasses, if it is not literally affixed to your person, it must be stowed. BUT, they give you the locker rental free. BUT, they have no real way of telling how long you will be detained on the ride, so they just give you an hour. Which is great. And wonderful. If they had more than 5 lockers (exaggeration). And if  the lockers reset in the system once they had been identified as cleared. But they didn’t. So because everything is computerized, what you end up with is a bunch of empty lockers that still have time sitting on them and so can’t be checked out again, but are empty and won’t lock again. The one locker attendant is so bogged down with requests to reset this locker number and that that if you aren’t within nose rubbing distance, you won’t get heard. But whatever, the lockers were free. And the wait time for lockers was factored into the wait time for the ride so there you go.

We rode the coaster and then reevaluated our situation. We were getting hungry, Hogsmeade was till pretty packed, and we wanted to check out Diagon Alley as soon as possible, so we headed to the Hogwarts Express!