Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Summer Do-Overs

School ended on Friday. I'm glad.

Last year at this time I was excited to have a great summer with the kids and their friends. Then reality (or pregnancy, rather) took over and I found myself feeling rotten physically and emotionally. It was all I could do to go through the motions of making sure everyone ate and didn't smell too terrible.

This summer here is how I plan to make up for last year.

Instead of trying not to scowl at the kids' friends when they come over I want to be the involved mother I have been in the past. (By which I mean, apart from planning a few activities for them, regular teasing of all children that happen to be in the same room as me.)

Instead of shutting myself up in the house for the entire summer I want to get out and walk and play ball and swim with my kids. (just to give you an idea, I have walked more in the last two weeks, even before school let out, than I did the entire two months of summer last year, or probably even my whole pregnancy)

Instead of watching my house fall down all around me we have a very solid cleaning schedule wherein we all do our chores for 1/2 hour together and I check the kids work and they check mine (with more tidying throughout the day).

Instead of burying my own nose in a book for most of the day and letting the kids' library books become many, many months overdue I will take them to the library once a week, I will read to the little ones daily and the older ones will each read at least one book per week.

I also meant to do weekly themes with art and science projects and fun lessons. Not sure that's going to happen as I'd hoped, but I'll try to do something. . .

As motivation to keep to this schedule, especially the keeping things very tidy part, Greg is offering Ev and Dave each 2 złoty (about 70 cents) every day that they do it. That sounded like a lot to me (we're cheap) but then he added on the end of the list that they may not whine. If they whine once, they get nothing that day. He is confident we won't be spending too much money with this plan during the two months of summer. I hope he's wrong!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Getting Shot In Poland

Okay, fine: Getting Shots In Poland.

We took Spencer to get poked in 3/4 of his appendages today (the head isn't considered an appendage, is it?). Poor little guy. It looked something like this, only this was a month ago when he was also getting poked in three of his four (five?) appendages.

His dear father decided to document it so that when he's older we can look back on the pleasant memories of his carefree childhood.

While we were there I thought, "Hey. I don't even know if they have a computer here." Peeking into the office we found that no, they don't. There is a phone though. That makes it nice as far as setting appointments goes. Just don't ask me how they keep track of who's coming in when.

Another thing they have is a shelf for files. This is a view into the office from the "healthy" waiting room (there's a separate one for sick, is it like that in the States? Weird that I don't know that)

You can see the painted metal furniture on the left, very clinical and just like the hospital beds. Floor, door, doorknob, stuff hanging on the wall, it's all very Polish Doctor's Office.

There are no cushioned chairs in the waiting room. No carpet, no soothing shades of paint on the walls or parenting magazines or neat toys for your kids to play with while they wait.

There is a doctor who smiles and talks to your baby and performs a perfect check up.(although she closes the door "so there won't be a draft"). There is an accurate scale for weighing the baby and experienced nurses to administer immunizations.

As long as they have those things, who cares that you sit on a wooden bench which has back support at a right angle to the seat while you read posters on the wall about which kind of tea your infant should be drinking? The things we need, we have.

And on a completely unrelated note, someone needs to hire Aaron for product naming. While the kids were roasting marshmallows over candles Aaron kept coming in and asking me if he could have one more marshpillow. I think he got it right. What's a mallow? They obviously hired the wrong person for naming those things.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Maybe She's Born With It

So, I know in that slogan they are referring to the woman's beauty, but as this post is about me I certainly am not referring to being born with that (see above. that's me with allergy eyes.). I'm talking about being born with makeup.

Long ago I posted about my love of make up and mentioned my "natural eye make up". Today, I blog about it. Lucky you.

With my glasses on I sort of might as well not have any eyes at all for all you can actually see them. But if you could, you might notice (but most likely wouldn't) that I wear way too much make up on my eyes. Especially the corners of my eyes. Except that I don't.

I won't go into the story, but once my sister refused to believe that I hadn't put my make up on yet in the morning, even when I told her that I only wear mascara and it was obvious I didn't have any of that on. (which reminded me of the time as a kid that I didn't believe her when she told me she wasn't wearing fake eyelashes)

Here is a picture that shows rather well, without me having an actual picture taken of my eyes for this post. I'm sort of against taking pictures of myself (or most other things) strictly to be posted here. I don't know why, but that's how it is. So anyway, when I saw this picture I thought, "Oh! There you can see it!" and decided to post it.

So now I'll be a little ridiculous and suggest that you look at my eyelids in the picture above. That will be difficult a) because there is a RATHER cute baby to look at and b) because the picture was taken in the shade and it's not that easy to see the details.

You may be able to see that it looks like I have brown eye shadow on my lids and a darker shade in the corners. Those blasted corners.

I'm not saying this is a great thing, it's just a thing. A thing that means that my self has decided what color of make up I get to wear, whether I like it or not. I do use cover up on the edges sometimes and apply a different color of shadow but usually I go brown.

Anyway. When it comes to eye make up, for some people it may be Maybelline, but I, for one, was born with it.

Friday, June 4, 2010


Spencer is learning to do a lot of things with his hands.

There's the all-time favorite: tasting them

And newer discoveries: feeling nature

grabbing tags, like this little one on his collar

and making sure his toes don't go anywhere while he naps.

But there are some things we discourage.
Another favorite from day one (or so) has been face scratching;
way too much face scratching.
So we're big on gloves.

He's also not allowed to attack our dinner.
Look at him eying that farmer's breakfast, which is why he had to be restrained

at night we don't want him doing any of the above so he gets bundled
and sleeps eight or nine hours straight.

But the best thing to do with hands, and something we never discourage, is holding sibling's.