Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Cupcake Dreams and Morning Routines

I had a vivid dream about cupcakes last night.  Maybe because I really, really, really want a chocolate cupcake with rich chocolate frosting, but maybe also because I have been mentally planning Charles’s birthday cake(s).  For Jamie I made two cakes, one a banana-split ice cream cake, the other an ├ęclair cake.  Both were delicious.  For Charles, I will make Rice Krispies treats to take to his classroom, probably frosted and in the shape of Lightning McQueen (in my head, it looks amazing).  I’ll make chocolate cupcakes and a big cake with sprinkles for his party.  But it’s SO FAR AWAY.  I want a cupcake now.


Isn’t it funny how your evaluation of your children’s behavior is completely relative?  Tony was gone first thing this morning and when I spoke with him around 9 am, he asked how the boys had been.  “Great!” I responded.  “Well, great for them.  I mean, someone else would probably think they were holy terrors, but for them they were very well-behaved.”  We only had one crying session, I wouldn’t even qualify it as a tantrum, they both ate their breakfast, put up only a moderate fuss about getting dressed and brushing their teeth, and didn’t cause major bodily harm to one another.  You may have obedient children who don’t stand on their chairs and sing The Elmo Song at the top of their lungs at 7:30 AM or run away, naked, when mom is trying to get them dressed, or drop their toothbrush in the toilet on purpose to avoid the terrible chore of cleaning their teeth, but I do.  Like I said, no major bodily harm, no big tantrums, and I got to work by 9 AM.  Win.


Parenting is all about _____________.  Lately (especially after a week without Tony), parenting has been all about staying cool.  I don’t let things phase me.  You want to sing loudly?  Sing.  You want to move every blanket and pillow to one spot in the house and snuggle with them?  Fine, I’ll just move them back later.  You want to empty that drawer or cupboard?  Fine – ten minutes of fun for you, two minutes of rearranging things for me.  I do the math and see that I’m still way ahead.  You want to bang your fork on the table?  I will calmly take your fork away.  You want to play with the slide whistle?  You have to go outside.  Getting mad and yelling doesn’t seem to work for me, so I’m trying not to do it anymore.  I hope my self-restraint will last.


Also this morning, Charles seemed to enjoy putting on his clothes in stages.  Like, “Charles, go put on underwear, that’s number one!”  A while later, “Charles, number two is pants!”  Whatever makes him happy, I guess.  I’ll change, I’ll adapt.  It used to be that I could race him to get dressed.  Now he wants something different.  I’ll keep my cool, play along, and think about the cupcakes of my dreams.

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