I love the holidays. They are the most wonderful way to end a year. Lots of good food, friends, family, Christmas music, fancy dinners, cookies, oh the cookies!
Holidays are also a time of exhaustion. Shopping, shopping, shopping. Cooking. Baking. Wrapping. Cards (I don't do them anymore myself). Traveling. Visiting. Late nights. Little sleep. All of this is a perfect recipe for: Crankiness. Bitchiness. Witchiness. Homicidal Maniac-ness.
We just came home from a week with family in New York state (the Rochester/Buffalo area to be exact). Lots of driving and lots of "being on." We finally left to return to Michigan yesterday but decided to stop in London, Ontario Canada for an overnight. We'd stayed at the Best Western Lamplighter Inn before, and Liam loved the pool and swimming that ensued. This year, he enjoyed it again. Nimmy (your author) and Poppy (your author's spouse) went into the pool for a bit as well. Nimmy eventually gravitated to the hot tub and then left the boys to swim while Nimmy went and took a hot shower back at the room.
Anyway, we left this morning and headed home to Michigan. Let me mention how great it is to be around children. You have absolutely no time to age because you're moving so fast and so constantly that the cells in your body have little time to become squalid and lifeless. They don't die slow deaths; rather, they have a quick cellular heart attack and new cells are replaced with the snap of a finger because there's just no time for languishing, growing old and wasting away.
By the time we got to our early morning breakfast, we'd been up for two hours, or should I say, feigned sleep for one hour and told Liam it wasn't time to get up yet for the second hour before resigning ourselves to the fact that it was, indeed, time to get up. We made it down to the restaurant with nary a person in sight, including the hostess, who finally appeared and, groggy-eyed, led us to our booth.
Although I've already gone this route before with my own children, I don't know what it is about humans. We just keep doing the same things over and over again, thinking that maybe, just maybe, THIS time, there will be a different result. Kind of like why women keep going through childbirth - even though the first time was so hellish and hurt so goddamned bad, that we promised we'd be performing our own vasectomy on our husbands once we got the hell out of that hospital and that we would never EVER EVV-AARR do this again, well guess what? Most of us did it again. And so that's why we keep taking children back to the restaurant. Because we think it's not going to hurt so bad this time around. Or maybe we're better prepared. Because we know what to expect. Yeah, right.
Anyway, after taking the knife from him and then the fork because he so accurately mentioned that, "couldn't I get just as hurt from this fork as I could from that knife?" while he poked his cheek gently as just a simple demonstration, AND, after telling him four times to get back into the seat and out from under the table, AND, after me mistakenly using every last one of those little creamer cups set out in a pretty bowl and stirring them into my coffee because I had no idea what I was doing while explaining to him what was going to happen if he didn't stop doing what he was doing, and then drinking just a little coffee with my cream, AND, after bellowing at my husband to get OUT of the seat and move so that Liam could be released as I pointed to the empty table where he was to go and sit ALONE and Liam begging for forgiveness and my husband sitting there, half in and half out of the booth, not sure WHAT to do, I decided that I will never EVER take this child to another restaurant until he is graduated from high school. NOTE TO SELF: He's just as tired and cranky as we are. I get that.
We made it through that ordeal and piled into the car on a blustery snowstorm of a day and headed home. The roads were treacherous and I was glad when we finally pulled into our driveway. Lugging my purse, laptop, a bag filled with toys and snacks and another bag I used as an overnight bag while on our adventure in London, Ontario, I got Liam out of the car and the three of us trudged to the door. Poppy (my husband) unloaded the rest of the car and shoveled the driveway while I put things away.
We hadn't been home an hour and Liam wanted to take a bath with his toy fish his mama gave him for Christmas. All you do is set them in the water and these rubber fish start swimming. The thing is, that I hadn't cleaned the tub in almost two weeks because of the holidays, so that had to be done first. I scrubbed and rinsed and rinsed and scrubbed and then filled the tub.
He hadn't been in the tub five minutes before he was "wondering" if I knew where his goggles were so he could watch his fishies swim from under the water. I couldn't remember where I had put them prior to leaving for New York. I was pretty certain I had put them in the big walk-in closet in the back hallway. Of course, the goggles were not right there. Even though I was sure I'd seen them "right there" BEFORE we left town. So I cleaned out the entire closet, rearranged shoes, moved boxes of summer clothes and hung up cloth grocery bags - which is where I found the goggles - tucked in one of my cloth grocery bags.
Less than two hours later, my entire laundry room had to be emptied and mopped because of a major spill caused by...you guessed it! He spilled my coconut oil all over the laundry room floor where I had been storing it to keep it in liquid form to make it easier to manage while making soap. Apparently, the chair he stands on to watch the washer wash laundry was wet (because he had gotten it wet after trying to clean up the water he had spilled all over the bathroom sink, down the front of the cupboards and all over the bathroom floor - don't even ask). He apparently put that wet towel onto his little chair and he needed to dry off his little chair to stand on it and look at the washing machine. Make sense? I didn't think so.
Anyway, when he went to grab a towel to dry off his chair, he reached for the pile of clothes I had just put (not 15 minutes earlier, mind you) onto the floor that I had planned on washing later this evening. These were the clothes from our trip. He apparently knocked my coconut oil drum over because there was very little left in it anyway and it was light.
Naturally, I ended up on the floor, down on my hands and knees with this one. Two loads of laundry later (the clothes that I had set on the floor to be washed anyway but which were now covered in coconut oil), I was ready for an attitude adjustment on my part.
But that attitude was challenged even further, because...you see, when we arrived home, the first thing my husband brought to my attention was the fact that one of the cats had pooped in the litter box in the garage (they have a cat door to the garage where we keep the boxes) and he couldn't do any work out there that needed to be done (access to snow shovel, etc) because it smelled so bad out there. I went out, grabbed the shovel and cleaned out the litter box.
And then, somewhere in between the interactions with a cantankerous five year old, the fifty-three year old husband tells me that something smells musty in his office and he can't figure it out and could I? NOT NOW. I bellow.
And, the final piece de' resistance? After scrubbing a bath tub, wiping up a flood on the bathroom counter and floor, after scrubbing up coconut oil from the laundry room floor and almost completely renovating a closet in search of goggles, my husband noticed an oily footprint on the kitchen floor.
Good night everyone. He's still alive.
Epilogue: No animals, children or husbands were harmed during the making of this day. And I am not a door mat even though I might make it sound like I'm a shoe-in for the part as of this writing. But there are many tiles that set the groundwork for this story and I've only included snippets of the grout used in pulling these tiles together. Yes, there were time outs today. Yes, Nimmy won standoffs. Yes, there were moments of loveliness. Yes, there was a major confrontation with my spouse, leaving him sulking in his chair downstairs (no, he's not in a timeout) and me upstairs in bed with my three cats and my laptop. Tomorrow is another day. Life is good. The holidays are challenging and exhausting and we always manage to survive. Happy #$%^ New Year!
Copyright 2014 liamsgrandma