Chalk Moth & Stick Stabbings

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

My days are different than they used to be. They're full now. Not that they weren't full before, I guess, but- now they're more full of content, rather than distraction.

Last night, for the first time in I can't even remember how long- I really enjoyed putting my babies to bed. Giving them scrub a dub dub dub baths, getting splashed in the face (okay I maybe could have done without that), brushing teeny tiny teeth in little mouths with pretty pink pooh character toothbrushes and orange scented toothpaste, gently tugging the tangles out of my oldest daughter's hair using a gallon of leave in conditioner and my grown up hairbrush, since hers was nowhere to be found.

The baby was on the bed next to me, screaming so hard that her tears formed little puddles inside of her ears, her face bright red, her lungs jerking for air between cries. Normally it would have stressed me out, "stop crying baby, plllease stop crying baby", and I would have maybe neglected the other two to soothe her infant outburst. But there she was, throwing a fit beside me, mad as mad as a baby can be- and I let her. I popped her binky back into her mouth once or twice, which was no boob (and even though she wasn't hungry, thats what she really wanted), and I continued to tell Charlie how beautiful his Hello Kitty coloring page was, and smooth the rats nest out of Eleanore's hair.

And we all survived. Even the angry baby.

I enjoyed story time with the kids so much, that I kept telling them to bring me more books. Choose another one, and bring it to Mommy. I kissed them a thousand times before closing their bedroom doors. I stalled in the hallway, before going down the stairs, to listen for any last minute requests or complaints- but all I heard was Eleanore talking to her kitties, and Charlie singing row row row your boat. And the baby recovering from her fit and gasping for air in my ear while her tired head rested on my shoulder.

I wasn't in a rush to get the kids into bed. I had nowhere to be but here, nothing to do other than love, and alllll the time in the world to just watch them soak in the stories and chase each other around the room.

Without all of the distractions, I'm able to just be a Mother.

Today was busy. I'm not even sure what we did. Zoo animal stamps and ink pads. Terrible tasting cookie dough, and even worse tasting cookies. Book reading. Pipi Longstocking watching. Snuggling on the couch and wearing over sized slippers.

To kill an hour before dinner time, I took the kids outside. Evelyn sat on my hip, kicking her legs with excitement at the change of scenery, while brother and sister fought over anything and everything.

On my way back up the driveway, after talking to the neighbor for a brief second, I saw a big fuzzy spot on the cement. A big ol' moth, just lying there on his back. "Don't touch it", I told Eleanore, "I'll be right back with my camera".

And okay I know its kind of weird that I wanted to take a picture of a dead bug, but-

In the short time that it had taken me to set the baby down, switch the lens on my camera, pick the baby back up and then set her down again- Eleanore had drawn an entire house for the Moth. She didn't touch it, just like I had instructed. Instead, she touched all around it.

Moths are so unknown to me. I've never really looked at one up close. Ever, I don't think. So seeing it there, in all of its spotted beauty, was only slightly awkward, but more interesting than anything.

I had to keep waving Eleanore and her piece of blue chalk out of the way. I had to keep telling Charlie to stop throwing rocks at it. And since the sun was going down (I apologize for the lack of light in the photos, these never made it to photoshop- I'm typing this from the comfort of my netbook, on the couch, instead of the big computer) I didn't get as much time with Mr. Moth as I would have liked.

Its probably better that way though. Because I always feel like such a creeper when I'm around dead bugs. And, random fact: I hold my breath whenever we drive past a dead animal on the road, for fear of inhaling its soul.


So there I am, down on the ground taking pictures of the Moth in his blue chalk house, and I say "Eleanore, do you want to see what the pictures look like?". She shouts yes, I hit the play button on my camera, and then-

I get stabbed in the side of the head with a very large pointy stick.

"What are you doing?! PUT THE STICK DOWN!" I yell, while rubbing my hairline, expecting to see blood all over my hand (which of course there wasn't), and thinking about how much it would have sucked had I chose that exact moment to look up and had my eye poked out instead.

Right. Eleanore had stabbed me straight in the face, with a big giant stick. It was an accident, and I didn't get too hurt, but- I was still mad.

So I demanded that we go inside right then and there. We were done. It was getting dark anyways, dinner needed to be made, and my face hurt. "Time to clean up", I announced, as Eleanore had a sobbing tantrum on the ground between the chalk estate and her weapon.

As soon as she saw that I was taking pictures of her (she hates that when shes upset), she started running up the driveway towards me, giving me every mean face that she had along the way.

Well fine, give me every mean face you've got, little girl. I'll only enlarged the picture to the size of our state and have it hung up in the living room, so that we can all look at it every day for the rest of our grouchy girl lives.

And while all of that was happening, Charlie was off in the front yard pushing an empty stroller by himself, calling out for Lovey, falling down every couple of minutes in the awful dead grass, and loving every minute of it.

It was another long, life-filled day. Where when the babies went to bed (Christopher helped me get them there on his dinner break), I felt warm on the inside, even though on the outside my toes were cold and I went for my husbands hoodie the first chance I got.

Goodnight babies. Goodnight Moth (poor Moth). Goodnight scratch on the side of my head from the stupid stick that I threw into the yard after it stabbed me.

...and goodnight awful cookies with the bitter salty after taste and powdery texture.

Maybe tomorrow we'll find a ladybug to draw a city for.

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