Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Bath Time = Memories + Gray Hair

This particular bath time took place on Sunday evening. We'd planted flowers and played outside all afternoon and evening. If the dirtier you are is directly correlated to the fun you've had, we all had an absolute blast. It was after 7:30 p.m., and an already tired two-year-old did not understand the necessity of getting clean. Here's how it went down:

Ellie: (whining) "It's too hot!"

Me: "It's too hot?" (checking water again)

Ellie: "It's too cold!"

Me: "It's not too cold."

Ellie: "Yes it is! It's cold! ... It's hot."

Me: "It's not too hot or too cold. The temperature of the water is just fine."

Ellie: "Okay. I want bubbles."

Me: "No problem. What's the magic word?"

Ellie: "Please!"

Me: "Okay, let's make some bubbles." (turns water back on and pours a little Burt's Bees Baby Shampoo and Wash into the water stream)

Ellie: "I don't want those bubbles!"

Me: "Ellie, it's too late. You have bubbles now."

Ellie: "But I don't want them!" (fake cries for a moment but then gets it together) "I want toys."

Me: "Sure. What's the magic word?"

Ellie: "PLEASE!"

Me: "Which bath toys would you like?"

Ellie: "All of them!"

Me: "Nope. We're taking a quick bath tonight. Just pick a couple."

Ellie: "Noooooo! I want all the toys!"

Me: "How about..." (insert nearly every bath toy option the girl has here)

Ellie: "No. I don't want that one." (repeats with each option)

Me: "Okay, no toys then. Let's just get you clean."

Ellie: "No! I don't wanna get clean. I want more bubbles."

Me: "No ma'am. We're not using more bubbles tonight."

Ellie: "Please, please! I want more bubbles! Puh-lease!"

Me: "How about your boat? Would you like to play with your boat?"

Ellie: "Yes! I want the boat!"

Me: "Great!" (hands boat to Ellie) "What are you supposed to say?"

Ellie: "Please!"

Me: "Well, that's a very nice magic word, but after you get something you want or need you should say 'thank you.'"

Ellie: "Thank you. I don't wanna play with this boat. I want my animals." 

Me: (losing patience) "Hand me your boat please. Here are your animals, and here are your cups. You have lots of fun with these cups!"

Ellie: "I'm ready to get out now. I'm all done now."

Me: "You're finished."

Ellie: "Okay, I'm finished." 

Me: "Yes, that's correct, but, no, we still need to get you clean. I'll wash you super fast!"

Ellie: "Okay." (begins playing with toys and putting them on the edge of the tub getting water on the floor)

Me: "Ellie, keep your toys in the tub. They're getting water on the floor." (takes hand towel and wipes up the water)

Ellie: (continues putting toys in the edge and getting more water in the floor)

Me: "Ellie, stop! Keep your toys in the tub. You're getting the floor wet." (wipes floor again)

Ellie: (continues to ignore me and put more toys on the edge soaking the floor)

Me: (very frustrated with an elevated tone of voice) "Ellie, I've already asked you twice to stop. Do not put another toy on the edge of this tub!"

Ellie: (in a singsong voice) "What's the magic word?"

Saturday, April 16, 2011

No Wonder 50% of Marriages End in Divorce

Marriage is hard. Add a child to the mix, and it's even more difficult. My husband and I have been married for nearly 13 years, and let me first set the record straight that we're not getting divorced. (Not today anyway.) But that's not to say he doesn't drive me absolutely insane. I'm sure you'd be shocked to learn I'm not always so delightful to be around, and I drive him crazy too; however, this is my blog so I won't bore you with those details. 

What I will tell you about are the times when I think I might actually lose it completely, like when it's his turn to clean up the dinner dishes, and he thinks rinsing and stacking them in the sink will suffice. I can't stand it when he doesn't empty his pockets, and I wash random items left in his pants. When he takes the initiative to throw in a load of laundry they end up mildewing in the washing machine about forty percent of the time. The other sixty percent they get dried and left to sit and wrinkle themselves to death until I salvage them from the dryer. And of course he and our two-year-old daughter, Ellie, are two peas in a pod so they're already ganging up on me. 

But then my little family and I have a day like today. It began with the planets perfectly aligned because Ellie slept until 8:30 a.m. That never happens! We enjoyed a nice morning, and this afternoon we went to The University of Tennessee's Orange and White Game, the annual inter-squad football scrimmage. Today was super special because not only was it Ellie's first time inside Neyland Stadium, but it was the debut of this year's t-shirt. This t-shirt was designed by the one and only Laddy Fields, my sweetie. I think I may be the only person in the history of Tennessee Football to ever tear up at the Orange and White Game. I'm pretty sentimental anyway, but today made me really misty-eyed.

Laddy and I married at a young age. We did the whole crappy apartment/multiple crappy jobs thing for a while. Laddy is the smartest person I know (although for some reason he can't manage to sort his clothes into the four color-separated hampers we have), but after college he hadn't decided what he wanted to do yet. Really, when you think about it, who has? At today's game I vividly remembered the night we sat in our tiny apartment in Bristol. It was the night before his interview for his first design job. I'm not sure what he'd written in his cover letter, but I recall it being very late and him being stressed to come up with an entire portfolio. Everything he knew at the time (and for that matter what he knows today) has been self-taught. He had a few books out that night trying to figure it out, and I hung around for moral support. I'm not quite sure how he got that job. I figure it was part luck, part skill, part charm and part divine intervention. 

Fast forward about 10 years and five increasingly awesome design jobs later, and there we sat watching his design on the jumbotron. I can't imagine being any prouder. Every artist in the state and beyond would love to have designed UT's Official Fan T-shirt for 2011, but it was my husband who was sought after. It was honestly emotional for me in a weird way. It's like we'd hit some sort of milestone. For as many times as we have no idea what we're doing or where we're going, I had peace that whatever happens, we're going to be okay. Mostly because we have each other, flaws and all.

It made me see how far we've come in a decade. We've moved to Knoxville, become home owners, adopted a dog and had a baby. We've been through a lot, both good and not as good, and we've been extremely blessed. And I'm going to do my best to hang onto this zen feeling, at least until mid-week when Laddy will forget to replenish the toilet paper.