Saturday, June 23, 2012

What Love Looks Like...

It's shaped like a cross. But it's so very sweet.

Chiara Corbella, pray for us. Especially when the days (and nights) of motherhood are challenging.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Psalms of David

Come on, I had to think up a clever title to compete with Simon Says and Mike Check. So maybe it's a little irreverent. Would you expect anything less? And don't worry, I won't be busting this out as a recurrent feature. I'm just not up for the challenge of remembering 98% of what we say to each other that isn't funny. So I can't imagine cataloging his comedic genius on a regular basis. But maybe I'll surprise myself....

Over Father's Day weekend, (3 days of it, much to my delight) my handsome husband continually surprised me with his one-liners, delivered in juuuuust enough of a flat affect to let me know that he has not yet recovered from the sleeplessness bomb that detonated on our wee family exactly 2 months ago today. (Love you, John Paul)

So without further ado...I give you the following gems:

While excoriating Joey for his 13th summit into the babyswing of the morning, he barked 'out of there Mr. Copa Cabana ... you'll be doing your lounging in time out since you didn't listen to mommy.'

Whilst sunning our whitewhitewhite selves at an upscale pool with 'water features' on Father's Day, he whispered 'For a family friendly place, there sure are a lot of tattoos.' Upon being reminded that his wife is also inked, he replied 'I was reflecting on that.'

Before a family excursion to Target, when I asked whether I needed to change from my daily momiform of maternity capris and magenta wife beater, he calmly replied 'Maybe you could slip into something a little less white trash.'

When asked if he wanted to pray Joey's bedtime Rosary decade, he gestured towards the living room where The Bachelorette was streaming live: 'Well we've already missed the intro...we better wait for a commercial break.'

Upon hearing a certain someone emit a clap of thunder from the backseat, he remarked 'that's JP's battle cry.'

Discussing our upcoming trip to Rome and attendance at a Papal Mass with our smallest fry, he asked in mock horror, 'You're going to breastfeed in front of the Holy Father. You know he's German, right?'

I'd say we're equally yoked.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Holy hell

My husband went away last weekend for a little retreat with his best guy friends and their spiritual director.

Let me be quite clear; were I not headed to friggin Italy with this man in less than 2 weeks time (more on that later), there would be no way in allllllll the world I would have agreed to saddle up this horse solo at a measly 7 weeks postpartum. Other women give birth in rice paddies in Vietnam during their 12 hour shifts, live-Skype their labors with their warrior husbands fighting wars in godless deserts a million miles away, and have Irish twins and a husband in a residence program that is hellish with a side of Purgatory...and they are all holier and more capable than me.

So to go away and leave me with both tots for 48 hours was pretty much an ass-kicking if ever there was one.

Like a brave little soldier, I marshaled my troops and piled them into the sensible sedan for a 50 mile road trip south where I sought solace with mi madre and the always delightful and fashionable Tia Tia (sister/aunt/fashionista extraordinaire), where I spent a somewhat enjoyable Friday sunning myself at the country club while my gentlemanly sons swam dignified laps and then popped over to the golf course to play the back 9.

What actually happened was that I allowed Joey to drown not once but three times in the urine-warmed baby pool, the first instance being completely and utterly a product of my maternal naivete and negligence as I turned away from him to yell to my mom 'how cute he looked!' Cue spectating and obviously more experienced mother of 5 gently but firmly alerting me from her perch poolside that 'he's underwater.'


I scooped up a red, sputtering toddler and hastily and forced cheerfully righted him in the 18 inch depths of the water telling him he was 'okay' and 'oops, sometimes we swallow wa-wa' ... no mention of how his mother's ineptitude was actually the source of his brush with mortality.

He proceeded to drown twice more during our stay (note: to drown is to struggle/inhale/lose control of one's motor skills in the water...sometimes but not necessarily resulting in death.) I know this becasue I was a (clearly incompetent) lifeguard for many moons. At this very pool. Circle of life, baby.

Anyway, the Titanic didn't sink, the day continued on somewhat uneventfully, (minus the shameful bar scene at same Club later that evening featuring 2 babies negligently passed along the row of barstools to the delight of several drunken, retired golfers) and I made it back to Denver in one piece, toting my very own mother's little helper in the form of Tia Tia, who I bribed with the promise of cheap booty shorts from AeroEagleOutfitters.

All this to say I was really, actually on my own for less than 18 hours from Saturday afternoon to Sunday morning...but I'll be damned if if didn't feel like a fortnight.

The crown jewel of my 'weekend' flying solo was definitely 9 o'clock Mass on Sunday, the (unbeknownst to me) Feast of Corpus Christi. (Translation: 90 minute liturgy)

Decked in my fanciest, rhinestone and flower-decked headband from Forever 21 and a slightly hideous thrifted Ann Taylor number with a provocatively low neckline for ease of nursing, I strapped on my Ergo and wore/dragged both children inside and slid right into the middle of a mostly empty pew. (Why? The middle? Why? Idiot )

We did survive the first 50 minutes almost flawlessly, but as the timer ticked down to what time Mass is usually done, Joey's internal alarm system triggered, leaving me to scoop up both children, hundreds of craisins, a fistful of finger puppets and a loaner copy of 'The Joys of Being a Catholic Child' which our pewmate apologetically forced upon us. 'No really, you can keep it. We have another at home'

Sweating profusely, I made it to the glassed-off vestibule in time for John Paul to realize he was starvingstarvingstarving, prompting a frantic search for a nursing perch. I beelined it toward the confessionals where a tiny and nervous looking Asian man scooted 3 millimeters aside to let me share his bench built for one, and I rewarded his generosity by promptly whipping out a boob. And yelling at Joey repeatedly in a not-quite-whisper to stop shoving all the abortion pamphlets into the Knights of Columbus charity bin. Stop it. STOP IT.

He had no sooner emptied the rack than John Paul let loose with the most prolific diaper of his life, and, while I am prone to hyperbole, I must be quite clear that I speak literally here: he literally pooped so far up his back it got into the locks of his baby mullet, and, the tiny Asian man literally started gagging and ran to the restroom.
Proof Pudding.
Joey, sensing my defenselessness, made a break for the gift shop while I frantically tried to mop up a nuclear waste spill with far too few diaper wipes, but I was forced to admit defeat, strip the offending child and swaddle him in my nursing cover.

Does this hyper masculine floral print make me look fat? And naked?
By the time I got to Joey in said gift shop he was trolling his greedy little fingers through bins of holy medals and pocketing his favorites. I scooped him under my free and non-pooped arm and ran back into the vestibule in time to see Father reposing the Blessed Sacrament, signaling to me that we'd missed Communion and that it was most definitely time to beat a hasty retreat.

Jenny: 0
Boys: 47

 And for the record, I did throw a very genuine and heartfelt apology to my gagging Asian friend as we passed each other in my flight to the parking lot.

Can't make this stuff up.

Thursday, June 7, 2012


I ain't writ in so long cause I ain't slept none, neither.

Not for many, many moons has this head spent 3 consecutive hours resting upon a pillow.

And so, I'll leave you with this:

I'm alive. I'm sitting alone at the computer in front of a three-quarters empty bottle of red wine, and my husband took the smallest tyrant to the local organic grocery store by.him.self.

Mind blown.

And obviously, instead of, oh, sleeping or maybe getting freaky wild and showering... I'm catching up on me internets.

Because last night...oh, let me tell you about last night.

It started at 10 pm when John Paul unexpectedly passed out AND was successfully transferred to his pack n play with minimal blood, sweat or tears.

I promptly passed out into a deep and dreamless stupor only to be awakened not by my starvingstarvingstarving 7 week old who'd gone 78 minutes between feedings, but to a frantic husband clutching not one but TWO babies and urgently ordering me in between machine gun bursts of thunder and apocalyptic lightening 'into the basement, there's a tornado warning!'

Note: we don't have a basement.

I made the mistake of hesitating and asking him what in the heezy he meant by basement, at which he promptly barked at me 'not to argue with him, this is real!' before hustling me out of the bedroom and into our kitchen where he pried up the awkward trap door in the filthy linoleum and disappeared down a rotting wooden ladder into the bowels of hell. With the laptop. And exterior baby.

Dumbfounded, I sat on the kitchen floor with formerly interior baby resting inexplicably silently in my arms, and then realized that he was a. serious and b. waiting for me to drop down into the dungeon behind him.

Summoning all my womanly courage, I hoisted the baby onto my shoulder and backed barefoot down the decrepit 'staircase' into the packed-dirt dungeon from Silence of the Lambs. Only no killer. And more spiders. (Oh, you never saw the horror movie/psychological thriller du jour from the 90's? Well, your soul is in better shape than mine.)

45 minutes later, had convinced my vigilant Midwestern husband that perhaps we could relocate to the boy's closet on the 'main' level. Let me be perfectly clear: our rental house is 1,000 feet square in a generous estimate, and there sure as hell isn't a basement to speak of. Don't get me started on the 'attic.'

We ended the cray cray crazy stormy night huddled in Joey's walk in closet (much more generously appointed than ours, I jealously noted), praying a decade of the Rosary and feeding a certain someone a tasty midnight treat of banana and water. (The provisions I grabbed as we fled to safety.)

Never not an adventure...

Here's hoping the vino renders me unresponsive should tonight's equally ominous weather report yield repeat nocturnal antics. God help us all.