Tag Archives: life

I Make It To The Gym (Finally) And Love The Shower The Best

It finally happened. I went to the gym. I worked out. I know, it’s a miracle of sorts. I am on the road to a slightly better bathing suit body or maybe at least a body that actually fits into said bathing suit. The gym was spectacular. I have to admit that I loved it, but not just for the exercise.

The day of my first gym trip started with a screaming toddler and a cranky(ish) husband. I had scheduled “gym time” into the family schedule and was packing my bag to go when I started to feel a little guilty for leaving my husband alone with the most miserable little girl in the whole wide world. OK, maybe that’s exaggerating, but I am sure she was at least the most miserable little girl in the whole wide county. She was crying over spilled milk, spilled cereal, and spilled blocks. She didn’t like her clothes, her hair, or her diaper. If things were going good for 30 seconds she found fault with something else just so she could cry. She woke up tired and needed a nap, but was not about to take one. I looked at my husband and he said, “Go to the gym.” So, I did.

By the time I drove to the end of the driveway my guilt had melted away and I smiled with my new found freedom from the cranky baby/cranky daddy duo that was likely throwing tantrums and screaming at each other as I drove off into the sunset. It was going to be a fantastic morning and after my workout I had plans for solo grocery shopping. What a novelty! I had plans to linger over the produce aisle and hide behind stacks of cookies while looking at Facebook on my phone. I might even stop for coffee…yeah, I was planning on pushing things a little.

I got to the gym, let myself in and promptly boarded an elliptical machine. I stumbled over the buttons, but finally got it moving and off I went to nowhere fast. I was feeling pretty spiffy and energetic until a 20 something climbed on the elliptical machine next to me and took off like a gazelle. I was huffing and puffing and stumbling my way through my two mile adventure, but I am pretty sure she never even broke a sweat. She should be making commercials for deodorant or maybe for the Olympics. Then, I did a few miles on the treadmill going uphill both ways while I simultaneously listened to a news show on my iPod and watched a movie on the TV screen located directly in front of my face. It’s been so long since I chose something to watch on TV that I almost didn’t remember how to do it. I wasn’t interrupted once by a screaming baby or a husband asking if I knew where the such and such is or complaints that he couldn’t find specified such and such and could I please help him find it. It was bliss.

I know I am supposed to say that I got a runners high or felt completely energized by my workout, but in all honesty my favorite part of my gym experience was the showers. I had the entire bathroom to myself for a full, uninterrupted shower. There were no toys being dropped in with me, not one person ripped the shower curtain back to talk to me, and I didn’t hear my name called even once. I could have stayed in there all day except that would probably seem weird and suspicious to the other gym goers. Plus, I am pretty sure my husband would have called the police to file a missing person’s report if I stayed in there for hours on end. He was home with a screaming baby after all.

Still, it was a bit wonderful to be at the gym all by myself and then to be buying groceries all by myself. I felt like a big girl for once. I did miss Tiny-Small a little when I started talking to myself in the coffee aisle. I kind of forgot how often I use her as cover for my inappropriate behaviors and overall general madness. I can only hope my eccentricities went unnoticed by my fellow shoppers and store employees. If not, I may need to purchase a disguise for future solo shopping trips.

So, in conclusion, I will be returning to the gym because I love the showers, the TV, and the running at my own pace sort of thing. I hope to gain some muscle and lose some inches, but even if I don’t I will still enjoy the time to myself. It’s nice to feel like my old prehusband, prebaby self for a change and to think uninterrupted thoughts even if it is for just an hour or two per week. It’s my little slice of heaven right here on earth and after this delicious, soul recuperating activity I really couldn’t wait to get home to see my family.

If You Give A Toddler A Cookie She’ll Throw It In The Bathtub With You


This is a memoir written explicitly to express my displeasure in showering with “company” for the past week. When you are sweet and pregnant dreaming about pink ruffles and baby carriages your friends and family never bother to tell you to enjoy showering alone. They should, because you will likely never do it again. At least not until your child is old enough to be left alone in a room without breaking something, breaking themselves, swallowing small, hidden, foreign objects, or climbing up the wall and then falling out the window. Yeah. There are two choices for showering at my house. The first one is I shower while Tiny-Small roams the bathroom looking for trouble. The second one is she showers with me. Both choices have unpleasant aspects, concerns, and lack of freedom involved. What? Why don’t I shower at night after she has gone to bed? I don’t shower after she has gone to bed because by that time of night I am way too tired to even turn the water on. I wish I was exaggerating.

SO, this is my past 7 days of showering:

Day 1: While I am in the shower Tiny-Small is pilfering through the bathroom drawers and throwing toothpaste and hair bows left and right. Then it gets quiet. Too quiet. I call out, “Are you OK? Hello? Say something!” Then I hear a little giggle. I pull back the curtain and find her writing with a blue crayola marker all over her stomach. I have no idea where the marker came from. I don’t know how she got the top off. I close the curtain, shut my eyes, and pretend I am someone else for 30 seconds. It doesn’t work, I’m still me.

Day 2: This time Tiny-Small is in the tub with me. She’s writing on the walls with her bathtub crayons while I wash my hair. All of a sudden I feel a big glob of something land on my foot. I open my eyes and she is pouring her dad’s fancy schmancy bath gel out of the bottle and screaming, “Lotion, lotion, lotion! Soap!” I give her some lecture my parents gave to me (at least a thousand times), about money not growing on trees, and then I get soap in my eyes. Then I start screaming, “Ouch!!!” Then she starts screaming because now she has soap in her eyes too. Two gals flapping around screaming because their eyes are literally on fire. It’s a great way to bond. I’m starting to hate peppermint soap.


Day 3: While I am in the shower Tiny-Small keeps pulling the shower curtain back while singing, “Where awww uooo, Mama?” The hot water sprays out each time leaving a big puddle on the floor. I keep pulling the curtain shut and trying to redirect her to the other end of the bathtub where the water is less likely to squirt out all over the bathroom. Then, she rips the curtain open so hard that it rips off a couple of the hooks. By the time my shower is over she is completely soaked and needs to be redressed, the floor looks like a kiddie pool, and then just for extra fun she runs across the wet floor, slips and falls. Scream, scream, scream…

Day 4: I’m in the shower  (she is not) and I hear banging around. “What are you doing? Are you All right?” I beg, I mean ask. Then I hear “I right.” So, I start rinsing the soap out of my hair. Then I hear her screaming, “I Schhhhtuck. I Schhhhtuck. Hep me! Hep me!” I pull back the shower curtain and somehow Tiny-Small has gotten the dental floss off the bathroom counter, opened it, pulled out the floss and wrapped it around both legs. She looked like a deer that had been bound after hunting season. I could have just picked her up and put her on the roof of my car and called it a day. She rolled around on the floor squawking and flailing. I shut the curtain and counted to a million. I’m still counting to this day.

Day 5: Tiny-Small is in the shower with me. She is playing nicely with her toys. All of a sudden she has my razor. I don’t know how she got it because I usually keep it on a shelf that is at least shoulder high. She has magical powers when it comes to retrieving objects she is not allowed to touch. She especially loves the dangerous objects and will put much effort into getting them. She starts trying to shave my leg with it while I attempt to wrestle it from her slippery little hands. The whole time she is yelling at me, “Stop! No. Stop!” I think she probably hears that said in her general direction a few times a day. Nobody got hurt, but one of us was very angry for a while. I’m not naming names, but she was both tiny and small.


Day 6: Tiny-Small takes a bath by herself. I take a shower by myself. Paradise. Oh no: Paradise interrupted by hubby who comes into the bathroom and wants to complain about the neighbor’s dog coming in our yard and biting poor Rosie. Guess who comes with him? You got it. Tiny-Small. She says, “Mama? Mama?” Then she pulls back the shower curtain and throws several of her toys in with me. I throw her toys back out, but realize I missed one when the water starts rising up past my shins. The drain has been blocked. Meanwhile, the  hubby keeps strategizing about how to keep the horrible dogs next door from coming into the yard. I secretly plot to run away from home.

Day 7: I’m in the shower. Tiny-Small has knocked over the laundry basket. She is in a full out tug-of-war with the dog. I don’t know how the dog got into the bathroom or when, but there she is on one end of my sweater while Tiny-Small pulls on the other end screaming, “No bites! Nooooo bites!” I pull back the shower curtain and see Tiny-Small rolling around in the dirty laundry like the bad guys in movies always roll around in the money after they rob a bank. I close the curtain thankful the clothes were at least dirty to start with. The next thing I feel is a cold draft. I open my eyes just in time to see Tiny-Small throw my sweater into the shower and before I can stop her she throws a towel in too. As I bend down to pick them up she pulls the shower curtain back one last time and throws in a cookie. A cookie?! She didn’t have a cookie before we entered the bathroom so she must have stored it in some secret location waiting for just the right moment to fling it at me in the bathtub. It’s hard to believe she doesn’t plan these things out weeks in advance sometimes. I keep thinking about the book, “If You Give A Mouse A Cookie” and keep thinking yeah, but if you give a toddler a cookie she’ll just throw it in the bathtub with you.


Good grief. It’s no wonder I look like something the cat dragged in half the time. I’m not completely positive I rinsed the soap out of my hair today. I keep asking myself, “Did I rinse it out? Did I?” I don’t know the answer to that question. Anyway, let this be a warning to all of you bright-eyed, bushy-tailed soon to be parents: shower while you can. Don’t take anything for granted! It’s the little things that will drive you crazy someday or everyday or sometimes on an hourly basis. I’ve got cookie crumbs between my toes, red burning eyes, and bubbles in my hair and that is after I took a shower. Maybe some things are just better left unsaid. I mean, how many people would want to have kids after reading this weekly adventure? I’m guessing some people just got real serious about over populating the planet and other such causes. It’s OK though because someday Little Miss Tiny Small will have a child just like her….

Sleepless In Seattle Or Where Ever It Is We Live

By now you have heard me belly ache about my daughter’s sleeping or lack there of. I’m like a broken record whining off key and out of tune on a turn table with no off switch. If you’re too young to know what a turn table is I’m really in trouble (look it up you young’ens). I’m really in trouble anyway because no sleep is bad news according to all of the health reports I’ve read lately. After 21 months of this it’s amazing that I’m not just sitting in a chair staring into space for most of the day or just drooling on myself even. Yuck, I really don’t like saliva. Anyway, you can imagine the advice I have gotten on this topic over the past year. Everyone has a sure cure to remedy the situation. This is my story on how nothing (so far) has worked.

First there was the warm bath before bed, calm and quiet book reading, and dim lighting. It sounds like a nice date with yourself, but in fact this is what all baby books seem to recommend. The problem is my daughter falls asleep easily, she just doesn’t stay asleep – so nice, but no solution. Then there was the feed her a big, heavy meal and of course it’s polar opposite: a small, light meal. Neither have made much difference. Except the big meal made her roll around with gas pains and the small meal made her hungry for a snack in the middle of the night.Why not? We’re up anyway. Light blocking curtains are in place, but she wakes up at 3 am (the witching hour) so no help at all. Then we tried the no nap during the day policy idea which was hell on earth for all involved. The poor kid was exhausted and cranky and frankly so was I. We have put her to bed early and also put her to bed late. By some criminal twist of fate going to bed late always makes her wake up early (and also in the night) and going to bed early also makes her wake up early and in the night. The most traumatic experimental night was a recent one where we attempted to let her cry it out. We were determined not to go into her room. So there we were, in bed in the middle of the night, listening to the soul crushing crying coming from our little girl on the first floor. Before long Jim caved in and went down to right all of our wrongs. It was a good thing he did too because she had somehow gotten her foot over the crib bumper and wedged between the crib and the wall. She was stuck and we were inexcusably guilty for not coming to her rescue. We will probably have to pay enormous therapy bills when she grows up (for us not her) and all because we selfishly wanted to sleep through the night.

It gets worse. Today I clicked on an article from The Week, “Does snoring make kids crazy?” Mostly because I wanted to know what they meant by “crazy” and I was given one more thing to worry about. Apparently children with sleep problems are more likely to develop behavioral problems like hyperactivity by the age of 7. They are talking about ADHD which has been diagnosed in my family so it isn’t much of a stretch to imagine this could be in our future and this label could be thrust upon our sweet and sleepless little child. The article assumes that lack of sleep causes changes in a child’s neurological makeup, but I wonder if the converse is also true. Can a neurological difference be causing the sleep problems? I’m worried, but at the same time at least ADHD is something familiar and something I can understand. Her pediatrician assures me that some kids don’t sleep through the night until they are two and that there is still hope. Hope. Hope is what I am always clinging to without apology and without shame. Hope that someday I will sleep again for eight hours straight and so will she.

As for me I am so tired that sometimes when I wake up in the night I am not sure where I am. I’m a bit disoriented for a moment and have to remember which side of the bed to roll out of before I attempt to climb down the stairs. It’s a sacrifice I am willing to make, but not without complaining a little or a lot or sometimes all day long. I’m stubborn. I’m Irish. I won’t give up even if I have to meet the UPS guy at the door wearing my pajamas (because choosing an actual outfit requires the kind of decision making that my tired brain can’t always muster the energy to do). I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. I know this can’t go on forever. Now if I could just turn that light off and find a nice quiet place to rest my eyes for a bit I might be able come up with an appropriate ending for this blog post. That doesn’t look likely.

Here is a link to the article I referred to in case anyone wants to read it: http://theweek.com/article/index/225210/does-snoring-make-kids-crazy