Wednesday, August 4

Mealtime Madness and other Misc. Meanderings

Mealtimes are just plain nutty...

The crazy part is, when you add up all the time you spend on them,  you swear they take up like 2/3 of a mommas life: between the planning, the shopping, prepping, preparing, managing and then cleaning up afterwards-- it so often feels like it's time to make the girls lunch shortly after breakfast ends! 

Mealtimes are especially difficult when your children are on a food strike...Ella is on one right now. I made her eggs this morning (one of her favorites!) and they were a no go, as were the blueberries, the toast and the yogurt. 

I gave her a ham sandwich this afternoon...not so much...Same with the cheese, craisins and applesauce...

Seriously, the only thing she will eat these days is baby food. In between breakfast and lunch this morning I managed to get her to eat an entire jar of baby food while sitting on my lap on the middle of our kitchen floor. 

I know she has molars coming in BUT it makes you crazy as a mom because you know that not only are they going to be crabby because they're teething, but now also because they're hungary too!! I was ready to offer her a piece of chocolate cake after lunch, just to get her to eat something!!

At the end of the day (or  the meal!) the "experts" all say that kids bodies are pretty good at indicating what they need and what they don't so I guess I just have to trust that she's getting what she needs for now. 

This was Ella's chair after lunch this afternoon (it was worse than it looks, I swear!)...

I've decided she is going to be one of those kids that tries to hide broccoli under the table and/or in her shorts when she gets older! She is constantly jamming food into the side of her chair...I swear to you, this food did not simply fall, it was deliberately placed there! 

AND, as if it wasn't crazy enough with trying to get Ella to eat and have her fling half her food at me and shove the rest down to her side, as I was trying to get Ella to start on her lunch I went to grab Ava from the backyard and found this...

"AVA!!!! WHAT! IS! ON! YOUR! FACE???" I asked. 
"Sunscreen," she says innocently. 
"Oh dear!"
"What mommy?"
"Oh nothing...come here...actually, let me take your picture and then come here!" 

At least she gets that she needs sunscreen when it is 85 degrees outside...

So Ella sat screaming in her high chair because she was crabby and done and I still wanted her to eat and Ava started screaming  from the bathroom because when she tried to get the sunscreen off her face it started to burn her eyes and mouth! 

I ran to Ava (at least Ella was contained), helped her, threw her lunch at her and then just stared at Ella...

All the while, mind you, I am STARVING! 

THE hardest part about being on a diet is being a mom on a diet. I'm trying to figure the whole thing out, like the timing of meals and such, but by the time we got home from the library this morning the girls needed to eat asap and so with a GROWLING belly I made sandwiches, cut fruit, poured milk, found paper plates and tried to feed Ella applesauce...

Finally, I gave up and put Ella and the remaining half of her string cheese on the couch in front of a Baby Einstein, finished my salad and let me tell you...

...we had pure, SILENT, peaceful, bliss for the next 20 minutes, as I finally sat to eat my lunch and the girls recited words like "chair", "house", "table", and "phone" as Marlee Matlin taught them sign language for them. 

I have a serious love/hate relationship with the television these days...I HATE the idea of sticking my children in front of it to calm them down, to serve as a babysitter, to give them something to do, but lately I LOVE that it does sometimes calm them down and buy me a few minutes of no screaming, no climbing, no craziness, no fighting, no whining...boy, give them a lollipop and an episode of Curious George and SCORE! 

I would never do that for real. I swear! 

wink. wink. wink. 

On a happy mommy note...I LOVE my babysitter Ashely! She is THE best! Truly...she loves my children and most importantly she loves God and is the sweetest 20 year old I have met in a LONG time and I am so blessed to have found her. 

When I came home yesterday I found these on our patio table out back...

What I LOVE about Ashely is that I had absolutely nothing to do with this. She got all of the supplies out and must have taken the girls out back on her own accord...painted with them, cleaned them up and left the finished product on the table for me to find. 

Yesterday, Ashley's mother dropped her off because her car is in the shop and I was reminded that Ashley is so sweet because her mother is as equally as wonderful a person! Her mom was actually my 6th grade Health/Gym teacher at a local Christian school her and is still teaching there. 

When she dropped Ashely off yesterday she was telling me stories about how when her children were younger and she was trying to figure out whether or not to keep working she remembered praying and saying, "God, if you want me to keep teaching you have to bring me the BEST babysitter."

God answered her prayers with a pastor's wife, a retired elementary school teacher, and eventually a former student, all on separate and needed occasions. 

I think it's so cool that this mom, who prayed for the BEST person to care for her children has raised such a wonderful daughter who has been an answer to MY prayers for the BEST person to take care of my children! 

I've told Ashley she is NEVER allowed to go away to school, get married or engage in any other activity or venture that would take her away from me! 

And, while I'm thinking about it, Ashley is the product of not just a wonderful family, but also of the said Christian school her mom teaches at, which sometimes makes me think all the more about wanting to send Ava there even though I may eventually need to get a job to do so! 

Anyways...the girls will be up soon and I have a cup of coffee to drink before round two begins.

By the way, this is the cup I grab when I'm needing any extra measure of a reminder that God does love us and will help us through our tasks as moms!  My brother gave it to me for Christmas...such a sweet gift. 
Hope your afternoons are happy!  

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