Nothing in Life is Free

Photo: This is actually our view from playgroup on Monday mornings, but it’s perfect for today because the weather was yucky this morning. I don’t love everything about the city of Boston, but the skyline from across the Charles is really quite impressive.


It is a gray and gross day here in Massachusetts. The air is cold and raw, and the rain can’t decide what it wants to do. I decided not to go out with the boys today so as to avoid whatever plague would come from taking them out in this weather. This, of course, is where a family membership to the Children’s Museum or the Aquarium or something would be super helpful. Of course, that would then require a nice long drive into the city. And do you know how much a pass to the Boston Children’s Museum costs? Those suckers start at $150. Ridiculous.

I had a back-up plan for  being here all day, because we actually got a brand new set of toys. A big Fisher-Price kitchen complete with every plastic foodstuff and cookware you can imagine.  The cost? Not a single penny. One of the teaches over at Ursa Major’s school was giving it away. She even brought it to my door. I was beside myself with happiness. When she brought it to the door, I insisted on thanking her. Can I bake something for you, I asked her. She tried to beg off, but finally accepted my offer to bake her a poundcake (which is cooling as we speak). After hanging me the plastic behemoth, she went back to her SUV. “I have a bonus, too!” She announced, taking out the red and yellow toy shopping basket. “The boys can go shopping, too!” She said. I accepted it graciously. Bonuses are always good, right?

Nothing in life is free, ya’ll. Nothing in life is free.

How many times can two toddlers fight over a toy?How many times can one run over the toy with the other? I put the big plastic kitchen in the kitchen so that the boys could pretend to cook right alone with me while I cook dinner in the evenings. Why play with the kitchen in the kitchen when you can run over the little brother with the  stupid grocery cart? Augh, too many freaking times. Of course, Ursa Minor has also decided to try out all of the food and utensils.. putting many a plastic thing in his mouth. The ick factor is huge enough, let alone the chocking hazard. This thing has turned into far more of a hassle than I could ever imagine.

We’ve figured out a turn system with the cart, which works maybe 75% of the time. the system fell apart once a child became distracted by whatever was on the television. I have tried to utilize my time between breaking up the fights by baking and catching up on the week’s cleaning. I don’t know how it is Wednesday already. How is it Wednesday already? I feel like I haven’t accomplished anything this week, which must be true judging by the mess that is this house. Even after the picking up and vacuuming that I’ve done, the various loads of laundry (that next need to be folded), I’m still looking around like “augh, this place is gross.”

Maybe it is the beginning of transition. I know (I think) I’m leaving this place, thus I choose not to really care? But I do care! I’m putting in a lot of effort to make it look like wolves don’t live here! Maybe it is just the weather–winter gray is settling in, and nothing looks good with winter gray as the backdrop.

Let’s play a game–it’s called “how much can I complain about the cold weather before ya’ll stop reading my blog? “I should probably stop doing that, no?

I have decided to go to the Potluck, but I’m not going to be able to take The Husband with me. We just don’t have the babysitting for it, which is indicative of a larger problem. As much as I’m starting to find my suburban mom swagger, I am not fully connected yet, and finding a regular and reliable babysitter is going to be a big step toward full connectivity. My husband, of course, is elated. I’m doing all of the social work around here when it comes to our putting down roots and becoming established (He would probably beg to differ, citing his work around making this house deal go through). He did, though, express a little bit of guilt about my going without him, “I know I should probably make more effort to go to these things…” and then he did that look down, look up through his increasingly long hair cute white-boy thing that he does… ….Lordy… but I didn’t let him off the hook. I was all mmmhmmm, you should feel guilty. He chuckled. I can’t stand him, i swear.

Remember when I was all on-the-fence about the Potluck on Friday? Well, it turns out I’m going, thanks to much encouragement (read: coercion) from the other moms at school. I decided that i’m going to be that Brown mom who brings the ethnic food to the party just to see who is racist. Also because jerking some chicken wings is easy, and I can feed a lot of people with pretty minimal effort. It’s also easy to transport without worrying about smooshing/spilling/smashing. If I am feeling really froggy, I might fry some plantains to go with them, but that’s work on a different level that I don’t know if I want to do. We’ll see. I’m committed, nonetheless, and it is a good distraction because…

I cannot confirm that work started on the septic yesterday. We’ve pinged a few people, and we’ve gotten no word back… that can’t be a good thing, right? That’s gotta be a bad thing… We are supposed to be sitting at the closing table next Friday, but I’m telling you, I’m just telling you, I’ve got a feeling that we’re not going to get there.


It is going to be a long afternoon. Ursa Major has refused to nap–he’s currently on the floor lining up cars and toy utensils. Ursa Minor will not nap as long as usual when he realizes that his big brother is not in the room. I’m very concerned that Ursa Major is transitioning away from the nap, which would be a very sad thing indeed. However, when he doesn’t take that daily nap, he’s a jive little punk come 5:30. The thing with him is that I must come up with ways for him to burn energy, or else he just won’t go down, which means that I’m in for a pretty long winter if I can’t figure out a way to get him out when it’s super cold or wet and cold…

I suppose this is really my fault. I could have made the effort to get them up, dressed, and out, though I don’t know where we would have gone. There is an indoor playroom that is here in town–I hate those things, though. They are never as big as advertised, and they are the most germ infested place on earth. There can be 15 signs that say “don’t bring your child if they are sick” but people will bring their kid with the wet cough and the nose full of yellow snot as if that is totally ok. And the staff will just let them in, even though the rules say that they aren’t supposed to be there, and then they will sneeze all over the toys or my kid and the Mom will just walk around like that is totally ok. There is nothing in the world more frustrating than seeing someone blatantly breaking the rules and spreading germs. And yeah, we can talk about the wiggle room of the “after cold” where there is a little snot, but it is clear and the cough has done away. I’m talking about the moms who bring the actively sick kid to play spaces like that. One mom that I encountered had the nerve to say to me, as I was giving her a bit of a nasty look, “well, you know, it’s good for their immune systems to be exposed to different colds. Builds a healthier body.”

Are you a doctor? Is the answer no? Are good strong slaps to the side of your head good for the body because that is what I want to give you right now? This non-doctor would like to prescribe you a healthy dose of punch to your nose. Seriously! I’m pretty sure I gave her the best scowl that I could muster, packed up my boys and left. After, of course, politely informing the little girl at the check-in (read: we take your money here) counter that if they weren’t going to enforce the health and safety rules then they simply should bother to have. 

Ever so politely, though. I am a southern woman after all.

The thing about the Children’s Museum, for it’s ridiculous expense ($14 per person over the age of 1) is that it is big, airy, and I can see people cleaning the joint all the time. It’s still a germ factory, though. Why are children so gross?

That being said, what I really need to do now is stop blogging and go find the boys’ winter coats. And little gloves. And hats. Because it’s cold, ya’ll. Legit cold.

Gonna stop complaining.

(Not gonna stop complaining)



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