Sunday, February 17, 2008

Shopping with Daddy

Two-year old Matthew loves grocery shopping. He especially loves the pint-sized grocery carts that our local supplies for active tots. He's great fun to watch, to be honest, and will happily dump anything into his cart and shove it around the store. Especially sponges. Don't know why.

As you can imagine, shopping for groceries takes an age. Hours, as opposed to minutes. In my world, there's no such thing as a "quick stop." It's an event. It takes planning and strategy. It requires snacks.


My husband is presently out of work. Downsized early in the new year, which royally sucks for a number of reasons. But having an extra pair of hands about the house has been great. He's been mumbling about grocery shopping all day, in between video games, of course.

Me: "Are you planning to take Matthew with you?"

Mark: "I wasn't, no. It's faster without him."

Me: "I know it's faster, but he loves it so much."

Mark: "Ummm..hmm......"

Two hours later:

Me: "Are you planning to do any groceries today?"

Mark: "When Matthew goes down for a nap."

(Doesn't want to deal with the hysterics and gnashing of teeth which will occur should he don shoes without his son. Matthew knows there's grocery shopping to be done - he spied me writing the list this morning and my kid's nothing if not smart!)

Alas, there were video games to finish before shopping, and Matthew awoke before Mark could steal out the door. (Inside my head: "Hee, hee!")

Just now, pyjama-clad Matthew rushed his trying-to-sneak-out Daddy. It was a glorious sight to behold:

Matthew: "Daddy! Me go 'popping, too! Me go wit you go 'popping with Daaaaadddyyy!!''

For once, I said nothing. Just looked askance at Mark, who simply sighed.

And off they've gone, pyjama-clad, wearing boots backwards and all. Sigh.

My husband might actually get lucky tonight, after all!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

God's Grace

Two years ago, yesterday, God welcomed Grace.

Gracie Elizabeth, actually. She was was just three months old and her passing (SIDS) will never make sense to me, or her mother, or anyone who has ever lost a child.

Gracie's mother, Brittanie has borne the loss of her beloved daughter with dignity and, well, grace. She and her husband are expecting their second child, Nathan, within the month, which has got to be a beyond bittersweet experience.

This morning, I read that Gracie's parrain (godfather) died in a boating accident. That Gracie's parents had to lose her is a tragedy. That they lost their best friend on the anniversary of her death? For this, I have no words.

Much love to Brittanie and Coy. My heart aches for you, on this day and always.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Some stuff I swore I'd never...

1. The first time the phrase, "Because. Because I said so," came out of my mouth, I was horrified. How had I become one of those parents? Was I so devoid of imagination, so lacking in patience that I couldn't come up with a decent response to the zillionth "Why?" from my two-year old?

Yep. Turns out that becoming a mum really does cause loss of brain cells, and I'm ok with that.

2. "Would you like to go pee-pee on the potty?"

Like so many before me, before kids, I thought I had all the answers. And I swore that I would never use cutesy words for body bits (except vagina as the word makes me shudder, for no good reason at all) and bodily functions should be referred to using only ONE syllable: Poo. Pee.

Ha! Here's a snippet of an actual conversation with Matthew, while he oversaw my bath for a change:

Matthew: "Mummy...that your boobies?"

Me: "Yes, Matthew, these are my boobies. No, no, honey, please don't grab them. That hurts Mummy."

Matthew: "Mummy, that your pee-pee?"

Me: "No, sweetheart, that's Mummy's 'gina. Only boys have pee-pees."

Matthew: "Boys have pee-pees?"

Me: "That's right. Boys have pee-pees. Girls have 'ginas."

Matthew: "That MY 'gina?" (pointing to his penis)

Me: "No, no, Matthew. That's your pee-pee, remember? Only girls have 'ginas."

Matthew: "How go pee-pee, Mama? Pee-peeeeeeeee!"

Me: "Well, Mummy goes pee-pee with her 'gina. You go pee-pee with your...uh...pee-pee."

Is it any wonder that my child loves the word pee-pee? Apparently, it's both a verb AND a noun!

3. "Honey, could you shift over? Matthew and Luke don't seem to have enough space!"

Poor Mark. Here he thought that getting married would, if not guarantee nooky every night, ensure a warm, wifely body to snuggle up to at day's end. Alas, despite all my pre-parenting ideas ("The marriage should be the number one relationship - kids are secondary!"), we are a co-sleeping family.

Oh, it didn't start out that way, but little people have a way of sneaking into their parents' beds as slyly as they do our hearts. Luke, at four months, still nurses during the night and having mastered the whole "roll-over-here's-a-boob" thing, I'm not about to give it up. We usually hear the pad-pad-pad of Matthew feet around 2 am, when it's easier to scoop him up than to get up and battle him back to his crib.

Morning light will often find us - Matthew, Mark, Luke and Liz - blissfully squished together, snoozing away. These magical days are fleeting and I, for one, want to revel in every. single. moment.

Friday, February 8, 2008

What's in a name?

So, the moniker - Bellymonster.

One evening, years ago, I was complaining of stomach ache. "It's like there's something huge in there, moving about, " I moaned, convinced that I was dying, "I just want it to go awwwaayyy!"

My then boyfriend (now husband) Mark leaned over and jammed his head into my belly: "Belly Monster! GO!" and burst into gales of laughter. Nice, huh?

Cut to 2005 - we'd just discovered that I was pregnant, much to our absolute shock. (Did you know, that if, in 8 years of doing it, if you don't use a condom one time, you can get knocked up?)

"What should we call it?" I wondered aloud, suddenly feeling all mushy and glowy, the way the books promised I might.

Mark, leaning down to gently press his face into my still-flat (ish) belly: "Belly Monster! Grow."

And "it" did.

Belly Monster became Monster for short. Today we call him Matthew and he is my very heart. His brother, Luke (Belly Bean) was born last October and is my soul.

These days, I go by Bellymonster online, Belly for short. The name is as much a part of me as my boys are. Funny, how things go. And grow...