Saturday, November 12, 2011

What's up

Both the boys are napping. It's unusual; probably a sign that Noah is coming down with something. I'm sitting in the chair in the living room, laptop on my lap. I finished reading all the blog posts in my reader. I pause to consider my next task. Put the plates in the dishwasher? Start some laundry? Some part of me is afraid to move out of the chair: they'll both wake up, I think. Or just one of them. And then the other. Which may be less preferable, because inevitably one will wake up the other with his noise or crying and then the freshly woken one will be in a bad mood, when the first woken one was in a bad mood already and...

Best to stay seated and type a post.

There are thoughts I can't get out of my head lately, but they also don't really come together in a cohesive or witty or even interesting post.

Like food thoughts. I'm eating so much food lately. It's so wonderful, it tastes so good; and I'm very close to jumping a size in my clothes. (My mother, who dreamed I was shrinking the other night, will be relieved to read this.) Really, I need to stop eating. You might say I should exercise, and I probably should. But I still find it unbearably complicating to put exercise-for-myself into the family schedule. That's what it is, too: there's no Me Schedule, there's only Family Schedule.  In the past, I've done best about exercising when I lived alone. I used to run early in the mornings. I did, indeed, love running. Sometimes I see a lone, early morning runner and my heart aches to be out there like him or her. (Not with him/her. I like to run ALONE. Just like him or her.) But my heart doesn't ache too much or for too long, obviously. Because I go right back into the kitchen to look for some food. And finding some fresh bread or a cookie to pop in my mouth? Divine. Sigh. This isn't any sort of healthy, well-rounded, or advisable advice: but the only diet that has worked for me in the last 4 years has been all about deprivation. I find deprivation works best when I wage psychological warfare on myself.  Margaret Atwood's characters have given me an impressive arsenal. But warfare? Kind of exhausting.

Early mornings. Yeah, about those. (Because I HATE talking about My Weight and hate the fact that even talking about it makes me feel like I've 'bought' glossy women's magazine culture. Yup, now I feel like a cog in the delusional fashion machine.) We recently decided to adjust our whole schedule. The previous schedule was: boys are awake from 7am to 7pm, Fritz is gone from 8am to 6pm. We thought, why not shift Fritz' day one hour earlier? If he leaves for work at 7am and is home by 5pm, the boys will get 2 hours of continuous time with Fritz each day in the evening. Fritz, NOT being a morning person, wasn't crazy about the idea of waking up earlier. But I was an effective lobbyist: "You can do the commute in daylight!" And I will have less of the 5pm Happy Hour! "You can play with the boys! I think the swimming pool might be open at that time...." And they can yell all they want at the pool, away from my ears. "I'll make some lovely soup for dinner." Without too many chefs.

We just finished Week Two of this new, earlier schedule. The boys have a tendency to wake up when Fritz and I wake up.  Meaning, Fritz is going to work earlier, but the boys are now waking up earlier and going to bed earlier. So, the plan isn't really meeting our my expectations; everyone just seems to be more tired. We'll stick with it a little longer, nonetheless.

What I do enjoy, however, are these early mornings with the boys. When they wake up at 6 am, we have more than 2 hours to get ready before preschool. I complained in my last post about Noah getting dressed - and some days really are that conversation. But if I he gets dressed as soon as he gets out of bed, everything flows much more smoothly. It's almost as though his brain isn't fully functioning yet and he forgets to resist putting on his clothes. Or maybe it's more like: he's not involved in other things and putting on his clothes is okay because it's not disrupting Very Important Plans. In any case, making him get dressed almost as soon as his feet touch the floor is a good thing, and makes the whole morning much more peaceful. Mattias does better with the get-dressed-right-away-strategy as well. And THEN, we watch the sun come up. We read books. We throw in a load of laundry. We breakfast. We unload the dishwasher and reload with breakfast dishes, all before taking Noah to school. It feels amazingly productive.

Then I drop Noah off at school. I think about swinging by the garden store - because I'd really like to grow some amaryllis indoors this winter. I grumble because the store's not open yet and Geez! we've been up forever. Get with it, retail, I know you want my money.

So, instead of flower bulb shopping, Mattias and I head home and we play. I play a lot with the boys. I always played with Noah when he was younger, because he demanded it. Thanks to Mattias, I know that this trait was - is - simply part of Noah's personality. Mattias isn't demanding about my attention, he can play by himself amazingly well. But if I don't play with Mattias while Noah is at school, Mattias becomes increasingly fussy and wants to be held and before you know it, he's falling asleep at 10 am. So we play and Mattias stays awake until about 11:45 - which is so, so much better than the 10 am morning nap.

I've been cautious to say that Mattias' sleep is improving, less I mistake a couple good nights for genuine improvement. But I think we can now say: it's truly getting better.

A few months ago I was blogging at night. But this new morning-centric schedule has me more tired at night. Also, I've been trying to read my brother's manuscript. Yes, my brother wrote a book. I am completely and utterly impressed. He's been working on it for several years now. Every evening I try to read through (and edit) about 5-10 pages. And every evening that I find myself here, typing on my blog instead, I feel a little guilty that I'm not reading his manuscript. I think about the years he has dedicated to writing his book and I think the least I can do is give him a little bit of time to read it and note some typos or make a few comments. So, yes, there's that. When I'm not here, blogging, I'm there, reading his manuscript.

The nap that began this post, ended several days ago. Now it's evening, and I'm thinking about the manuscript. So I end here. Good night. Sleep well.


Anonymous said...

Which of Margaret Atwoods books can you recommend to a German mom, trying to improve her English while relaxing in bed with a good reading?

Ann Wyse said...

I think I'd start with The Robber Bride. I think a lot of her books can seem confusing even if one is a native english speaker. As far as I remember, this one is more straight-forward.

Pregnantly Plump said...

That's great about the sleeping! It makes things a lot easier. Our mornings are always a rush. Little Elvis' school starts REALLY early in the morning.