No more butt-monkey, check.

There is just nowhere in the *world* at which 4:17 is an acceptable time to begin your day. Nowhere. But as Miss O fell asleep in the car around 5:00 last night and rather than make it a brief nap, I let it just be 'down for the night', I anticipated an earlier-than-usual start. And would have been prepared for it were it not for that magical hour of awake-for-the-hell-of-it that occurred around 1 a.m. Bean joined O in that hour of being awake and making me want to drown myself in the bathtub, so I was hating on both kids last night with equal fervor.

I'm going to propose to Dave a new custody arrangement - he gets them at night, I get them during the day. My daytime patience is infinite, but O sleeps for crap here. I think his daytime patience is slightly more limited, judging by Bean's repeated "I don't like daddy because he spanks my butt!" (which, I have no doubt, is more drama-ho'ing and making a case for always being with me than it is an actual reflection of amount/intensity), but they sleep well with him. So he can do the nighttime stuff where less patience is required, and I can tap into my deeper reserves and do the daytime stuff.

Think he'll go for it?

I took the girls to breakfast at McD's, a cemetery, Toys-r-Us, the mall, the park and Target yesterday. Bean wanted McD's breakfast, and it's so cheap to feed the three of us there I have a hard time saying no, tho I do forbid the playscape. I don't do any indoor playscapes with my kids - personally, I consider them festering pits of cooties and sickness. And I'm a mom who extends the 5-second-rule to include the unwashed, straight-from-the-container blueberries that fall on the floor at the grocery store. I've just seen one too many obviously ill and contagious kid at those places, and once I read Julia's story about watching some kid slide down one and leave a poop trail, it's a completely closed case.

After breakfast, where the girls entertained the masses - Bean with her antics and O with her tiny cuteness - I took Bean on her much-desired cemetery field trip. We talked about burial versus cremation, and what one can do with the powder from cremation, as well as discussing who is buried at this cemetery. This particular one is over-represented by 'Cluck's, so Bean ID'd all the Cluck headstones.

Then she noticed the very small headstones and graves.

Thus began a discussion about why babies and kids die. She wasn't happy about there being kids and babies there, but didn't seem profoundly saddened, just a little sad and thoughtful. I thought to myself then, and think now, that this will likely be a recurring discussion for a while to come.

Bean: That's a baby's headstone
Mommy: Actually, it is. It's a baby that died a long time ago.
B, in her most empathetic and sad voice: Oh! That's so sad!
M: It is. Sometimes babies are too sick to live very long, and they die very early.
B, noticing another small grave: There's another one
M: Yes.
(We proceeded to pick wildflowers, with Bean looking at all the headstones, and stopping at any she thought were kid or baby graves. She wasn't super sad, but seemed to get that it was sadder than adult graves)
B: Miss O, this is a baby's headstone
I kid you not, O stopped and placed the flowers she had been holding down near the headstone.

But overall, Bean really enjoyed her trip there. When I noticed the grave of a veteran, I noted it, and explained to Bean that this weekend was a special weekend where we said thank you to the folks who have served our country. I said "you can say 'thank you for serving our country' because they were soldiers who protected us." She proceeded to thank everyone, babies included, for serving our country.

When I asked her her thoughts afterward, she was focused mainly on how pretty cemeteries are, and how you bury dead people in boxes. She paused and said "when we talk to dead people, can they hear us?" I said "some people think they can, and some people think they can't. Do you think they can hear us?" She thought for a minute and said "Yes. I think they can hear us." So I told her "then that's what you should believe. We'll never know for sure, so the only thing that matters is that what you believe makes you feel good."

Miss O dozed off in the car, so Bean and I chatted and drove around for awhile. She was complaining incessantly about her shoes with orthotics hurting her, and I recalled a sale at Stride Rite, so I planned a stop there. Miss O snagged a 45-minute nap in the car, we did some shopping, got both girls' feet measured (O's actually a size 5 now, Bean's an 11), scored a new pair of sneakers for Bean, then headed home for naps. That totally didn't pan out, so we went to a new park and then to Target. Miss O fell asleep on the way home, and now we're full circle to my first paragraph.

I'll leave ya with a couple conversations with Bean. The Toys-r-Us one, which is not for the easily embarrassed, occurred with someone in the stall next to us.

Bean, pointing at some scribble: Do you know what this says?
Mommy: No. What does it say?
Bean: It says 'Loving mommy. We love you. You're the best mama in the whole world. Thanks.'

Bean, leaning over to whisper in my ear at the park: This is *awesome*. Thanks!

Bean, at Target, to an unsuspecting mom with two kids: When we were at the cemetery today, we saw a baby's grave. It was sad.
Mom, fixing me with a special look: I'm sorry. I bet it was sad.
Me, trying to explain: It was a field trip that she requested!

Bean, in the bathroom with me at Toys-r-Us: Mommy, why do you have hair on your butt?
Mommy, laughing in disbelief: You just asked that, didn't you?
B: Yes I did.
M: Well, when people grow up and go through puberty they get hair in new places. And it's not on my butt.
B: Well, why do you have hair on your bulba?


Julia said...

Scruffles! I can't wait for C and Bean to have a conversation about the bulba with scruffles. Hilarious.

Yep, no indoor playscapes for us either, not after the diarrhea trail.

tobethode said...

OMH! I love her!

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