July 22, 2011

My Daughter, The One Who Finds My Weak Points

I'm not usually one to write lists, but I think that it is important to discuss one of my least favorite things about being a parent and, I feel, the clearest way to do so, is in list form.  So, without further ado:

Four Reasons Why Diaper Rash Cream Is Worse Than Human Feces
In no particular order

1)  It smells worse than poop
  I may have written a post or two about the horrendous alchemy that occurs in the intestines of a child, converting innocent things like blueberries and apples into something that Satan himself must have concocted.  My daughters give off odors from their posterior ends that would cause those who work with raw sewage to weep for their mothers.  During the diaper changing process, I attempt to bring some light to the awkward situation of wiping the anus of another human being, by saying things like "Ew stinky!  Let's get a fresh diaper and we'll be aaaaaaaaall clean!"  I know, someone nominate me for creative dad of the year.  What is usually said, however, sounds more like "Ew stink...BLECH!!  DEAR GOD GIRL!  What did you eat?!?!?"

With this said, I use baby powder when the girls have rashes because the smell of the diaper rash cream is worse than the worst diaper I have yet to change.  It smells of depressing retirement homes where the relatives never visit and the nurses would rather watch One Life To Live than find out why Mrs. Elderson is moaning.  It smells of people who have been living at the hospital because they don't have the strength to leave and besides, where would they go?  There's no one waiting for them at home.

2)  Harper will not eat her own poop
  I type this while knocking on wood.  So far, she has shown no interest in writing her name on the wall in poop, as is shown in every comedy that has toddlers.  She has actually demonstrated an aversion to her own waste, wanting to get the diaper off and away from her as soon as possible.  She is clearly my daughter in this respect as, once I soil myself, I too need those clothes as far away from me as I can get them.  The diaper rash cream, however, seems to hold some strange fascination for her.  She loves to pry the lid open and squeeze 15-20 butts-worth of cream onto her fingers, most of which goes into her mouth.  Once there, she realizes that this was a terrible idea, but for reasons I will lay out in number 3, it's too late.  This does not, however, stop her from doing it again the next time she gets her hands on a tube.

3) Poop is not grease-based...
  ...at least until they start eating more buffalo wings and faire-food.  Parents who are reading this will know that, in the course of parenting, occasionally, you get poop on your hands.  It happens.  In my case, there is lots of crying involved, but once I settle down, I wash my hands and I'm alright.  Soap and water remove all traces of texture and odor of whatever the girls had for breakfast.

Diaper rash cream is made with a mixture of skunk vomit, super glue, and sun screen.  In this particular case, it is the latter that concerns me.  What this means for me is that even the slightest trace of the stuff on my skin and my pores open up, as though they have stumbled upon an oasis after wandering in the desert for weeks, drinking in as much as possible, pulling it deep into the dermis.

Now, we watch Sesame Street fairly often, as I did when I was a child.  The only segment of Ernie and Bert that I remember from my childhood was one in which Bert painted his hand purple.  The paint wouldn't wash off and he had to wait for it to wear off on its own.  The cream is the same way.  No amount of hot water, soap, steel wool, borax, hydrochloric acid, etc. will remove the goo and therefore the smell.  I feel as though for the good of humanity, I should lock myself in quarantine.

"Why can't you come to work? Are you sick?   ...   DIAPER RASH CREAM?!?  Jesus Christ, son!  We'll be praying for you.  Take as much time as you need.  We don't need that spreading through the office."

4) Harper gets it EVERYWHERE
  As though my previous items were not conclusive enough, my biggest issue is when Harper manages to combine all three into one super-happy-fun time.  She puts it on everything.  This evening, after getting a liberal dose from Sara, Harper managed to get a hold of the tube.  By the time I found her (read: 3 seconds later) she was using it to finger paint on her sister.  When I grabbed the tube from her hand, she flung herself away from me, leaving a diaper rash hand print on the couch and a line of cream along the carpet.  Since it is grease-based, as previously mentioned, it will be there, smelling and being unsightly, forever.  In hurling the tube out of her grasp, the cap came off, leaving more drops on the wall and floor.  While I was trying to clean up those spots as best I could, she somehow managed to find another tube, opened it with her teeth and started giving herself tribal tattoos.  When I went to clean her, she ran away and buried her (cream-covered) face in the upholstery of a chair.  If you're wondering how long it will remain there, please allow Squints to tell you.

As I've said before, Harper does not like to play with her poop.  If, however, she decided tomorrow that she wanted to finger-paint the walls with her own excrement, it would be easier to clean up and would smell better than the current medium of choice.

I feel like my house may reach a tipping point.  Sometime soon, there may be so much diaper rash cream spread of various surfaces that I will cease to attempt to clean it.  I will simply let it pile up until, in an effort to escape the smell of itself, the house opens a portal to hell and sucks itself in.

I haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaate diaper rash cream.

I can't wait to grow up and find other things you hate!

July 15, 2011

My Daughter, The Tester of My Psyche

It has always been my goal to keep this blog positive.  Even when I get frustrated about things, I try to put a happy spin on them to make it entertaining for everyone.

It is precisely because of this that I have avoided writing any posts lately.

I have been frustrated and have been unable to see a way to spin it for entertainment value.  So what have I done?  I've decided that I need to just get my thoughts out of my head so that I can make room for funny
anecdotes again.

Harper has been making me insane as of late.

Let me back up.  I don't know where my left post ended and I'm WAY too lazy to go and check, so as a quick rehash, let me say that once school let out, I've been home with the girls.  I've been keeping Brynn with me almost every day, unless she's being taken care of by her aunt or grandmother.  Harper, I have been sending to day care twice a week in order to get some things done around the house and to keep her socialized with other kids.

When Harper is home, I have been trying to take them out as much as possible.  Errands and road trips are a bit ungainly as Harper likes to scream and cry every time I put her in a car seat.  Instead, we go for walks.  I found a coffee/breakfast sandwich place that's about a mile and a half from the house over the hills of the town so I'll put them in the stroller and we'll go there and back.

There have also been a few times when I strapped Harper into the backpack carrier and pushed Brynn in the stroller and we walked on the trail.

When Harper is at day care or with a relative, I can do pretty much whatever I want/need to do.  Brynn is still at the stage where she's content to sit in the car seat and watch what's going on.  With her alone, I've been able to go to lunch with friends, work on the wall, run errands or just waste the day watching movies or playing video games.

I think it is because she's so easy to take care of that my frustration level with Harper has increased drastically.

I've spoken before about she doesn't really want to play with her toys, but only wants the power tools.  She only wants to destroy things that we need, like my car registration.  She'll stand in the kitchen and point to something and make a sound like a wounded animal.  When we point to things that she might be wanting and say "Do you want this?" she screams and throws tantrums, regardless of whether or not that was the thing she wanted.  The other alternative is that she'll ask for something clearly, agree that's what she wants and then, as soon as it comes into her hands, she freaks out and throws it away.

Last night, while I was on the phone with Verizon Customer "Service" she stood at my feet and screamed.  When I went to another room, she followed me and screamed.  When I went to pick her up, she thrashed until I put her back down.

I understand that there is a level of frustration on her side as well.  She knows what she wants to be doing and simply does not have the vocabulary to communicate the way she wants.  There is a huge gap between what she wants to be telling us and what we want to be communicating to her.  For the most part, she understands us.  We can tell her to put her clothes in her hamper, and she will.  We can tell her to go find her shoes, or a diaper, and she will.

Last week, after telling her that she cannot hit her sister, I told her to go and say sorry and she did.  It just about broke out hearts, but she knew she had done something wrong, said sorry and walked into her room to go to bed.  I rocked her to sleep and told her how much I loved her and how proud I was that she said sorry and how I know she loves her sister, she just can't play as rough.

As I said before, I've been trying to keep this light and positive, but these are things that I need to get off of my chest.  I also feel very bad that I don't talk about Brynn much.  I don't want her to get second child syndrome and I spend a large quantity of time with her, but at this point, it comes down to one simple thing.  She just isn't doing much.  She's unbearably cute and has a very good-nature.  She sleeps pretty well, eats pretty well and is easy to take care of.

Here are some pictures with a few clever captions.

 Neon Swing X-Perience owes me endorsement money


Go to my happy place... 

"Noooo, Mr. Bond!  I expect you to die!!" 

Having to deal with me, my ladies need a nap.



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