In pursuit of passion iced tea.

passion iced tea

Today was a no-nap day. Between the no-napping and the constant chorus of “Why? Why? Why?” and “Mommy! Mommy! Mommy!” I thought I was losing my mind. I was also trying to get some extra chores done and it seemed like every single member of my household was resistant to me making any progress, even the cats. Sometimes I just want to throw up my hands and leave for a day and see how they fare without me.

So I did. Sort of.

I was arguing with Toby over something or other and he was using his Jedi mind tricks on me where he scrambles my thoughts. No matter how valid my points are (and believe me they are!) I cannot make an argument go further than a sputter with him. I hate it when he does this to me. You don’t even know how many times I’ve wished I had my own personal moderator to plead my case.

I think I’m quite good at debating. I use to argue circles around my ex and I come from a long line of outspoken German-Irish hotheads. I’m not usually one to hold my tongue so this sputtering makes me mighty uncomfortable. I guess I married my match and it is so frustrating.

There I was arguing and losing hopelessly. Bug was interjecting her two cents every other second and the floor was distracting me with the zillion and one threads left on it from my latest fix-the-couch-cushions sewing project. I think the cat even threw in a yowl. I just couldn’t take it anymore so I flipped.

I quietly screamed, “I need a break!” I grabbed my purse and stomped out of the house in a huff.

Now, I don’t usually do this. I used to all the time before Bug was born but now with our new arrangement where I am the primary caregiver for our child, I can’t just up and have a temper tantrum whenever I choose to. I miss those temper tantrums. I miss dropping meaningful expletives and slamming doors. I’m just one pent-up angry misunderstood woman these days and I can’t even blog about my feelings because my whole family reads and I need to keep things upbeat and cheerful or else I get worried phone calls.

So I sat in my car and thought about where I should go. To the movies? To Santa Barbara? Mexico? I didn’t know what to do. I drove around the block and thought in blessed silence. I still didn’t know what to do so I kept on driving. I got as far as the local theatre and checked the movie showing times before the guilt set in.

I could hear Bug’s voice in my head saying, “You don’t need a break from me, do you mommy?” I thought of her crying and missing me. She would be scared and what if Toby didn’t really know how to comfort her? I know he’s a good dad and technically they would be fine for at least a day without me but I just knew I wouldn’t be able to enjoy a movie while I was worrying about her in the back of my mind.

And what about Toby? What if he had work he was planning on doing? What if my silly outburst put him even more behind schedule than he already is? We’ve been under some financial stress lately (like everyone these days), what if I was compounding our problems?

So I turned around and headed home. Some huff. I didn’t even last fifteen minutes.

When I got home you’ll never guess what I found. The furniture was all rearranged and Toby was on the floor with the vacuum cleaner up-ended. He had replaced the overflowing bag and was extracting five years’ worth of hair from the roller. Not only was he going to vacuum the whole house but he was fixing my poor tired vacuum cleaner too. Bug was nowhere to be found because she was “hiding” from Daddy and the big scary vacuum. Her laughter gave her away though and I found her naked under the covers in her room. Silly kid. She didn’t miss me at all.

I walked back into the living room and sputtered. Tears were leaking out of my eyes. I tried to explain myself to Toby but he cut me short.

“I love you Bren,” he said. “Go get yourself a passion iced tea.”

A passion iced tea? I don’t even like passion iced tea. But I didn’t argue. They only sell passion iced tea at one place that I know of and that place is Starbucks. So I left and went to get myself a passion iced tea. I also got two shots of espresso but Toby doesn’t have to know about that. I figured I was going to need it since today was going to be a very long no-nap day.

I sat in the sun outside Starbucks and drew in my book until my tea was gone. It was nice. I unloaded all my negative thoughts into my book. I drew myself fat. Then I drew myself with really really really long legs as if that would solve all my problems. I drew and drew and drew. And then I missed my family so I went home. Home to a freshly-vacuumed clean house.

If only every no-nap day could end like this.

Greetings from the wet and soggy North!

short hair

So here we are on our trip to Northern California. But the real news is that Toby cut his hair! Can you believe it!!? He told me he was going to cut his hair when I first met him fourteen years ago. It never happened. He’s grumbled about it over the years but never done anything. I just got used to the scraggly ponytail as part of his “look.” Toby’s an artist, he can get away with these things. He wore big clunky glasses way before they were ever cool so I just figured his hair was his own business.

not smiling

I really expected his haircut to be more shocking. He looks the same from the front. From the back he looks like a regular Republican white guy, which he is, so I guess that’s okay. Now he’s grumbling about how his preppy collared shirts don’t look good on him anymore and he wants to grow it out again. Who knew men could be so vain?! I think it’s all sort of funny. I’d love him no matter what kind of hair he had.

long long car ride

Other than the big haircut news, our trip has been mostly uneventful, which is good. We did get a nail in our tire in Santa Rosa and spent a few hours hanging out in a tire shop. There is nothing like a few hours of good old-fashioned family bonding in a tire-shop waiting room.


playing tag at the tire store

waiting for a new tire is very tiring

I’m just glad that we make this trip in two days now instead of the one-day insanity that we used to pull off. It would have been way more taxing if we had to deal with this tire business in the middle of the night.

Bug was really good in the car. She only got cranky about being stuck in her carseat late in the day. I don’t blame her at all about that. I’m pretty cranky about being stuck in a seatbelt after more than four hours too. We had a DVD player (that I borrowed, thank you Bethany!) but Bug, being Bug, would much rather have me entertain her than anything else.

pretending to be dogs

You don’t even know how glad I was to finally make it to the grandparents’ house where there are cousins to help entertain the toddler. Bug’s cousins are the best. They played together for hours and hours. And then we went home to our cozy cabin motel and she conked out like a light.

our hotel room has a kitchen!

I LOVE our cozy cabin motel. It has a kitchen!!! We had no idea it had a kitchen when we made the reservations a few weeks ago. You’d think they’d include a detail like that on their website, but no. Of course they included all kinds of information about the wifi connection that was absolutely not available for the first four hours that we were here. Isn’t it always like that? I don’t know why I always get my panties in a twist about the wifi connection. You’d think I’d be used to the lack of a good connection since it happens every single time. I’m just not happy if I can’t get my fix, I guess.

Anyway, after a bit of complaining (which I hate to do; it’s sort of like complaining to a waiter who might spit in your food as soon as he gets back to the kitchen) I have the internet and I’m happy.

putting her clothes away

You know what else makes me happy? My kid putting her own clothes away in the dressers. She’s such a funny kid. The only problem with these easy access drawers is that she’s changed her outfit three times today and it’s only early afternoon. I think I’m going to be needing a laundromat if she keeps this up.

making breakfast

And of course I cannot end this post without documenting the fact that Toby made us breakfast.

yummy pancakes!

It’s good to be on vacation!