Monday, Monday.

In true Monday fashion, I didn’t get to the computer to write a post until Tuesday morning. So you MIGHT be getting two posts for the price of one today…that is, if I manage to put together a Tuesday post! Pretty soon I will be backsliding to the point where I have to do five days worth of posts in one day. Such is the fate of most of my resolutions…they last about a week before going kaput.

Yesterday started a little rough when I got the kids all ready to go out — we were going to hit a thrift store, then the library — and realized I couldn’t find my keys. BAD NEWS, primarily because you absolutely cannot get them ready and then stall for any significant amount of time before actually leaving the house. In fact, I don’t even TALK about leaving the house until their shoes are on. And once their shoes are on, they had best be hustled out the door within five minutes or all hell breaks loose. So me having to search for keys, even for five minutes, provoked weeping and wailing…imagine what life looked like when the search stretched on to forty-five minutes. At that point, I desperately called Justin, who offered to come home and give me his keys. Mind you, his office is twenty minutes away when traffic is light. I was seconds away from taking him up on his offer when I found the keys buried deeply in the cushions of a couch I had not sat on for days and days. Those rotten kids. Hiding my keys and then freaking out when I can’t find them. I actually asked them for help while I was looking for them — “Has anyone seen Mom’s keys?” — only to get nonsensical answers that left me wondering if there was any truth to them…i.e., Emme said,”Yes, Mommy, they’re in the truck!” Which truck? “This dump truck!” Only they’re not there, but then I’m wondering, hmmmmm, WERE THEY THERE AT ONE POINT AND HAVE NOW BEEN MOVED  TO SOME REMOTE LOCATION SERVING AS THE TOWN DUMP? SO. By the time I found them, I was feeling down right panicky. The thought of being stuck in the house with these kids with no means of escape was claustrophobic to me. SOMETHING has happened to them lately, and they have turned into absolute maniacs. They just run wild and the only way to get them to behave themselves is to absolutely lose it — screaming at the top of my lungs. THEN, they’ll stop and mind me, but up until that point, no amount of “Hey, stop climbing up the walls” makes any sort of impact on them.

So that is why the loss of keys sent fear and loathing through my bones.

By the time I had found them, it was too close to lunchtime to do the things I had promised, so like the bad mom I am, I decided to JUST go to the thrift store and hit the library after nap. They were fairly amenable to this proposal — I think they were just happy to get out of the house. I didn’t find anything good at the thrift store EXCEPT for a new puzzle: this one is a 64-piece Richard Scarry puzzle, rated for ages five and up, and Emme did it in no time flat! She’s a puzzle whiz!

We came home, ate lunch, took naps, then headed back out to the library. Our library is open until 8 during the week, and the children’s section was blissfully empty. Not a single computer was in the use! They love playing these dumb games the library has on the computer — most of them are meant for older kids, so it’s kind of hard to find one that can occupy their attention for any length of time. They’re so cute with their headphones on.

This section is usually the one most fraught with emotion as other kids hate getting off of the computers, but we’ve managed to avoid such drama by setting the iPad timer for ten minutes. They never argue with the timer, thank God.

Then it’s on to puzzles for a few minutes. Although little Miss Smartypants is pretty bored by the simple puzzle offerings of the library.

And then they get to pick out a few books. Emme’s not that interested in picking out books — she usually grabs just anything off of the shelf and thrusts it at me. Jack, on the other hand, ferrets out his FAVORITE kind of book — a big,colorful picture book that teaches numbers, letters, or shapes. He searches until he finds it. They’re way too young for him — he already knows everything they teach — but he loves their pictures, I guess. We got a giant stack of books this time, because last trip, almost every book I got was a bust — either too boring or too scary.

A friend on Facebook posted this article — 10 Simple Things You Can Do That Will Make You Happier Backed By Science.  Nothing that will come as a surprise to you, probably, but a good reminder, nonetheless. They’re all good suggestions but there are three points I’m resolving to work on.

1. Meditation is something I really need to look into — I read an article not too long ago about it’s enormous effectiveness at alleviating anxiety. It’s just that when I start investigating how to do it too many instructions make it seem hard. But it isn’t really, is it? I mean, in the end, it’s just sitting, quietly, clearing your mind. I’m going to try and figure out how to get meditation time into my day. I could do it while they nap.

2. I also want to figure out something I can do with them to volunteer. In Chicago, my job fulfilled the part of my personality that wants to try and make the world a better place (cliched, sorry) but I’m not doing anything now that alleviates my guilty feelings over having a nice life simply by being born into it. I’m thinking if I could find something that could be done while they’re with me, it might be a good way to have thinking about others become ingrained in their personalities. I’ve been thinking about Meals on Wheels — seems fairly easy to strap them in to the car, deliver the meals, and maybe visit a bit with people who might enjoy seeing two wild animals masquerading as toddlers. Just don’t know if I could do that and keep them in line at the same time.

3. This is the second article in two days that talked about writing down three things you are grateful for each day and how much that can boost happiness. I tried this one time a couple of years ago with Justin but he refused to take it seriously and tried to get away with listing the same thing every single day so I gave up. But I am formally reviving the practice right here, right now. First: I am grateful that I found my keys before I asked Justin to drive all the way home to give me his. Second, I am grateful that we have such an amazing library in our town. Third, I am grateful that I got out in the garage and sanded down a bunch of wood and can now get busy making some Christmas signs for the sale Shara and I are doing in November (more info on

Mommy out. Time to start Tuesday!

Shannon - October 8, 2013 - 5:13 pm

Love the idea of volunteering with them! Also…totally a fan of listing things you’re grateful for…it is something I try to do each day!

Justin - October 9, 2013 - 3:58 pm

But the thing I’m repeatedly grateful for is you. Isn’t that enough?