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I’ve spent the last 6-7 months gearing up to redecorate el Benjamin’s room, starting when I realized how much time and energy we had focused on Alex’s room, which made me feel quite guilty. Alex has yet to spend even a single night in his bedroom (and his crib, OH his crib, it cost an insane amount. I’m considering sleeping in there myself, just to get my money’s worth) and Ben, well, he’s stuck in his room every night that he is home. In a toddler bed. With mismatched furniture.

We picked out the theme for his room, which had to be 1) approved by myself and 2) nothing too theme-y because that’s really not how I roll, and finally decided on this. It’s obviously not as awesome from Pottery Barn Kids, but hey, we didn’t have to take out a second mortgage to afford it, which is a plus and a half in my book.

After purchasing this in oh, I don’t know January, we decided that it was high time to finally do something. Which included buying a bed without a crib mattress, so when we saw the one we’d initially been casting our eyeballs on finally on sale, we sprung into action.

(as an aside here, who the hell knew that beds were so bloody expensive? Apparently, they’re made out of platinum and diamonds and the tears of wee babies.)

So this weekend, we (and by we I mean I) will be painting, which is awesome, aside from the fact that we had no paint.

Off to the happiest place on Earth I know (aside from Target, which ALSO happens to be the happiest place on Earth. How the two co-exist, I have no idea) we trucked. And as we pulled into the lot, we noted how nasty and black the sky was behind the hardware store.

We started to gather our supplies as the rains began to pound down onto the metal roof while remarking on our good fortune not to be outside during the downpour. As I was examining roller covers–something I’d never before cared about–an alarmed employee mentioned that there had been tornadoes seen in the area. Having lived in the Midwest my whole life, I found nothing particularly alarming about the statement.

I mean, there are ALWAYS summer tornadoes. Big deal.

This news set the WHOLE STAFF into a blind panic. We were not allowed to leave the store, and a frightened mass of employees gathered at the front of the store windows (um, duh. Away from the glass, folks. That’s dangerous) all chirping nervously away, occasionally one would sprint wildly–and aimlessly–around the store like Chicken Little causing general unease and out and out fear among the patrons. The power went off as we were looking at lights and when the emergency lights came up we decided that around glass was probably not a great place to hang out. Especially with Alex around.

Languidly, we strolled to the back of the store where a frantic employee had been trying to direct us, because apparently there was ANOTHER BABY BACK THERE, YES ALL OF THE BABIES NEED TO BE TOGETHER. We took a seat on some chairs and began to wait when I heard the unmistakable cry of a child about Alex’s age threatening to drown out the cries of his mother.

I went over and invited the poor woman who was almost hyperventilating to sit down, when I realized that the poor woman had 2 babies with her and she informed me THAT SHE HAD JUST MOVED OUT HERE FROM COLORADO YESTERDAY, where they do not experience weather like this. And of course, with the alarmist attitude of the staff (which was nearly hilarious, because seriously, hadn’t at least some of these people been through this before?), she was undeniably shaken to the core, imagining that the tornado was going to suck us all up.

The Daver and I calmed her down while we compared notes on what having babies was like. Overall, it was a pretty pleasant way to get trapped somewhere, even though the computers were down by the time that we were finally free to go (the light! I can see the light!!) and it took about 29,034 hours to get all of our myriad of stuff coded and priced.

And so the real fun begins: phase one of wiping down grody kid walls begins in the morning. With only one kid (as el Benjamin’s help would not actually be help at all, what with the constant redirection and likely spilling buckets of water onto the white carpet. Oh, white carpet, you are the bane of my existence) in tow.

The Great Taping Project will commence in the afternoon, after the walls dry and I soothe Alexander from what is sure to be hysterics stemming from GOING OUTSIDE THE ROUTINE, MOMMY.

Heh. Wanna come help?

I’ve always had a great amount of admiration for parents who look so at ease while out with their young children, sitting serenely at dinner with the babe happily gumming his hands while sitting in his car seat. If the camera were to pan to my table, you’d likely see my six year old hard at work on completing the kids menu games, my the top of my husband’s head while clicking away on the Blackberry and me, sitting with the baby on my lap while he attempts to fling my plate back to the kitchen. That wide-eyed look on my face: it’s not Xanex-induced euphoria, it’s fear.

You see, after having 2 extremely demanding/screamy/colicky/generally unpleasant babies, I have started to hate going out without reinforcements. Having been front and center in the Great Colicky Baby saga of 2001-2, including such highlights as Out At Dinner, Where’s The Damn Check and At A Friend’s House, This Must Be Better Than Birth Control. 2004-5 held such gems during public bathroom potty training as Mom, Where Is Your Penis And Is It Dirty Down There? and Dave, Can I Hold Your Penis? These days, I’m more apt to have to fight such battles as Dude, Where Is The Tit? and But I Waaaannnnnnnttttt It, Mommy!!!

I want to be able to suck it up and not get so damn stressed out by it because I genuinely hate sitting around the house day after day, as I know that the only behavior that can be changed is my own. Aside from Xanex, I have no idea how I can do it.

I just watched Alexander, my talkative baby have a full out conversation, complete with full belly laughs with my nipple.

Either he was laughing at the smell eminating from my armpit, or the nipples the size of Mount Rushmore.

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