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Tuesday
Oct142014

If Only It Were So Simple

"You're welcome," Alexis said. Her tone was that of someone who had been waiting for weeks to say "I told you so" and was finally in a position to yell it loud and proud.

I stood on the other side of the car, precariously balancing a giggly Mila and several bags. It's amazing how many things it takes to leave the house with a baby. The diaper bag, the purse ... all of the things. It's even more amazing that somehow moms magically grow enough limbs to carry it all at just the right time.

Given that the gloating 8 year-old was doing absolutely nothing to assist with the balancing act I had going on, I asked, "What?"

"I said 'You're welcome,'" Alexis repeated proudly. 

"For what?" I asked as I bobbled a pacifier. 

"You're welcome for Mila," Alexis slowly and deliberately explained. She spoke to me as if I was an elderly woman suffering from dementia and might forget my own first name at any moment.

"What do you mean 'You're welcome for Mila,'" I asked. I was more confused than ever.

Alexis replied, "I wished really, really hard for a baby brother or sister and now she's here. You're welcome."

Well then.

Monday
Oct132014

I Can't Be Trusted With Sharp Objects

They couldn't possibly be more different, so it's not really a surprise that we're hitting some parenting milestones with Mila that we managed to avoid with Alexis. 

Which, thank you, Alexis. I very much so appreciate that you screamed bloody murder when I approached you with nail clippers. It made me super paranoid and, thus, we never imitated a crime scene with you. I might have been completely freaked out by your vocal prowess, but at least the only thing that was ever injured was my ears.

Mila, though. MILA. 

If you've ever nicked a baby's fingers when trimming fingernails, then you know. YOU KNOW. Those tiny little fingers gush blood like nothing else. Those tiny little hands flail wildly, spreading the blood like nothing else. A tiny little cut can quickly turn into a nightmarish scene filled with blood spatter and gore that you had hoped to only see in a movie. SO. MUCH. BLOOD. 

EVERYWHERE.

I've nicked Mila's thumb twice. The first time she stared contently at me the entire time I was cutting her finger instead of her fingernail. No screams, no cries. Silence. Creepy, bloody silence. The second time she at least managed to chew me out, but even then it was late. The damage was already done and she had blood from the top of her head to the bottom of her toes and all over me by the time she opened up her mouth and read me the riot act.

The second time required a full wardrobe change by the both of us. THAT is how much blood there was all over.

After the second time, I declared myself unfit for nail trimming. The poor kid has cuts all over her face from scratching herself, but TOO BAD. At least those are self-inflicted wounds. The mom-inflicted wounds come wrapped in a guilt burrito so I am giving them up. I've had enough guilt burritos for one lifetime already. I quit.

It's a good thing I fired myself, by the way, because as we were returning home from cheer yesterday, Alexis fired me again. She sat in the back seat of the car and told me all about how Mila's nails are too long, but I should stay away from them.

"You're going to have to take her to the doctor to get her nails trimmed, mom," she said. "You can't be trusted."

You know it's bad when your 8 year-old calls you out as a failure.

Sunday
Oct122014

Pumpkin Spice Monster Cookies

I'm completely over the pumpkin spice revolution, but yet somehow a weird thing happened -- I bought a bag of Pumpkin Spice M&Ms. They sound like a terrible idea in my head, but I tried them and discovered that they're good.

Very good.

And not at all pumpkin spice-ish. Which is why they're good.

I ate the entire bag all by my lonesome self, and then found myself buying another bag. I blame Target and the Cartwheel app for that moment of crazy, by the way. I can't walk away from 50% off. It just so happens that Alexis was with me when I bought them, which means that I was never destined to eat that bag all by myself. I was going to have to share no matter what, so I decided it would be better if I shared in cookie form.

Pumpkin Spice Monster Cookies. Yes. They became a thing and they are fantastic.

Pumpkin Spice Monster Cookies

1 stick butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
1 15-oz can pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 eggs
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 1/2 cups instant oats
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 bag Pumpkin Spice M&Ms
1 bag white chocolate chips

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a few cookie sheets with parchment paper.

2. In a large bowl, mix the butter and sugars until creamy.

3. Add the pumpkin and vanilla and mix some more. Then add the eggs, baking powder, and salt. Mix.

4. Stir in the oats, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

5. Stir in the M&Ms and white chocolate chips. One quick note -- the pumpkin seems to take the dye off of the M&Ms, so don't stir more than necessary if you care about your cookies turning out pretty.

6. Drop by heaping tablespoon onto the cookie sheet. These don't spread much at all, so feel free to pack them on that cookie sheet.

7. Bake at 350 degrees for 14-16 minutes, or until the bottoms of the cookie are a little bit browned.