My son has been anxiously awaiting his birthday party. Every night before bed he would count the days. This year he requested a reptile themed birthday. I was thankful for this because we had never done a reptile themed birthday party. Between the three boys we’ve done four dinosaur parties, two camping parties, three pirate parties…along with a few of Deacon’s stragglers like Star Wars and Ninjago.
What made this party truly special was the surprise guest. Logan didn’t have a clue that Grammie and Papa had made arrangements for Dave from Animal Experiences to be there with his arsenal of reptiles and a few furry friends. He’s seen Dave at preschool and still obsesses over it. I really thought he would figure it out or one of his friends would say something. They didn’t. He was so surprised.
What surprised me was how well the kids behaved. They all immediately sat down in silence. They raised their hands and asked questions. They even shared their own knowledge. They waited patiently to hold each of the animals and helped each other. Sharing and trading. It was wonderful. My son was in his glory. Turtles of all varieties, an alligator (his favorite), snakes of many sizes, lizards, and even some furry friends. I personally loved snuggling the chinchilla.
It was one of the best birthday parties ever! I even held the snakes. It was funny to see some of the kids really open up to holding the animals. Some of the were a little apprehensive and then just relished in the moment and were holding everything.
Of course with fall in New England comes the fun apple picking season. Nothing beats a fresh apple right off the tree. How about a fresh 18 pounds of apples. That’s right folks, 18 pounds of apples, actually it was 18.8 pounds but who’s counting? 18 pounds of apples for a family that doesn’t have kids who like to eat apple pie, apple crisp, or apple sauce. 18 pounds!
I couldn’t pass up the apple picking. Honestly, I really wanted some apple crisp and apple pie. Two of my fall favorites. Last year we went a little too late in the season so we didn’t get much. Well this year, they sure did pick ‘em!!
Three little boys can pick a lot of apples in a matter of FIVE MINUTES! It didn’t matter if I said, “Don’t pick anymore.” “Wait to pick the other Macoun apples on the other side.” “Please don’t pick another apple.” “Did you even look at that before you picked it? It’s got a hole in it!” One particular child (who shall not be named) decided he was going to, as he called it, “sneak attack pick.” He thought it was funny…my wallett did not.
The weather was perfect and we did have a very fun 10 minutes in the orchard because I didn’t have cash left to go on a hay-ride, but the boys enjoyed themselves. Two apples crisp, an apple pie, a stuffed apple, and peanut butter and apples down. I now have ONE child that likes apple pie and apple crisp. Yay!! But I still have pounds and pounds of apples left.
So now I’m turning to you my dear readers…I need apple recipes, stat. Main dishes or desserts? What do you have to share? Help!
I often tell everyone that I have four boys. That’s right FOUR boys. Boys ages 7, 5, 4, and 36. Don’t we all have that “boy” to deal with? The “boy” that you need to feed and constantly clean up after just like the rest of the boys. You have to tell him to put his socks in the hamper, don’t get all riled up, and say “Hey, how long have you been playing that video game?”
Well this mama is on vacation!! I love my husband dearly but I LOVE when he goes away every year camping with the guys. I even have my secret countdown! After he kissed me goodbye and was on his merry way I kind of did a happy dance (hanging head in shame). Now one might say, “But you’re stuck with the kids for the entire weekend without back up.” I will take it! You see as in many families there is always the good cop/bad cop thing. I am always the bad cop. I’m the enforcer. I dish out the rules and consequences; complete with follow through and a lecture. I’m the hardass. Dad is so fun and mom…well, when your kids start saying “Yes, Master Mom” you get the hint.
Things are different when it’s just mom around. I get to be BOTH; the good cop and the bad cop. One must maintain balance, right? We don’t run into the situation were “Daddy said I can play my video game.” just 10 minutes after I said “No, you need to go play outside.” It’s my way. Oh, there is that controlling Virgo in me. When I say it is bedtime there is no sudden game of T-Rex attack to interrupt the flow from brushing teeth to tucking in. I find myself being a little more lenient with certain things. I say “yes” more. I can be the attacking T-Rex at an appropriate time, not bedtime. I can be FUN!
I put them to bed and then there is silence, aside from the dog’s incessant whining because he wants to get on the couch again after just getting off of it two minutes prior. I can watch whatever crap on TV I want. I can watch reruns of Grey’s Anatomy without the comments on how it’s really not like that in a hospital (duh, I’m not an idiot). I don’t have to talk or listen to anyone. I can just sip my wine and be.
Of course I miss my 36 year old boy, but never the first night. The first night is vacation bliss. My children fall asleep thinking “fun mom is awesome.” The second night I might miss him a little bit. By Sunday morning I anticipate his arrival home in the afternoon. Then there is the arrival…kids are happy, I’m happy. 20 minutes after arrival…there is a pile of campfire smoke stinking crap on my dining room floor. The “boy” is back. I’m ready to stomp my foot and get this shit cleaned up!