Wednesday, November 21, 2007


I was sick of it! The sneaking, the smuggling, the whining, the sticky wrappers behind the couch.

"No more!" I declared. "Today is the last day of Halloween candy."

My children were perplexed by the statement, and downright shocked as I proceeded to dump all four buckets of candy out into the middle of the kitchen table. It was 8 am.

"Eat up," I say. "Whatever you don't eat by noon, goes into the trash."
Kate embraced this. She's the number one offender of sneaking candy anyway. She began shoveling the sugar into her mouth as fast a she could open packages. Collin was more suspicious. He'd never encountered this mommy before. He needed many questions answered and still throughout the allotted time needed permission to indulge. He even quietly asked, "What about breakfast?"

"This is it, ," I say as I hand each of the twins a dum-dum. Joe strolls through about this time. He's been listening to my rant from the office, and has a smirk on his face.

"Quite a way to start off Thanksgiving break," he comments more to himself than me.

An hour later, the twins are in bed and Collin has disappeared, but Kate is still parked at the table, sticky candy residue clinging to her chin. "Kate," I say, "are you trying to eat all of that candy?"

"Yeah." She seems to be speaking and moving much slower than usual.

"What's going to happen when you do?"

"My stomach's gonna hurt real bad, and I'll probably throw up."

"So why are you doing it?" There's no response from my daughter; she's staring off into space with a lollipop in each hand.

No one complained when "lunchtime" came, and I scooped the rest of the candy into the trash. No one wanted any lunch either. Weird.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Clothing Optional

Collin got in the car at the bus stop Friday, looked into the back seat and said, "Are the twins completely naked today or do they have diapers on?"

This gave me pause, because I'm already a little sensitive about how much time they spend undressed... but come on -- they always have a diaper on! It got me to thinking though: why don't they wear clothes more?

Now, granted, this wouldn't even be an issue if I lived anywhere but Arizona. I mean, we're well into November and it's still in the 90's. It's hot outside, and I'm sure it's much cooler in nothing but a diaper.

Still, just because I can forgo dressing them, why do I? Last week my mom was helping me go through the twin's dresser, replacing everything they've outgrown with bigger sizes. She commented, "The twins have plenty of clothes! How come you always dress them in the same thing?" You mean a diaper? Even when I do dress them, I often just pull the next thing off the pile. Two of the same thing. No need to strain my brain.

So laziness is obviously a possible answer. But deep down I believe the root of this is more of a subtle variation on laziness: my extreme dislike for re-doing tasks. My typical day will explain this.

Get up in the morning. Take the babies' jammies off, change diapers. Now -- do I put outfits on them? I have to take them down and feed them breakfast. There's going to be oatmeal everywhere. They'll put bananas in their chairs and sit on them. They rip bibs off as the first bite is heading for their mouths. No, they'll eat naked, then I'll dress them.

But after a quick, messy breakfast it's time to rush everyone to school. Into the van, school kids and naked babies! When we get home I tie into cleaning up the kitchen, scraping food off the floors, hosing down chairs, washing dishes. By the time I finish, they're screaming for bottles and naps. So I plop them into bed and tell myself I'll dress them after naptime. It's pretty hot still anyway, and they love to cuddle with their blankets.

After naps, I change diapers and have another perfect opportunity to dress these cute boys... but, they're hungry. It's lunch time, and if you thought breakfast was bad! No, no... I better wait till after they eat again to put clothes on. But now we have to run to get Kate from preschool, so into the car the boys go -- again in nothing but diapers.

We get home. Lunch is a messier repeat of breakfast. There's more cleaning and distractions and honestly I don't usually make it back upstairs until it's time for nap number two. They get plopped down, no energy for dressing. A few hours later I rush into their room, grab them from their beds, throw them in the car and head for Collin's bus stop. Which brings us to 4:30 pm. We get home just before 5:00. Dinner is an hour away, followed immediately by a bath and bedtime. It would be silly to dress them now. What, just to undress them again? So around 7:00 the twins get dressed for the first time today... in their pajamas!

Now, here's where that extreme dislike of re-doing things comes into play. Let's say I dress them first thing in the morning. Like if we have to go somewhere in public where the twins might have to get out of the car. To keep them in clean clothes, I will have to redress them after each meal, and possibly more due to diaper leaks and drink accidents. I don't want to dress them more than once a day, and in my effort to do that, I generally don't dress them at all!

Here's the kicker though... I don't think the twins like wearing clothes. They fuss quite a bit when I'm dressing them. There's usually some chasing and holding down involved, but that's just babies, right? Today during church though, we looked over and Logan was pantsless! He had somehow shimmied out of his khakis and was moving up the aisle. We replaced the pants and figured it was some sort of freak accident, but no. Several minutes later, he shed those things again. Yeah, I think it's them. And now that I think about it, Kate spends an awful lot of time in nothing but underwear. Hmmm... My kids must not really like getting dressed, and who am I to tell them what to do? Their mother?!