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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Best. Afternoon. Ever.

They're like the Village People.  Only more adorable.
So this morning was tough.  I was (and still am, although I'm blogging when I really should be sleeping) completely, utterly exhausted.  Sleep has been hard to come by and I've had a lot to do, so Mama's been staying up late.  And damn, am I grumpy when I'm tired.  I think I mentioned before that hubby has decided it's in everyone's best interest to just let me sleep in when he can.  Not to mention a large dose of uncertainty about where we're going to be living and what we're going to be doing next academic year, the state of the world in general, and Japan.  Oh, Japan.  I'm not going to blog about it because I just don't know what to say or how to deal with it.  Throw that all together and add uber-cranky toddlers to the mix, and what do you get?  A complete breakdown for Mama.  I dropped the kids off at preschool and came home to dissolve in a puddle.  Luckily, hubby was home this morning, and he tucked me up in bed and made soothing sounds at me until I calmed down.

And then I went out for a bit by myself, and my head started to clear.  I decided that even though the world is a mess and there is suffering everywhere, I was going to do something nice for my kids.  They needed some new rain boots, and I spent a few extra dollars to get them the fireman-themed ones because they are OBSESSED with firefighters.  As you can see from the photo above, they were pretty excited.  They yelled and laughed and refused to take the boots off.  I'm not sure why they needed mittens to go with them, but they went around putting out fires all over the house for a while.  I needed those smiles.

Gorton's fishermen?
And then I got an email that the books I requested were in, so we went to the library.  This is always a source of joy for the boys, so there were more smiles, and snuggles and stories on the couches in the children's room.  And then we went to Reny's (if you are from Maine, then you might understand my love for Reny's.  I heart that store, so much.) and found raincoats for the boys, which they sorely needed.  AND they came with rain pants!  As a mama who loves camping with her toddlers, I can't even explain how exciting that was, especially since it was a super good deal. 

And then the afternoon got unexpected.  And better.  Owen decided that he didn't want to get in the car and go home.  He wanted to go for a walk, since it was "such a sunny day".  So since we were in Gardiner and it's a really cute and nice little downtown, we walked up and down Main Street.  We went into a couple of shops to look at things, and we all had a big laugh when we realized that Owen was wearing two right boots and Jonah was wearing two left boots.  Ah, the dangers of buying matchy-matchy things for twins.  And then the boys decided they were hungry, so we stopped into a little place called Sweet Love, which is an odd but charming combination of bridal boutique and bakery/cafe.  The boys ate buttermilk scones and I had a much-needed cup of coffee, and it was lovely.  Normally, taking the kids out somewhere is stressful and difficult, but this was really nice.  They were (mostly) well-behaved, said funny things, and made me so very proud and happy.  

As we were sitting at our table enjoying our treats, the boys swinging their legs in their chairs, the bright sun warming our faces, my cold hands around a warm cup of coffee, smiles on all our faces, I thought: this is what I daydreamed about when they were in the NICU.  And I got all misty, right there at the table.  Of course, shortly thereafter, Owen started having a meltdown because his scone was gone, and we had to leave pretty quickly.  But that moment is still with me, and I'm thankful.  I think I needed that reminder of how full of fear I was when they were born, and although times are still tough, I have everything I ever wanted.

Watching intently.
My phone doesn't have the best camera but there they are, breaking the ice.
So we walked back to our car, and on the way home we were noticing the river.  It was still frozen pretty solid, but we talked about how the icebreakers would be coming up the river any day now to crunch up the ice.  And lo and behold, we looked out the window and there they were!  And even though the boys were exhausted and we were all getting hungry, we parked the car and got out to watch.  
My view, between two little heads.
It's just so exciting!
Buuut we're tired.  And not appropriately dressed.
(On a side note, those vests are way too small now.  Time to make new ones, I guess.)  So even though we all got snow in our shoes and we froze our inappropriately-dressed butts off, it was really fun.  There was a whole crowd there watching, and the boats kept honking at us.  The boys thought they were in heaven.  After a while, we decided to go home and have some warm milk with cinnamon and honey.  And that was pretty much it.  There were multiple meltdowns between then and bedtime, but I felt much better equipped to handle them gently after such a cool afternoon hanging out with my boys.  

And for the grand finale of this never-ending post, I leave you with the rest of our rain-suit photo shoot, plus a couple of extras:

J looks like he's trying to be tough, and O is just so darn excited.

Oh, that little face!  

And like most things at our house, it ended in wrestling.
Thoughtful Owen is thoughtful.
Demon child Jonah.
p.s.: In case you were wondering (and I know you were), I'm feeling sort of done with calling them Moo and Bear.  So for future reference, Moo is Owen and Bear is Jonah.  I was thinking today that they would probably just rather have me use their names.


  1. what a beautiful moment of gratitude, liz.

  2. Great post, Liz! And I love the photos! Isn't that the best, when you can turn around a lousy day and feel so satisfied/gratified in the end.

  3. Awww...love it! :D

    It is definitely those moments that make it all worth going on when everything seems terrible...glad you got a great one! :)

  4. They are just TOO cute in those rainsuits!! What a great buy, and an even better day :)