Kids

The f'ing fairy who cleans the house looks pretty sick and tired too

The f’ing fairy who cleans the house looks pretty sick and tired too

I love my family.  I would do almost anything for my family.  This includes my siblings, my dad, my in laws.  And I mean it.  I would do ALMOST anything as long as it does not include laundry.  Or polka music.  That being said, let us discuss some myths about how a household is ran.

The first myth is the sock goblin.  If my children cannot find matching socks and my husband is wearing a white sock and a black sock, blame the sock goblin.  I learned long ago that with so many children who are all wearing basically the same socks (ankle socks in the summer and long socks in the winter, either white or black) it is easier to throw all the boys socks in one basket and all of my husbands in another rather than trying to sort them out and figure who is wearing what type of socks.  Whether the socks make it out of the wash intact and paired is another story.  I am not sure if there is a sock goblin or if there is a pile of missing socks sitting in a dark corner of one of the boys bedrooms (looking at you #4)  so I cannot debunk this myth.  I am glad that mismatched socks are all the rage right now though.  My kids were finally been ahead of the fashion curve on this one.

The second myth is the tooth fairy.  I am all for keeping childhood memories intact and go along with the Easter Bunny, Santa  Claus and even that damn Elf On a Shelf but the tooth fairy?  I am paying my kids for losing teeth that I already paid a dentist to keep healthy?  Not to mention the cost of toothpaste, floss, toothbrushes, and mouthwash?  This is one of the strangest childhood myths and by the time the kids lost their baby teeth I could have paid for college.  (Just joking, I’m not on Teen Mom for gods sake!)   Plus, there are all the questions that come from said children over the tooth fairy.  Where do the teeth go?  They grind them down to make fairy dust.  How does she get in my room?  The same way Santa does, through a secret portal.  Why does the tooth fairy sometimes forget to leave money under my pillow?  Because the tooth fairy is very disorganized and fell asleep on the couch while watching Bravo.   Plus, the tooth fairy didn’t have any cash and is not leaving her debit card under a 5 year old’s pillow.   I still go along with the myth but grudgingly.

The third myth is that there is a f***ing fairy that makes sure the house is picked up after everyone goes to bed.  This myth needs to die and soon.  I am not a house elf and my name is not Dobby.  At the end of the evening, when everyone has been fed (leftovers count), baths taken, and lunches made, a miracle happens.  While everyone else is upstairs snug in their beds, mom gets to pick up all the crap that has re-accumulated since she picked up 2 hours earlier.  All the homework left out on the table, all the cups picked up out of the living room, all the socks laying all over the house (the sock goblin must keep graveyard hours) and all the litter that accompanies children and spouses who cannot quite make it to a trash can.

That’s right. The fairy is real and she is tired and muttering bad words under her breath the entire time.  It goes something like this. “I cannot believe they just walked past that wrapper.  How freaking hard is it to put your shoes in the mudroom?  Oh my god, there’s only two right shoes?  Who the F loses only their left shoe?!?  I swear to god one day I’m just going to sit on my ass and see how quickly the house falls apart.”  In regards to the last one, I have tried this and it doesn’t work.  Turns out the kids and S.O. don’t value tidiness as much as I thought.

The solution to the problem could be that I need to have the kids pick up after themselves more often.  To ask the S.O. to help me pick up.  To staple their socks to their foreheads. The fairy will probably still grumble and grouse about picking up but it is easier than herding said children and hubby into a cleaning corral and prodding them to do it.  The real solution is that I like waking up in the morning to a picked up house and I like the way that I do it.  So, this myth can die but it won’t.  But the tooth fairy?  That one is ready for the ax.

 

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We have had colds all week.  And I mean all of us.  It started on Monday with #6.  Sniffling, sneezing.  No big deal.  I stocked up on Kleenex (you would think with three teenage boys I would have Kleenex by the case, but I digress.)  and juice and Lysol’d everything in sight.  Normally, with the first sign of any kind of cold we go into quarantine mode.  It is impossible to imagine the lunacy of having so many children all come down with the plague like dominoes falling.  But it happens.  Thankfully only once a year.

#6 cannot be quarantined.  She has to have attention on her at every second of every day.  Spending the day in her room by herself was not going to happen.   Than #7 started sneezing.  And his nose ran like the Mississippi River in the spring after a winter thaw.   Okay, 2 out of 9 was not bad.  I could take those odds.

I warned the older children that they need to actually wash their hands and not interact with the little ones.  Which sounds way easier than it actually is.  #3 was the first big kid to fall.  He was miserable.  I loaded him up with cold medication and Kleenex and juice and sent him upstairs to his room.  #4 said his throat was sore but he was fine.  Vitamin C and juice and again, hand washing.   #1 (who only moved out last year) came to visit and was warned of the potential for being sick.  She was brave.  She was so so brave.  Than she too was down for the count.  #5 was the only hold out (#2 chose to stay away so he was the smart one in the group.)  #5 woke up on Wednesday with a slight fever and cough and again, quarantine.

Then … then S.O. started coughing.  It started small.  He swore that he did not feel sick and did not have a cold.  Everything was still okay at this point.  Yes, the kids were miserable and sick but they were staying quiet and sleeping most of the time.  If S.O. became infected, the patient count would be 8:1.  I was the 1.  And S.O. , like #6, requires attention and cannot be left alone.

He was sick.  He was coughing, he couldn’t hear, his glands were swollen, his eyes and nose was runny.  He would sleep fitfully and yell and mutter and whine in his thin sleep.  It was not awesome.  S.O. , #6, and #7 camped out in the living room amid a growing pile of Kleenex, empty juice cups, and despair.   By Friday, #6 was better as was #7 and #5.  We were on the mend.  We had made it.

Saturday, I woke up with a sore throat and a cough.  I had no one to take care of me, make sure I had Kleenex, and juice.   S.O. was still under the weather but had gamely decided to join his dad in Chicago for a car show. #3,#4,#5 were all better and running around.  I was doomed.  So, being a mom, I chugged juice from a mainly clean cup, I used toilet paper when the Kleenex ran out (and doesn’t my raw nose thank me) and I laid on the couch amid the mess and destruction of a house ran by a sick parent and children who recognized the weakness and took it as a sign that it was okay to destroy everything.

By the time S.O. returned home he was greeted by a wife napping with #7, #6 still wearing the same pajamas she had slept in the night before, a kitchen full of dishes,  and cold pizza delivered hours before so the older children wouldn’t starve.   And he still wasn’t feeling well.  We looked at each, through bleary red eyes, and without saying a word (which I couldn’t do anyway without expelling mucus everywhere) acknowledged that this time, through sickness, not health, we had made it.  Till we meet again next year, flu bug.

 

 

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I have heard the question over and over.  “Are they all yours?”   “Don’t you know what causes that?”  “You must be Catholic.”  “You must be Mormon.”  “What were you thinking?” But I have never, ever, ever been asked, “How much fun is it?”

To answer:  yes, they are all mine.  No, I did not foster, adopt, or steal seven children that all bear some genetic linkage to me.  Yes, I know what causes it. It’s called sex.  Which I have obviously had at least 7 times.  Yes, I am Catholic, though not practicing.  I always forget to give up or stick with giving up things for Lent and I enjoy a nice steak on Fridays sometimes.  No, I am not Mormon.  Although I would like to visit Utah.  And I was thinking, I love my big family and I feel incredibly blessed to have all 7 of my children.  Most of the time.

And they are fun.  They are stressful, worrying, staying up nights with sick and scared ones,  incredibly infuriating, overwhelming loved, never a quiet or dull moment,  and I would not trade it for anything.  Well, maybe for an all expense ADULT only vacation but than I would miss them and want them back.

I have a big family.  I am not ashamed of it.  I enjoy knowing that my children will always have a great relationship with their siblings (once they learn to like each other and not try to knock each other off) and that I found something that I rock at.

I am a good wife.  I am a good sister.  I hope I am a good daughter.  But I am a great mom.  I am not perfect.  I make mistakes, I get impatient, I forget what eating a hot dinner is like.  I am raising 7 people to not judge by appearance, to forgive and eventually be able to forget, to think for themselves, and to be contributing members to society.   They make me a better person by not hesitating to tell me when they think I’m wrong, by knowing how to love someone unselfishly and with all of their flaws.  My children say thank you and your welcome and hold open doors.  They are my imperfectly perfect gift to the world.  And you do not even have to thank me.

I have never went up to a parent with one child and said, “How selfish to only have one.”  I would never put someone down for not wanting to have children.   My little sister only has two for gods sake.  I do make fun of her for it, but I don’t judge her for it.  So why is it okay for complete strangers to make remarks about my family?

If you did not birth them, raise them, or pay for them, than you have no right to judge me or question me for my family size.  And I won’t judge you for yours.

The only difference for me, at least, is that when I take all of my children and my SO out in public, I smile and answer, “Yes, they’re all ours.  Yes, we know what causes it.  No, I do not care to discuss my spirituality with you.  And they are a joy to behold, aren’t they?”   before bolting to make sure #7 isn’t choking on #6’s barbie shoes and that #4 is not putting #5 in a choke hold.  God, I love my family!

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