This morning was hectic. I whisked all three of us out the door at 8:58 am, just in time to get to the YMCA at 9:15 so Jacob could attend Parachute Games. Remember elementary school gym class? We waited ALL YEAR for our gym teacher to pull out the gigantic parachute. The 30 or so of us, standing in a circle and holding onto the edge of the chute would throw our arms up into the air, sending the parachute to the ceiling. Then we would run under as fast as we could, creating a gigantic tent. That is my favorite elementary school memory! And now I was so excited for Jacob to have a turn.
By the time I got both kids piled into the car and buckled up (a feat in and of itself), I put the key in the ignition. But it wouldn't turn. The steering wheel was stuck causing the ignition-starter hole thingy to lock up. I grabbed the wheel as hard as I could, trying to straighten it up. It was 9:01, time was running short and I was beginning to panic. This was my third attempt to get Jacob to the parachute class after a month of talking up how amazing it would be and DANG IT we were going to get there this time!
I grabbed one end of the wheel and pulled like a mad-woman, groaning and swearing under my breath. Ryan started fussing. Time was ticking away on my cell phone. Jacob, sensing my increasing frustration, began to interrogate me, "Why aren't we going? We're going to be late! I'm going to miss my class! Mommy, why aren't you driving? Mommy, WHAT'S HAPPENING?"
"CHILL OUT EVERYONE!" I was so upset. I really wanted to get Jacob to the class this time. I even woke up EARLY and had spent the past 45 minutes dressing the three of us and organizing the diaper and work-out bags.
"UGH!" I yelled defeated. I got out of the car and started boxing at a random cloud in the sky. "WHY DID THIS HAVE TO HAPPEN TODAY!" Then, giving up, I leaned into the car to grab the diaper bag out of the passenger seat. I rested my arm on the steering wheel and "CLICK." Just like that, the wheel straightened out. My cell phone said it was 9:04. I just might have time to make it. I hopped quickly back into the car and booked it to the Y, driving like a rude, crazy person. We got there at 9:14, one minute to spare!
I breathed a huge sigh of relief as we sauntered up to the childwatch counter. One look at the sign-in sheet told me the awful truth- Parachute Games started at 10:30 today. I did everything possible to stop myself from pounding my head into the wall.
After dropping the kids off, I attended my first Zumba class. OMG. ZUMBA. LOVE IT. It's hardly a "work-out." It's more like clubbing but without booze and creepy men hitting on you. I'm a total fan! Half the time I couldn't figure out the steps, but that didn't stop me. I slapped on my "duck lips" face and partied it up in the corner doing the macarena to upbeat-clubbing music.
When Zumba finished, I picked up the kids and made a quick stop at the craft store where, against my better judgment, I purchased these:
Battery operated rings that shoot lasers into the air. Who the heck thinks up these things? Not that I can talk, I did buy them...
Despite painful experience, I haven't quite figured out that I can only run two errands or make two stops on each outing. Whenever I try to do more, something inevitably goes haywire. But I was obviously not in my right mind today as evidenced by the purchase mentioned above (laser rings!). So.....I attempted a trip to the grocery store.
Although I had told Jacob that he couldn't play with the rings until we got home (seriously, it's like giving a kid a ball and telling him not to throw it), the rings had somehow made their way to his fingers by the time we picked out a shopping cart.
As we walked the aisles, every three feet Jacob would bound out of the cart to ask if he could have something.
"Mommy, can I have this can of fruit."
"No. I'm buying real fruit. Get in the car." His eyes caught something farther down the aisle and I saw him get that sparkle in his eyes. "Get in the cart NOW!" Without waiting for him to get all the way in, I wondered to the produce section. "Jacob, do you want some carrots this week?"
I peeked into the cart and see that Jacob's spot is empty. What the heck? "JACOB! JACOB! Where are you?"
He came hobbling around the corner carrying a huge gallon of some pink liquid labelled "11% Real Fruit Juice." "No," I say. "Put it back. Put it back now. NOW! Now get in the cart. STAY THERE!"
We moved onto the next aisle and I saw that the customers in front of us had weird multi-colored dots on their backs. I looked down and saw Jacob pointing his laser rings at everyone we passed. "Jacob, don't point those at people."
He turned his weapons on me:
"Not the face. ESPECIALLY not in the face." My yelling woke Ryan up from his light slumber. Rudely startled awake, he began to cry. "Come on. Ryan is crying, let's go." Unfortunately, pushing the cart did not settle him down. He kept screaming so I finished my shopping frantically.
Finally, I grabbed the last item on my shopping list. I turned around to put it in the cart and saw Jacob pointing his lasers at the top of Ryan's head, making gun noises, "pew, pew, pew! I shot ya!" He said.
"Jacob. GET IN THE CART. STOP SHOOTING RYAN. DON'T POINT THE LASERS AT PEOPLE!" Did I cover everything? "Oh and get your hands out of your pants!" Now I did. We quickly paid for groceries. Ryan was charming the pants off everyone with his frantic screaming. Maybe he'll be an opera singer? He's got the lungs!
I strolled us quickly out to the car, Jacob's hands were flailing out of the front of the cart, shooting invisible bad guys with his laser guns, "pew, pew!" When we got to the car, I saw a smashed paper cup on the ground, oozing out mysterious bubbling liquid. Knowing Jacob, I forewarned him, "Jacob, there is garbage by your door. DO NOT TOUCH IT."
I opened Ryan's door and stuck him in. I came around to buckle Jacob and found him holding the smashed cup in his hands. "Jacob. I told you not to touch that! Put it down."
"But Mommy, you said not to pick up TRASH. This is a TREASURE!"
AAAAAAH!!! I smacked it out of his hands, fastened him in, and climbed in the driver's seat. The car was burning hot, so I rolled down the windows, hoping Ryan wouldn't get a heat rash. We stopped for a red light at the next intersection. Ryan was still screaming out of an open window and Jacob was waving his hand out of the other, "pewing" everything in sight.
And me.... I was yelling at Jacob every three seconds: "Don't shoot people. I said DON'T shoot people. Get your arm in the car. Don't make me take that away!"
Ryan: "WAAAAAAH. WAAAAAAH!"
At that precise moment, a group of teenagers stopped at the intersection just feet away. They were all staring in our direction. As they eyeballed us, I totally wanted to sink into the floor board and melt away. Then I had a thought. I should get "Abstinence Education Mobile" painted on the sides of my Subaru and drive around highschools. I ignored the urge to yell out the window, "THIS is why you don't have sex until you're 40, and married so you can share the torture with another human!"