Sunday, October 30, 2005
Post-Traumatic Grandma Disorder
It's been two weeks, and I think my children are finally recovering from their recent bout of Post-Traumatic Grandma Syndrome. It was touch-and-go at times, but they're beginning to resemble MY children again instead of whiny, demanding, instant-gratification-hungry beasts.

And let me back up a second to say that this is NOT a rant against my mother-in-law! (For once!!) I think it's just the nature of grandparents - they get to shower your kids with attention and sometimes gifts, and they don't have to spend a single second concerned with silly things like discipline or long-term effects. By the end of a visit, the kids realize it's kinda NICE to live that way, and then they get irritated when mom doesn't simply fall in line with that approach to things herself.

So for a couple of days, we had a few really intense tantrums and screeching and squawking. An endless string of "I want, I want, I want, can I, can I, can I?" Lots of "Mom, watch me get a cereal bowl! Mom, watch me get a spoon! Isn't that amazing?!? Mom, watch me take a bite!" Yes, dear, now shut up and eat.

But it's easing off, and they're nearly civilized again.

Last weekend Emily went to a Halloween party, and it was the first one for her where (a) parents were encouraged to stay with their kids, and (b) they shouldn't have been. The kids had a blast, because an outdoor party on a 50-degree day when it has rained for the past 4 days is fun if you're 5. I'm not.

Not that I had a BAD time, it was just boring. There was nothing for grown-ups to do, and nowhere to sit, so we all just sort of stood around and occasionally made pained efforts to chat. But it was like playing catch with a bowling ball, not a smooth or graceful process at all. I'm sure that I have a ton in common with each person there, but I lacked the energy to try and find out those things, so instead I felt like, "HEY, guess what?!? We both procreate and we both breathe! Hooray."

We had a much better time at the science center in Manchester last weekend, stuff was interesting and chairs were available and not one out of the 6 children under 5 in our group had a meltdown. Amazing.

And now it's Halloween, which I love. I love carving pumpkins, I love eating pumpkin seeds, I love making costumes, I love eating candy. Just love it. It is just a tad on the commercial side, but no one pretends it's got a deeper meaning, so I'm okay with that!

I took the kids out trick-or-treating tonight, because for whatever reason we do that on the 30th here. It was great fun to watch Jacob struggling manfully to open and consume a Kit Kat all by himself.

And now for the inevitable sugar highs and lows of the week following Halloween... as a good mommy, I feel it is my duty to steal as much of their candy as possible to prevent unreasonable hardship on their own bodies.