Redneck cat feeder

We might go on vacation one day.

The livestock are covered, but how to make it easy for someone to check on the cat?

Amazon is my usual go to. So I looked it up there.$21.66 to feed and water the cat? 

“I can do better than that” I thought… annnnnddd Now it’s a challenge, and as the competitive sort I rarely back down from a challenge….even sometimes when it would be more prudent to do so. “Do it or die trying” was something I inherited from my Mema…and it appears that poor innocent Claire has inherited it from me. But I digress.

I looked around the house and low and behold, the trashcan beckoned to me. 

Two juice bottles. Ah ha! I can use these.

Poor Lynn came home from work for a short lunch break during this moment. Since we’ve been married for 11 years THIS COMING SATURDAY LYNN WATERS (hint hint, Kroger usually has a good selection of reasonably priced flowers, purple and yellow is a happy combination… Heck, I’ll even go with you to pick them out.) Anyway, since we’ve almost been married 11 years, he’s used to my crazy ideas and super-cheap ways and can almost control his eye rolling, or at least know to look away when he does it. 

He tucked the kids in for their nap since I was focused on the task at hand. (Hyperfocus anyone?? Ha!)

So with a box cutter (that I snapped in half) and then a steak knife I hacked at the juice bottles to make a cat feeder. 

Whaaa-lah! Here it is, in all its redneck glory. 

Top bottle
Bottom bottle
Get a scoop of cat food…(small scoop to make sure it works)
Stick those bad-boys together
Front view
Ta-daaa! Finished product. Next time I will fill it up more.

If I was doing it again, I’d make the cut more shallow on the top bottle so the cat food in the “dish” area would not be so deep. So get to drinking juice kids!! 

Overall I think it will work ok. 

The cat doesn’t care if it’s redneck, she just cares if there is food in it. 

When we have more bottles I’ll probably make a new modified top bottle. I will probably also make a redneck cat waterer. How’s the cat going to be fancy unless she has a matching set??

Anyway, y’all remind Lynn he has an ANNIVERSARY COMING UP soon. Please and Thanks. 

Don’t let the lunchable guilt get you down

Between work and other things we’ve traveled a lot here lately.

I feel like I’m playing catch up even more than usual. 

Usually, I make a concerted effort to get healthy (ish) lunches for the girls at daycare.

This week they started back to preschool full time. That means lunches every day. Lunches I must plan for.

Which brings me to this.

Yes. It’s a stack of  lunchables. I dont usually buy them, and if I do it’s just for one lunch. Because I read a study once about nitrates in lunch meat and it’s effect on brain development … or something. I don’t know. A lot of life has happened since I had time to read studies.

That stack of lunchables represents me coping with lifes craziness right now.(the poor deprived children will still get fruit with lunch and healthier breakfasts and dinners ) I’ve decided to be kind to myself and just roll with it this week. 

I will do better on next weeks lunches kids. I promise.

 

Home Again – and of course my daughter threw a fit

Just got home from a quick two day work trip.

It was just overnight. Still – I was eager to see the girls. (Lynn is at a meeting, so I can’t say I was excited to see him BECAUSE I haven’t seen him yet!)

I hurried over to my in-laws to get them. (Thanks in-laws for helping out!!)

I got a hug from Caroline and I promised her we could finish a movie if she hurried right home. Claire was very nonchalant about my arrival. She didn’t even look up from her pringles. Little punk.

After quite a while of coercing (in which I was getting frustrated, and a bit miffed that my presence wasn’t exciting the kids more) finally I had to make some firm statements (buffered by grandparents) to get the ratbabies in the car.

Once buckled in, Caroline began wailing that she “wanted to stay with Papaawwww.”  And that “Mema was waaayyy more fun than Mama” 

Etc. Etc. Etc.

When we got home she demanded I start the movie for her, and was taken aback when I told her since she wouldn’t come on home and since she threw a fit we no longer had time to watch it. 

Much drama ensued. 

While Caroline was loudly “expressing her feelings”I asked Claire to put her dirty shirt in the clothes basket and she yelled “NO!”, She then giggled and said “Watch my booty!” While shaking her bare undiapered rear in my direction. (Another fight for a different day)

Finally I managed to scrub them, got their teeth brushed and put their little wild and/or overly emotional selves to bed.

Honestly – I didn’t address the issue beyond telling  Caroline she was hurting my feelings and making Claire wear clothes to do her “dance”. 

(Don’t be judgy. It’s been a really tiring month, and I need to regroup before I strategize)

I reflected on the situation while trying to muster enough energy to start on some laundry.

Y’all know what? I am so thankful they love their grandparents so much that they are not bothered when I have to be gone. (Grandparents who spoil them beyond rotten – as is a grandparents rightful … dare I say…duty?!) I felt the same exact way about my Mema, and I have a feeling that this is well and good and right.

I am happy these kids of mine aren’t worried that I am the only person that will love them. They are secure because they know without a doubt they are loved by quite a few people.

I’m relieved that Lynn does such a good job as a Dad that they don’t feel like life is out of whack when I’m working. 

I’m glad we are raising strong resilient daughters…it looks like they will need those traits in the world we are living in.

Thanks for reading friends. I think I’ve sufficiently unwound enough to wash some laundry and re-pack for the next adventure. *Sigh*

Terrible housekeepers

I had to use the bathroom this morning. I’ve started locking the door because SURELY these kids will be ok for 5 minutes in this baby proofed house without being supervised. Right?

This is how Claire was running.

This wild hooligan was sprinting up down the hall with a steak knife in one hand and a baby wipe in the other.

She got the knife out of the closed dishwasher.
We are supposed to go to the Zoo this morning after we do a bit of housework. After almost an hour of chasing the kids around trying unsuccessfully to get them to pick up a few things, my new strategy is “If Mama uses all her energy asking you to do things over and over, there will be no energy left for the Zoo”

I’ve given them until I drink my second cup of coffee to accomplish their specific tasks. Claire has to put her backpack on the shelf, Caroline has to pick up the crayons in her room. I’m even stalling by piddling on my phone. 

We shall see. It’s looking like it may be a Monday at home. 

Day and night

The differences in the moods of my girls never ceases to amaze me. 

After Caroline’s awful fit Friday – she has been a very pleasant 4year old. Beyond some typical giggling and not always listening she has been great for me.

Typically she tries very hard for Lynn but makes me work to communicate with her.

Last night she put away her laundry, asked if she could help Claire and then TOOK IT UPON HERSELF to put away Lynn’s laundry. It’s a miracle folks.

This evening she kept asking me what she could do to help me…and thanked me for being “such a wonderful, beautiful mommy”. And colored me a picture of myself.

I love it. And at the risk of ruining a perfectly wonderful peaceful few days, I’m going to have to talk to her and make sure that she knows 

A. I appreciate very much her willingness to help me

B. I’m going to love her no matter what she does or doesn’t do. 

C. I love it when she is nice and-heres-a-bribe-to-keep-it-up… because (just keeping it real) I’m weak and my sanity has been needing a few days of reprieve from the constant challenges from a well rested 4year old…and I’ll do a lot of things to encourage it to continue.

Lest anyone worry my life is getting easy or something….Claire has been a happy, joyous, giggling wild maniac. 

For example: Tonight Claire pretended to hug me and then reached out and poked me IN THE EYE for fun. TWICE. I might have to wear a pirate eye patch now. 

These kids! I love them like crazy.

Goodnight friends.

The WORST Mommy EVER

It appears we have reached the teenage years at age 4.

Yesterday I chauffeured Caroline, her friend and Claire to a birthday party last night.

It was supposed to be a pool party, but it stormed with a lot of wind and thunder and lightening.

Obviously no swimming.

When I loaded up the kids she started.

Caroline : Why you not let me swim

Me: Because there was lightening and I didnt want you to die

Caroline: (30 minutes of complaints and whining)

Me: Caroline, I cannot allow you to continue to treat me like this.

I dropped off the friend, picked up some dinner for Lynn and the backseat situation was drastically escalating.

Me: (repeating to myself, don’t engage – she is looking for a reaction)

Caroline: You are the MEANEST MOMMY EVER! I want to live with someone ELSE! Aaaahhh! Wooohoooo!HELP! (Pounding the back of my seat with her feet, waving her fists and SPITTING) 

Me: (Loses my mind)

I pull the car in some random strangers driveway. 

I put it it in park. 

Calmly (the calm that scares people) I walk around go her door and open it.

Caroline is watching me with giant eyes still weakly flailing her arms and kicking her bare feet. (Having already thrown her shoes at my head)

Claire is enjoying the show, and perhaps enjoying being the kid NOT in trouble for once.

I grabbed sweaty kicking Caroline held her close while unbuckling her from the car seat. I kissed her head and smoothed her hair.

Me: I’m so sorry you want to live with someone else. I’m going to miss you.

Caroline: WHAT DO YOU MEAN?!

Me: You said you want to live with someone else. So this looks like a nice house, I hope the people that live here want a little girl and you will be happy here. They certainly take good care of their flowers. We love you a lot and will all miss you.

Caroline: I DIDN’T MEAN IT! I am SORRY! I love you! I don’t want to live with  strangers!

Me: Are you sure? You sounded like you really wanted to, and I want what’s best for you. Plus, we are already here.

Caroline: I’m sure. I love you. I’m sorry I was mean, please take me home.

So I did. And no more screaming. 

And when I tucked her in bed she said that she was sorry and she would never be that mean again…which was probably a lie, but it was sincere at the time.

And this morning? Well, she’s a ray of cheerful sunshine. Once again loving and helpful. 

Lord help me!

Who VBS helped this week.

My kids are at Vacation Bible School this week.

They are SO EXCITED.

Dinner, cool video and skit, fun lesson, kiddie crafts and…..BOUNCE HOUSES.
I mean, my kids would do a lot of things to play in a bounce house.

Because I got confused on the dates, I told the lady in charge that I couldn’t help. But then I realized I could have…but then I forgot to tell her. Sorry!

Anyway. I always thought when people worked with kids it was for the children. Makes sense.

But ya know…this week I’ve realized that working with children isn’t just for the kids, it may be an even bigger gift to the PARENTS.

As a Mama, it thrilled me that our church cared enough about the kids to feed them before VBS. (And I didn’t have to feed them. Yes. I’m that shallow…and tired)

It made me happy my girls came home excited about a new song they learned (I don’t know the words, but there was a ton of clapping and the word “bubbles” seemed to be the main theme)

They learned about the Bible, they jumped in bouncy houses, they admired the “cool big kid” that won the bicycle for memorizing the most Bible verses. They played with their friends until they were sweaty and then they crashed when I brought them home.

The amazing part for me, is they were so excited to go that I had ZERO mom-guilt for escaping kid-free for a couple hours. This was big. I’m a mom-guilt pro.

They learned a lot from VBS and I did too. It’s ok to let go and let my kids learn new things from other loving, trusted people.

Maybe that in my career working with kids, maybe – just maybe I can be able to make the lives of those parents better too like the “Ladies of VBS” did for me this week. I hope so.

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Goodnight friends!

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