Sunday, July 26, 2009

A Day Out With the Girls

Just a note: this is a long one.

As with any job, there are good days and bad days.  Days that everything falls into place, and days that everything falls apart.  The job of stay at home mom is no exception.  Then there are those days where you think things may go better than you ever imagined, only to find yourself crying in a corner at the end of the day wondering where things went wrong.  Yesterday was one of those days.

Let me start by telling you that Andy high tailed it out of here to Las Vegas on Friday afternoon.  Somewhere about a month ago, I apparently agreed to this arrangement.  I'm pretty sure it was after a 2nd glass of wine one Saturday night, when the kids were in bed and I didn't have to remember what I was going to face alone for 48 hours.  I know I'm with them all day every day, so what difference does another couple days make? However, not having Andy here AT ALL makes a HUGE difference.  I have no backup for the morning Sonya/Lana fights or even someone for me to talk to at the end of the day.  Plus the girls miss him incredibly.  It's hard to say the least.  Either way, I agreed and I was okay with him having a weekend away with the boys.  Plus I will repay the favor soon enough when I head out with the girls for a weekend of massages. I really believe all parents need alone time away.  I dream of a day when we can maybe go away together!  

Since he was gone all weekend, I realized I had to find something for us to do, at least one of the days, otherwise there might be a few less kids in the house come Sunday night.  The problem is it's the middle of the summer in Los Angeles, and it's damn hot.  The other problem is there are not a lot of places I can take three small kids alone.  The movies would be great if Georgia were a bit older, but that was out.  The beach would be my preferred place, but if you have not been with us to the beach you have no idea the production that goes into that adventure. We're lucky we can handle that with two adults going.  So I decided to embrace the heat of the summer and head to the zoo.  We have a seasons pass, so even if we went for an hour, got ice cream, and came home at least it would be time spent out of the house.  Then I remembered that there is a merry-go-round at Griffith Park down the street from the zoo.  It's only open on the weekend and we've never been, so I figured we could go there, then to the zoo.  Perfect!  I had a plan, now if only it worked out with the naps...

This is where I thought things were going to go so well.  The girls were in great moods yesterday morning.  Georgia and Lana got up close to 6:30 which was late for them, and Sonya slept until 7:30, even later for her.  Georgia took a great 2 hour morning nap and Lana went down at 10am with no hassle.  I managed to even get a workout in.  Things were going great!  I decided not to shower, since it was so hot out and I was sure to sweat walking the hills of the zoo, but got dressed and ready to go.  Then I packed a picnic lunch.  I got everything ready to go and right on cue Lana woke up from her nap, on her own. (This is always much better than having to wake her up).  We all hopped in the car and headed to the merry-go-round.  Once we got there, we set up a sheet and the girls and I had our picnic lunch under a very shady tree, listening to the carousel music in the background. We were having the picture perfect outing.  I even took a few pictures on my phone to send to Andy.  Surely he was missing his girls while lounging peacefully poolside in Vegas.  Then we cleaned up and headed to the merry-go-round.  That's where things took a turn.

After we got our tickets and handed them to the lady, we walked around looking for empty horses for the girls to ride on.  Sonya was very excited, Lana on the other hand... well when we found empty horses and I went to put her on, she started to cry and asked to go home.  We were right in front of the music which was extremely loud.  Then there were the creepy horses.  And I do mean creepy.  At one point in time I'm sure they were pretty carousel horses, with lots of bright colors. However, the merry-go-round was put there in 1955 and if it weren't for the fact that people run it on the weekends, I would say it was the last time anything was done to it.  Some of the horses tails were missing, and they were all some form of a grayish, blackish dirty color.  Yeah, nice.  So I couldn't blame Lana for not wanting to get on a horse. We opted for the sleigh type seat instead, with Sonya on a horse in front of us.  

The ride started and Lana got better.  I was holding Georgia and after about a minute I could tell she was not doing so well with the spinning around, so I faced her toward me and she clung to me the rest of the ride.  Now I'm not one for spinny rides, but I can usually handle a merry-go-round. This one, however, did go a bit fast, but more than that the ride lasted about 4 hours.  Okay maybe not that long, but it was a while.  Long enough where where Sonya started saying, "I'm getting dizzy!"  That's never good, because she's been known to throw up after a couple spins on the tea cups at Disneyland.  I told her it would be over soon, so not to worry.  Although, I lied because it was still another 2 minutes before it ended, and I'm so not kidding about that.  Finally it ended and I was a little concerned about Sonya, but once we got off she seemed better.  I put a bucket next to her in the car, just in case.  Lana decided she had fun and Georgia was still curiously clinging to me.  We left and headed to the zoo.

When we were at the merry-go-round I was given a very false sense of the weather.  It had been breezy, shady, and generally gorgeous there.  The zoo was the complete opposite.  It was hot, and sunny with not a whisper of a breeze anywhere around.  We started to trek through the zoo and I was immediately sweaty.  Good thing I skipped that shower.  I figured Georgia would be tired so I layed her down in the stroller.  Within 10 minutes she fell asleep.  I did notice she kept jumping and waking up.  It was the kind of thing you do when you first fall asleep and you dream that your falling or spinning.  I just figured it was because she was sleeping in her stroller.  No biggie.  

I had promised the girls we would get ice cream at the zoo, and of course Sonya  asked me for it the minute we stepped foot past the entrance gate.  I put her off for about 45 minutes, but finally decided I was hot and tired too, so we got some.  Lana had chocolate and proceeded to drip about half the ice cream on her outfit, despite the fact that it was in a cup and not a cone.  Normally I don't really care about that kind of mess, but she was covered, so I changed her.  Then we went off to see the Red Apes.  Georgia woke up while we were watching them and I pulled her out of the stroller, because she looked so hot and sweaty and like she needed some air.  After I put her back in the stroller we started to head to the giraffes. That's when I heard a familiar and unfortunate coughing sound, and then Sonya yelled, "Georgia's throwing up!!" 

Indeed she was.  All over herself and the stroller.  Everything she had eaten that day.  Gross.  We rushed to the bathroom, which luckily was around the corner.  It was a smaller bathroom, and one that was hard to maneuver my double stroller, but I managed.  Once in there I remembered how the L.A. Zoo tries to be environmentally friendly and in keeping with that, there's NO PAPER TOWELS.  How do they expect me to clean up the puke all over my baby with no paper towels to use?!  Thanks for helping to save the trees, but I have a gross baby here!  What about that L.A. Zoo?!  I did have half a pack of wipees, so I would just have to make do with those.  It took me a while to get her cleaned up, and the other two girls were NOT helping.  Sonya decided to wash her hands about 15 times, because she liked the foaminess of the soap in there, and Lana of course wanted to do the same.  I was trying to keep her from falling out of the stroller, she kept standing up in,  meanwhile cleaning throw up off the baby and the backseat of the stroller, while yelling at Sonya to get out of the way to let the other people in the bathroom wash their hands.   Fun times I tell ya!

After about 15 minutes I had G changed and the stroller cleaned enough, even though it still held that lovely smell of puke.  We headed out.  I was done.  The problem with the zoo is it's a good 15 minute walk to get the hell out of that place, and with Sonya walking it was at least 20.  We finally made it to the car and I got Georgia and Sonya in.  Lana was being difficult so I had to force her into her carseat.  She was very unhappy about that, and didn't want her blankie or her drink as she melted down into a small tantrum.  After a couple minutes she asked for "BLANKIE PLEASE!"  It was not nicely, so I told her as much and gave her the example of how to ask to which she replied, 

"I can't!  I cying wite now!"

That was pretty much the way I felt right at the exact moment.  With at least another 24 hours before Daddy made an appearance, all I wanted to do was cry.  

We made it home without incident, but on the way into the house, Georgia got sick again.  Luckily it was on the porch and easy to hose down later.  I gave her a bath and she was completely fine after that.   I'm guessing it was the long merry-go-round ride coupled with the heat that did her no favors yesterday. She hasn't been sick since and had no other symptoms.  The day wound down okay, with dinner, a shower and getting them to bed wasn't too difficult.  

My saving grace was that Melinda and Sooz came over last night so I could have some adult conversation and, more importantly, some adult beverages.  If ever there was a day I needed wine!  Thanks ladies! It was one of those days that just went horribly awry.  Mom always said there would be days like this.  I just wish I knew ahead of time when they would be, before I agreed to let my husband take off for a weekend in Vegas.  

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