Random Thoughts

Friends, I am a little tipsy on fatigue and a day full of drinking prosecco at Cookie Monster’s birthday party. So, if today’s post is particularly punchy and random, blame the baby. Being tired hurts my brain cells more than the prosecco.

Seriously, you need to check out my friend, Miranda Wicker’s, Wine Shop at Home site and order this prosecco. I am not a fan of wine at all. I smell wine and fall over drunk. Quite frankly, I don’t see the appeal.

However, I am a fan of sparkling wine (which I recently learned is just champagne from areas other than Champagne, France). In fact – I particularly enjoy prosecco during the day (there is something delightfully naughty about drinking in the day time for me). So because I love my friend, Miranda, I wanted to support her business and bought two bottles of their Le Cadeaux Semi-Seco.

Dude, the shipping was $18 because they have to pay by weight and use a fancy bottle cushioner thingy to make sure your wine bottles arrive unbroken (IMPORTANT). But other than that, the wine arrived in 2 days.

TWO DAYS. (It might have even be less than two days – I can’t remember because I am a horrible reviewer of things but you’re stuck with me so I’M NOT SORRY.)

Anyhow, I originally was considering ordering a case on Black Friday for $240 but Hapa Papa put his foot down and ruined all things (he claims I don’t drink enough but you know what? I could and I could start now. Talk about a lack of imagination on his part. Lame.)

I meant to immediately start drinking the moment I received the package but since I was by myself, I didn’t want to waste it and risk it losing all its bubbly because I can’t kill a bottle by myself. I even bought special bottle stoppers for bubblies because otherwise it will lose its fizz and I was not about to ruin $22 bottle wine. (Affiliate link.)

But it turns out I needn’t have bothered with the wine stopper because it’s all gone gone gone. Down my gullet and my friends. YUM. Not too sweet and not too dry. Just the way I like it.

Ok. That was a pretty boozy preamble for a non-drinker. But now onto my other thoughts.

1) I finally convinced my mother that Hapa Papa and I don’t want Christmas presents and I would rather spend time with her watching a movie or eating so we watched Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them tonight.

Since I exclusively breastfeed, I had to start pumping milk this week so I would have enough milk for Sasquatch during the three hours I would be out.

It was hard because I haven’t been pumping and I was starving when trying to ramp up production. Making milk is hard work. Also? I lost sleep because instead of sleeping, I was pumping milk.

Sasquatch ate 10 ounces in the three hours I was gone and when I got home, he was still hungry. This was after I fed him before I left.

People, this means I will need to pump milk for months before I will have enough for baby boy when I go off to Type A Parent West 2017 in Denver this coming April.

I am going to be very hungry and cranky.

2) Incidentally, because I so rarely watch movies now, all the previews seem amazing. I teared up inappropriately at all the movies. Every movie looked amazing.

3) My mom seemed really happy to watch a movie. She loves movies but doesn’t have anyone to watch with. I don’t know why we haven’t gone to see more movies together.

In 2017, I am going to make more of an effort to watch movies with my mom. Easy peasy.

4) I have been listening to The Weeknd on Spotify lately after reading a review in the New York Times of his latest album.

I never realized just how filthy The Weeknd is.

Also? His cover of Michael Jackson’s Dirty Diana is amazing. If I could sex a song I would have sex with this song. It is so good.

Maybe I just don’t listen enough to music. I don’t know.

5) I am starving.

6) My friend’s husband was so appalled that I’ve owned the Instant Pot (affiliate link) since July but I still hadn’t brought it out of the box to use it; he decided to make us dinner with my Instant Pot.

People – this is how you friend, ok? Everyone else? STEP UP YOUR GAME.

He kept trying to tell me how awesome the Instant Pot is by describing all the things I could make and I just kept laughing at him. Me make tacos? Pulled pork? Braised pork shoulders?

I don’t make these things. I eat these things.

I am chuckling just thinking about it.

7) Geez, people. I really am ravenous. But Sasquatch is on me and I am in bed.

Sigh.

8) Oh, and I know I mentioned it last week, but HFS, I have been adulting af this week.

I AM MADE OF WIN.

I don’t know how long this will last. I am deeply suspicious of myself.

And with that note, I should sleep. (I will lost likely squeeze in a few more games of Two Dots though because I can only make so many wise decisions without maxing them out.)

Happy Monday!

Incoherent Ramblings of My Sleep Deprived Mind

I am a consummate idiot. 

Instead of going to bed at 9pm last night, and possibly sleeping through the night because Sasquatch seems to be sleeping longer when he is dry (so adding an insert to his cloth diaper was super helpful), I stayed up until 3-4am playing a new to me game called Two Dots.

This is why I can’t have nice things. This is also why I have never tried drugs. Because I have an addictive personality and dammit all if I didn’t spend all day playing this stupid game. 

In fact, I am currently fighting off the incredibly strong urge to play the game in order to write this post. 

So, because I ruined my brain and likely will be super cranky today (my busiest day of the week – great planning, jackass), I give you more of the random firings of my brain. 

1) My unders still hurt. Though I have mostly stopped leaking blood, my baby squeezing out parts still ache and are kinda throbby (and not in the good throbby kinda way). 

I really hope this is normal and not because I have an infection in Lady Town. 

2) I didn’t need to mention that there is a highly likely chance of me being TMI, right? 
No one is new here. 

3) I am ravenous. 

I would say it’s because I am breastfeeding, but mostly it’s because I make poor eating choices. 

So this is the secret to how I always end up losing weight post-baby. It is because my body just does that (sorry) rather easily and also because I breastfeed a lot. (Yesterday seemed to be continuous ALL DAY.) 

But, it is also likely because I am used to not eating dinner with the family and usually prefer to eat by myself after everyone is down for the night. Except now I am super tired and often fall asleep nursing in bed (we co-sleep) and by the time I wake up it’s too late and I just say fuck it and go back to bed. 

And then, when I am up during the day, I never particularly want to eat what the kids eat so I graze and eat mostly snacks so um, yeah. 

I especially eat a lot of chocolate and Halloween candy. It is delicious. 

Bad decisions all around. 

4) Gamera did not sleep well last night. She kept sleep-talking all night and she was NOT happy in her dreams. At least once, she sleep-yelled/whined at Cookie Monster and her frenemie, Rhythm Girl

I love how she gets pissed off even in her sleep. Clearly, she is my child. 

5) So I am bummed that Cookie Monster and Gamera’s eyes have succumbed to genetics and are now both wearing glasses for reading. 

However. 

The bright side is that kid glasses are no longer horrible and awkward like when I was a kid so they are adorable. 


6) Our part of CA seems to have finally gotten the memo that it is fall and indeed, has been fall for some time now. 

I am cold. 

7) My butt and legs constantly go numb because I am always sitting and nursing Sasquatch.

I am probably getting tennis elbow because I am constantly on my phone either texting or playing Two Dots

It’s a sickness. 

8) I love getting free books at the library. But I hate how I end up paying so many fines because I am incapable of returning books on time lately. 

9) I need to find new TV shows to watch that are episodic and not a continued story arc. I started Designated Survivor and though I enjoy it, the pressure to keep watching is about to do me in. I just can’t stand all the new episodes judging me in my DVR queue. And now there are so many it seems that watching them will take too much effort. 

I still have Roots on my DVR from summer. Still haven’t come up with the commitment to watch any. 

I need another NCIS or start watching Bones reruns again. Pretty much I just need to DVR old procedurals in syndication. 

Ooooh. Psych is back on Ion. Hmmmm. This shows promise. 

10) I am super excited PharmGirl is having her baby soon. Then we can have three sets of frenemy kids. And most importantly – I don’t have to make new friends so that Sasquatch can have friends. 

WINNING!!

Now, to convince my other good friends they want a third or fourth child. 

Alright. That’s it. My brain is done. See you soon!

Scattershot

My mind is totally everywhere right now and while I’m sure each individual thought is snowflake-esque and definitely brilliant material enough to generate a post of its own because I am a font of hilarity, alas, it is not to be.

And so you, Dear Reader, are forced to read only half germinated thoughts and be satisfied with being genius adjacent versus actual witnesses.

Anyway…

Here then is another one of my lists of random thoughts. You’re welcome.

1) I have been super cranky with the kids lately. So much so that even Hapa Papa thinks I’ve gone a bit nuts. (He particularly thinks it’s bad that I’ve stopped caring about swearing in front of the kids. My thinking is, that ship has long sailed away.)

2) I’m really enjoying my “looser” schedule for this homeschooling year. Still a lot of crap and driving – but much easier than last year and I better remember to keep all that “empty” space open. Easier to homeschool when there is actually time to do so.

3) I’m about 6 weeks out from Induction Wednesday.

I thought it was going to be Induction Tuesday. I am beyond sad that Induction Day has been pushed back an entire 24 hours.

Look. Obviously, I know that babies are better growing on the inside of my uterus. No lectures about any prenatal health, etc. This is my FOURTH kid. Keep your scintillating knowledge to yourself. I likely have read it at least a hundred million times.

HOWEVER.

I’m at that point where I really no longer wish to be pregnant.

I am constantly in a state of discomfort. (In fact, I think I’ve been uncomfortable almost every single day of this pregnancy.) And truthfully, I have had a very easy and uneventful pregnancy (as were my other three).

Obviously, super grateful for healthy babies and pregnancies and all this healthy stuff.

AND STILL.

I look like I swallowed a basketball.

Everything hurts.

I am ALWAYS uncomfortable.

I want to be unpregnant.

4) Of course, then I remember that to be unpregnant, I will have a newly minted NEWBORN in my life again. Which, although lovely and wonderful and yay for new baby smell and potential new fat baby snarfing, OMG WHAT HAVE WE DONE WE ARE THE STUPIDEST OF HUMANS WE HAVE RUINED EVERYTHING.

I mean, um, YAY BABIES!

5) Seriously. WTF HAVE WE DONE?

6) Oh, and remember when I mentioned that my vagina constantly feels like it has something stuck in it? According to my OB/GYN, that is totally normal because my vaginal tissues are swollen and full of blood because of this pregnancy – and each pregnancy increases the swelling. So, the reason my vagina feels full? IT IS. FULL OF THE BLOODS.

You’re welcome for that fun factoid.

7) When my mom comes by and takes all three kids out to dinner and they come back fed and happy and tired and slightly wired from froyo?

AWESOME.

8) Even better when I’m not home when they come back and Hapa Papa bathes them and puts them into bed and I come home after consuming unholy amounts of boba and beef stroganoff (I was on a mission today to get some and get some I did) and hanging out with a friend and all I have to do is look at their angelic sleeping faces.

That is the only time they are still, angelic, or silent.

9) Baby4 better be an extrovert or they’re going to have a rough go in this family. Because for realz, there is NEVER silence. They will NEVER be alone. It seems cruel to bring an introvert into the house.

10) Speaking of boba, I was at my local boba place and clearly, I wandered back in time to when every single asshole Asian dude I remember hating in college was in the parking lot showing off their shitty sports cars.

Sorry. Just because your Kia Rio has fancy lights on the outside does not make it cool. Or hot. Or sexy. It makes you sad.

11) That said, I suppose it’s rude to judge people by their outward appearances. And prejudiced. And really, why can’t I let them live? Who cares if they like to show off sub-par cars or the cars their parents bought them? What’s it to me?

Nothing. Nothing at all.

But I still judge. Because FFS.

12) I take an inordinate amount of pleasure in denying people membership to Facebook groups when they do not follow the very simple and specific directions I post as an admin.

I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before.

It bears repeating.

I know. I’m petty. No one is surprised.

13) I’ve been MIA from blogging because I have been busy working on my ebook that I want to get out before Baby4 shows up (at which point, everything will grind to a halt). I’m at the 90% point but definitely at the point where all the low hanging fruit has been picked and everything left is either hard or tedious.

I WILL FINISH THIS OR DIE TRYING.

14) Ok. Maybe not die.

15) When I start online shopping, I shop like I’m trying to win an award or something for most things purchased in short order and without much consideration.

I really should stop doing that.

16) My awesome Black & Decker handheld vacuum that I got for $25 years and years ago died today. I felt my soul cry. Then I had a soul cry that I had a soul cry about it.

17) What’s that you say? Just replace it?

I am. But it is no longer $25. It is considerably more.

This just compounds the soul cry.

18) Ever since I’ve cut down on my kids’ screen time, they play together a lot more and play with our toys a lot more. I know it’s obvious but why do I always forget?

19) I am always thirsty.

20) Corollary: I am always peeing.

21) According to Hapa PapaGlow Worm has seen lots of zombie related videos because he is often pretending to be a zombie. He also pretends to EAT YOUR INTESTINES.

Glow Worm is three.

We win at parenting.

22) When I was showering with Gamera the other day, she pointed to my nipples and asked why they were like the nipples on the goats they milked the other day. She said mine were the same color just not as long.

I blathered something about mammals and milk.

I tried not to laugh and despair simultaneously.

23) Then, Glow Worm decided he wanted milk from my breasts. I thought he would nurse so I said, go ahead. He said he was scared. I told him there was nothing to be scared about.

He came to me and squeezed really hard on my breast. Then, he said, “Not working!” when no milk came out.

He nursed for over 2.5 years and clearly has no memory whatsoever of the experience.

Apparently mammary glands (mine, specifically) were the educational topic of the day. Homeschooling WIN.

24) I really want to see every Daniel Wu movie ever made because he is so hot and even more so now that he is in his 40s.

Oh, who am I kidding? I rarely watch films because I am so lazy. (You have to be a special type of lazy to be too lazy to WATCH a MOVIE.)

I will just stare at pics of him on the internetz instead.

25) I currently sound like a person who smokes two packs a day. I’ve been fighting a sore throat on and off for about a week. Nothing terrible and the essential oils have been helping. But I still sound like Selma on The Simpsons.

26) I always have the most fun with these types of posts because I indulge in pretty much every non sequitur comment that passes through my brain because I find it funny.

Yeah, I said it. I’m my own biggest fan.

Alright. I think I have burbled on enough and will let you lovely people carry on with your Mondays. Have a great day.

Runaway Brain


So, my third trimester insomnia has hit full on (likely aided by jetlag and shitty kids who are so jetlagged that they’ve gone insane) and even though I’m exhausted and sleep-deprived, I still don’t go to sleep because I’m stupid.

I know there are essential oils I could be using, but frankly, I kinda like the extra time it gives me to do things I want to get done but it’s somewhat impossible with three horrible (I mean, lovely) children competing for my attention.

So, I have a bunch of things on my mind (both to do and to think about) and I guess that means it’s time for another mental flotsam post wherein I just list a bunch of crap that’s running through my restless mind.

YMMV in terms of how useful or interesting these thoughts are, but my long time readers are used to these posts by now so I’m not really too concerned about it.

OKOKOKOK, here we go:

1) So You Think You Can Dance: Next Generation is making me miss their regular show. On the one hand, the kids are really good. On the other, I feel weird watching kids dance in sometimes adult ways.

However, I am appreciating the hotness of several of the allstars. (I’m looking at you, Marko! RAWR! Especially after that hip hop number and his swag/old man shuffle at the end. *drools*)

2) In a related note, I really want a moto jacket.

But let’s be real. I don’t really ever wear jackets (even in winter) because I’m rarely outside long enough to require it.

Also, I think I’m overestimating my coolness factor.

Ah well. A girl can dream.

3) I love writing things in my planner that I’ve already done and then crossing them out.

4) Finally cleared out and cleaned my kitchen table. It’s beautiful.

It won’t last, of course. Because LIFE.

But for now, I love it.

4) I accidentally left the lights on in my minivan all day and completely drained the battery. Thank goodness for AAA who can come to our house and replace it for approximately the same price that it would cost for me to go out and buy a battery and install it.

This was way easier.

5) My kids are still really jetlagged and it makes the normal awful bedtime even worse. Like a bjillion times worse.

Nothing like putting my children to bed with the dulcet sounds of my screaming invectives and threats and their loud weeping.

6) Speaking of weeping, Gamera is driving me insane.

All this girl does is cry and whine and cry.

She literally cries over EVERYTHING.

I find myself unsympathetic – which likely just makes things worse.

It doesn’t help that she is the slowest human alive and perhaps it’s a super power of hers because maybe she’s actually trapped in a time bubble and everyone else is going at normal speed and she’s at 1/20th speed and thus will age at 1/20th the rate and will end up being immortal.

Her powers are lost on me because it just makes me erupt in a rage. I’m a very task-oriented person and when I want shit done, that shit better get done instantaneously.

Instantaneous is not a term Gamera is at all familiar with. Unless it refers to how quickly she will cry.

7) My poor mother ended up taking out all three of my kids to dinner because Glow Worm absolutely refused to get out of her car with the other kids because he really really really wanted to be big and hang out with his older brother and sister.

I didn’t mind, but I’m sure my mother did.

Glow Worm had a deliriously happy time.

8) Guavarama came by and organized my Chinese library into a cohesive unit (vs the random pile/shoved bookshelves/floor upon which they were stacked). They are arranged by levels and size and prettiness and quite frankly, it’s a beauty to behold.

It has made me 10x happier.

I am now researching library labels. It’s a sickness, people.

9) I can’t believe I’m home. It’s both wonderful and sad.

When I first got home, I was kinda pissed and shocked at how incredibly dirty and disgusting my house was. After all, didn’t I leave it in pristine condition because I spent all week prior to our trip cleaning it?

How did Hapa Papa fuck up my house in just four weeks?

I was especially mad because before I left, I was frantically cleaning the house and vacuuming – which is really much more than vacuuming because you have to clean up the floor enough for you to have something to vacuum.

Anyhow, Hapa Papa told me to stop and leave all the vacuuming to him because it was exhausting me and he had nothing but time. He talked a good game and it was the ONLY thing I asked him to do when I was gone.

So, imagine my surprise (and complete fury) when a week before we were about to head home from Taiwan, I asked Hapa Papa if he vacuumed and he just had a blank look on his face because he had no clue what I was talking about.

I asked him to do ONE THING! FFS!!

Sigh.

But anyway, when I got home, I initially blamed Hapa Papa for the gross state of our house. Then, I remembered that despite my cleaning, it’s not as if our house was immaculate before I left.

I mean, it was relatively less grimy, but by no means was it tidy or neat or bereft of clutter and dirt.

It was just hard to go from a modern, clean, minimalist 800 sqft apartment where each person has max five changes of clothes and we barely own anything except the stuff I bought in Taiwan to our 2,300 sqft home that practically bursts at the seams with stuff and toys and books and the usual suburban vomit.

Of course my brain went into shock.

My house is a disaster. It just took being away from it for six weeks to have the impact be that jarring.

10) At least this time, I remembered that all the unpacking of clothes and suitcases and books and the thousands of tiny details I have to take care of don’t have to be ALL DONE AND ALL DONE NOW AND BY NOW I MEAN YESTERDAY.

I realize that my natural tendency to get overwhelmed by all the details and hugeness of a multitude of projects doesn’t actually help and likely makes things worse because then I’m incredibly cranky and the kids are already thrown and were so happy to be home that they dragged out every toy we have ever owned in order to re-acquaint themselves with our stuff.

But I told myself to chill out and break everything down into discrete steps and take one chunk at a time.

Even if the chunk is as little as: put clothes back; put away currency; move books from suitcases and boxes and stack them by the wall; clean up family room and vacuum; go to Costco and buy food; plan curriculum (again) for homeschooling, etc.

I am nowhere near done (and the list quite frankly, seems to be growing), but I don’t feel overwhelmed or panicky about it.

It helps that I write down the things that I did manage to do (and then cross out) so I feel as if I’m actually doing things.

11) I’m trying very hard not to fill up every empty space.

So, all the space I cleared in my pantry and fridge and cabinets and toy sections before I left? I tell myself that the world will not end if I try to keep those clear (or as clear as possible).

12) I really enjoy the clickety clack of typing. It’s both soothing and makes me feel as if I’m a Writer with a capital W.

I don’t care if it’s just writing some asinine comment on Facebook. The sound pleases me.

13) A friend has been asking me a lot of questions about building a blog and writing and all sorts of details and I forgot how much I know about marketing and writing and stuff and it’s been fun to be helpful.

I still have a brain, people, and it works on occasion!

WIN.

It also has me re-evaluating my blog goals for the year. Haven’t dedicated too much brain space to it yet because IMPENDING BABY will ruin everything anyway, but it’s nice to stop and re-evaluate, right?

14) How do I still have bug bites that itch?

15) And how is it that the only child of mine who doesn’t need a diaper at night is my almost 3 year old?

16) And how do I manage to go to Costco and spend hundreds of dollars only to find that I didn’t buy any actual food and only bought snacks and fruit?

I mean, I know this is what I do. But STILL. How can I fail at grocery shopping so utterly and for so long?

17) I can’t believe that I’m starting homeschooling my kids today. Although my charter officially started this past Wednesday, that’s the beauty of homeschooling. You always have perfect attendance and you can start whenever you want.

But I’m easing into it these past few days and let’s just say that I am always shocked at how quickly I forget things that I learned about my kids and educating them and my own crappy character less than 2-3 months ago.

So, when I’m annoyed at my kids for not grasping a concept quickly enough (or for not grasping it after multiple attempts), that I can’t even remember stuff that is vital to my teaching my children – and that I have to relearn it every time we come back from a break.

18) I still have to go through stacks of mail (it’s always the medical bills that get me) and do our yearly benefits and attend to all sorts of FSA crap and deal with health insurance EOBs and I REALLY HATE dealing with medical stuff but BLARGH.

Sigh.

What was I saying about not being overwhelmed and breaking things down into discrete steps?

Yeah. I should do that.

19) I really need to go to sleep at a normal and decent hour.

It would make me feel better and happier and I suspect, everyone in my family will benefit.

20) It was very satisfying to re-draw my homeschooling schedule to accurately reflect the changes that have occurred since I made the original tentative schedule in June.

It is very pretty.

Also? It was very satisfying to set all these repeating alarms to remind me when to leave to drop off/pick up my children at/from their classes.

Hey. Those alarms are vital because I have exactly ZERO brain cells left to remember the time.

Alright. I better shuffle off to bed. (Although listening to Britney Spears is making it difficult for me to leave because um, BRITNEY.)

Also, just to re-assert my coolness factor, I was listening to Eminem and Sia before that… so, um… yeah.

Have a great Monday, friends!

Notes and Nonsense

Welp, it’s been a few days since I last posted and honestly, I really only have a random collection of thoughts to write. My brain is mush due to the heat and also, all the blood rushes from my brain to my basketball sized stomach in order to process all the food I am eating in the early hours of the day.

I know. You feel so bad for me.

If it helps, I barely eat dinner (if at all) because I am just too full. Also, eating with my children present always ruins my day.

Anyhow, here then, are a collection of some of my thoughts and observations as I walk around randomly on the streets of Taiwan. If you are friends with me In Real Life on Facebook, some of these may sound familiar.

Hey, I never said I was an Original.

Alright, here we go:

1) There really are a shit ton of people here. I mean, holy shit. There are a LOT of people here.

2) I really don’t understand how anyone can wear anything other than loose fitting clothing or linen here. Why do people wear jeans or jeggings or anything that is dark, heavy, makeup, and anything at all related to hosiery? (Admittedly, some of the women may not have a choice in the matter.)

FFS, every day after I walk my kids to school, my chest is COVERED in sweat. Not to mention just my chest. I just happen to notice my chest because when I look down, it looks like someone took a spray bottle and sprayed my chest with water.

I never realized my chesticles made CONDENSATION.

This happens in my loose fitting cotton maternity dress and pixie cut.

How do people have long hair here? Not to mention long hair that isn’t worn UP in braids or buns or ponytails?

I am baffled.

If I lived here full time, I would just look like some fucking bald hippy because OMG THE HEAT.

3) Despite the bjillion people here, everyone is really polite. People queue up to go up and down escalators like schools of efficient fish. They’re quiet, clean, and very kind and helpful.

Especially the women.

There are signs all over the place to give up your seat to the infirm, the old, the visibly pregnant, and people with small children.

Inevitably, I am always offered seats from women and old folks who look just as tired as I feel.

The young and male population? Noticeably absent.

Before we Americans get on our high horse, I have to say that I find women in America a lot more helpful than men, too.

I don’t know if it’s because women are used to caring for others and/or men are just self-absorbed, entitled twats. (Probably both.)

And before I get the MRAs up in a tizzy, as well as my considerate male friends all mad, don’t get mad when it’s fact, ok? If it didn’t happen so regularly for me to notice on multiple occasions, both during this foray to Taiwan and my previous ones, I wouldn’t point it out.

I don’t EXPECT people to give up their seat for me. But it’s kind. And I have also given up my seat to old people or other people who look as if they could use the seat more than I do.

Chill out.

4) Some of the best parts of my day are when I run into the promotional ads (which are HUGE) for 寒戰2 (Cold War 2). Mmmm. Aaron Kwok. How did I not know about you?

Yes, please. And Thank You.

Oh, and you’re WELCOME.

5) Incidentally, I think I somehow got one of my aunties to agree and watch the movie with me. We have no idea what it’s about or if it’s any good. I just want to stare at Aaron Kwok.

6) Also, also? I don’t know how women my age can lust after young men. I mean, I get it. Equal opportunity objectification, et al. But seriously, I feel creepy looking at any men under the age of 30-35. They look like children, FFS.

Give me a man in his late 30s and 40s any day. Mmmmm.

7) The other day, I saw a group of attractive young men in their mid-twenties walking around with girls their age. I realized that I will NEVER be attractive to that group of men ever again.

I’m not sad or upset or anything.

It’s just startling.

Like, oh shit. I’m no longer a hot young thing and have zero wish to be.

8) I always forget how diverse Taiwanese people actually are in terms of looks, height, noses, eyes, sizes, everything. We are not just what is depicted in the media – some uniform “Asian” face. We do not look the same.

9) Along these lines, possibly because there are just a ton of people around, I see a lot of folks with mild “disabilities” around. Whether they are lacking limbs, have limps, or have more severe physical differences, it’s nice to see them walking about and behaving like regular normal people.

Because guess what? They are regular, normal people.

I like that my kids see them, have questions, and I tell them that people come in all sorts and that they are people, too. They look different, but have loves and hates and likes and dislikes and feelings.

I don’t know if it makes a difference in my kids’ minds, but I hope it does.

10) I LOVE air conditioning.

11) I find myself often mentally praising the Lord or thanking Jesus for the little things like a surprise breeze, or overcast skies, or anything that makes the misery of being outside more tenable.

I wonder if my comfortable life makes me less amenable to gratefulness. After all, I am rarely in a position of discomfort – so I rarely have to think about being grateful for “small” things.

12) The internet is fantastic. Especially when traveling in a foreign country.

13) I use Pleco, a Chinese dictionary, almost as often as I use Google Maps so I often accidentally pull up Pleco instead of Google Maps to look up directions. Seems legit.

14) Also, plenty of idiots in Taiwan, too. No shortage, here.

I don’t know why I find that both slightly surprising as well as disappointing.

Come on, my people. You are supposed to be better than this. (I kid, I kid.)

15) My current trip isn’t even halfway over yet (although almost) and I’m already planning on my trip for next summer. Hapa Papa doesn’t realize it yet, but he’s going to agree.

Alright. All randomly observated out. See you soon!

Sleep? Who Needs Sleep?

So, I spoke too soon in my last post. I thought that since my kids usually sleep 10 hours a night, I would be in the clear having them sleep at 7pm. Waking up at 5am was perfectly cromulent in my book.

But, I forgot Gamera was still coughing a lot and she woke up herself and Cookie Monster at 3:30am. Thus, Glow Worm is my current favorite child because he slept 12 hours and is the only one of us completely switched over.

I was an idiot and after sleeping four solid hours, woke up from Gamera’s coughing and never went back to sleep because Facebook FOMO is apparently a real thing in my life and every time I was about to finally fall asleep, Gamera would have a coughing fit I would attend to with essential oils. It worked most of the time, but it’s a somewhat shorter term effect than say, codeine. So needless to say, when I picked up my phone at 11:30pm, I chose poorly.

Although, after a few nights of kids going to bed early and then waking up at 3:30 or 4:30am, they have now settled into going to bed around 8pm and then waking around 6am. Unfortunately, Glow Worm seems to be napping at school (shakesfist) so it makes him sleep later – closer to 9 or after, but I guess all in all, still earlier than when they were sleeping back in the US.

I know. Utterly fascinating treatise on my children’s sleep habits.

I, too, have been much better about sleeping longer hours and am no longer as FB FOMO-y.

So, here’s the weird thing. I thought I would have all this free time and be all refreshed and everything, but I’m not! I’m still exhausted at the end of the day. I forget how the heat just saps the strength and will to live out of me and by 8pm, I’m done.

The mornings are frantic as I get the kids ready and cajole and nag Gamera because she really is the slowest human on earth. But I realized this morning that I need to take my own advice that I gave a friend, recently, and just STFU because we’re still getting to Gamera and Glow Worm’s school about 15-20 minutes early, and I just don’t need to be so mean and yelly at my baby girl.

I always forget that she is still very small and when I yell at her, she gets more and more insecure at school and becomes less of who she is. Normally, she is very independent and secure and doesn’t care what other people think or do. But when I yell at her right before school (mostly for her to hurry up. I swear, sometimes, I think her full name is Hurry Up, Gamera!), she becomes more insecure and tends to follow the crowd more – even if she doesn’t like it.

Anyhow, this is all just to say that I need to chill out.

Y’all will have to remind me and check in on me. This is very difficult, this shutting up business.

Then, when we get home around 5:30pm, there is a mad rush to eat dinner, bathe (because OMG you HAVE to bathe everyday because it is so hot and sticky and gross and YUCK) and prep tomorrow’s lunch for Cookie Monster and Glow Worm and then go to bed.

I usually have the kids zone out to iPad even though I told myself they should watch local TV. But I figured, after a full day of perhaps understanding 80-90% Chinese, maybe it’s ok if they watch Pat and Jen’s Minecraft Channel in English for an hour.

And then, Gamera coughs all night (although the episodes are getting fewer) and I have to wake up and pee every hour. And then we start anew in the morning.

Since it’s Wednesday afternoon here already, I think I’ve started to get into a pretty good rhythm. I’m bummed my cousin left to go back to Kaohsiung because it was SUPER handy to have him bring dinner while I got the kids ready for bed. But I guess I can do this grown up thing by myself.

On top of the heat sapping the life blood out of me, the mosquitos literally are sucking the life blood out of me. I had meant to bring bug spray of the industrial DEET variety since Not Another DB MBA gave me two BOXES (still bitter about being tricked) but I forgot them. So I only had my essential oil sprays. sigh

Look, I’m all for natural shit and essential oils and everything (I’m known to say, “There’s an oil for that” at almost any occasion – my friends are saints), but ONLY if they work. And for me, the Terrashield by DoTerra is NOT working. (It’s working pretty well for my kids, but not for me.)

I have always been everyone’s favorite bug repellent because when I’m around, mosquitos will bite me. Well, perhaps my pregnant blood is now even MORE delicious because I swear, I look like I recently had the measles.

I’m covered in welts (especially my legs and knees and calves and thighs and EVERYTHING IN THE LOWER EXTREMITIES) and I have been scratching because I’m too tired and hot to find the lavender roll-on I made that works really well against itching but SO HARD TO GET BECAUSE SO TIRED.

Even after Irish Twins gave me her 40% DEET bug spray and I liberally sprayed all over myself (and choked on the fumes), I still got bit. Lots. And then, somehow, more bites showed up when I woke up. Maybe there’s a really well-fed mosquito stealth-moding in my room. BASTARD.

I pretty much need to put myself under industrial strength pesticides (you know, the kind that shouldn’t touch your skin or any part of your body you would like to not twitch or foam) and roll around in the death juice because OMG, I hate mosquitos.

At least my children haven’t really been food. (Gamera has one bite, but that’s it.)

Hapa Papa is sending the bug spray and my hat (that I also forgot) with a friend when they come this Sunday so hopefully, my bites will no longer be an issue.

Add to this that my children have really heavy backpacks (mostly Glow Worm and Cookie Monster because the fancy bento boxes I got them are heavy but keep their food warm/cold since the schools have no refrigeration or microwaves) and that I end up carrying them for the kiddos during the long walk from the MRT to the schools, and all the groceries I carry or food I have to bring home, or the water I’m lugging around, I’M EXHAUSTED.

Did I mention that I’m hugely pregnant? Or huger than I was (thanks to all my constant eating).

Anyhow, I think that’s it for now. I have a bunch more posts in my brain but I have been lazy and lounging and quite frankly, enjoying doing nothing more than occasional grocery shopping and food prep, and eating. Lots and lots of eating.

Don’t worry. I will do a food post soon. (Be warned though, I suck at taking food pics and describing food taste. But I will try and be diligent about what restaurants I ate at and what I ordered.)

See you soon!

Yup. Still Alive. 

I know. Shouldn’t I be out of my first trimester yet? Yes, yes, I am. But I’m still exhausted all the time. This 4th pregnancy is kicking my proverbial ass.

Anyhow, here are a few things that have been floating around in my brain.

1) Now, it should come as no surprised to my long time readers (or even, really, my new readers), that I am a somewhat hot-tempered person and tend to rant very easily because I take all things personally – even when things aren’t meant to be taken personally (eg: general stupidity).

I’ve attempted to change my daily life to try and not be so riled up and pissy.

The biggest change has been how I approach the Facebook groups I admin. I finally made a requirement, out of efficiency and an initial weeding out process, that if people want to join the group, they need to PM me first. No PM? No admission.

I used to be overly solicitous and ask people questions to screen them and make sure they’re a good fit for the group. But really, that’s way too much work. Once I changed the rule, it made my life a lot easier – except that I was super pissed off that people weren’t PMing me.

So, recently, I’ve decided to no longer get angry at people who don’t PM me. Instead, I thank them for making my life easier. For certain, it is much easier for me to “deny” someone from the group than it does for me to approve them and respond to their messages and welcome folks to the group.

Thanks, people who can’t read!

2) Glow Worm broke his arm six weeks ago falling off our tiny indoor slide. Mother of the Year here took a full hour or more to realize he was in a lot of pain and not acting like his normal self before calling the doctor and shuttling him around town.

Hapa Papa had to come home early from work because there was NO WAY I was going to inform my mother of the potential arm break and the subsequent fallout if I didn’t have to!

He’s finally out of a cast (if an adult had the same break, it would take at least three months to heal!) and he’s now in a removable splint for two weeks.

They have not changed how he approaches life in the slightest.

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3) I got super sick of my hair. So I chopped it all off. Now, I’ve had pixie cuts before (confer Summer 2014) and I don’t mind them. But I was not expecting my hair to be this short. However, I figure it will be at least 3-5 months before I will even have to comb my hair (or maybe even wash it!!) again so it works out. Plus, when I am in Taiwan this summer, it will be at my preferred length.

 

4) Technology has seriously advance since I was last pregnant. I mean, holy cow! I remember when I was pregnant with Cookie Monster in 2009 and I refused to even allow them to do 3D imaging because it was SO CREEPY. It was less so with Gamera and Glow Worm, but WOW! With Baby4, it looks like claymation!

Amazing!

5) Pregnancy is still kicking my ass. I pretty much do nothing except lay on the couch, watch TV, ignore my children, and go to sleep when they sleep. It’s an exciting life.

Ok. That’s it. I’ve had this post in the queue for at least a month and I am finally going to just not care and press publish (or schedule, as the case may be). Hopefully, I will get out of my lethargy soon.

Thanks for hanging in there, friends!