Yesterday Seattle issued many Dire Warnings about the arctic deluge we were about to experience, and public schools closed for the day with a worried, audible kerslam. All day I kept peering at the sky waiting for the skies to turn white and the snow to start falling in giant, traffic-snarling drifts, but it got sunny and warmer and eventually the leftover bits of frozen slush from last Saturday’s tiny snowfall melted away and I was like, I CALL BULLSHIT.

Today, however, we woke up to this:




It’s been coming down like a sumbitch all day long and while it’s very beautiful and kind of exciting there’s a nontrivial pain-in-the-ass factor about being stuck inside with two small children. We tried for a sled outing earlier, but Dylan became so rage-filled at being stuffed into a snowsuit I thought he was going to attract some sort of mobile, weather-resistant CPS unit, pulling up to our house via plow, shouting into a bullhorn about putting the baby down and backing away with our hands in the air. Riley is a little thrilled about the snow but refuses to wear a hat and is deeply, deeply suspicious of the sled, to the point of asking if we could just go back inside and pretend to be riding it.

There’s not much to do sit around with the heat cranked, trying to keep the kids entertained, and running to the window every now and then to take more photos, but I suppose we’re muddling along:

Switching gears: sooooooo, can we talk about potty training for a second? Here’s what we’re dealing with with Riley, who, for the sake of context, turned 3 last August.

• He won’t poop in the potty. Flat-out refuses, whines and cries if you make him sit on the toilet, won’t articulate why except that he “doesn’t like it”

• He wears underwear all day long, and aside from the typical oops-I-didn’t-realize-I-had-to-pee-THAT-bad accidents, he does just fine.

• He only poops during naps or at night. Mostly at night. So, after a potty visit, we’ll put him in a Pull-up for the night, do our goodnight routine, and 20 minutes later there’s that Unmistakeable Aroma coming from his bedroom.

What to do? We’ve tried everything, it seems, and maybe part of the problem is that we’ve been a little inconsistent with our approach (rewards, cajoling, bribing, talking, explaining, demonstrating, charting, that’s-okaying, tsk-tsking, etc etc ETC) and now both JB and I are feeling low on patience. It’s turning into this unpleasant nightly thing that starts with the potty visit and the pleading to try and poop, Riley’s subsequent whining and crying, then the inevitable messy diaper change.

He’s a smart boy but stubborn as a goddamned mule, and I’m just not sure what to try at this point. I know we shouldn’t be showing him that we’re irritated or disappointed, but it’s awfully hard not to.

Any ideas?

The more of your comments I read on the issue of Small Children and Weddings, the more I became filled with a righteous fist-pumping sort of “YEAH THAT’S WHAT I BE TALKIN ABOUT” sort of fury, and when JB finally arrived home from his endless, snowy drive back from Bend on Sunday I practically kneed him in the balls as soon as he walked in the door and demanded to know what the hell he’d been thinking, the whole internet thinks it’s bugfuck crazy to bring a baby and toddler to a formal evening wedding.

I didn’t even really need to plead my case, as it turned out, because in the hour or so before Dylan’s bedtime the combined force of both children, excited by Daddy’s Triumphant Return from Mancation — Riley chattering nonstop and running back and forth in little demented circles, Dylan screeching and trying to climb up his pantlegs and leaving snail-trails of snot all over JB’s shirt — wore him out so thoroughly all I had to do was lean over and say, “This? This is what I’ll be dealing with, as the officiant says Do You JB’s Brother Take This Woman Etc and the room is filled with a hushed, reverent SILENCE. While wearing an EASILY-STAINED DRESS MIGHT I ADD,” and he acquiesced.

The plan is to secure a babysitter for the entire event, excepting a potential brief cameo appearance before the ceremony for the beshitted photos — although I’m lobbying for an entirely childfree evening because, among other reasons, I think certain people are forgetting that the wedding and the photos are about the happy couple getting married, not so much a stand-in opportunity for a family Sears portrait studio visit.

The way things are going, Dylan won’t be very photogenic anyway. Not only is he kind of blotchy and scaly from having his nose wiped every two minutes all day long (an activity he enjoys every bit as much as I do, which is to say oh my god with the flailing and back-arching and squealing), but his face is banged up from 1) falling cheekfirst into a tile step on Saturday, and 2) well, this happened yesterday and I’m still kind of recovering, but basically I put him in the carseat on the dining room table, unbuckled him, turned for one second (I know! OH I KNOW) to help Riley with his coat, and baby and carseat pitched forward and fell all the way to the hardwood floor. It all happened before I could even take a breath, it seemed, and suddenly he was sitting upright next to an overturned carseat and screaming like hell, a red bump rising on his forehead and abrasions across his cheek.

Oh the poor kid. First there was the Stroller Tipping Incident, and now this.

And then, just like a couple hours later? I was on the phone with JB when Riley came running up to me howling in dismay, his mouth full of orange mush, and after a panicky flurry of making him spit in the sink, rinsing out his mouth, and wiping his tongue with a paper towel, I determined he’d reached into a drawer that has been known to contain M&Ms and popped a small round object into his mouth, only it wasn’t a piece of candy, it was a fucking MOTRIN.

So! A banner day yesterday on the parenting front. I have now cleaned out the drawer o’ accessible drugs, vowed never to put the carseat on a table ever again, and watched in the mirror as five million new gray hairs sprouted right before my eyes.

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