What Texas Looks Like So Far

We’ve made some major changes in the last few weeks, to put it mildly. We made the decision to move almost two thousand miles from Massachusetts to Texas, and from the moment we made the decision to the moment we actually got on the plane, we had a little less than a month to get it done. Now that we’ve been here for a bit and the dust is beginning to settle, I’m trying to set up this blog so family and friends can see pictures and read about what the kids are up to. Phone calls and video calls can only do so much- I think, after a time, trying to condense a relationship into a call (even a long one) just won’t work. The details of daily life get lost, and those are the ones you need to really feel connected. At the moment I’m a ‘stay at home mom’ with two small kids under 4 years old, living in a strange place essentially on my own, and I don’t have time or the energy honestly to even shower some days, let alone catalog all the crafts, homemade meals and life lessons that I am decidedly NOT managing to partake in with said children every day. But I will try! I think this one ought to be a picture post, since their faces are what people miss the most. You’ll have to tolerate my rambling for a bit before you get to the good stuff.

Things of note so far:

1. Isla tripped over a moving box and broke her fall with her face. Her front tooth is chipped but it’s OK and a pediatric dentist that was kind enough to call me back after I left frantic messages at offices all over the state (because it was a Saturday and dentists don’t do weekends) assured me that this happens in his practice several times a week. He told me what to look out for, how to care for it while we wait for offices to open up, and that she is in considerably less pain than an adult would be if they had broken their front tooth. This was a huge relief because I smashed my front tooth to bits when I tried to take a “sip” out of a glass bottle once-upon-a-party, and the pain was so intense that I’m nauseated even now just thinking about it. Isla, however, seems fine. Well, she did seem fine until this weekend when her other front tooth turned grey. Now she has one smashed tooth and one dark tooth and I am officially the worst parent in the world. Google assures me that this happens with baby teeth after a trauma, and it’s more like a bruise and baby teeth will lighten up in a few weeks. Unless it doesn’t, in which case we may have to have it pulled or get her a baby root canal, which sounds awesome, made Even More Awesome by the fact that she’d have to be sedated. But she’d have to be sedated to have her chipped tooth fixed anyway, so I’m squarely back in the worst parent in the world position.

2. We cut Ben’s mop of hair, then cut it again, then finally we buzzed it. It’s hot here. I don’t think I made myself clear. IT IS SO HOT HERE. I used clippers and what do you know, 4 year old boys don’t stay perfectly still while their amateur hairstylist moms wield buzzing razors of death next to their heads. Every time he ducked and shook and dodged I cut a little shorter, then shorter still, and finally his hair looked so stupid I called Rob into the bathroom to just fix it please for the love of god, and that’s how my kid ended up bald. With a “stripe”, which was Ben’s idea. He also had a nightmare about the clippers chopping his arm off and told me we can never cut any of his hairs ever again.

3. We got a dog! His name is Emmett and he’s 6 months old, which I believe to be shelter-speak for at least 1 year old but very skinny. He’s a Queensland Shepherd mix (we think with lab) and he’s a sweetie. Already housebroken and trained (somewhat) and totally, head over heels in love with Rob. Like he follows him from room to room, sleeps under the bed on Rob’s side, lays down at his feet whenever or wherever he sits down, and generally stares at him in doggy wonder. It’s the cutest thing I’ve ever seen. He likes me too, and when Rob is at work Emmett follows me around instead. He’s sitting on the floor next to me as I type this, and I’m pretending not to see him eating one of the kids stuffed animals because…well whatever. He listens right away when we give him commands but he still gets a little sneaky sometimes. I caught him on the couch this morning and I said, “Emmett” in the dog-owner voice which I am now allowed to use, and his face was so guilty I could hardly contain my laughter. Another time I caught him with my slipper and he heard me walking behind him, jumped up like an embarassed little kid and trotted the slipper over to me with this look like, “Uh…I found this? Yes. Found this for you. Wasn’t eating it. Here you go BYE!” and then ran to the kitchen. I like to think he was just really well trained and not shouted at all the time, because he seems to know when he’s doing something “bad” and then gets really nervous and weird when he’s caught. Poor nugget. We haven’t heard him bark even once.

4. I have fixed and built so many things with tools I feel like Rosie the Riveter on steroids. Our washing machine broke after the first few days and we couldn’t figure out what the hell happened. So I took it apart like some kind of NASA scientist and inspected all the hoses and whatnot down there and I found an allen wrench lodged inside the drain pump. I guess it’s common for coins or baby socks or small stuff like that to get in there and it prevents your washer from draining, which then confuses the crap out of it the next time you go to wash something and it will just sit on the “sensing” stage of the wash cycle forever because your tiny load of clothes weighs 45 lbs when there’s a crap ton of water logged in there. Anyway, I fixed it with tools and I’m a goddamn genius. Only thing is, we can’t plug our dryer into the outlet here, and we can’t get an adapter without risking massive explosions and fires (my interpretation anyway) and we’d have to have an electrician rewire all that business back there. I’m not about to attempt that, and if Rob attempts it I will hit him with a frying pan before he kills us all, and so in compromise I’ve been ‘drying’ our clothes on a rack outside. Our backyard is a hill, so the rack doesn’t stand up at all, and the clothes just fall all over the place and the bugs get on them and my towels are SO FREAKING CRUNCHY that I don’t even want to bathe so I can avoid using them all together. I’m not all that great at being a pioneer woman, turns out.

And now, pictures.

Islaplane Benplane

Here are the kids on their first flight ever. They were both 100% fine and I was so relieved.


I was also nauseated, terrified, exhausted, and convinced we were about to die. Rob was kind enough to take a picture. I had a horrible sinus infection as well and when we started to descend my whole entire face started popping, instead of just my ears. I had no idea what was going on and thought my eyeballs were going to explode out of my head. It.hurt.so.much. Did I mention I hate flying?


A double rainbow at our front door to greet us!

BenMD IslaMD

This is how I woke up on Mother’s Day


This is how my kid acted in Target on Mother’s Day


It was OK because she’s beautiful

kidsanddog kidsanddog2

We have a dog! Now I have another blurry subject to add to my photos.


Isla and Emmett running in the yard


Ben reading the bedtime stories. He’s starting to sound out simple words and I just cry and cry. C-A-T.


Greetings from the Cookie Break room!


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