Monday, 30 March 2009

Light at the end of the tunnel

Yes, I see it, it is just 3 days away, in the form of the arrival of my mother!

Yeah, we did it!!! We made it through the craziest winter of my life... well, one of the craziest. Sebastian's first few months were pretty hellish too, what with him being a premie and not having our house done yet. Then there was the sleeping, or lack thereof. Yes, these past 3 months were a whole other hell. And my eczema is my testament of it. Yes, I still have it pretty bad, and it flares up when one or the two boys starts fussing or needing me when I can't give them my all, and it also flares when Tiziano is grumpy (which means that it was really bad, most of the past 6 months!).

But now my mom is coming. And she will be here for 3 months. And when she leaves, so do I! I will go back to Montreal with her and have another month of "fun" and "freedom." Then I return to Italy, and we will have a nannny, while I learn to windsurf. Then it is back to work and Sebastian at pre-K. By that time, though, Lucas will be walking, which means it will also be that much more easy and fun to take care of them. Get them both in the car and off we go to the zoo, Swissminiatur, the park, and all the other child-friendly places you can go when your children are bi-ped and conscious.

Yeah, we did it!!!!

Saturday, 28 March 2009

Big boy bed, this time for real!

I can't believe it, Sebastian went to sleep with barely a peep! He is right now sleeping soundly in a big boy bed, right beside his little brother Lucas. WTF!? It is incredible how the most mundane things can get me all choked up and existential. This is just such a big deal for me. Everytime I reach a milestone, pass a threshold, fit a new mold, I have a mini-existential crisis, re-evalutating my existence, along with everyone else's... I mean, this is it - one of the delicious facets of multiple children. I put one down, then the other, and when they are both asleep, I look at them, peacefully asleep because another (beautiful) little creature is sleeping alongside. Two little boys breathing softly, gently, sleeping. How simple, how basic, how nothing, how everything.

Of course, I have no idea what kind of night I have ahead of me. Last night Lucas woke at 4:30am for a bottle. Sebastian, though more calm since quitting daycare, still has his middle-of-the-night wakings/whining sessions. Hopefully, if/when he does, he isn't too disoriented and can go back to sleep on his own, without waking Lucas. Tiziano worked the night shift last night, and actually worked till 2am putting out a fire (too bad it started raining AFTER the fire was put out!!!). So he should get the full-night's sleep tonight.

We agreed that from now on, Sebastian sleeps in his bed in his room. If he needs us, it will be me to go and lie down with him, but that's it. I mean, my mother is arriving on Thursday. We need the sofabed for her.

Okay, finished pumping. Gonna go sleep. Hopefully for the whole night!!!!

Over and out! n@

Sunday, 22 March 2009


My mother-in-law has been on our asses since the birth of our older son to baptize our kids. I have always refused: taking part in a Catholic religious ceremony feels about as natural as being part of a polygamous Muslim harem. Plenty of people do it, it serve its purpose, and hey, what works for you...

But WHY would I participate if I don't believe in it at ALL? Besides being insincere and hypocritical, it is also disrespectful towards those who DO believe in Catholicism. UGH, UGH, UGH.

I am doing it for my in-laws. Yup, and deep down, I knew that I would eventually need to do it for the boys because growing up, they would need/want to be full parts of their community. Don't worry, I haven't grown a new altruistic brain, here. If I do something for my in-laws, I am getting something in return! After years of shitty, lame-ass Christmases, I am putting my foot down: they are going to HAVE to stop celebrating Christmas in a restaurant. From now on, they are coming over for Christmas dinner to my place, and my kids are growing up with fun Christmas memories. I don't care how boring his family is, nor how bitchy and self-absorbed his sister-in-law is, Christmas is going to be a fun, family-filled tradition in my children's like.

Take THAT for rebellion in the face of tradition.

Saturday, 21 March 2009


I can't believe it! My windsurf and kitesurf instructor husband and I just got into a fight because I want to take kitesurfing lessons!!! WTF? Ever since I first saw the sport, I have been wanting to learn it. But since where we live, the conditions for learning it are rare, he uses those opportunities to teach his customers, instead of me (understandable). So I have never really gotten around to learning. And one of the reasons that I am frustrated about choosing getaway destinations with him is because we never want to visit the same places: he wants to go windsurfing, and I want to go somewhere where I can actually do something.

So now, we are going to Tuscany for Easter, and I figure, 'Hey... why not take kitesurfing lessons?' Maybe this way, in the future, I could get excited about going to the places he always wants to go to, because I will be able to do something!!! This summer, I am going to invest in a nanny specifically so I can spend the afternoons perfecting my windsurfing, but after 5 years of trying the sport, I am still doubtful about whether I will get the windsurfing craze. Kitesurfing on the other hand, is easier, cheaper, more lightweight...

And you know what he says?!??! He says it is stupid for me to waste money on the course because where we live, the conditions are not good for kitesurfing. WTF???? If I were on my own, living in Montreal, and going for a vacation, I would SO take the course. Here, I am married to an instructor, live by the lake, have access to two motor boats and could potentially spend the rest of my vacations going to windy spots, and Tiziano is thinks it is a waste of money.


Friday, 20 March 2009

Daycare parents teacher meeting

Our daycare had a meeting for the parents. I was dying to go because I wanted to hear all about Sebastian, talk about the things they do, the philosophy of the daycare, and other generally informative topics.

Instead, I spent two hours listening to all these families talk about their children. Occasionally it was eye-opening, but it was mostly a royal waste of time. I don't really care about what other people's kids do, say, play at the dinner table; the latest funniest thing they say, the various things they do to misbehave, etc., etc., etc. They all talked at the same time, and there was no real direction to the conversation, no point to all the babble, and no seeming end point. After two hours, we made up an excuse to leave, even though we probably looked like hoity, toity snobs.

The only thing I wanted to know was more about why they choose not to organize any activities to stimulate the kids. And I was still not convinced - I still feel like they leave the kids to fend for themselves. They said that forcing activities was an imposition and almost violent to the little ones who need to approach things at their own pace, etc. I can't help but think that Sebastian would enjoy himself more if he felt like he was wanted, and invited to join in, baited into activities that I KNOW he wants to take part in. But in the fear that these poor children may feel forced to do something that would be traumatizing, they leave the gentle ones alone.

Conclusion: we are going to take Sebastian out of daycare.

Thursday, 19 March 2009

me time

Just had some...

Offloaded kids w in-laws again, but feel guilty because the original reason was a work trip. Trip was cancelled, and we didn't tell em. Then this am, Seb woke up w fever and we STILL brought them over. But I (and TIziano) DESPERATELY needed some down, childless time.

The cherry on the cake is that TIziano works the night shift tonight... Yes, the whole house for ME, ME, ME, ME. LOVIN' IT!

I just had a nice warm bubble bath with a glass of good red wine (on an empty stomach...), listening to my ambient playlist, and I am feeling guuuuuuuud.

Spent the whole day getting mommy colleagues to affirm that it was OKAY to lie to my in-laws, even with a feverish child. I needed it. They needed it. Everything would be better this way. And right now, it is. I so crave some alone time, me time. I am tired of being a mom. Even when I rest up, it seems like it is never enough to get excited again about having two small children. All my conviction of having a large family has COMPLETELY disappeared. Crazy. Now, I envy my childless friends. Will that go away? No idea. Maybe when my accumulated exhaustion wears off, I will be excited again about being a parent.

Anyway, this is a motherland blog, and I am going to pretend I am not a mother for a few days. (well, pumping my milk 4 times a day will be a reminder... but otherwise, not a mommy!!!!)

Over and out! The couch and TV are calling my name...

Wednesday, 18 March 2009


What's up with that?

How do mothers know when their babies are teething??? I have NEVER been able to anticipate it. I always notice AFTER the fact, that Sebastian has a new tooth. Only then does the preceding runny nose, grumpiness, fever, etc., make sense. But I can never figure it out before.

Any time he doesn't sleep (which has been about 24 months of his 27-month-life), people say it must be teething.

Any time he has a fever (which has been about 5 different times just this winter), people say it must be teething.

Every time he has a runny nose (which he's had for 4 months straight), people say it must be teething.

Obviously, he hasn't popped out 5 new teeth in the past few months, so... how am I supposed to guess that THIS fever, THIS particular runny nose, THIS particular grumpiness is due to teething, and not separation anxiety, or a developmental milestone, or some psychological reaction to something I am doing or not doing???

So I decided that today's fever, runny nose and 3-day-grumpiness is teething. I think this mostly because he has gotten everything else there is to get! Take away viruses and every strain of influenza, and you are left with teething!

Plus, it has been a low-grade fever for 3 days. If he were really sick, it would have gone up, no?
Plus, today he was whining and pointing to his mouth. I thought it might have been a cancre, but it was probably molar pain.

Then again, when I brushed his teeth, it didn't hurt.

Sigh. Sometimes I feel like such a bad mother...

Tuesday, 17 March 2009

No kids

I was supposed to go away for work on Thursday, for 2 days.

Though no one has said it specifically, we all implicitly agree that Tiziano shouldn't be left to fend for himself for too long periods of time alone with the children. It is far too strenuous for the poort guy.

So we asked if we could ship both off to his parents until Sunday morning. However, the seminar was cancelled (which I am actually sad about). And I haven't cancelled the "emergency childcare."

I feel terribly guilty about this. From Thursday until Sunday, the kids will be at their grandparents house. From Thursday until Sunday, my in-laws won't sleep soundly through the night. From Thursday to Sunday, I am no longer going away.

But we are still not going to cancel, because we both are TERRIBLY sleep-deprived. We are both TERRIBLY in need of some alone time. And since i work until Friday, the only day I will have is Saturday. And Sunday, Tiziano works. So when I go pick up the kids, I take them home to an empty house with no help. So I NEED the Saturday to rest.

A colleague told me not to sweat it: Tiziano's family has probably lied to me several times, so I shouldn't feel so guilty.

But I do.

But I won't cancel.

So I will burn in hell.

Oh well, at least I will be well rested when I do...

Monday, 16 March 2009


I just had the nicest evening with hubby! What a long time that's been! I was expecting the worst, since both of us had a short night last night.

I decided that we should put the boys to bed and have dinner separately afterwards. Good move! We chatted like old times, and we didn't ONLY talk about the boys. It was really very, very nice! We spent most of it talking about potential and real future destinations for our vacations, which is kinda funny, because we are in no position to do any extensive travelling. I've organized our second annual romantic getaway for Easter weekend, and we are both excited about it. Tiziano is excited because we are going to a good windsurfing spot. I am excited because I will have 3 days where I get to do NOTHING. And if I don't want to do NOTHING, I can also do SOMETHING.

Talamone: near thermal baths, Pitigliano, Ortobello. Room with a seaview. Stop by Lucca and/or San Gimignano on the way down.

Did I mention that the best part is I can do NOTHING if it so pleases me? If I am tired, I can lie down and take a nap. I will be bringing down a bunch of books. I will stock up on comedy podcasts...

I CAN'T WAIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, 15 March 2009

My Weekend

My in-laws spontaneously took Sebastian Friday night, so I was able to rest up on Saturday. And I needed it, because yesterday was one of those "Parenting-is-not-just-cuddles-and-cute-smiles"-day. Sebastian broke balls from the moment he woke until, well not the moment he fell asleep (oddly enough), but 10 minutes before going to sleep. And to think, that we catered most of the day around things that HE would like to go: we went to the lake to throw stones in the water, to run up and down the skateboard ramp, to spin around the playground merry-go-round. He had gelato in the afternoon, Tiziano played in the sand with him until nightfall, and throughout the entire day, he whined, whimpered, and threatened tantrums if we didn't do these things just so.

By evening, when it came to dinnertime, you can just imagine how much he ate! Then he put his feet on the table, and started playing with water, two big no-nos at our house. After both TIziano and I lost it, we finally put him on time-out, while he wailed pitifully. If he could speak, he would be calling out to the village asking someone to save him from his terrible, good-for-nothing parents...

Friday, 13 March 2009


Yesterday, we had some time to kill in Varese, and we stopped by the in-laws' place. Pale-faced and perma-yawning, I painted a sorry picture. Tiziano is working today, Saturday, which meant that after a week of exhaustion, I was in for a full day alone with the boys. I had already planned a trip to the zoo, and was mining my soul for energy and patience.

Then my mother-in-law said, "Why don't you leave Sebastian here for the night? I will bring him back to you tomorrow evening?"

The sun started rising on my internal horizon, and I think I started tearing up from the joy. My whole weekend started looking up. I started remembering what it would be like sleep a full-night, and knew that I would be able to sleep repeatedly throughout the day. I would be able to cuddle with Lucas, go groceries, go for a walk, sleep repeatedly throughout the day.

It was too nice an offer to refuse.

Then the guilt started in.

If Sebastian knew how happy I was that we were leaving him at nonna's, he would be devastated, the poor thing.

Every time I stood up to get something, he would direct his gaze to me, and wouldn't look away until he was sure that I wasn't going away. And now, I WAS going to leave him there. The poor thing.

At his grandparents' house, which is near his aunt's house, he is the centre of attention, he has everyone under his thumb, he sleeps well and eats well, no one loses her patience, and the entire extended family stop what they are doing so they can visit and play with him. He LOVES his grandparents silly and they love him too.

And I feel guilty because I left him in those conditions. Go figure.

Thursday, 12 March 2009


I was just re-reading my posts, and the general theme is "EXHAUSTION" and "THIS SUCKS."

Am I complaining too much?

Probably. But who cares? If it makes me feel better, why not?

So stop telling me to stop complaining! (this goes out to the crazed hysteric that lives inside my head...)

Momversation et al.

I am so in love with the momversation podcast, manicmommies podcast,, and all the online mom communities!!!! My general wellbeing has improved dramatically since discovering these people! I love being able to identify with all the exciting and not-so-exciting parenthood problems from these other moms who I consider cool, young, modern, open-minded and NOT ITALIAN!

(...not that I want to bash Italian mamas, I mean, aren't they supposed to be the best in the world????)

But as an expat living in a secluded village in Italy, I ain't got much choice. Plus, working full-time and driving an hour each way to work leaves me very little free-time. Also, my colleagues are mostly childless and hip, and many don't want to hang out with a tired-out downer with two little ones (i.e., me). Or if they ARE moms, their kids are older (and so are they), so we have little in common, and they don't want to be bothered hanging out with a tired-out downer with two little ones (i.e., me). Also, because I work at a boarding school, for the occasional fun, friendly face that enjoys my company despite my being a tired-out downer with two little ones, socializing still involves sacrificing the scarce and therefore VERY precious free-time to drive the hour each way. Why make that sacrifice when there are so many less-tired-out, fun, childless people to visit who only live 5 minutes away?

Bottom line: I LOVE Momversation et al!!!

Thank you fellow online moms.

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Workplace sympathy

So a part-time mommy colleague that I rarely see "stopped by" my office yesterday. She had no intention of stopping by. She was passing and she quickly popped her head back and asked, "How's it going bella?" It was one of those rhetorical, salutation-type questions, the one that you are supposed to reply with, "Great, thanks! And you?!?"

Poor woman got a sincere answer of "...uh... yeah... uh... not feelin' so hot..."
Then I started crying.

Whatever appointment she had, she missed. Because by not ignoring my sobbing, she was basically forced to be my therapist for nearly an hour: I cried and complained about my latest fight with Tiziano, about how tired I was, how I just don't know how other women do it, did it, continue to do it, often in worse circumstances, bla, bla, bla.

Thankfully, she was really compassionate and did the whole "if you make it through these years, you can make it through anything" speech. Which I needed to hear. I subsequently called Tiziano and, well, didn't apologize (because as usual, it was HIS FAULT!), but tried to make the peace without letting loose the crazed hysteric that is in my head.

I have to admit, though, that being the breadmaker to a stay-at-home dad may sound good in theory, but I get little in the way of moral support by most of the other mothers I know: they usually identify with the frustrated homemaker issues Tiziano brings up, and not with the perpetually exhausted breadmaker, nursing mother, primary night-waker, zero downtime/hobby issues that I deal with!

Tuesday, 10 March 2009

dazed and confused

People say that these are the best years, to enjoy them, they just fly by, that I will one day wish my kids will love me as much and want me as much as they do now... bla, bla, bla, as far as I am concerned. Every month that goes by, I get excited at being that much farther away from the baby years. I look at baby pictures of my toddler-aged Sebastian, and no, I don't get nostalgic AT ALL. Yes, he was cute, yes, he ate his whole meal without bribery, no, he didn't throw temper tantrums. But I still don't want to go back.

And I think that will be the same when both grow up even more.


I live my life, dazed and confused, with minimal awareness of myself and my surroundings. Even though to my colleagues I seem energetic and happy (it is more like high strung and insane), I am simply in survival mode. I don't want to kill myself, so I have to live. I can live with a smile on my face or with a perpetual frown.

Fake it till you feel it.

Happiness is the cause.

The wrinkles will be smile wrinkles, not frown wrinkles.

I can't believe I am still functioning.

I can't remember what I did 5 minutes ago, I can't concentrate for more than 5 minutes, I live 5 minutes at a time.

Yes, these are the best years, because eventually, I won't remember them at all.

Monday, 9 March 2009


I am tired, fed up, mildly depressed.

That's all for now.

Sunday, 8 March 2009

Waking late

Ugh. Tiziano didn't hear his alarm and woke me up late (he needs to come up and make the switch in bed with Sebastian. If I put the alarm, it will wake Seb). Actually, he didn't wake me up at all. I felt less exhausted than usual in the morning, so my eyes opened and I realized that it was nearly 6:30am! YIKES! Thankfully, I am scootering to work this week!!!


It's funny. Weekends are supposed to be relaxing, restful, recharge for the week. I very rarely feel that on Sunday evenings. Not that weekdays are MORE restful, it is just the weekends are still exhausting. Considering that I get to sleep in (well, by sleep in I mean until Sebastian wakes up at 7am), I take two afternoon naps, and I still go to bed early, you'd think I would feel rearing to go on Sunday evenings.


And it is mostly Sebastian's fault. He still wakes up every two, three hours, whines/whimpers/cries and won't settle down until he's woken me up and forced me to try out every variation of spoon position with him. Plus Lucas wakes up at least once or twice per night to eat.

Anyway, I don't think I started this blog to get into the details of my sleep every night.

Though I have to admit, it feels good to bitch, because I can't really keep bitching with people around me. I mean, noone really cares, and if they do, they don't understand. And I understand that: listening to someone complain when you can't do anything about it is just downright annoying.


Nursing Lucas today. (I only get to do this on weekends and since he was at his grandparents since Thursday, I only got to nurse him today).

Sleeping in yesterday morning. Tiziano took Sebastian when he woke up and I got to snooze until 8:50am.

Throwing pebbles into the lake today with Sebastian.

Petting my dogs Carlos and Pepe: I rarely do this, because they usually jump, bark, and are generally overly agitated. I caught them offguard lounging and dozing on my terrace, so I was able to pet and hug them, and they stayed somewhat calm. (Then Carlos started humping Pepe, so I had to stop).

I think I am going to start doing a Highlights of my Day part to my blog. I think it will help me stay positive. And since happiness is the cause, I can use some self-forced positiveness!!!!

Friday, 6 March 2009


As most people in my life know, Sebastian is not a "sleeper". In the 27 months of his short little life, he has slept well for 3 months. By well, I mean in his crib, in his room, through the night, without fussing before, during, or after his sleep.

The latest weaning process we have been trying to carry out (again) is letting him fall asleep by himself, in our bed (well it is really my bed now - Tiziano mostly sleeps downstairs). Even though I have been doing the exact same thing that worked beautifully last week (i.e., talk to him calmly, explaining that mommy has to clean the kitchen, pump her milk, bla, bla, bla), this week it is useless, and he has started crying at the top of his lungs when I leave the room. No apparent explanation. Crying is just one of the methods he uses to try getting me to stay with him until he falls asleep.

Tonight, though, the little furbetto succeeded!

He knows I'm a sucka for cuddling, so he leaned up against me, spread his little arm around my neck and essentially full-body hugged me before our last book. Then he pretended to go to sleep and guessed that I would be too much of a sucka to extricate myself from his embrace. He guessed right. My heart just melted, I full-body hugged him back, and I counted my blessings as I dozed off myself.


Thursday, 5 March 2009


Why does Tiziano start a rule, ask me to enforce it, and then chicken out once Sebastian starts crying? It drives me BONKERS! Not only does it always mean I am the bad guy, it is actually harmful for Sebastian - he learns that if he cries long enough he will get what he wants. Now how can that possibly be learning anything useful in life????

Either we change the rule, or we be consistent, right?


Wednesday, 4 March 2009

Are the Desperate Housewives really desperate?

Sometimes I wonder whether the Desperate Housewives are really desperate or not... I mean I think I lose it more often than they do, and I wouldn't qualify myself as desperate. Or should I? Actually, I am proud of myself for controlling myself as much as I do. I want to yell and scream so much more than I actually allow myself to, and most of the yelling and screaming happens at night when Sebastian loses it. (So there, it is his fault!...:/ )

The other thing that is weird about DH, is that their kids are never really there. I mean where in goodness' name does Lynette find the time for a weekly poker game? Where are her FIVE kids most of the time? I know that they are school-age now, but the whole program doesn't usually take place between 9am and 3:30pm, does it? And when does she get her cleaning and cooking done? Does she eat only microwave meals that don't require prep time? She is supposed to be cooking for SEVEN people, not just the measly three I cook for (Lucas is still on milk), and I, who am no Martha Stewart, take at least an hour every time I hit the kitchen.

And Edie? I know her son doesn't live with her, but wouldn't she call or write? Wouldn't she be involved in his life's problems and upkeep? As self-absorbed as she is, I know she MUST have a bit of love for her offspring, enough to occupy a bit of her mind?

And neurotic Susan? Her oh-so-perfect daughter/confidante is in college, but you would think she would be on the phone more frequently, or preparing care packages and organizing her next visits. Her relationship is kinda Gilmore-girlish, no? But nope, nothing. Heck, you barely even see her 5-yr-old son, who is still at a high-maintenance stage.

If that is what desperate looks like, then I am NOT inviting you into MY home!!!

Big boy bed

Tiziano and I went to Ikea today to get a big boy bed for Sebastian. Right now Tiziano and I take turns sleeping in the sofabed downstairs while one of us sleeps with Sebastian. But my mother arrives in a month, and she will need to use the sofa bed, so we need to get him out of our bed and out of our bedroom. We are hoping that the transition will be easier if we can get him excited about joining the world of big people. We are also hoping that sharing a room with Lucas will make him less lonely and desperate for us at night. We are hoping that we are not hoping too unrealistically.

However, of course, Ikea didn't have the bed we wanted in stock, so we had to order it. The guy said it would take 10 days. Ouch! I was starting to look forward to sleeping normally soon. Oh well, another 2 weeks ...

I am trying to enjoy this (hopefully last) time of co-sleeping. When I am not too tired, and I don't have to wake up at 5:30am to go to work, and it isn't my turn to do Lucas's nightfeedings, I actually enjoy sleeping with Sebastian. Nothing as precious as a sleeping child. His little breath, his little peaceful face, his little arms either holding onto his stuffed animals or sprawled across the bed. When he randomly sits up and then snuggles up to me, wanting to be spooned or held or hugged, I just get filled with warm and fuzzy feelings and cascades of fierce protective love.

(Did I already say that this is only sweet when I am not severely sleep-deprived and I do not have to wake up at 5:30am to go to work and it isn't my turn to do Lucas's nightfeedings?)

I found out today that I will have to go away for work for 2 full days in two weeks. And OMG, I am sooo excited. Isn't it horrible? That means 2 full nights of sleep. That means 2 full days of child-free, care-free, worry-free living. That means 2 days away from it all! I don't care WHAT I have to do when I am away, I am just excited I get to LEAVE! But the bonus is that I will actually finally be able to see Neuschwanstein Castle (Cinderella castle), the castle that I have been wanting to see for the past 20 yrs. Whoop, whoop!!!!

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Bad, bad, bad night, again.

Will the wrinkles I've accumulated from all this stress and sleep deprivation go away once (if) I start sleeping properly again?

In-Law Ambiguity

So my mother-in-law came today to help Tiziano care for Lucas. On one hand I am happy he got some relief; on the other, I hate her going through my house "helping" in ways SHE thinks I need. Her priorities in life are putting things in order, making them look nice and neat. Appearances seem to be more important in Italy than hygiene.

For example, she is obsessed with doing laundry, having clothes dry, ironing them, folding them hanging them up around to house (probably so I can see how much she has done for me). If my laundry bags are empty, she will wash anything hanging around, even if it is still clean: pyjamas hanging on the door, dish towels, hand towels, sheets, baby blankets, etc.

She will place all the items in my fridge in neat little lines, she will take napkins in my cupboards out of their packaging, fold them, make piles and place them back in the cupboard, put away the dish soap under the sink so it doesn't show, dry the sink (yes, DRY the sink), and reorganize all my kitchen cupboards prioritizing the placement of things she deems important. It takes me half an hour after she's left to go through and put things back to the way I want them.

As for really helping me where I really need it, nope!

Maybe she could dust, for example. Our cleaning lady put out her back a few weeks back, everything is covered in dust. My bedside table is sticky from cough syrup spilling. If you look at our floor from a certain angle, it shows all the signs of Sebastian's puke sessions of the past few weeks. Our bathtub is filthy. Our fridge needs a good cleaning. The cupboards under the sink have little lines of juice that have rolled down it...

Can you clean these things, please, instead of taking dishes out of our dishwasher to wash them by hand? Can you stop ironing my underwear and shuffling around the baby clothes and instead properly wash the stove top?

She hasn't been by for the past few weeks, even though we have survived the closest thing to parental hell you could possibly imagine. Why the disappearing act? Because her 40-year-old son (my husband's brother) has been family-less for 3 weeks (his wife and son were away in Germany for a few weeks), and he had to go over to his mother's place to get dinner and have his lunch box made up for work. Yup. Priorities. Apparently, it is more urgent to prepare supper for a 40-year-old son who is temporarily wifeless, than help out a severely sleep-deprived son with 2 sick babies and a full-time working wife (who has also been sleep-deprived btw).

Yes, I live in Italy.

Yes, I have an Italian mother-in-law.

No, I don't have anyone else to help us with childcare.

No, I am not allowed to look at my mother-in-law's kindness in the mouth.


Monday, 2 March 2009

Sick again

I have spent most of this winter sick. And so have my kids. And so has Tiziano. This weekend I finally felt better after a week of pregnancy-type nausea and throwing up (no, thankfully, the immaculate conception did NOT happen!). Two days later, the infamous nose tickles started again. I just had a terrible night with what felt like spiders crawling in and out of my sinal cavity, blowing my nose, and desperately trying not to let Sebastian's face or hands anywhere near my face or hands (I can't afford to have HIM sick again!).

You'd think keeping someone's face and hands away from my face and hands would be easy. But alas, not with Sebastian's current form of sleep torture. At random points in the night, he needs to ensure that I haven't disappeared and then ensure that I won't subsequently disappear. He does this by swinging his hand around my neck, frequently missing and hitting my face. Or, he will sit up, whine or cry (depending on his sadism any particular night), and then plop his whole body across mine in a gymnastics-worthy bridge. Yes, sweet. No, sleep.

Finally deciding to start

I finally got around to starting my blog. But after figuring this out, and coming up with a remotely telling and witty title, username, etc., I am too tired to actually write something out.

Probably the perfect start to my new motherland blog...

See in a few hours.