Tuesday, January 16, 2018

It's what's for dinner!

I took the kids to the dentist this afternoon—all of them, by myself—and it actually wasn't terrible, which only testifies how awful our previous dentist office was. I never left that office not hopping mad (and I'm not really a hopping mad kind of person, usually, so...); I was pretty satisfied with this office.

I called a dentist this morning because on Friday night Rachel said her tooth hurt so I asked her to show me and...let's just say she had a pretty obvious issue with one of her teeth (a baby tooth, thank goodness). I don't spend a lot of time looking into her mouth these days (though I still do brush checks for the older girls I don't help either of them brush their teeth anymore because (a) they're old enough to brush their own teeth and (b) I have enough other mouths to worry about) but apparently I should be!

It was time for a check up anyway. I was surprised when they said they could fit all four of our toothy children in at the exact same time that very afternoon.

So after we picked Benjamin up from kindergarten and had a lovely lunch (Zoë hardly touched hers; she ate half a banana and then threw a big fit) and a little play time, we got ready to pick up our big sisters and head to the dentist.

Even though I'd scoped out the office online and knew it was rather child-friendly, I packed some books to keep the kids entertained and we headed out.

Packing books was a waste, though, because we didn't need them. There were bins of books in every room, a train table in the waiting room, and the kids got to play Mario Kart while their teeth were worked on.

We all got to go back together for x-rays and cleanings and check-ups (our old office always made me stay in the waiting room, which I thought was weird) and everyone was super nice.

They didn't even wrestle Zoë down for a cleaning. Instead the hygienist gave her rides up and down in the chair and let her spray water into a cup with the water pick and then slurp it back up again with "Mr. Thirsty," the suction tool, all in the hopes that she'll remember it as a happy place the next time she comes and will let "the tickle brush tickle the sugar bugs out of her teeth."

So it was a positive experience overall, even though all three girls have to go back for a little work in the next couple of weeks (Benjamin's mouth was just fine).

Once home, I gave Miriam a piano lesson (she's on the very last song in her book and is excited to "level up") and then I started on dinner.


Benjamin and Zoë were both rather whiney so I dubbed them my "chef's helpers," with the (false) hope that a little responsibility on their shoulders would make them feel important, which in turn would keep them from whining at me.

We had some pineapple-bacon sausage to use up, so I gave Benjamin the task of cutting it into circles so we could fry it up.

"These aren't circles, Mom," he said, in his ever-contrary manner. "They're spheres because they're not flat."

"If you really want to get technical they're not spheres," I shot back, like a mature, responsible adult. "They're cylinders, because spheres are round like a ball and these are like tall circles."

BOOM.

I could totally play a round of "Are you smarter than a kindergartener?"

I have to admit that Benjamin + a knife = a little terrifying. But he has to learn to focus somehow, right? And what better way to learn than under risk of chopping off your own fingers should you stop paying attention to what you're doing?

(The knife wasn't that sharp and I was supervising; it's fine).

Zoë wanted to help, too. She wanted to sit on the stool that Benjamin was sitting on. She wanted a drink of water. She wanted me to hold her. She wanted to help get a can of pineapple from the storage room. She wanted a turn cutting sausage. She wanted me to turn off the water. She wanted me to stop talking to Benjamin. She wanted me to talk to her. She wanted Alexander to stop screaming. She wanted to sit in his chair. She wanted me to take the burp cloth out of the chair so she could sit in it. She wanted to watch what I was doing. She wanted to sit on the stool that Benjamin was sitting on (because the stool beside him was absolutely not the stool for her, apparently).

"I want another drink," she tacked on to the laundry list of demands she spends her days concocting.

I gave her another drink.

"My tummy hurts," she tacked on to the laundry list of complaints she crafts when not working on her list of demands.

"Well, that's probably because you're hungry. You hardly had any lunch and you didn't even finish your snack. We're making dinner right now so it will be ready soon, okay?"

"Okay," she said.

No sooner had I looked back down at the celery I was chopping, than I heard a gurgling and spluttering, a splashing and gagging.

Zoë had vomited all over our workspace.

I took a picture so that I could show Andrew, but for you, dear readers, I will try to explain the mess in 1000 words or fewer (because that's all a picture is worth). In short, there was vomit on:

  • Zoë
  • her cup
  • the counter
  • the stool
  • the floor
  • the cutting board
  • four and one-quarter sausages
  • the knife
  • Benjamin's hands
  • the outside of the frying pan containing our would-be dinner
  • And, if we're honest, probably a few other things
Karen was already off bouncing a fussy baby for me, so I called Rachel down to supervise Zoë in the bathtub while I cleaned up the mess and finished preparing dinner. I had Miriam put the clothes in the washing machine into the dryer so that we could put vomit laundry into the washing machine. When Grandma and Grandpa came upstairs I announced that we were having a dinnertime crisis, so Grandma gave the baby to Grandpa so that she could cuddle with a freshly-bathed Zoë while I sopped up freshly-spewed vomit and then continued with dinner preparation. 

Grandma and I looked over the contents of the frying pan and determined that no vomit had made its way inside so we decided that we could keep that food (and not join the 4.25 other sausages in the garbage). 

Daddy came home soon after this and I left him to finish preparing dinner while I held a needy Zoë. 

For some reason he thought I was making sausage fried with celery and onions, so that's what he did and then everyone was like, "Ew! We're having sweet-and-sour!" and he was like, "Thank goodness because this looks disgusting!" So he made a sweet-and-sour sauce to go with the sausage, celery and onion mix he'd fried up. 

The rice was safely cooking away in the InstaPot all this time. 

So far there's been no more vomit, though dinner was a little less appetizing than usual. I certainly hope this was just a fluke because she isn't acting sick really—she isn't running a fever and wasn't unusually grumpy or lethargic. Fingers crossed...

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