i don't think i'm going to go to a restaurant, or any other public place for that matter, until ALL of my children are shane's age. since i'm sure that pretty much everyone who might happen to read this blog (like all 3 of you) have young children, you can probably relate. i cannot fully express how completely inconvenient and disgusting it is to have to take a little kid to use a public toilet. first of all, let's face it, most public restrooms are dirty and gross. unless i really can't, i hold it. however, when the 3 year old with the pea-sized bladder and a tendency toward leakage has to go, you have to take her. so first of all, the first thing layla does when we walk into a stall is put her hands all over the toilet. 'keep your hands off the toilet.' then she turns and grabs the little garbage receptacle on the wall, invariably sticking her fingers just under the door flap and says, 'what's this.' 'it's a garbage can. don't touch it it's icky. please pull your pants down.' at this point i've already lost my patience with the situation, the stall walls are closing in on me and my shoes are making squishy noises in the puddle of ??? on the floor. 'why is there dirt in that drain on the floor?' she says as she bends over, reaching to point it out to me. i grab her hands as fast as i can. 'because it's on a bathroom floor and bathroom floors are very dirty. please don't touch the floor. PULL YOUR PANTS DOWN SO YOU CAN GO POTTY please.' so by now, i've completely lost what was left of my patience and as she starts exploring the flushing mechanism to see if it's a button, a lever or the kind that flushes automatically, i grab her pants, yank them down to her ankles and heave her up onto the toilet, which is huge, by the way, and she nearly falls in. of course, she grabs onto the sides of the toilet seat to hold herself on. at this point she looks up at the ceiling and, remembering that public restrooms often echo, she starts singing. not a song. just a tune that generally resembles 'twinkle twinkle little star' (or the ABC song, or bah bah black sheep - whichever is your title de jour since they're all the same tune) but with loud, staccato, somewhat explosive 'BAH' sounds - i guess because she's done an extensive study on what sounds echo best and that one takes the cake. 'layla, please just go potty.'
let me pause here and ask a question. what is the purpose of the split in the toilet seat? you know, right there at the front? i can't, for the life of me, figure it out... unless it's 1)to ensure that very small children's legs and/or hands touch as much of the disgusting, hair covered, pee encrusted toilet rim as possible or 2) to make sure that, even if her pants and underwear were dry when we went into the bathroom, they will inevitably wind up wet because this particular seating arrangement causes her to pee straight out, rather than down, over the edge of the toilet and directly onto the pants she's wearing around her ankles. good grief. can it get any grosser? wait, we still have to wipe, flush, pull up our now wet pants, and wash our hands. today i had the great privilege of taking layla to the bathroom to poop. twice. the high quality toilet paper there is the thickness of vapor, while having the texture of a splintered 2x4. what a great combination. i think i smeared more than i wiped. i quickly flushed which of course prompted the 'but i wanted to flush it' whine. 'you can flush next time. now let's go wash our hands!' 'no. i don't need to wash my hands.' 'OH YES YOU DO!'
the handwashing thing is a whole other story. how hard would it be to have a stool in there? i can't imagine that mine is the only child in the world who has to use the bathroom. but no, i have to heave her up on my knee, and hang her over the edge of the wet, gross sink and somehow turn on faucets, get soap (which is installed a mile away from the sink) 'rub, rub, rub! make LOTS of bubbles. no, don't touch that!' and turn off faucets, all while balancing on one leg. i grab her a paper towel, which is also up high and start to sigh in relief as i'm reaching for the door but, 'layla, keep your hands off the garbage can!'. seriously. is it just a fact of nature that she MUST put one hand on the garbage can while throwing something into it?
now do all of this with a baby strapped to you. it's even more fun that way.
in other news...
we put the pool up yesterday. shane and layla splashed around in it while it was filling, but when it was about 1/2 full, dave kicked them out so he could put the chemicals (ick) in. after dinner, the water was still cloudy and the test strip indicated that the chlorine level was still high, so they couldn't swim. same today. although i can't imagine why they would want to swim since it's the worst weather we've had in over a month. it seriously rained last night and it's like 62 out or something. but then again, i'm not shane. this is my obsessive boy. the only reason we actually put the pool up yesterday was because he was going crazy having it just sit there in the box, not being used. well, now that it's actually up, it's even worse that he can't use it. of course he can't come up with anything else to do today, so he's bored and grumpy and has been threatened with something horrible (being strung up by his toes, i think) if he keeps asking about it. i realize it's disappointing, but the kid will not let things go. seriously. i think he's asked at least once a day since he was about 4 if we can get a boat... or rather 'why can't we get a boat?' the answer is the same every time, but for some reason, he needs to keep asking. grrr.
the other day i was doing some weeding outside and layla came over and noticed some moss growing on a stump. she thought it was grass and i told her it was actually moss, but either way, it's totally irrelevant. i kept pulling weeds and she went into the house for a second and came back out with my comb and started combing the moss. huh? i asked her why she was using my comb and she said 'because i need to get the grass off the stump'. (well, obviously.) i took the comb away amid much whining and crying and put it back in the house. where did she come up with that?
for her birthday, layla got some playdough supplies from a couple different sources. very cool tools and such which she's very excited about. the other morning as the kids are eating breakfast, shane says, 'a lot of people are giving layla playdough'. layla replies with, 'a lot of people are giving me somersaults'. hello random!.........