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MLK Was Probably a Great Man But…

This post has nothing to do with Martin Luther King Jr’s accomplishments which I’m sure were many. It’s not a history lesson; I’m sure he was awesome and did a lot of fun things for civil rights and made some inspirational speeches or whatever. That’s all fantastic except that now Marty’s birthday is a national holiday and I had to come up with something to do with all three of my kids on a MONDAY no less. Couldn’t we just celebrate his birthday on the inside? As a parent, I don’t need any more holidays especially ones that entail a three day weekend. Having Monday off is soul crushing to parents of toddlers.

I look forward to Monday all weekend! Is it Sunday morning and my Persian rug is littered with scrambled eggs and my couch is smeared with strawberry yogurt (even though I specifically made a new rule about not eating in the living room)? Well, tomorrow will be Monday and I can clean it up. Is it Sunday afternoon and the kids are shrieking in the grocery store, demanding Nutrigrain bars which they will never actually eat but instead chew up and spit out behind their car seat to be discovered closer to Valentine’s day? Relax, Monday’s rolling in.

Sometimes by Friday night I’m already ready for Monday. Save your hate mail on this, I’m not alone. My children are delicious nuggets of insane cuteness and I adore hanging out with them but I love that they can go to school and make a high holy mess to their heart’s content while I sit at home pondering going to the gym, returning an email or sitting and staring off into space for a minute or two. I’m not breaking any new blog ground with this, it’s just that when we have Monday off it’s particularly painful and I must take a moment to vent.

By a typical Sunday night, I’m out of ideas. I’m not a fucking cruise director and there’s only so much entertaining I can do, crafts I can oversee or errands I can drum up to burn off time. By last Sunday night, I’d done it all: playdates, a birthday brunch for my friend (with two toddlers on my lap for an hour and forty five minutes), a sleep-over for Elby where we made pizza, popped popcorn and colored the shit out of every available piece of paper in the house I even braved a bookstore; So by Monday morning I was tired. But I had three kids who were looking at me like I had the schedule for the Lido deck etched on my forehead. I had to think of a plan.

And that plan, was the zoo. And apparently, the general population of greater Los Angeles also celebrates Martin Luther King’s birthday by scoping out Giraffes and eating eight dollar ice cream cones. I wasn’t sure the zoo would actually be any fun because I’ve always had a “thing” about zoos feeling that they’re sad and that the animals are drugged up and not well cared for but it was kind of the opposite. They really seem to really love the animals there, giving them wide breadth to roam and eat grass and the monkeys are downright attention hos. Where else but the LA zoo can a monkey mug for a paid audience all day and possibly score an agent? So, other than the fact that it was later in the day and Sadie and Matilda were beyond tired, it was a fine activity.

But let me just say that there are a ton of holidays in March and April and I may not survive them unless you more experienced parents give me some suggestions that don’t involve me doing a whole lot. I don’t know if you’ve met me but I’m lazy.

Posted by Stefanie Wilder Taylor on January 19, 2011 2:54 amUncategorized33 comments  

33 Comments

  1. JJ Keith said,

    Oddly enough I just posted something on places to exhaust toddler (or two) in L.A.. I’m planning on working my way through the city, but right now I’ve only got Griffith Park up: http://jjustkidding.blogspot.com/2011/01/jjust-kidding-guide-to-exhausting.html.

    I recommend the California Science Center and/or the Natural History Museum, both in Exposition Park next to USC. They’re pretty easy spots to supervise a kid. I get a lot of reading done on my iPhone Kindle app there.
    JJ Keith´s last blog post ..The JJust Kidding Guide to Exhausting a Toddler in LA- Griffith Park Edition

    | January 19, 2011 @ 3:51 am

    • Stefanie Wilder Taylor said,

      JJ, you rule and you also live in LA so those ideas are like gold. I will say that going to a museum does require some supervision so I will have to be well rested and that may not happen until 2020.

      | January 19, 2011 @ 3:09 pm

  2. erica said,

    if I were a good writer, and wittier, I could have written this exact post! i so look forward to monday, pretty much hate saturday now and holidays? too many of them if you ask me! TWO weeks for christmas? kill me now.

    | January 19, 2011 @ 4:44 am

  3. Jen said,

    My kids were out of school for three days with a terrible case of the whiny, crabbypants illness. Then there was a three day weekend. Things got so bad around here that I actually considered going to the zoo and it’s about 3 below outside. When they went to school today I had a little solo dance party.
    Jen´s last blog post ..The Story of Joseph – Becoming Family

    | January 19, 2011 @ 4:52 am

  4. Amanda said,

    If things get too wild at my house, I will totally banish my 6 year old twin boys to their room. I frequently get tired of saying things like, “You can’t tackle Mommy!!”

    On long weekends, I try to take them to a park or one of those indoor play places. The zoo is obviously a good choice. Museums can be a good threat if you work it up the right way. Libraries are good for no cost/low cost places. And if all else fails, continue to let them run wild and pour a glass of wine and don’t worry about the mess or inability to stop pulling out your hair until Tuesday.
    Amanda´s last blog post ..This Kid is Photogenic

    | January 19, 2011 @ 5:08 am

  5. Amanda said,

    Crap. So I just read your “About” page again and now I feel like a complete jerk. Nix the glass of wine I mentioned.
    Amanda´s last blog post ..This Kid is Photogenic

    | January 19, 2011 @ 5:11 am

    • Stefanie Wilder Taylor said,

      Amanda, don’t feel bad! Your comment gave me the idea of having a glass of wine and now I’m totally drunk!! Okay, I’m kidding. Calm down.

      I’m not against drinking, so it is a good suggestion just not for me! We’re still friends!

      | January 19, 2011 @ 3:11 pm

      • Kerry said,

        Stephanie,you crack me up.

        | January 21, 2011 @ 1:27 pm

  6. Erin said,

    I feel like there is practically nothing to save the mothers of multiples when it comes to wearing out toddler-aged children without wearing out mama too. I know it’s not like twins at all, but when I had my second and my first was still a toddler, the best places I had for when I was worn out were indoor playplaces at malls. Yes, malls. The spaces are small and the toys are usually padded and generally hard to injure oneself on. And there are benches for the parents, so I could do the most restful thing I could think of while caring for the children – sitting and watching.
    Erin´s last blog post ..Mommy’s Little Mischief-Maker

    | January 19, 2011 @ 8:33 am

  7. Tracy said,

    You always make me feel so much better. I, too, could have written this post. Thank goodness I have an engaged husband, or else I might lose my mind. I find myself sitting and staring vacantly when he’s around, just because I can. I’m home with my 28 month olds all week, and am counting down the months until preschool starts. I love them to pieces, but man, are they exhausting.

    I like to take them to anywhere that they can burn off energy so they nap. Doesn’t always work, but it’s worth a shot. We hit playgroups at the gym, gymnastics centers (which often have “free gym” that costs $9???? but is oh so worth it), the children’s museum, the mall (take sanitizer), and even my own gym, where they have a childcare room. I may have to sweat, but at least I get an hour of peace to veg out. :)

    It could be worse; you could be in Michigan, like me, where I’m forced to stay indoors with my little crazy people for long stretches of time.

    | January 19, 2011 @ 11:55 am

    • Stefanie Wilder Taylor said,

      My husband joined us at the zoo but somehow it’s still a lot of work. I guess I forgot to mention that Sat. we went to the mall rode the carousel, ate a hot dog on a stick, rode the train, played a few video games. I can’t do that twice in one weekend. I know you understand.

      | January 19, 2011 @ 3:13 pm

  8. Susan said,

    Grab a stack of favorite magazines and pull up a chair in front of the train table at Barnes and Noble—in the children’s area. That buys me an hour of “me” time where the only thing I have to do is break up a few squabbles every now and then over not sharing the trains. It rocks!!! (p.s. This might not be as effective with girls)

    | January 19, 2011 @ 12:48 pm

  9. SoberJulie said,

    Personally I dig staying home. We do Wii tournaments (very competitive and noisey), crafts…well ok so the kids cut out pics from a magazine and paste them on bristol boards. Pick a theme and if you need to cut the pics do it and they love this. It’s easy and quieter.

    Frankly I bow to your courage, I’d never face an outside location on a holiday!!

    | January 19, 2011 @ 2:14 pm

    • Stefanie Wilder Taylor said,

      Obviously, we need a Wii.

      | January 19, 2011 @ 4:29 pm

  10. Kir said,

    I SKIP out of daycare, now let’s be clear, I don’t esp like going to work…LOL but I do love leaving my little lovies there…and I put on my high heels and g be an adult. I SOOOOO “get you” :)
    Kir´s last blog post ..Wordlessful Wednesday- The Girl Who Loves Quotes

    | January 19, 2011 @ 4:25 pm

  11. Krista said,

    Long time reader, never posted but literally almost spit my coffee out at the Lido deck reference. I too, feel like Julie the Cruise Director…Keep up the great writing! Love reading your blog.

    | January 19, 2011 @ 6:27 pm

  12. Issa said,

    My kids had Tuesday off as well. I have no words to adequately describe how wrong that was. Especially considering I had to work it. Yep. Fun times.

    Basically I am so with you. Solidarity sister.

    Ya-Ya.

    ps. Sorry. Couldn’t help that last part.
    Issa´s last blog post ..Things I love

    | January 19, 2011 @ 7:59 pm

    • Stefanie Wilder Taylor said,

      What kind of indecent person decided that your kids should have a FOUR day weekend? I will hunt them down and punish them.

      | January 19, 2011 @ 9:41 pm

  13. Erin@MommyontheSpot said,

    I am totally feeling this post. Last year, I wrote a post about how Monday is the new Sunday and how Tuesday is actually more of a Monday to me. So yes, you are in good company with me.
    Erin@MommyontheSpot´s last blog post ..Hermy the Elf is a Genius

    | January 19, 2011 @ 8:19 pm

  14. Valarie Miller-Corl said,

    I HATE the zoo! My husband actually had the nerve to want to go there (it is over an hour away AND if you walk from one end to the other, which my husband always wants to do, it takes upward of 2 hours) a few days after my 8yo daughter’s slumber party where 8 girls showed up and this was after the party at Build-a-Bear at the mall and then McDonald’s ( which I also hate – the mall) …! And my baby was 14 mos. old at the time and it included taking him as well. Did I mention that although hubby promised to help me out with the birthday party that he did absolutely NOTHING for it…? And then couldn’t figure out WHY I didn’t want to go to the fucking zoo…???!!!

    Wanna know what I did…I had a nice relaxing day window shopping and having a few glasses of wine in my favorite bar of my favorite restaurant. it was bliss…

    | January 20, 2011 @ 4:01 am

  15. Jennifer said,

    Stefanie,
    Being the mom of an almost 11 year old and 4.5 year old I feel ya! I have no clue haow anyone wih kiddos under 4 do it everyday, let alone multiplies! Props lady to you! :) I also love Mondays with a passion! My preschooler only goes 2.5 hours 3 days a week. I thank everything that’s holy my dp (domestic partner)’s mom kept my boys from this past Sunday night until Tuesday around dinner time! That was a first! My family lives an hour away and I try not to ask the to help with childcare because I am a SAHM! My point here is as a “more experienced parent” (hahaha) taking your kiddos to the zoo to meet the Easter bunny is what I’m thinking you will be looking forward too! Hang in there mama!

    | January 20, 2011 @ 10:45 am

  16. Jennifer said,

    PS It’s early here in Pa, I really do know the difference between to, too, and two, in fact I believe I recently joined a fb group for that!

    | January 20, 2011 @ 11:09 am

    • Stefanie Wilder Taylor said,

      Sure you do. That’s why I always get a touch sweaty before I hit “submit”

      | January 20, 2011 @ 9:40 pm

  17. Milan said,

    You know what’s worse than a 3 day holiday weekend? Having a snow day on Tuesday. Just when you think the coast is clear and you can actually get something done like take a shower, the school district calls you at 5 am, because what else are you doing at that time, to tell you that you get an extra day with your kids! Wednesday never looked so good.

    | January 20, 2011 @ 12:54 pm

    • Stefanie Wilder Taylor said,

      Hi California, I love you.

      | January 20, 2011 @ 9:39 pm

    • Susan said,

      Ditto. I’m in Chicago. Snow days and sick days make me bananas. Winter is too long to live with three little boys.

      | January 29, 2011 @ 5:17 am

  18. Kerry said,

    Although my twins are not in preschool this year and my 6 year only goes to kindergarten 1/2 days, I too love Mondays. I get to send my husband out the door to work and I have one less person smearing strawberry yogurt all over my couch and begging to go to the zoo. :)

    | January 21, 2011 @ 1:31 pm

  19. yasmine said,

    This is funny to me – I guess I so totally do not “get it” because I am not a mom but all of these comments are echoed by all of my mom-friends too… that they love their kids but secretly don’t want to be around them for long periods of time, that they love Mondays – I even know one that looks forward to going to work, which is the craziest thing I’ve ever heard. I guess I don’t understand because all of my time is “me” time and “free” time… (except when I am working)… very interesting to read your perspectives on this!!!

    | January 21, 2011 @ 3:29 pm

  20. Lauri said,

    LMAO!!! It’s Friday night and though I don’t usually drink, after snow days and a week inside with my boys, I find myself halfway through a bottle of wine and eating crumbled chocolate cake over the kitchen sink. I suppose I should consider this a breaking point, but oddly enough, it’s just what I needed. My husband senses my meltdown and is doing the night-night routine. Love them but Holy crap, had no idea a 2 and 4 year old could be this hard. They are slowly taking my sanity, those sweet darlings. did I just say darlings? Yea, too much wine…
    Your books/blogs give me comfort in knowing I am not alone- thanks for being a true girlfriend, although you don’t even know me, I cherish your real truth- it’s motherhood and sometimes it sucks.

    | January 22, 2011 @ 3:02 am

    • Stefanie Wilder Taylor said,

      ha ha! Love you for this. Sometimes it does suck. I wish my husband was home tonight to do the bedtime routine. Or i wish I had a job.

      | January 22, 2011 @ 3:08 am

      • Lauri said,

        funny, I have been updating my resume for six months now. Sadly, I believe I have replaced my sexual fantasies with going back to work fantasies!!! Damn, that is bad! But, I am laughing at this too.

        | January 22, 2011 @ 3:39 am

  21. rebecca said,

    Isn’t it you who taught me to take the kids to the Sprint store? Then take them to Costco? Whatever happened to the field trip to the post office. Free scotch tape!
    rebecca´s last blog post ..The Good and The Bad

    | January 22, 2011 @ 11:02 pm

  22. seekingclarav said,

    “I’m not a fucking cruise director and there’s only so much entertaining I can do…..”

    -Okay I came really close to peeing over that one.

    Believe it or not I was a nanny for part of when I lived in LA and we did the train graveyard place at the very end of Griffith Park a lot. You know, the one if you keep driving past the Shane’s Inspiration playground for handicapped kids and follow the road for several miles -you’ll find it. Of course I nannied for a boy. Hey, go to a paint your own pottery place and pay $700 for an ugly mug. Or, just let them run loose at The Grove. Pedicures? Bake cookies or make cupcakes. That saves me some days. Kids will frost just about anything. I’m done.
    seekingclarav´s last blog post ..Motherhood is kicking my ass

    | January 28, 2011 @ 5:49 am

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