I haven’t really been great at keeping up-to-date with all the goings-on in our neck of the woods. With all of the stress of trying to find a house, our little hour-glass was running out quickly, as our holiday villa was due to expire this coming Sunday. When it became quite clear that we couldn’t buy a house in time, we knew we were going to have to rent something soon.
We debated about flying back to Utah for a few weeks to wait for whatever house we decided on to close, but then our international movers threw a wrench in our plans by announcing delivery of our goods sometime from July 3rd. Which meant a trip was out of the question.
So last weekend, we jetted down to Vero Beach, FL to look at condos, as well as trying to find apartments in the local Orlando/Kissimmee area to rent. After viewing what seems like dozens, but which is probably only about 7 or 8, we decided on an upscale two bedroom top-floor apartment in Kissimmee. We applied, we were accepted, and we moved in two days ago.
Of course, it is all well and good to say that we are now settled in our new place, but the harsh reality is that settled is the last thing we can claim to be! I never thought of myself as the kind of girl who needed STUFF to make her happy. But the sad truth is that when you have a bunch of big empty rooms, no television, no toys, no furniture and no idea where to go to get them, your happy new house can seem like a pit of despair in no time at all!
This was the case today when Mark had a meeting in the eastern part of Florida and had to leave us all day alone. I had thought that we might go for a dip in the pool or explore the town on a walk or any number of things. But this is hurricane season, after all, and there’s a big tropical storm headed our way this weekend that chose to make itself a good start today. And while Dexter and I were able to have a small picnic on our balcony this morning, by the time we were fit to make a go of it, the heavens had opened and there was lightning, thunder and more rain that was strictly necessary.
Frustratingly, even though I insisted on buying Dex some new toys over the last few days and even slaved away for nearly 3 HOURS putting together a little play kitchen for him, his room full of gear wasn’t enough to keep him happy. It was actually shocking that he is the only one who has NO cause for complaint in this house, and yet he is the only one who refuses to settle.
Still, trying to take those lemons and make some lemon flavored vodka (I am not keen on lemonade), I do have a shortlist of things that have made me smile lately.
So without further ado:
Mr Bucket Head
Some may think that letting your toddler roam the house, arms stretched blindly in front of him, while wearing a bucket on his head is cruel. But since he puts it on his head himself and takes great pleasure from jetting around the room bumping into furniture and walls, I just smile, laugh along and take incriminating photos of him for later blackmail.
And then there’s the moment when the bucket pops off, and suddenly I’m met with the happy smiling face of the slightly battered little man, who is just checking to be sure that momma is still there before the bucket goes back on and the tumbling can begin all over again.
Or how about when the little guy steals the lid of my Subway salad, smothered in honey mustard dressing and licks the sucker clean, dousing himself in the sticky goop in the process. And then I am forced to lick his face clean because giving him a bath is just too much work. I jest. I just wiped his face with a wet wipe and let the mess congeal in his hair.
Gas Station Overwhelm
Watching Dexter taking in all of the colors, shapes and selections of a gas station mini mart is hilarious. Running down the short aisles, tearing candy off the shelves and carrying it to opposite corners of the store, trying his hardest to open the fridges and grab a giant bottle of pop, or ingratiating himself to wary shop assistants he thinks might just give him a free cookie.
Like a true American, our little wubba has become easily addicted to the sweet section of the baby food aisle. His favorite treat is the tiny packs of gummy fruits, which he will devour in less than ten seconds before screaming and stomping for more. I’ll admit I’ve been a shoddy mother and have given in to his tantrums at times, even going so far as to let him have three or four packs at a time. But those days are in the past now, as I have realised it will be far too easy to succumb to gluttonous behaviour if I don’t put the kibosh on it sooner rather than later.
Still, the sight of him peeking over the table, little fingers at the ready to sneak a sweet treat is one of the cutest things in the world.
Daddy Dressing Dexter
We’ve all been there, right? When you allow the dad of the house to dress the baby, only for them to emerge together proudly, celebrating sartorial success before you have to point out that baby’s shirt is on backward. Or… you just let it go… because honestly, no one needs to know, and that kid is so cute, he can get away with a bit of backward dressing.
Feeding the Craving
I’m such a sucker for seeing my boys happy. And since a good portion of Mark’s time in the UK was spent lamenting the lack of his favorite foods, I love seeing him dig in to a Quiznos sub or a Taco Bell Chalupa and smiling his satisfied smile which shows he is really very happy to be back in the motherland.
And like father, like son – Dexter has a fondness for fast food, as well!