Here's another one.
(You know the really pathetic thing? After I posted last time, I went to bed and thought of another half dozen things at least I could have vented about but didn't.)
The next day, I was sitting on the bed putting on my socks and muttering to myself. "Iyyar's doing much better. I don't have any cavities. The kids are healthy." Mr. Bigfoot overheard me. "Are you telling yourself good things?" "Yeah. Not everything is awful." "No." "It just FEELS that way." "Right."
So, here is a list of Things That Are Not Awful:
1. The kids are healthy. This is huge. Remember last year? That isn't happening now. We had a couple of weeks of stomach bugs, all of which passed relatively quickly. B"H, no major health issues currently going on with anyone. Pregnancy seems to be going fine, the kids are doing well.
2. Iyyar really is doing much better. He has his ups and downs, but overall he is taking many more steps forward than he is taking back. He loves his gan. He has not said he hates/doesn't want to go to gan in months--not since before the chagim. He tells me he loves Michal and he also tells me about how he is playing with the other kids. Just like he spiraled downward last year, and things got worse and worse in a vicious cycle of frustration/acting out/disapproval/anger/other kids not wanting to play with him, this year, it's heading in the opposite direction. He's happier, he's more cooperative, he's playing better with the other kids, he's less disruptive, more patient. This week Michal told me she was hoping to see him in a regular kita aleph next year. I'm not actually sure that would be best for him--far from it--but I was really, really happy to hear her say it.
3. Marika is one day away from turning TWO. The mind reels. That deserves a post of its own, but in the meantime, she is cuddly and adorable and has developed quite the personality. She has also recently figured out how to open doorknobs. That part I could have waited for, but I'm happy to see her growing and happy and doing new stuff all the time.
4. No cavities! I went to the dentist when I was in the US, because I really like the dentist (he's in the same building as my office) and I have been having issues lately with a really raw and painful mouth--certain foods (sesame seeds, tomatoes, citrus, hummous, anything acidic or rough-textured) seem to rip my tongue/inside of my mouth to shreds, and some of them make my mouth swell. It seemed weird that I could be developing multiple food allergies at once, and I was due for a cleaning, so I called to see if they had a cancellation and they did. Anyway, no cavities (yay!) and the mouth thing he told me was pregnancy-related; he gave me some fancy toothpaste and a special toothbrush (?) and told me to stay way from trigger foods. Also, he fixed a chipped filling. Even better, when I went to pay, the receptionist discovered that I had a huge credit on my account--apparently I overpaid last time--and only owed $9 for the visit. There was a sign on the desk that said, "Like us on Facebook and get a $10 credit!" so I asked if I could like them on Facebook and call it even. They said sure, so I walked out of there without paying anything. I'm not thrilled that they sat on $163 for almost a year without telling me, but it was a nice surprise nevertheless.
5. I brought back a lot of Tootsie Rolls. There is no Tootsie Roll shortage here.
6. I also brought back a lot of little plastic dinosaurs from the thrift shop. Twenty cents each--couldn't resist. The kids are happy, with that and also with the whole box of K'nex I bought for around $6.
7. Work is going well. Nobody expects me back in the US next summer.
8. This baby is the most active baby-in-utero I have ever had. S/he never seems to stop kicking, wiggling, rolling, and squirming. It's fun. I try not to wonder how this will translate into sleep habits in the outside world. Hopefully, just in the kicking off of many blankets.
9. The kitchen is clean. I made pizza for dinner and cleaned up while the kids were eating it. I also redid the contact paper on the counter on Tuesday, so it looks much better in there. And I bleached the sink. That helped too.
10. We are going to get a new washing machine, cost be damned. I can't not have a washing machine. Mr. Bigfoot says no more used appliances. The End.
11. We have three windowboxes full of ivy and geraniums, courtesy of Deb.
12. Barak can now do most of his homework by himself. He usually gets about halfway through it without help. This is a big improvement from September, when he'd do three out of ten questions after a lot of misery and suffering and parental involvement. His homework continues to be, in my opinion, wildly ambidiout; last night's Chumash homework involved reading and understanding and answering questions on TWENTY-SIX psukim. Which they had not done in class. Seriously.
13. Yesterday I heard Barak singing a song I didn't know. Mr. Bigfoot didn't know it either. He listened carefully for a minute and then grinned. "He's singing mishnayos." Last year he was singing Pirkei Avos, this year it's mishnayos. This is why we moved here.
14. I made a to-do list of all the horribly overwhelming things I had to do. I did three of them today. It's only a start, but it helps.
15. My computer is working much better now, after a lot of long-distance intervention from IT at work.
16. I brought back a lot of Trader Joe's chocolate chip granola bars. Marika has figured out that there is almost always a chocolate chip or four hiding in the bottom of the wrapper. I can open one, hand her the wrapper, and she will be so busy hunting for tiny chocolate chips that she leaves me alone with my granola bar until it's almost gone.
There. Sixteen good things. The seventeenth: I am going to bed.