We spent part of the this weekend with my brother Nick and his wife Emily and their two daughters Anika who is almost 2 years old (and definitely the terrible twos are reeking out of her) and Leah who is 2 months old. They spent the night in a tent at Matt's Mom and Dad's house. We also went and spent the night but opted out of the tent idea. We slept in the house. Matt's mom and dad have a really nice property, with a pond, four wheeler, woods, etc. So we love spending time there. Nick has been wanting to go camping so thought it would be a perfect weekend to finally go. And thank God the rain held out on us!
So last night Nick set up the tent, while Emily tend to her two small children. Anika had a petrifying fear of Matt's family dog Sophie. Any time Sophie would lurk by she would scream "Note Note Mommy!" And yes, she has this new thing where she doesn't say the word "No" anymore. Which she use to clearly be able to say. But now somehow no has transformed to "Note" but it still means "No".
So we enjoyed the night by the campfire. I was all excited and decided I wanted to sleep in the tent as well because I love camping. But Matt wanted to count himself of the camping fun because he hates camping. He wanted to sleep in the house. I got my sleeping bag and pillow, and was boldly going to sleep in a tent with my brother, sister in law and their two children. But as the night progressed, being pregnant and irritable, I realized I really wasn't feeling the fun camping factor I usually feel, and that I would rather sleep in a nice soft bed in air conditioning. It's sad how pregnancy is just making me anti-fun.
So Emily puts Anika to bed in the tent, and she sings herself to sleep. And she keeps saying Matt's name. Which is funny the last time we say Anika which was at Leah's baptism, Anika could clearly identify who Matt was. This weekend I discovered how much she loves saying his name. Emily said when she woke up, she said "Matt, Matt, Matt, Matt.." But here's the funny part, she is absolutely petrified of Matt. Any time he would get near her she would start crying and running away to her mommy. It was pretty funny. We joked that Anika only would say his name in fear. Though by the end of the day she did started to open up to Matt and was less scared of him.
I'm amazed at Emily and her super multi-mom skills to deal with a constantly crying infant and an constantly clingy two year old. The entire time she effortlessly managed the both of them. Of course all the fun began when Emily had to leave for work. She had to leave early, so they drove separately. So after she left, Leah was in disarray. Frantically crying, we had to give her a bottle, but she didn't like her bottle. She wanted her mommy's boobie. A bottle is just not the same. Matt's mom worked her magic and finally got her to take the bottle. Then we were off on our way back to our house.
Anika cracked me up on the car ride. Lucky me got to be squished between two car seats. I was tried and decided to take a nap, so I put Leah's blanket over me, to block the sun. When we got home I woke up and say Anika doing the same thing, she too put her own blanket over her eyes, and ended up falling asleep. She learns from the best. hehehe..
As soon as we get home this is when the fun begins. I somehow ended up having to take care of both of Nick's children as we lays on the couch sleeping. He asks me to get Leah's diaper bag out of the car, so I do that and when I come back in the house I find that Anika had a piece of Marco's food and was chasing him around trying to hand feed him. She kept saying "Eat. Eat Cat". Then I discovered that she took Marco's water bowl and dumped the entire thing in his food bowl. So he had watery food. Wasn't that nice of Anika? So I get that all cleaned up, I put new food in Marco's bowl. I get Anika away from Marco's food. Then got to deal with one clamity after another.
She was petting Marco, and Marco doesn't really understand what Anika was trying to do, because Anika's form of petting is like smacking him. So Marco retaliated and slapped Anika with his paw. Note Marco is declawed so he can't really hurt Anika unless he bits her. He did this a few times, and then finally Anika had enough and starts bawling her eyes out. I told her Marco is being mean, and she tell me "Mean cat". And of course this doesn't stop her from pestering Marco again. Now note Marco really isn't bad with children, he's perfectly fine as long as they don't mess with him. He just hates being pestered by Anika. And Anika doesn't know any better.
Then I went upstairs to the bathroom, and then another calamity happens. Anika goes up the steps to see where I am, and falls up the last step and hurts herself on the corner of the wall. She was fine but the wailing she was doing you would have thought she broke something. (She seems to get overdramatic when she gets really tired.)
Then I go change Leah's diaper because Nick doesn't want to do it. When I finish that, I find out Anika dumped Marco's water in his food AGAIN for the second time! So yet again I had to clean it up. Sigh.
My favorite part was when Nick was packing everything up in the car, so I had Leah on our bed sleeping, but she didn't stay sleeping very long, she started to cry. I tried to let her cry herself to sleep. So I play Guitar Hero and sang, Anika danced while I sung and got Matt's head set and starting to sing in it, as if she was singing along with me. It was really cute, expect she pretty much put her entire mouth on the mouthpiece to the headset. It was soaking wet with goober. But oh well what Matt doesn't know won't hurt him. I'm sure the head set is fine. hehehe. So the baby wouldn't stop crying, so Matt's screaming upstairs that I need to grab the baby because she's still crying. So I scoop her up, and rock her, and start singing on Guitar Hero, and Leah just stares are the tv, and listens to the music, and seems perfectly happy. It was like my singing and Guitar Hero put her in a peace trance. (Note to self, I'll have to use this tactic to see if this works when my baby comes) And Anika was dancing in the background. It was a great moment. I felt like both babies were happy, while at the same time entertaining myself.
It was a great day, and I love Anika and leah so much. Anika cracks me up. Even though she gets into so much trouble she really has a big heart. When I was holding Leah at one point, and couldn't get her to stop crying, Anika grabs Leah's bottle and gave it to me. It was really sweet. She also helped me set the table when we had pizza for dinner.
It's small moments like these that I can't wait to be a mom. I know one days wears me out spending it with Anika. But I still look forward to being a mommy. I know it' all worth it in the end. Motherhood is tough. And I admire Emily so much with dealing with two children, and working as well. I'm just excited to begin my new chapter as a new mom next year. I know many times it won't be easy, but boy is it rewarding.