November 21, 2008

The Spin Cycle: Manipulation with Potty Training

The wonderful and very comely Jen over at Sprite's Keeper saved my life this week. She let me off the hook so I didn't have to write something new for a post. Like many of us this week, I've been feeling a little creatively challenged. If you read my time travel debacle post from Monday, you'll see that old Steenky Bee has resorted to blogging about outdated hairdos. No one should have to read, or see that. Not never ever.

The post I've selected is one that appeared on my site last spring and the only people reading this blog were relatives who took pity on me. These relatives no longer read me, but their pity for me has increased tenfold.

So anyway, this post is all about how I celebrated my eighth wedding anniversary...WITH ANOTHER MAN. That's right, for one night, Steenky whooped it up with a younger man. A much younger man.

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Sometimes your husband goes out of town to meet with fancy doctors in a Colorado resort town about a new project and he leaves you and the kids to fend for yourselves. Sometimes he calls you and tells you that he misses you and he wishes that he didn't have to be in "meetings" all day long. But if you listen close enough, ever so faintly in the background, you can hear the soft humming of a motorized golf cart and cool ice tea being served in this "critical meeting".

Sometimes on the first night alone with the children everything runs so smoothly that you sit and think to yourself that you are awesome. In fact, you are so confident about your awesomeness that the next day at work you brag to anyone who will listen to about what a master you are at bedtime rituals with the kids. You see, that night you recorded a stellar time of 7:00 pm bed time. Let me repeat that. Two kids, both in bed before 7:00 pm. That is huge, folks and undeniable evidence of superior parenting skills.

Or so I thought.

Turns out, it is against all known laws of nature to have two smooth bed times in a row. This brings me to the events that transpired at my home the evening of April 15th 2008, (my wedding anniversary) between 6:23 pm and 11:01 pm.

6:23 pm: Reese rubs her eyes and lets out an adorable little sigh. This is her signal that she is tired. I dress her in her pajamas, rock her sweetly and lay her down for the evening.

6:42 pm - 7:19 pm: Henry and I play Spiderman vs. Doc Ock. He is Spiderman, and I am Doc Ock. We battle and wrestle for world domination. I think I have beat him a few times, but ultimately, Spidey always wins. This imaginary play would be eerie foreshadowing of the evening that Henry and I will share together.

7:20 pm: Henry has a potty break.

7:21 pm: I praise Henry for aforementioned successful potty break.

7:23 pm: I begin coaxing Henry into his pajamas. He sternly announces that he will be sleeping in his sweatshirt tonight. I concede. It seems silly to argue with him at this point. Everything is going so well.

7:40 pm: A demand is put forth for me to fetch Henry his chocolate milk. He needed it. He absolutely needed it, he tells me.

7:48 pm: I some how trick Henry into his bed. We rattle off a few knock-knock jokes together and say out loud to each other how awesome we think we are. I notice his eyes close shortly after.

8:02 pm: I creep out of Henners' room.

8:11 pm: Here's where it all goes south. Less than 10 minutes after I sneak from his bedroom, this walks into our room.


Henry claims he has to potty. So we walk, hand in hand, to the potty. Then we wait. Nothing happens. I suspect this was all ruse to get out of bed. I tuck him back in his bed.

8:31 pm: Henry yells to me from his room that he has to try to potty once more. We try one more time. (Notice the look of concentration on his face during this attempt.)


Only the itty-bittiest stream. Nice try little-man. Henners then tells me that he did a good job on the potty and that he needs a treat. Here's the convincing face he gives me.

He's hard to resist, but I do anyway. I tell him that he did a great job, but it's too late for a treat. Unsatisfied, he gives me an even bigger smile.

This time, I fall for it. He gets his small treat and then shuffles off to bed. It is now 8:54 pm.

9:01 pm: Henry goes in for the kill. He grabs my hand and pats it gently. He asks me in the most polite way possible if he can call Grandpa Brent on the phone because he loves him and because he has a beard. Aw. How can I pass this up?

9:03 pm: Henry makes the phone call to grandpa. I am waiting for my son to profess his love to his grandfather just like he said he would. One minute later Henry makes a critical mistake.

9:04 pm: Henry immediately tells Grandpa Brent that he isn't tired and that he called to tell him he's not going to bed. At age three, and not having a firm grasp exactly how sound travels, Henry unwittingly reveales his evil little plan of pre-meditated procrastination.

9:07 pm: After the brief phone call that my parents think is hilarious (I actaully hear them laughing as my son hangs up the phone), Henry announces that he would like to call Grandma Granny. I check the clock. It's late but she may still be awake. I consent. At this point, I am worn down. I think if I can befriend the little guy and win his trust, I can trick him into his bed once more.

9:08 pm: We dial Grandma Granny. The line is busy.

9:09 pm: I make a mental note to find out why Grandma Granny is on the phone at such a late hour. How did a 78-year old woman get a busier social life than me?

9:14 pm: I somehow convince Henry to get back into his bed.

9:26 pm: Henry opens his door and announces to me from across the hall that he would like a drink of water. I ask him if he really needs it. He says, "I really, REALLY need it."

9:38 pm: Henry asks for a refill.

9:47 pm: After drinking his two cups of water in the slowest possible way, Henry spies his favorite cookies. He asks me for a "cookie brown". We go back and forth here for a good two minutes about the cookie browns. I think I have him beat when I say, "You can't have cookie browns right before bed." Henry quickly, and thoughtfully counters back, "But I not go to bed." Check mate.

Henry's stall tactics are proving wildly successful. He's put off his bedtime by almost two hours. He's doddled, pottied and used his good looks to win me over so far.

10:01 pm: Henry finds a pen with multiple colored inks. He insists on drawing. I oblige. This will give buy me some time to get a plan thought up.

10:15 pm: Henry is now growing groggy and disoriented. He is searching for another reason stay awake. He begins asking for Dad. I tell him Dad will be home soon. I can see he's starting to crack.

10:16 pm: I suggest to Henry that he should take a bath. He loves the idea. In his mind, things are going according to his plan. Little does he know that I have just turned the tables on him. Big time.

10:23 pm: Henry is now in a warm bath. His muscles are now relaxing. He's starting to get that tired, dazed look on his face.

10:31 pm: Henry tells me that he's sleepy now. I tell him that he can't go to bed yet. We have so much to do before Dad gets home. He gives me a dirty look. I am definitely smelling a momentum shift here.

10:42 pm: I dry the Manster off and get him tucked in our bed all nice and comfy. He reclines thinking he's drifting off to sleep. His eyes are definitely glazed over now and he's talking gibberish about going to sleep in his own bed.

10:58 pm: Henry finally drifts off to sleep. This is the latest he's been up with me when he hasn't been sick. A new record, little man. Well played. World dominance.

11:00: I hear the front door open, footsteps up the stairs, then down the hallway. Look who shows up in the bedroom.

11:01 pm: Henry takes one look at Dad, let's out a huge sigh and says, "Where have YOU been?" Henry then pats the bed and tells Jeremy to "Get in bed now. Mom and me are so tired now."

And that's pretty much how I spent my anniversary night. Two men in my bed. Rawr.

Not in on The Spin? Join now! Sprite's Keeper is nice. I promise she won't bite.

67 comments:

Captain Dumbass said...

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAAAAAA!

Captain Dumbass said...

Why is it they save their truest evil for bedtime?

Captain Dumbass said...

Top 3? Hell ya, suckas!

Captain Dumbass said...

Four? Sure. It's an unlucky number in Supreme Leader's culture, but I'm not Asian, so it's all good.

Captain Dumbass said...

Five? Well I'm here so why not?

Captain Dumbass said...

I took my oldest to a bird sanctuary for a field trip today. I'm sure it would have been great if it hadn't been pouring rain with hurricane force winds.

Captain Dumbass said...

Seven? Seven is a lucky number.

Captain Dumbass said...

Now eight is definitely a lucky number for Chinese people. I know these things. And they like ducks. To eat. Did I mention the bird sanctuary?

Captain Dumbass said...

Oh ya, and the 40 pounds of barley in small paper bags for 16 little kids to carry around. Did I mention the rain? And the barley in paper bags? Good times, good times. I'm glad ducks don't have teeth.

goodfather said...

TOP 10!!!!

GAHHHHH!!!!!! Captain Dumbass bogarted the top 8!

Captain Dumbass said...

And now I round it out and take the top 10. That's right, boys and girls. top ten. All. Mine. Go ahead, pretend it doesn't mean anything to you, but we both now it does. I'm eating your envy right now.

It tastes good.

Captain Dumbass said...

DAMN YOU, GOODFATHER! I KNOW WHERE YOU LIVE! OK, I DON'T KNOW WHERE YOU LIVE, BUT YOUR STATE CONNECTS TO MY PROVINCE AND YOUR STATE IS NOT THAT BIG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

supreme leader said...

Enough Dumbass! All caps is rude.

goodfather said...

Sorry, I stand corrected. He bogarted the top 9, but I believe I thwarted his attempt at total top 10 domination.

Take that, my Captain.

Anyway, great post!! The pictures are phenomenal. We haven't had a 'bedtime' (as in NOT going to bed time) yet with Panda, but I'm sure it's coming...

goodfather said...

HA HA HA!!!!

I'm like a thorn in your side. A THORN.

Momma Trish said...

Here I'm wondering how I'm so far down the list when the post was really just put up like half an hour ago. Captain Dumbass and Goodfather, I bow to your supreme stalking skillz. (I'm cool, 'cause I used a "z". Or it's just really late.)

This scenario sounds eerily familiar to me. We go through it often. But lacking the incredible patience of the Steenky Bee, it doesn't usually go on for that long. And we have those exact same drinking glasses in our house. So I think we may be sharing the same 3-year old. It's the only thing that makes sense. Only our 3-year old looks different. Are you sure your pictures are accurate?

jori-o said...

It's not always easy to outsmart a litle dude, esp one as cute as that!! =)

Mc Allen said...

well, this is a 1st......... I have never seen someone be comments 1-10, EVER!!! Nicely done! And, I can see how you get suckad jen, how could you ever say no to that face?? Send him to us, we could use a fiesty boy to push my teens around!! :) LA

DeeMarie said...

Great story!! Is that still Henry's record?
I'm assuming you're taking the weekend off again. Stalk ya Monday!!! Loves.

Lisa said...

ummm kay...

Pretty sure I tried to read this post 2 days ago. Am I living in the outer limits type world? maybe a bit psycho... psychic???

Maybe?

You are a fine kinder mother than I. Inform Mr. Henners that in a strange land called canada when the child gets up out of bed he or she is meanly sent back with a yelled, "GIT!" Or a loud and pointed, "GOODNIGHT."

Laura said...

I love it - especially the glazed over eyes shot. I know that one well.

Casey said...

Hahah, here's the mystery post that showed up in my reader a couple of days ago and then disappeared. I thought you were trying to send me some bloggy smoke signal saying I'm your favorite or something.
Henry certainly won the fight that evening, I don't care how you spin it. That kid is a genius and he learned from the master. Those pictures made me crack up. Did you have to teach him those evil smirky faces or did he learn on his own?

Carolyn...Online said...

Ok, Captain Dumbass is drunk with power...

My favorite part is that you photodocumented the whole thing knowing you would be putting it on your blog.

Laufa said...

Hey Lady, do you need me to send you some pillow cases? Chocolate milk and cookies before bed, no wonder he was up so late. At least he wasn't like my Bubba, up every 3 hours. I hope he slept in this morning.

Sprite's Keeper said...

Love it! Two men in your bed!!
(And Jen, I don't bite. I nibble.)
Great Spin and Henry is such his mother's son. The facial expressions? Dead on!
You're linked of course!

Sprite's Keeper said...

As for the Captain and Good Father? Someone needs to separate those two.

Michele said...

Ahhhh...I remember those bedtime rituals well. Now the Boy rolls in at 7 a.m. to return the car so I can go to the gym. How fair is that?

Tuesday Girl said...

I swear they use up all their brain cells every day just to devise a plan how to get out of bedtime.

Chris Wood said...

he can call Grandpa Brent on the phone because he loves him and because he has a beard ...

Fantastic! Henry rocks big time!

GreenJello said...

When I was little, I used every trick imaginable to stay up past my bedtime. Usually, something "hurt".

I specifically remember one night, coming up the stairs, and announcing to my parents that I couldn't possibly get to sleep, that my eyelash hurt.

They burst out laughing. I was highly offended.

Heinous said...

They always save it for when you can't tag out. Sneaky is in the genes.

for a different kind of girl said...

Henry is wiley, but you are wilier, and that means moms will always prevail! Yeah, moms!

Please, please, please bring Henry with you when we join together!

Khadra said...

ahhh you are so much more patient than me. He sounds like a cutie though.

Bridgeburners said...

Oh, I forgot to mention that, as always, Henry has THE COOLEST stink eye.

Debbie said...

Henry is simply the most adorable little guy!

And no, I will NOT babysit, so quit begging, ok?

Miss Grace said...

I feel that spiritually I made the first comment here.

My favorite is the picture in the bathtub.

Cat said...

You can never REALLY be sure she won't bite, so I'd have everyone sign a waiver if I were you. Biting...just kind of happens one day, and you're all, "but we've read your blog for years and you never bit before, we thought you were so well socialized," and she's all "mmmmmm blood". Then you have to put her down.

Great story.

Krystal said...

Ha! I've got you beat! How about being in bed with 5 men at a time? Now that is exciting!!!

Krystal said...

okay yeah, I agree with the Keeper - Captain & Goodfather need to be seperated - gees, they are worse than my boys!

blissfully caffeinated said...

C.D. totally bogarted the top 9 and I am so glad, G.F., that you were able to step in there and end the madness.

And dammit, I signed up for a reader and I'm still 40th. *sigh*

Henry is my hero. Grandma Granny is the funniest Grandparent nickname I've ever heard.

That is all.

HeatherPride said...

That was a killer post. I am such a bedtime pushover too! I love Henry's demented smiles! He is so cute, in a Dr. Evil kind of way!

Petra a.k.a The Wise (*Young*) Mommy said...

Man, I had to scroll though Capt. Dumbass' comments for like an HOUR before I could even comment...

Now I forget what I was to say...

FIDDLESTICKS!

(your son is really cute, btw, just like YOU!)

Tina said...

Wow. That evil glint in Henry's eyes? Betcha that's just what Captain Dumbass looked like as a kid, too.

Seriously, the boy is too cute.

Anndi said...

We do odd things so we'll have something to post about... don't we?

And um... LAST!!!!!! *evil laugh*

beth said...

Kids and men know just how to wear us down. And their goals are actually very similar: having us in bed in a threesome (of sorts). Well done.

Shan said...

Do they teach these tactics in secret classes while we are not around or what? Some sort of mind manipulating codes in Dora and Backyardigans... I knew those shows were pure evil. For that matter why the heck is Dora's head twice the size of her body? And what exactly is Uniqua, I know they say she is some sort of lizard, but why does she have overalls on? Wouldnt it make more sense for her to wear gauchos?

anymommy said...

Awesome. And did you really photograph the whole thing (I'm with Caroline, my favorite part as will) or did you reenact later?

mrsbear said...

He is so the boss of you. Maybe the extreme cuteness has something to do with it.

Lola said...

Go, King Henry! That boy is so damn cute. How could you not let him stay up on your anniversary?

April said...

wait... you were married on tax day???

Sammanthia said...

He owns you!

Zip n Tizzy said...

Oh I could use some tips from you.
My nearly 3 yr. old has been waiting til 2 or 3 am and then banging down our doors. I'm not nearly so patient at 2 or 3 am as I'd like to be.

The Stiletto Mom said...

I love "But I not go to bed"...he had a point! They always sense when you are on your own don't they? That is always when mine, who are much older start to fight like cats and dogs and the one of them inevitably injures themselves. Sigh.

I think you need to put Captain Dumbass and Goodfather in a time out. Captain Dumbass for sure.

Yaya said...

Awards for you at my blog!

Elle Charlie said...

Haha, that Henry is just too freakin' cute. Especially the big scary smile.

Vodka Mom said...

DId i totally miss the Captain and Goodfather kicking each other's asses??? Man. I miss ALL the good stuff.

potty training? I SO don't miss that. Although I'm doing a BIT of it this year at school.

Sherendipity said...

I want to eat that Henners up. Literally snack on those cheeks. It's a good thing we don't live closer, I'd be like the smelly old Aunt that comes over all the time whether she's invited or not.

Jamie said...

WOW

The Utes played well
and BYU went down hard.

BSC bowl game, huh????

Colepack said...

hee, hee.........
Little buggers are great with excuses!!

Bee said...

I myself have a bedtime. It's 10:30 (tell Henry "ha ha!" for me because I get to stay up later than he does) and I'm always pulling stuff like Henry to stay up later. It doesn't always work but the few times it does? I'm in heaven!

Even though I can't wake up the next morning...

Kat said...

You got some awfully cute men folk there Jenn! That Henners is gonna be a little heartbreaker.

Rhea said...

OH, you are a sucker. Totally. He played you.

Love those photos...his expressions are priceless!

Rhea said...

and, wow, Captain Dumbass got a little hyper, didn't he?! Look how many comments...

apathy lounge said...

Sixty Four!!!! Take that Captain Dumbass! Yeah! How many people do you know that would be thrilled to call out that number? Aside from that? This post made me laugh out loud. Not in a demonic way...but in a very knowing and sympathetic way.

Ali-Pants said...

SO funny, I love it!

The Stiletto Mom said...

Dude. Where are you? I've been by about 1,000 times searching for some Steenk. No Steenk to be had.

Please don't try to tell me you are cooking or something. :)

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