New England Aquarium

To keep up the “family days out” thing we are trying to do at weekends, today we Aquarium-ed. 
Last time we visited an Aquarium, #1 Son was 2. 
We anticipated some enjoyment. What we didn’t expect was the sheer JOY experienced by the Tiny Tyrant. 
She Loved. It. 

Outside there were sea lions:

So these kept youngsters entertained whilst the adults queued ($80 entry!)
Inside were lots of penguins:

Then there were fish. So many many fish:

The central tank is truly breathtaking and Myrtle the Turtle is majestic. 
Giant puffer fish, sharks, and habitats. It all contributed to TT learning three new words:


This was, honestly the best trip out we’ve had since we arrived and potentially one of the best as a family of four. 
She constantly dragged us between exhibits  cooing and shouting “fish”, “more”, “turtle”, “shark”

We managed not to trip anyone – though I wasn’t so lucky – apparently the “no strollers” rule doesn’t apply to everyone and blocking people in with an empty one, then causing them to trip is fun. 

Can’t say I was pleased with the damn casualties. 

This is why I can’t have nice things 

I shall end with enamoured small people. 

We also came home via the gift shop and now are the proud owners of a bright pink penguin and a multi-tonal shark (2 for $30) I shall leave the audience to guess which child chose which. 

Gas Leak Evacuation – We are safeΒ 

08:25: Jo leaves to meet the DSC to go to get his SSN sorted (I can’t get mine until our wedding certificate arrives, which due to the uber efficient packing men ended up in the air crate rather than in our hand luggage). 

08:28: alarms start sounding in our building. I throw on clothes over my nightie, grab the children (naked bar nappy Tiny Tyrant, #1 Son in pjs) and bundle them down the fire escape stairs. #1 Son accepts the somewhat garbled explanation I give that we cannot use lifts in emergencies.

I left the cat. I know I had to, that I had to get the kids and myself out, but I feel so guilty about this.  

It’s a major gas leak at 100 Binney Street which is about three blocks away yet we have all had to be evacuated. 

09:49: one of three valves repaired. Gas switched off and now they are waiting for built up gas to dissipate before letting people back into buildings. 

So the children and I are sat in Jo’s office kitchen where there is air conditioning and access to food and drink while waiting. 
I have no supplies though so I’m just praying that the Tiny Tyrant doesn’t poop. 
We will be sorting out a “go bag” once this is  over. 

However I now know that in an emergency I can damn well get the kids to safety. 

This is worth knowing for certain. 

Oreos and tablets – not going to blame #1 Son for grabbing his “tap” – I grabbed phone and keys!

10:30 – we venture out to find supplies (diapers, clothes). We found a CVS over the river and obtained diapers and wipes. 

Had to venture down Charles Street to find kids clothes – $130 for two outfits 😱😱😱
Bostonian kidlets are now Bostonian though:

11:31: Over 5,000 people evacuated from 11 blocks of flats. So far three have been deemed safe to return to – ours not amongst them. 

We returned to daddy’s office and had some of their meeting pizza. 

I have to say, I hadn’t planned on my first meeting with my husband’s colleagues being with two under-dressed kids without having even brushed my hair, but they were all lovely, understanding and welcoming. 

12:35 – we are safely back in the apartment and the cat is okay. She may not speak to me for a while but she’s healthy. 

#1 Son is playing with a Lego set we got him for being so awesome. 
Tiny Tyrant is having a nap. 
I am crashed out on the sofa watching #1 Son.  
Drama filled day was drama filled. 

Things need to stop breaking

Today it was the turn of the garbage disposal. 
I forgot and started the dishwasher running and yes, the whole sink filled with water.
Have I mentioned I’m not good at these adulting things??
The lovely maintenance man came again and fixed it (and gave us a small lecture on what should go in it – apparently we had been over-using it)
Tiny Tyrant spent most of his visit flirting with him – which kept him entertained at least.  
Tonight was a first with #1 Son – he played hide and seek. Was really cute πŸ’—
We might have been gazumped on the house – other offers. We have brought forward our offer to move in but are not offering more money. 
Let’s wait and see. Need to progress the bloody house sale now. How is this so complicated? It’s a cash buyer!

No dishwasher.Β 

09:00: I have no dishwasher. With two kids this is Not. Good. 
Especially as, apparently, draining boards aren’t a “thing” here. 
Well there’s none here, and there was none in any of the properties we looked at last week.
So, this is what life without a dishwasher looks like:

Thank the gods for a breakfast bar!
I’ve also discovered what happens when you don’t notice that a teaspoon has made its way down the drain/garbage disposal. 
Hint: it’s loud and the spoon ends up very scarred. 

However it does explain the state of some other items of cutlery, so I clearly wasn’t the first!
The man came about 15:00 and fixed it though!  I was extremely grateful and tipped him – which apparently I shouldn’t  have done – but being confused, British and grateful apparently absolves a lot of sins!
The Tiny Tyrant was randomly screaming solidly from 00:00 to 03:00 because she just did not want to be in her cot. But I am putting my foot down – we’ve been here over a week so no, unless ill, no more co-sleeping. Except we are now all exhausted. 
I’m praying for no repeat performance tonight. Having said that, Wednesday night appears to be “brass band on the street between two of the restaurants underneath us” night. Two weeks in a row is pattern. 
TT has also learned how to open doors with pull handles. 
Bah. I need gin. Or whiskey. Porque no los dos?

Lessons learned

I cannot leave a packet of cookies on the breakfast bar. 
#1 Son claims Tiny Tyrant reached them. I doubt that somehow, but as I didn’t see I cannot confirm.  Housework is clearly a bad thing πŸ˜‚πŸ€£
She’s sleeping soundly at nap time at least. 
Seems to be an issue with the dishwasher, but it might just be cheap tablets:

Top propeller doesn’t appear to be spinning though, so we have reported it. 
Debit cards arrived today. And the house application is progressing. Looks like we can’t sign before 01 September, and school for #1 Son apparently starts 30th August in the local districts but the DSC doesn’t think it’ll be a problem. 

There was also father-son bonding in creating the new cat tree. #1 Son now appears to like the cat. 

Which, given I found the bugger had peed on our duvet (one assumes when it was drying after the baby puking incident last week) is a good thing as she’s not currently my favourite animal-creature right now…

Once more unto the breach

08:45 – daddy leaves for work. 

I cannot find the crayon remains!!!

This does not bode well. 

Every time I try to pick her up to put her in the cot, her eyes fly instantly open and she screeches. 

Children claim to be hungry. 

#1 Son ate better than the Tiny Tyrant 😱😱😱!
14:00 – the Tiny Tyrant passes out on me again. 
15:00 – she wakes and is inconsolable. 

I cave and give her a banana but now she wants a second. 
17:30: I manage to feed both children:

17:45(ish): Daddy gets home and hands me a glass of wine. 
First day as SAHM achieved. 

The children are alive. I am still sane, and I even managed some halfway decent domestic goddess-ing. 
All in all, I’m quite chuffed really.  
(Although I still haven’t found the black crayon from earlier)

Day 1 of Stay At Home Parenting

Did not really do much yesterday.  We went out for lunch and #1 Son actually ate!
It was chicken nuggets and pasta in butter but heck, at least it was food!
The Tiny Tyrant also ate – mostly broccoli and ketchup but at least it was solid. We are wondering if she’s missing her toddler meals, so we have braved the cost (2 for $5 I mean seriously?!?!) to get a couple of Gerber meals. Shall see what her verdict is!
She spent most of yesterday doing this:

So we have added a dolly stroller to her Amazon wish list for Christmas/birthday as clearly she is ready for it!

She’s a cheeky bugger isn’t she? No she is not supposed to be on the table. We won’t talk about glass furniture with kids…

Trip to the Science Museum

Having established lazy days are exhausting, we decided to go to the Science Museum today. 
Unfortunately we only got around two sections before both children got overstimulated and fractious. 
The honey bees were fairly awesome:

And the Tiny Tyrant enjoyed playing with the bee magnifier:

And the bees are free ranging:

#1 Son found an exhibition where they assembled a skeleton and tried to identify it:

Please note that the Tiny Tyrant cannot be outdone. 
Oh, and it was a female Bonobo πŸ‘πŸ»
Then there were baby chicks, which both kidlets found amazing. 

 I want to know what they do with them once they are 48 hours old though πŸ€”πŸ˜’πŸ˜•

We got as far as the Sci Fi exhibit where #1 Son loved the robots, both kids loved the dinosaurs and cars, and the Tiny Tyrant was enraptured by the floor panel that reacted when you walked on it:

One thrilled toddler πŸ‘πŸ»πŸ€£πŸ˜‚
Unfortunately the visit went downhill at lunch after #1 Son shattered a water bottle while queuing and neither child ate lunch πŸ™„
So we returned home – but we did at least discover that Delta have found our stroller!!!!
I mean, it’s in Montana but they have at least located it right?

Bank Accounts, Lollipops and Playgrounds

Oh my.


It is official, ‘lazy days’ are more exhausting that ‘busy’ ones.


The kids get stir crazy so easily, so we decided to venture out for lunch at 12:00 then find a local playground to let them burn off energy.


While so doing, Jo got an email from the lovely Gigi (the previously mentioned DSC) that she could meet us at the local mall at 16:00 at Bank of America to sort out a joint bank account (I can’t get my own yet).


So in the quest for financial independence (well not really, but it’s how the hus-creature framed it to get me out of the house for a second time in one day when I’m feeling rough as a bear’s behind) off we went again.


The bank staff were lovely, and gave both children a sucker (lollipop).  It’s not something we’ve let the Tiny Tyrant have before, but she saw her brother get one and her eyes lit up and went ‘ahhhhh Ammy, MINE’ so given we were there to supervise we chose to let her have it.  She got the sour apple one, so I fully expected her to throw it on the floor in disgust.



Much delighting ‘nyum nyum nyum’-ing


Yes, she tangled it in her hair, and then dropped it on the floor, but she had a whale of a time with it before I was forced to dispose of the floor food.


So we are now the proud owners of a USA checking and separate savings account.  I would be lying if I said that relying purely on the hus-creature for finances makes me comfortable, but I am still making a vital contribution to the family unit, and I get to watch the kidlets grow up , at least for the next few months.


I still want to earn my own money somehow, but I have time to think about what I want to do, rather than simply leaping blindly at the first office job that comes along.


As it took a while to finish the banking process, we decided to take the kids out for dinner.  We thought we’d try The Cheesecake Factory again – but in a two-for-two, neither child ate properly.


BUT #1 Son ate an entire slice of pepperoni pizza, even though he didn’t like it, because that was the deal to earn dessert.


We grownups did not eat, but ordered a cocktail apiece and a slice of cheesecake when the kids had pudding.  I spent most of the meal stopping the Tiny Tyrant from harassing people in the booth behind us, and telling her to stop throwing pizza at me… the joys of parenting.


It was yet another day where she waved, cooed and ‘hiya’d’ at every person she could.  I am going to need to have a serious ‘Stranger Danger’ talk with this child before too long… and she is going to be trouble when she’s a teenager…


On the way home I heard her shout a random babble-word that I know means ‘hey, adults with me, I have seen a dog‘  so I looked around and saw a very pretty, heavily brindled, heavy set dog on a walking muzzle (important).


I went into my usual spiel about how we don’t approach or pet a dog without asking their mummy/daddy.  The owner then commented that in his particular experience, it’s adults that tend to come running up and petting the dog.  I asked about the muzzle not being a hint, and that’s when he told me the dog was half dingo.


Which very much explained why it looked somewhat odd.  I mean, it was gorgeous, but yeah, not to be messed with.  However when we walked past the close-by local dog park there were a couple of very yappy Pomeranian things that were clearly spoiling for a fight, and all the half-dingo pupper did was start gnawing and yanking on their lead very close to their owner.


Tiny Tyrant was much more bothered by the yapping – seems her dog fear is triggered more by noise than proximity!

Smoothie Success!!!!

One of the issues #1 Son faces as a result of Aspergers is food aversions. 
His diet is so basic it makes me want to cry, but we’ve learned not to force it (and gummy multivitamins make me feel less of a failure). 
But since we moved he’s seen something on PBS Sprout that made him ask to try smoothies. 
So tonight we made:
Banana Smoothie


He made it himself. He even chopped the bananas himself (with supervision from daddy). 
He likes it!!!!*
The possibilities this opens for us are amazing!!!! 
*So does Tiny Tyrant, but she likes most things – including her brother’s previously rejected chocolate and cinnamon pudding!