February 15, 2021

growing 'em tall, entitlement screams for ice cream, and enter Landon

We took the kids to Dairy Queen for ice cream in September. It was their idea.  Who are we? Well, I will tell you who we used to NOT be, the caving type.  I sort of object to their approach to it, but Coach was like 'sure' and who am I to turn down a Reece's Blizzard?

When I refer to 'their approach' I am referring to the fact that they sort of whined about having to clean the house.  Um, it NEEDED it, and why the hell should I clean what's largely their messes?  Even just general dust and vacuuming - they live here, they're capable, QUIT YOUR DAMN COMPLAINING.  

I suppose they needed ice cream since all of our boxes of goodies were empty . . .  this is what I'm talking about.  Why can no one else BEND DOWN AND GRAB A BRAND NEW BOX FROM THE BOTTOM OF THE PANTRY & TOSS AWAY THE EMPTY BOXES?  You knew I had a back up supply of food, didn't you?

There were lists, upon lists. Initials next to items. Assignments. Check-marks. All of it. And at the end, ice cream.

Anyway, at DQ I stayed in the car and let them order for me. I was finishing reading something on my phone for a writing group.

My window was cracked and I heard this other family come out of DQ and get in their car.  

Guy:  That was a tall family.

Other family person:  Yeah it was!

Me:  (to myself) Ha! Eddie, our tallest, is not even here and they didn't even see me (it's true I'm shrinking, but I'm still on the tall side). Lad was not there and he's over 6 feet.

When I joined my people on the sidewalk, I told them about the guy's observation.  They agreed:  the guy wasn't wrong.  

My kids all arrived kicking and screaming and being BIG. Tank, my largest at 10 lbs 3 oz, was induced 3 days before my due date. 

When I had Tank, I was put in a tiny 'waiting' type room. The nurses thought my delivery would take a while because induction. Well, Tank had other plans. The room didn't come equipped with a TV and the nurses had to borrow a boom box so I could play my music. Coach and the doc had to do a little do-si-do at the end of the bed in order to switch places as Coach moved to the other side of the bed. 

Our biggest kid arrived in the smallest room.

Speaking of babies . . . Coach got to meet his employee Jennifer's new baby, Landon, just before Christmas. She was due  around Aug 13th. We went to Michigan the weekend before. For weeks before our trip, Coach: "I hope Jennifer doesn't go early."  

Guess what?

Landon arrived 3 weeks early.  

In. her. car. on. the. way. to. the. hospital. 

Coach:  (he has worked with Jennifer for years and when she stopped by the clinic to show off her little nugget Coach asked for details . . . if she was comfortable) Do you mind if I ask you to share the car story?  What HAPPENED?  

Jennifer:  Well, I had contractions but assumed they'd stop because it was so early.  I called my midwife after a while and she told me to get in a warm bath. Hubby called the midwife a little later to say that he could see the baby's head.  She told us to either call 911 and wait for the ambulance or start driving to the hospital.  

The hospital- 30 minutes away. She told Coach that she felt it was silly to try to put on a pair of pants, so she put on a robe and grabbed a towel and draped it beneath her - um, sumo-wrestler style.

Hubby drove. She was on all fours in the backseat. 10 or 15 minutes away from the hospital the baby just came out in her hand.  After a minute she realized she could look to see what the gender was, still on all fours.  

Rather than go the gender reveal route, they did the let's-be-surprised-and-see-our-baby's-gender-in-our-car route. Less of a crowd, but still dang exciting.

She called to Hubby, "Do you want to see him?" His stress level was too high to rubberneck and take a peek at his son, who was, um,  riding without a carseat.

She said Landon's face was a little puffy as a side effect of still being attached to the umbilical cord or something. Perfectly healthy though, thank God.  

Tank's small room delivery sure as hell sounds boring now, right?

Doubting anyone knows a good baby-born-in-the-car story, so let's go with what's your favorite DQ blizzard flavor?  Or, do you bribe your kids to clean the house?  Money?  Ice cream? Or do you pay someone else to do it? If so, do you clean up before your hired cleaning service arrives?


Nicole MacPherson said...

I was induced with my eldest at 7:45 pm, and he arrived at 11:55 pm! When I was pregnant with #2 I was so scared that I would go into labour and have the baby at home, because I heard subsequent labours would be even faster. That was my fear, baby in the car or at home. I'm not at all surprised Tank was the biggest baby! DQ just came out with a non-dairy dilly bar, so after years and years and years of never having anything there, I now can! They are pretty delicious too.

Eli said...

My cousin was born on the doorstep, as they were trying to leave for the hospital! (It was a long time ago, and they might have left for the hospital earlier, except they were trying to get the older sister to the neighbor's house first...)

And a neighbor also had her baby in the car. The hospital wouldn't let her check in, saying her labor wasn't close enough, and sure enough, they were wrong.

Kari said...

I love Dairy Queen! I get the Heath Blizzard, extra Heath, please. My husband has a friend who orders a Peanut Buster Parfait, no peanuts. I said why doesn't he just order a hot fudge sundae? Because it wouldn't be any fun to order it that way. :)

My kids didn't want to come out of my womb, for some reason. Maybe it was all that DQ I was feeding them. ;)

Kara said...

Oh I love Dairy Queen. My order is a simple chocolate/vanilla twist in a cone. We went out for fancy ice cream this weekend. It was a scoop of your choice of flavor, inside a fresh warm doughnut. Magical. I got strawberry ice cream.

My children did not want to be born. After a miserable, failed induction, my first was born almost two weeks past due date via emergency c-section. After that, I scheduled the other two c-sections. My children are the opposite of yours. They are tiny. As babies, the biggest was 6 lbs 11 oz, and the smallest was 5 lbs 11 oz. The youngest child and tallest child is still growing, and just passed 5 ft, 2 inches. The oldest and shortest maxed out at 4ft 10 inches.

Suz said...

We occasionally took the girls for ice cream, but I don't recall it was associated with housework. I suppose I'm a tyrant.
I've not had DQ in years, and I was never a blizzard person. I like a simple soft-serve chocolate icecream in a cake cone. We would never be confused with your tall family. LOL
The mac and cheese empty boxes. SMH.
No babies in the car for me, but I laughed at you saying Landon DID not have a car seat. Goodness least they saved $ on the hospital stay/delivery.
I was induced with Lolo and she still refused to come out, so I chose a C-section rather than starting over again the next day after 18 hours of labor. Then with Linds, it was a planned C-section. Something about my hips not being wide enough which makes me laugh now when I look at my hips. I was a tiny person back in the day.
House cleaning? After so many years of struggling, bitching and hating to clean this big old house, I finally hired someone about 6 years ago and it's the best money spent. Every 2 weeks....I have more time to work on big projects, outside stuff and of course, GA!! Plus the Coach is happy about the less bitching part.

Suz said...

Oh, and I totally have to tidy up before they come to know, so it's easier for them to clean. HAHA!!

Suzanne said...

Oh man, I love birth stories! Even about strangers. :-)

My baby was sixteen days late. I was induced on the fifteenth day after my due date but she still took her sweet time and was born 28 hours later. I still have incredible difficulty getting her out the door on time...

Charlie said...

Dairy Queen sounds yummy, I’ll have to try it next time I get the chance. When I increased my hours at work from part time to full time, one of my stipulations was that I needed a weekly cleaner. We’ve put her on hold during this latest lockdown, and I can’t tell you how much I miss her. My baby was late and she’s still late for everything now! What a rockstar your friend sounds. She not only had her baby in a car, it was a moving car! I cannot get my head around doing that on your own, especially the first time!!

Pat Birnie said...

I suspect your family always gets attention as the tall family! Smart rewarding housework with DQ.
I always made it to the hospital but babies 2 & 3 were born within 10 min or so of arriving. They rushed me into a room and onto a bed but that was it. My doctor missed both births. Those two boys (now 31 & 32) were hell as teenagers and I used to say “I went through 20 minutes of labour for this!!” I think it’s funny but they won’t get it till they have kids. I highly recommend SEth Meyers Netflix special “lobby baby”- he tells the story of his wife giving birth in their apartment lobby.

Anonymous said...

I have no baby-born-in-a-car stories, and I had very, very long labors, so no surprise babies either. My favorite Blizzard flavor is usually something chocolaty with some kind of pieces in it, brownies or whatever the special flavor at the moment is.
My kids do have to help with things around the house, they help put clean dishes away and help fold and put away their own laundry. No payment for these chores, because they live here and like to eat and have clean clothes. They sometimes help with small jobs like yard clean up or mopping for a bribe of a couple of dollars or a special treat. They’re luckily young enough that they usually just like to help because a rake or a mop still looks like fun to them, haha. But they’re also still young enough that their “help” isn’t always helpful and I have to go back and do things myself or re-teach them how to do it. So while training them is more work, I’m betting that it’s worth it in the long run? You’re a professional mom Ernie, tell me I’m doing this right??

Anonymous said...

Your whole post had me in stitches. Not in a car seat! Omg! What an amazing birth story.
No fav DQ order here bc I’ve only been once! I know, right? I grew up in a small town where the big ice cream treat was a local dairy that made their own. Nothing elaborate but so so good.

Chores man. This subject fascinates me. My mom firmly believes everyone can “help”. That’s her magic phrase: “ can you help me with this?”
We kids started “helping” with tiny tasks (“help mom set the table by carrying the napkins”). As we grew, so did the tasks. I think by the time I was in HS I cleaned the kitchen daily, vacuumed on weekends, dusted whenever it bothered me (yes, it actually bothered me lol), cleaned my bathroom weekly, grocery shopped, took care of the various animals, mowed if it needed it, and more but the list is beginning to look insane so I’ll stop. No allowance or bribery or nagging. Just room, board and a horse! Tho tbh I’d have done everything even without the horse. All of us kids were like that. I remember my oldest brother doing interior painting and ripping up old carpet, etc. It was just part of being a family.

You can imagine my shock when I learned my husband (and his many brothers) did *no* chores growing up. None! Dude I had to teach him so much! :-)

Have you tried guilt? My mom never nagged but oh my stars her Powers of Guilt were Mighty. Plus she’s short and tiny. Maybe small people have an advantage here? :-)


Ernie said...

Nicole - Yikes, that's fast. I wouldn't have even had time to watch a movie. I would've just been settling in. That was how my labor went . . . I'll read a while and then we can watch Oprah, and then. . . . when Oprah was a rerun, I about lost my shit.

Hooray for the dairy free Dilly Bar. Coach treated Mini and I to ice cream sundaes from McDonalds during the super bowl as we were the only ones home. I hadn't eaten ice cream in forever.

Ernie said...

Eli - On.the.doorstep. Ouch. That's a heck of a way to enter the world. I've heard of other times when the nurses take a call from a first time mom and say OH IT'LL BE AWHILE, JUST STAY HOME. Well, that isn't always the case.

Ernie said...

Kari - My kids were downright comfy on the inside too. I think it was all the commotion and the big mama voice yelling at the rest of the gang - they held on to that cord in there, DON'T MAKE ME LEAVE.

I am not following on the peanut parfait hold the peanuts. Huh? I like a GF item tossed into a blizzard, but the snickers bar is not as enjoyable as I would've thought. It's like too frozen or hard as rock or something and requires too much work for my mouth. Peanut butter cups are my fav.

Ernie said...

Kara - So so so many possibilities, and yet - the twist cone? I am not gonna judge, because I LOVE soft serve. Really. I used to frequently treat the kids to a cone through McD's drive thru on our way home from dancing. ONly 59 cents - can't beat it.

You're right, your kids are TOTAL opposites of my gang. So funny. I always feared a tiny baby. They seemed so breakable. I needed my littles to be sturdy as there were older kids at home who liked to man handle them.

Ernie said...

Suz - Our household tasks are not usually associated with ice cream, but that one time I was more interested in ice cream then I was in being a good role model.

Oh, the empties. Why? It is mind blowing. I don't remember being shy about throwing away an empty box of something as a youngster. My siblings and I went through quite a few boxes of Hostess you-name-it (twinkies, ding dongs). Oh the good ole days.

I don't know that I could ever pay someone to clean my house. I think I would be worried about how messy we are and I'd be racing around cleaning for the cleaner. Plus, it MIGHT kill me if I paid someone to clean my house and a few hours later the kids trash the place or spill a bottle of apple juice, etc. I'd totally expect that to happen. My Coach would love the less bitching too, but I think the mess makers would need to move out for that to happen.

18 hours of labor. Yikes. You must've had some tiny hips. My hips were apparently made for big 'uns.

Ernie said...

Suzanne- I love your connection between Carla taking her time getting out the door and her taking her sweet time to be born. 16 days late - yowza! Lad was 14 days late. 3rd degree tear. He was my first. 8 lbs 12.5 oz. My next doctor group asked me to describe my first birth and they were like: YEAH, NOT DOING THAT AGAIN. WE'LL TAKE YOU BEFORE YOU GET THAT BIG. They tried keeping babies reasonable sizes, but even a few days early and TANK WAS ENORMOUS.

Ernie said...

Charlie - That's the OTHER reason I haven't hired a cleaner . . . if I had to give up the cleaner I think I'd totally struggle. Yes, Dairy Queen is worth a visit. The many options make me nuts, but I do enjoy a Blizzard.

Yes, the baby in the moving car deal is unreal. I can't get over calling into the front seat, 'HEY IT'S A BOY!'

Ernie said...

Pat - We walked out of church recently and two families stopped us to tell us how tall we looked. My sisters were short growing up, so just my brothers and I were tall. We don't have a tall kid, but I do wonder if Curly who has been CRAZY tall and is a full head taller than her peers might be done growing.

I love the 20 minutes of labor joke. I yelled at my elderly doctor when I was in labor with Mini. She was turned sideways and was taking FOREVER but once she turned the right way she was begging to be born and the doctor came in and I was like GET OVER HERE, THE BABY IS COMING NOW!! He was like OK, GONNA WASH MY HANDS. I was embarrassed afterwards. Curly did the SAME exact thing.

Oh, I can't wait to check out the Seth Meyers thing. So funny. Another PT classmate of Coach's wrote the story of their 2nd kid's delivery in their Christmas card. Funniest story ever. No one believed his wife when she was like NOW - and she almost delivered in the elevator.

Ernie said...

AM - I had contractions while at home when I was expecting Curly. I was like HUH? THIS IS NOT HOW I DO THIS. EVERYTHING IS SCHEDULED. THIS IS 2 WEEKS EARLY. I was panicked, but alas I went to sleep and the contractions stopped. Otherwise no one ever attempted an escape until forced.

We do not pay for chores. I used to have an amazing system, they got movie tickets for our family movie night for each chore completed. Not enough tickets, no movie. Whoever had the most tickets picked the movie. My heart broke for the kid who didn't do their chores though, so I gave someone a butt load of chores to do in the 11th hour and let them into the movie.

I think you are smart to start young. My sister was over once watching my kids and when I came back she was like I TAUGHT THEM HOW TO WINDEX STUFF. WATCH 'JUST A SQUIRT' AND MY KIDS WERE SO PROUD. I was also much more comfortable living with fingerprints on the oven door and the dishwasher and stuff and my sister is a freak so it wasn't like I was jumping up and down thanking her.

Ernie said...

Maddie - No Dairy Queen? Growing up we were really more Baskin Robbins types. Your own dairy place sounds amazing though. Yum!

I am bowing to your mother right now. She had it down. I told my kids this past weekend that if I find garbage on the counter (or the floor) of their bathroom, that they are paying me $5 an item per person - the message - pick the crap up regardless of whether it is your empty box from your contact lenses or if you were the last one to use the tube of toothpaste.

We do not pay our kids for chores either. When they complain, we ask DO YOU WANT TO LIVE HERE? EAT THE DINNER WE ARE SERVING? HAVE CLEAN LAUNDRY? I just had a talk with Mini and pointed out that she literally does NOTHING. I've noticed that she's making an effort.

A husband who never did chores is a huge undertaking. Hats off to you.

Ally Bean said...

My first job was working at DQ. I was the WORST at making those darned curls on top of each cone. Fortunately I could dip a cone like nobody's bidness.

Would you like to know a bit of DQ trivia? [Of course you would.] Back in the day a Blizzard was a milkshake made with sparkling water instead of milk, so that your milkshake was icy not creamy. None of that candy in a shake stuff back then.

Ernie said...

Ally - So very glad that I am only familiar with the creamy kind of shake and that candy in them is now a thing, although I wouldn't complain about a regular milkshake either.

So she we start to call you Dip? Kidding, but that dipping of cones looks very enjoyable. I would've probably been fired for constantly licking things in the workplace. Must be frowned upon.

Beth Cotell said...

Brownie Batter is my favorite Blizzard. There isn't a DQ near us (closet one is about 25 minutes away) thsnk goodness or we would be massive. We live DQ! Peter was induced and Sarah was a planned C-section so no good birth stories here thankfully!

Ernie said...

Beth - 'Thank goodness or we would be massive.' - hilarious. We grew up eating vanilla ice cream at Baskin Robbins. My mom didn't let us order chocolate because she didn't like the stains. We weren't really DQ people. We were robbed.

My deliveries were all planned out too. I don't know how I would've handled racing to the hospital while dealing with pain too.