Sunday, February 28, 2010

The Honeymoon is OVER

In one of the myriad classes I took in preparation for this overseas assignment they talked about how people go through phases in their first overseas experiences.  The first phase is the Honeymoon phase, where everything is new, exciting, fresh, and otherwise amazing.  From a blogging perspective that translated into a lot of posts.  We are waaaaaaaaaaaaaay past that phase.

I'm pretty sure we have also passed through the second phase, the so-called Negotiation phase.  This is where one begins to reconcile the differences of their last place and their new home, and might even miss some things from home.  I must admit that the holidays were a bit like that for us, as I missed some things--mostly NOT sweating my brains out on Christmas--although it was really cool to go swimming outside on Christmas and New Years Days.

We are now fully into the third phase, the Everything is OK phase.  This is where we have accepted life here, the stuff that seemed abnormal is now normal, and we are just living life.  Mali has her regular routines and I'm into a groove at work and our lives are now fairly mundane.  Boring, even.

So does this somehow justify my lethargic blog posting record of late?  Is this a viable excuse for why I'm not putting into pixels the various things going on in our lives?  Probably not, but I did my best to justify it.

I already missed the opportunity to make a New Year's resolution to blog more regularly.  Ditto for Chinese New Year (it wrapped up last week, while I was down in southern Thailand checking on the insurgency).  Lao New Year, however, is in April, so perhaps I'll get a jump on it now and make a resolution to blog more.

And of course, whenever possible, I will take the opportunity to make gratuitous references to squat toilets, because that never gets old.  Ever.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Why is There a Rock in the Middle of My Bedroom Floor?

CAUTION: The following blog post is not for those who are faint of heart when it comes to icky stuff that kids do.  You have been fairly warned, and I might well have just given away the entire story.

So, the other night we were getting the kids ready for bed, and Mali was sitting in the recliner in our bedroom when she looked over towards our bathroom door and asked, "Why is there a rock on the floor right there?"  This is not an unusual question, as our children have this fascination with rocks and have collected several of them, and they show up in odd places around the house.

Maggie looked at it and said, "That's not a rock."

(Do you see where this is going yet?)

I looked at it and considered it's nice, roundish contours and confidently said, "Yes it is!"  So,I bent over to pick it up and immediately exclaimed, "Oh my gosh, that's NOT a rock!"

(Are you following me?  Do you get it?)

And suddenly it became quite clear why I thought I smelled poo when I was changing Jane's diaper and was surprised that there was no poop.  Apparently Benjamin was so engrossed in doing something else that he couldn't make it to the bathroom in time. I'm still trying to figure out exactly how it came to be that his dookie ended up in the middle of my bedroom floor, but there you have it.

This marked the second dookie-on-the-floor incident in as many days.  Jane, who has finally taken an interest in toilet-training, had approached me the day before saying, "Poopie, Daddy, poopie."  I took her to the bathroom and she sat on the toilet for about a minute, and then proclaimed that she was all done.  Right about the time we got her diaper on her, Maggie called out from the living room, "There's poop on the floor!"  See, Jane wasn't asking to go poo-poo, she was actually reporting on her recent activity.

I should get those kids a squat toilet.