Thursday, September 29, 2011

In which we end up with too many Volvos

Or maybe you can't have too many Volvos.... I'm not really sure.

So the story began waaaay back in December of last year.  When the DB wrecked my beloved silver Volvo.  I say beloved, because it had automatic gear (yeah I can drive manual, but What A Faff, I'd like a free hand to hold my coffee thankyouverymuch) and a sun roof that you winched open with a crank.  A CRANK!  How awesome is that???  It was practically steampunk!

And I had visions of driving our child(ren) places in it.  And our dog.  'Cause we'd have a dog, in this magic future with a silver Volvo in it.  We even drove it off road, once, because some silly fool had forgotten to connect the road we were on with the road we WANTED to be on... so we drove through an empty field on what looked like a dirt bike course.
Don't try this at home.  Your Volvo might not be so awesome as my Volvo.
This is the car that once stopped a Mercedes from rolling to certain death.  It pulled a camper from Holland to Denmark through a blizzard... in summer tires.

And the DB smashed it against a tree.  Okay... several trees.

He's only recently admitted that maybe he was going a little too fast for the conditions.

But one should also remember that the road is banked the wrong way.  And there might have been something wrong with the car... or the tires.  Definitely something wrong with the tires.  Because you should totally be able to continue to drive the posted speed limit in icy conditions, right?  Just because there is ice and snow all over the place doesn't mean you have to SLOW DOWN!  Pfffft to that!!  It was totally the CAR'S FAULT!

So with the loss of my beloved silver Volvo, we needed another one quickly.  The DB found us one and we went and got it.  It was rust held together with dust, but it had a turbo supercharged engine and the DB was in love.

I was glad I had my tetanus shots up to date.  It was a serious amount of rust.

After the mechanic assured us that the car will not pass inspection again unless we do something to keep the car from falling apart, the DB agreed that we needed to get another car.  He began to search.  But nothing desirable was appearing in our price range.

We agreed that we would wait a while, it was still months and months away from the next inspection, so really there was no hurry.

And still, every night, he stayed up late and "just checked" the on-line car ads.  We went to "just look" at a few cars.  I pointed out once or twice that we had decided that we'd wait to buy another car.  He pointed out that we were "just looking, just in case."

Of course he found one he wanted.  We went and drove it and it was lovely and good and had a radio, but no special extra-charged engine.  I was glad because it meant we might finally be able to drive a car that got a better gas milage (note: it only gets a better gas milage when *I* drive it, go figure).  And it might mean that he'd stop looking at cars and we could stop driving all over Denmark to test drive random Volvos.  And it was red.  The DB was a bit put out.  He wanted black.  "Beggars can't be choosers," I said.  "And it matches my mixer.  I think I'll go for rides with my mixer.  Just to show people how matchy-matchy I am."

He totally didn't get it.  But what does he know?  He wears black socks with his sandals.

Right, so all that was left was to sell our pile of rust.

And then the craziest thing happened.

A guy saw our ad and wanted to buy our car.  But instead of buy our car with cash, he wanted to trade: his Volvo sedan, a newer model with newer parts, for our massive, gas-guzzling, lockjaw-inducing station wagon.

Obviously he was insane.  Or would laugh hysterically at us when he saw the thing in real life.

But he didn't.  He was a Volvo enthusiast who liked to fix up and pimp out Volvos.  He'd run out of things to play with on his sedan and his growing family needed a station wagon.  (Seriously, baby prams in this country are the size of small tanks and about as maneuverable.) And he loved our rusty heap.  So we traded.

Suddenly we had two cars.  In Denmark, that's INSANE.  Thankfully we live out in the middle of nowhere, so people are a bit more forgiving of our obvious lack of priorities.  But most still ask us, "oh, so which one are you selling?" and seem a bit confused when we say, "no, we're not selling either of them at this time."

Could we get by with one car?  Probably.  But since I'm NOT giving up my station wagon (red! radio! power locks!) and the DB prefers the sedan (Burgundy red, lacks radio but has pimped engine), I don't see how we'd ever agree which one to sell.

And that's how we ended up with two Volvos.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Less Time Than Ever

I thought that having the Danish Boy home on paternity leave would mean I'd finally have time to do stuff. You know, write more blog posts, unpack boxes, sort through my clothes and get rid of all the stuff that doesn't fit, go through the Spawn's clothes and pack away the stuff that's too small.

And what happened?

I have less time.

It's the projects he's got.  Like chopping wood and mowing the lawn.  There was moving all the boxes out of the garage into the house because the garage floods.  There's picking up all the fruit that's fallen off the apple and pear trees.  There's the endless agonizing over the cars.

Yes, cars.  I owe you a post about how we accidently ended up with two cars.  But we have two and one is "making weird noises" and "there's a weird smell" and he's convinced that we somehow got screwed even though I think we got a good deal and hey, at 11 years old, a few dents and odd noises are expected and I smell nothing.  It runs.  It runs great, as a matter of fact.  And it has a baby-soothing radio.  And you do not need to be current on your tetanus shot to be eligible for a ride in it.

Anyway, what with all this going on, I'm still doing the vast majority of baby watching and not getting the stuff I wanted to get done, done.  I now need to come up with a dinner plan and go shopping.  This I could have done earlier today, but I didn't realize that he was only going to start mowing the lawn at 4:30 in the afternoon.

Do I sound a little bitter?  I am.  I had visions of productivity.  Visions, that with me going back to Danish next week, are going up in flames.  Yeah, I've had a shower every day this week and today I got to sleep in, but I've got no clean clothes and the dishes are still piling up.

Someday, right? Someday we'll catch up with life?

Saturday, September 03, 2011

Beaten up by a six month old

Okay, I confess, she's still 10 days short of 6 months... and she just kicked my ass.

I made the mistake of getting down on the play mat with her.  I forgot that down there, I no longer have the advantage.  My power rests in the fact that I can stand on two legs and that frees my arms to do other things.  Down there, on the floor, in my make-shift playpen (having three couches is the most brilliant idea the DB has ever had, all I needed to do was add a wall and TADA playpen) her inability to stand without support is not much of a handicap.

It began when she crawled over to me.  I rolled onto my back, at least freeing my hands to try to defend myself, but babies... they're slippery.

She grabbed my hair with one hand, close to the roots, and pulled back, pinning my head to the floor.  Then, with the other hand, she stuck her fingers UP MY NOSE and PULLED.  When I tried to remove her hand, she dug in with her nails and put an elbow in my eye.  Tears clouded my vision, but nothing softened my hearing as furious laughter erupted from my tiny conqueror.

Releasing my hair, she planted that hand in my remaining eye and relinquished my nose, only to clamp her sharp nails on my lips, pinning them together.  I inhaled sweet air, wincing as it burned where her nails had left paper-cut-thin wounds, only to lose even that precious pleasure as she brought her mouth down directly over my nose and stuck her probing tongue up one of my tender nostrils.

Drool flooded my nose and I was now unable to breathe, my lips held by steel-tipped pinchers, and I began to wonder if the police would believe that my 13 lbs (6.5 kg) child could have killed me.  Or if they'd charge my husband with my death, hauling the DB off to jail and leaving the Spawn to continue to kill unabated.

Suddenly she let loose my lips as she reached over my body to grasp my shirt at the shoulder.  As I took a deep breath, she lifted her head, apparently finished exploring my nose and grinned down at me.  Clearly, she was enjoying my plight.  I began to explain, patiently, that this was a bit rough for me and we hadn't really confirmed any "safe words" so I was becoming a bit alarmed, when she lunged abruptly, thrusting her knee into my tender breast.  My nipple may be well-worn leather by now, but the mammary glands are still remarkably delicate.

With that, all the air rushed back out of my body in a sudden "oh shiiiiiiiiiit" and she delivered the coup d'état - she simply took her fist out of my eye and dropped the weight of her body on my neck.  It was a perfect WWE maneuver.  I may have deleted all of the sports channels from our cable, but somehow she's learned how to body check.

"Garrrrrgh" was all I managed.

"Honey, do you need help?" asked the DB from downstairs, happily ignorant of the carnage above.

"Mmrph" I replied.

"Baby, don't kill Mommy" he called up the stairs as he headed back out to the garage.  Plausible deniability was now his.

After he was safely outside, she lifted herself up and crowed with victory.  Saliva ran down her chin and pooled on my chest.  Her eyes were bright and her grin toothless.  With a laugh that was only just this side of sane, she leaned down and gummed my chin.  It was the wettest kiss I've ever had.

And that was it.  I was defeated.