Since Eben has been away working with the Adventurists with the Ngalawa Cup, I have been on a bit of blog vacation. I really enjoy writing on the blog, I find calm in it. But with the business of being a full time parent resting solely on my shoulders, my “Me Time” has been drastically shortened. And the little free time I do get now I spend mostly on mind-numbing nonsense like Facebook, pinterest, and chick flicks. That’s mainly because my free-time hours are when the girls are in bed and I am exhausted. 
   I have found that MY routine has changed pretty dramatically in my husband’s time away, and I often find myself chuckling at my new behaviour. That is one of the new changes, I chuckle all to myself. That may also be a sign of me going f#*&ing loopy because of the girls! This isn’t my first time in this rodeo (the solo parent one), but this time we are out of the comfort of our boat, and things just seem different. Some of these things I am embarrassed to admit, because they are about my personal hygiene and care of myself, but at least it is all temporary and Eben will be back in 7 or 8 days to restore order to this house. Until then, have a laugh about what has become the NEW solo-mommy me.
*My showers have been cut down to a bare minimum. That is both in time and occurrence. It seems I cannot step in the shower for more than 2 minutes without one of the girls screaming that her sister did something mean to her. For this reason I now have to shower with the door open (goodbye privacy) so that both of them can come and tattle on each other for the entire duration of my wash. In my 2 minute blitz cleaning I have started a new routine, I wash the essentials first (face, armpits, and bits). If the girls manage to go that long without killing each other I then get to quickly move on to my hair and the rest of my body. It is totally fair to say that I look like one frizzy psychotic mess, because my hair deserves much more attention than it gets, especially in this humid Zanzibari climate. That covers the amount of time I get in the shower, now how often do I get to shower? Because showering is oh so enjoyable for me these days *with a sarcastic tone*, I try and avoid that stress, as gross as that may sound. So I will go as long as I can stand the smell of my own armpits (eww) if that means that I can be present full time to avoid one of my children punching the other in the face. 48hrs between blitz showers is usually as long as I will go before my sniff test points me towards the shower. And I should probably try and get a sponsorship from Degree Deodorant for the amount of stuff I use to mask my cleanliness state.
*Finding the time to do a proper grocery shop (in a foreign country without a car) and to meal plan is completely on the back burner. Yes eating is essential, and yes I feed us well, but our meals have gone from being excellent every night to being mediocre and fulfilling a need to stuff our bellies. Without my partner in crime to cook for us, or to entertain the kids while I cook, our meals are now mostly based on, “What do I have in the fridge right now?” and, “How long will it take me to cook that?”. When I do get around to the market I buy in bulk, and the friendly owner of the store finds it pretty funny to watch me come in and clear her whole shelf of yogurt in one shopping trip, but I have to make sure that I have enough food on hand to feed my two little hobbits (who actually do eat 2-3 breakfasts every day!).
Ice cream makes you happy and keeps you quiet!? Do you want one scoop or two?!!!!
*Going hand in hand with the above, I may spend a little more money than usual when Eben is away. No I am not going crazy and splurging, but if someone suggests that we should go out for supper, meaning I don’t have to cook or do dishes, you won’t have to sell me hard on it. WE’RE IN! And I figure, the extra money I spend here I save on dish soap and…
*Drinking. I would have assumed the opposite. That with Eben away and me having solo charge of our two hellians, that I would be hitting the liquor pretty hard, but I just don’t. I may have one drink with supper, or a bailey’s at night as I indulge in a chick flick (!!!) but boozing without a drinking buddy feels strange. And I do have to be responsible given that I am the only parent around supervising; I can’t quite be walking around tipsy midday, or hungover in the morning. That would not mesh AT ALL with two kids that just want to run around and be entertained! That would be a total nightmare.
I couldn’t keep up with these two if I wasn’t in tip top shape.
*I have taken to drinking way more coffee however. And if I feel like I can’t handle any more coffee, you may find me with a coke in hand. My body is probably hating me right now, but at least my brain is functioning. Caffeine has become somewhat of a necessity to keep me walking, talking, and smiling. It’s that or cocaine, and given that I have never tried the stuff, I am guessing that I shouldn’t start while Eben is away! In the coffee department I have not gone overboard, I now drink about three cups a day. And I comfort myself in saying that they are rather small cups that they have in this house and that I am probably only drinking a cup and a half of any “regular” sized cup. I have been extra vigilant to also drink lots of water, to compensate for the dehydration I am forcing on to my system. But the jolt of the black liquid (with sugar and cream) are what keep me going every morning, until nap time.
 New morning entertainment, I drink coffee while they draw all over me.
*Speaking of naps, I take those again. I have regressed to a 3 year old’s sleep schedule, where I wake up too darn early, am cranky by mid day, need to lie down if I want to be functional in the afternoon, and am exhausted by 8pm. All of this because I have two little girls that talk in their sleep, crawl into my bed in the middle of the night, wake up with the sun, and insist on coming to talk to me every 15 minutes there after until I’m fed up enough that I get out of bed. I have not slept this terribly since the girls were infants, and even then I didn’t find them this annoying because back then they were co-sleeping and I could just nurse them back to sleep while I slept next to them. Not anymore, nothing will get them back to sleep, only breakfast will shut their little mouths. Maybe why they get three breakfasts in the morning!

*The lack of sleep and the amount of energy drained from my personal stores from raising two energetic girls means that my mental state is taking a little bit of a beating. I call them my 50 shades of red! I have had to come to terms with the many different me’s that I have come to be. Some of them are not so pretty. I am good cop, I am bad cop, I am crazy mama, I am tired mama, I am happy mama, crafty mama, teacher mama, playtime mama, angry mama, zombie mama, sometimes yelling mama, finger waving mama, ignoring mama, silent treatment mama, fun mama, silly mama, selective hearing mama, loving mama, and on and on and on. But at least in all my forms of craziness I still get to be THEIR MAMA. I am comforted knowing that every night they fall asleep telling me how much they love me and of their grandiose plans of how amazing the next day is going to be. It means it’s another day where in their eyes I HAVE DONE THINGS OK

Ok is ok with me, until Eben comes back, when I have some helping hands, and I can go back to being awesome mama!

~I wrote this post last night, today I got a comment on facebook that brought A LOT of negativity to my day, making me question myself, my blogging, and the way I am perceived. Some of my posts, like the one above, are written to be comical; they are to be taken with a huge grain of salt. Because, just writing about my daily life and (very important) “role” could get monotonous without a little laughter thrown in. I LOVE my role as a mother, as a wife, as a partner in marriage to Eben. Yes it is exhausting, but it is also funny, rewarding, and full of happiness. I am fortunate and thankful for all that I have, and we (BOTH Eben and I) have worked hard for it. Thank you all for your love.~