As we turned the calendar page to January 2017, I made a few New Year’s resolutions. Most of them are pretty attainable, and I have even already made good progress on my resolution to read 12 books this year. One resolution, however, has not had such good success, and that is my brilliant idea that I should wake up before the rest of the family.

It just sounds like such a good idea: a chance to start the day off in peace and quiet, and to get some things done before the craziness begins. And there is all this research about productivity being highest in the morning, and stuff like that. When I made this resolution, however, I neglected to factor in the fact that in order to wake up bright eyed and bushy tailed early in the morning a person must get an adequate number of hours of sleep. This has just not been happening for me.

Take, for example, a night earlier this week. I had good intentions to get up early in the morning and went to bed at a reasonable time. Then I stared at the ceiling for awhile thinking about the merits of preschool versus homeschool versus no school, and how if I screw up this one decision it will probably be the first thing my son tells his therapist about his mother someday.

I know worrying is not helping anything, so I started my favorite white-noise app on my phone, and relaxed and started to drift off. Of course I refuse to pay for the upgraded version of the app that has no advertisements, so just as I was falling asleep a commercial for a very loud action movie interrupted the soothing ocean sounds, and I jolted awake to the terrifying sound of machine guns apparently in our bedroom.

Once my heart rate came back down to a normal range, I finally fell asleep. A few minutes later, teething baby girl woke up and needed a bottle and rocking before she’d fall back asleep. I wandered back to bed from the nursery and fell back asleep. It felt like I had just closed my eyes when the munchkin came into our room because he had woken up and was scared. I took him back to bed and prayed with him and tucked him back into bed.

I finally stumbled back to my own bed, tripping over a full laundry basket on the way. As I climbed back under the covers, the hubs threw his arm over to my side of the bed and started talking to me.

Hubs: You coming back now?

The hubs sounded sort of muffled and slurred, and I thought he was sleep talking.

Me: Are you awake?

Hubs: I am. I don’t think I was, but I am now.

Me: Are you sure?

Hubs: Yes, of course. Definitely.

He still sounded funny and like he was asleep, but I was ridiculously tired and did not say anything else.

Hubs: I love you.

I rolled over to turn off my alarm clock, acknowledging that there was no way I was getting up in just a few hours. I did not answer the hubs, because I really did think he was sleep talking.

Hubs: Hey, I love you!

Me: I love you, too. Please let me go to sleep.

The next morning I asked the hubs about our conversation, and he had no idea what I was talking about. Not only did he sleep through this little chat we had, he did not even know that I had been up with the kids. I do not know if the hubs made any resolutions for 2017, but if he did and one of them is to be a deep sleeper and sleep talk, MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

As for the status of my resolution of getting so much done before everyone else in the house wakes up…I’ll try again in 2018.


Seat Lock

When I married the hubs, there was the normal blending of family traditions and idiosyncrasies. One thing his family does that I was not familiar with is “seat lock.” Seat lock is when a person leaves a place where they are sitting, if they yell, “seat lock,” then they get to sit there when they come back. If, say, they don’t know about seat lock because they’ve only been on three dates with a member of the family, they lose their comfortable spot on the couch and have to sit on the floor. Thankfully, it didn’t take me too long to figure out the rules, so I can now defend my comfy chair at family events.

Our little dog is the queen of “seat lock.” Mainly because she only has a few places she likes to sit, and she has made those places so covered with dog hair that no one would want to sit there unless armed with a jumbo lint roller.

The dog lounging in her favorite spot on the couch.

The dog lounging in her favorite spot on the couch.

I think it’s normal to be attached to a particular place, and claim it as your own. This last week I even talked to the hubs about this in my sleep. That’s right, I am the one sleep talking this time.

Apparently, the hubs woke up in the middle of the night to me yelling. He said that our conversation went like this:

Me: It’s my spot…. MY SPOTTTTT!!!!

Hubs: You’re ok, honey, just go back to sleep.

Me: You’re not listening to me. This is my spot!

Hubs: Yes, honey, you’re sleep talking. 

Me: It’s my spot, my spot, my spot!!!

I asked him what he did after all of this commotion, and he said, “I rolled over and went back to sleep as you continued to repeat ‘my spot,’ over and over…. There was no winning.”

Well, ok then. I guess he knew that I would definitely call “seat lock” on this spot that I apparently cared about so much!

Yellowstone Wanderings: Bison, and Otters, and Wolves, Oh, My!

You might have noticed that there was no post last Monday. I was gallivanting with my parents and brother out west. There were beautiful lakes, lovely green fields, and magnificent waterfalls.

(My brother took all of these pics.)

There were bison and wolves and bald eagles and elk and otters all roaming this beautiful land. However, there was one thing that could not be found: internet connection. Therefore, there was no post. Not to worry, though. I am now back to the hubs, the dog, and the blogosphere.

It’s funny: when I am away from the hubs I can’t sleep because he isn’t there. But when I am home with the hubs I can’t sleep because his sleep talking wakes me up. This was proven yet again a few days before I left for my trip. I woke up because the hubs was sitting up, shaking my arm. I flopped over.

Me: Humph…what’s up?

Hubs stopped, and turned toward his nightstand. Now I was thinking that he was probably asleep.

Hubs: Hmm? What you say?

Me: Nothing, it’s alright.

Hubs (laying down again): Oh, ok.

The hubs sits up suddenly.

Hubs: Did you hear something?

Me: No, I don’t think so.

Hubs: Hmm… yeah. Must be nothing.

Then he laid back down and did not say anything else. All of this seemed almost normal, although it did not make much sense. However, the next morning the hubs didn’t remember any of it, so he must have been sleep talking.

I am very happy to be home to the hubs, back to his familiar night time ramblings. Even if they do wake me up.

The Best Guard Dog in the County

Our dog is very protective of her family. Thankfully she does not bark excessively and get us in trouble with the apartment complex. However, she does spend the vast majority of her waking hours guarding the apartment. She looks out over the lawn, giving a little snort whenever she sees someone pass by the window.

This is the dog’s favorite chair to sit on while she looks out the window, surveying her domain.

She does not bark at any dogs except for one: a small yorkie that I’m sure is very nice, but she for some reason views as a threat. The yorkie is the size of an overweight guinea pig, so I have no idea why the dog gets so upset, but she does. She barks and whines whenever that little rodent with bows in her hair walks by. The dog also freaks out and howls when the hubs walks around the building so she can’t see him anymore. When this happens she throws herself on the ground and “ROOOROOOROOO!”s her great displeasure.

More looking out the window. Is that the yorkie?!? Nope, it’s all ok. Just a giant yellow lab.

Everything looks quiet on the western front.

Sometimes the laundry pile needs to be guarded, too.

I’m glad that she is so protective of us, although she is so petite I don’t think that she would be much help if we really were under attack. The hubs is the REAL protector of our family, even though the dog thinks she is.

Last night the hubs all of the sudden sat up in his sleep, then started talking.

Hubs: 48, 54, 72, maybe…maybe a little more than that.

Me: Hmm… what, Buddy?

Hubs: I think, I really think 54. That’s enough.

Me: 54? 54 what?

Hubs: 54 feet. That’s how many it will take to protect her. Probably 54 feet, minimum.

Me: Oh, ok… you think 54 is enough?

Hubs: Yeah. That should be far enough to keep her safe.

Me: Keep who safe from what?

Hubs: Oh, don’t worry about it, Baby. It’s ok. Nothing to worry about.

Then he leaned over, gave me a peck on the forehead, and rolled back over to sleep.

I don’t know who the hubs was protecting in his sleep, but I do know that with him around I feel much safer.

The Amazing, Nesting Beagle!

The dog is very sensitive. If she gets upset, or scared, or cold, or excited she burrows into a nice cozy nest, like this:

In the past week the dog has gotten upset and felt the need to burrow into a little nest over the following things:

1. A thunderstorm, with lots of thunder and lightning.

2. The neighbor dog got a longer lead and can now round the corner of our building.

3. Watching WALL-E. She bawled like a baby. Oh, wait. That was me.

4. The hubs took a shower and fully latched the bathroom door. Normally the dog sits on the bathroom rug and waits for him, but with the door shut she was forced to hide under a pillow and whine until he got out.

The hubs’ sleep talking does not scare the dog enough to make her hide under some blankets, but if she had been there this past week when he sat up and started yelling, she probably would have run straight to the couch to make a pillow nest!

This past week I was working late and got home after the hubs had fallen asleep. Then I fell asleep over my bowl of whole grain spaghettios, so by the time I was slipping into the bedroom the hubs had been asleep for some time. I cracked open the door, and heard the hubs jump.

Hubs (sitting up suddenly and yelling): HEY!

I froze, a little concerned that in his asleep state he might jump at me.

Hubs: Oh, hi… I can’t see anything. I just can’t see anything. Who are you?

Me (starting to move into the room): Its me.

Hubs: Oh, ok.

Me: You ok?

Hubs: I just can’t see anything.

Me: Ok… So, you asleep?

Hubs: No, but, well, maybe. Are you?

Me: No…ok, well goodnight. I think you are asleep.

Hubs: I’m not…

Me: Can you prove it?

Hubs (lying back down): No… I love you.

Me: I love you, too.

I am glad the hubs calmed down and got over the fact that he could not see anything. And I am glad that the dog was not there to run and hide under our covers.

NyQuil: The Achilles’ Heel of the Sleep Talker

The poor hubs has been fighting off the sniffles this week. I do not like it when he is sick, although he has a very good attitude about it. (And, he’s not too much of a hypochondriac. I tend to lean toward being a hypochondriac myself. In fact, this morning I was making my toast for breakfast when all of the sudden I couldn’t see out of my right eye. I immediately thought of the worst thing it could be: I was obviously having a stroke. I started freaking out before I realized that when I was adjusting my glasses I had smeared peanut butter all over the lens…)

When you are sick it is nice to have your best buddy there to keep you company.

However, the hubs has been taking night time cold medicine every night. Although he has been sleeping like a log, he has not talked at all the whole week. Cold medicine is kryptonite to his sleep talking power.

Not to fret, though. I have plenty of previous sleep talking stories to share.

Several months ago I was up late sitting in bed doing some lesson prepping for teaching the next day. Suddenly, the hubs sat up and turned to me.

Hubs (speaking enthusiastically) – You’re important!

Me – Umm, are you asleep?

Hubs – You’re important… how nice.

(throws his arm around my neck)

Hubs (in a sing-song, high pitch) – Well, hi!

Me – I really think you’re still asleep.

Hubs (lies back down quietly) – OK, well you go to sleep now.

I am so thankful that I am important to the hubs, even when he is asleep.

Sweet Dreams

I am a bit of a dork. I wish I was not this way. I would prefer to be suave and cool and pulled together. Unfortunately, I am not any of those things. If you think that I am, it is just an illusion. And when you get to know me better you will see the truth: I am a dingbat.

This was proven yet again this week when I took the dog for a walk. I was waiting at a cross walk to cross the street. A car decided to stop and waved me out in front of them. I thought this was very polite of them, but I was sort of flustered because I was not expecting it so I took off across the street right away. Unfortunately, the dog was not ready to walk, but was in mid-sniff of a nearby light pole. So I started walking, the dog got turned around and somehow 2 of her legs got tangled up in the leash!

By the time I looked down and saw that she was hobbling/jumping along with only a left front and a right back leg we were a third of the way across the road. I did not want to stop in the middle of the road to fix it because of my fear of getting hit by a car so I did the only thing I could think of: I walked faster. Oh, the poor dog! She could not hobble along that quickly, so she had to take little leaps as I dragged her along, forging ahead in front of stopped traffic. They probably thought I was such a cruel pet owner. Oh, dear.

As soon as we got to the other side of the road I bent over to fix the poor dog’s leash, and she celebrated her release by peeing on yet another light pole. I was so traumatized by the experience that I dreamed about it that night. I do that quite a bit: dream about my daytime embarrassments. At least most of them are just embarrassing dreams, not nightmares.

I leave the laundry pile for a second and the dog takes over. I hope she only has sweet dreams as she snoozes on our clean towels.

However a few weeks ago I did have a nightmare. I jolted awake and sat up in bed, still pretty scared even with my eyes open.

Me: Hubs? Hubs, you awake?

Hubs: Yeah, what’s wrong Princess?

Me: I had a nightmare.

Hubs: Oh no. I’m sorry.

Me: Yeah, it was really scary.

Hubs: It’s ok. Do you want to tell me about it?

Me: I guess. I mean, it was really scary, and I was walking along…

Hubs (sitting up all the sudden and interrupting me): Hon? Lay back down and go to sleep.

Me: Umm…ok…

So I rolled over and went back to sleep, a little perturbed that he had interrupted me just to tell me to go back to sleep. It was not very compassionate of him in my time of need, that’s for sure.

I asked him about the next day, and it turns out that the whole time he was “comforting” me, he was asleep. Completely and totally asleep. Did not remember talking to me at all. What he did remember was waking up and I was talking to him. So he thought that I was talking in my sleep so he told me to go back to bed.

My hubs, he can comfort me even while he is still asleep. He is such a dreamy husband, for sure.

There’s No Place Like Home

I have been traveling for a bit, so had to be away from the hubs and the dog.

Sad to be away from the hubs, ecstatic to be seeing more of the world!

When I am away from the hubs, he eats pancakes for every meal. Every. Single. Meal. Even if I make a casserole or two and write directions on the foil, he still only eats pancakes. Only pancakes.

The hubs making pancakes... again...

The dog ate the same thing all week, too. But that is pretty normal.

However, I am back now, making yummy, non-pancake meals for the hubs. He has not talked in his sleep much since I  got back but he did talk some the week before I left.

I was snuggled up in bed, having some trouble sleeping, when all of the sudden the hubs started talking to me.

Hubs: Sure, you can come in.

Me: I can? Come in where?

Hubs: Come into the building.

Me: Oh… ok.

The hubs did not say anything else, so I hunkered down to go to sleep. I reached out and put my arm around the hubs. Suddenly, he grabbed my wrist and threw my arm off of him!

Hubs: I said you can come in! That doesn’t mean you can put your hands all over me!

Me (totally shocked): I can’t?!? Umm… ok, well maybe later I guess.

Hubs: Yeah, that’s ok.

Me: Do you know who I am?

Hubs: Yes, so I guess it’s ok for you to hug me. But no one else!

Me: Oh, ok. That’s fine.

Then he rolled over and did not say anything else.

It is a good thing that this happened before my trip. Otherwise, I would have been very offended if this was his nighttime greeting after my return!

The Elbow Conundrum

I am gone from home this week, so the hubs and the dog are all alone. However, have no fear, I will share something that he did several weeks ago.

I was asleep in bed and woke up because the hubs was sitting up, waving his arm wildly, bending and unbending his elbow. I thought maybe he was waving at somebody in his sleep.

Me: Buddy? Are you ok?

Hubs: Yeah, just checking.

Me (still thinking he was waving at someone in his sleep): Oh, ok. Who did you think it was?

Hubs: Just trying to get my elbow to pop.

This sounded normal. I now thought that he was awake.

Me: Oh, I see.

Hubs (calling loudly): YOU GUYS!

So, yeah…he’s asleep.

Me: Other people? Is someone else doing this too?

Hubs (acting like I should know this): Yes, like 500.

Me: Oh… I see.

Hubs (laying back down): I am sick of this now. I’m really tired.

Me: Ok… Well, goodnight.

Hubs: Yeah, you should go to sleep.

Then he laid back down and was quiet.

I will be back home next week, but until then who knows what things he is saying in his sleep. Hopefully the dog is getting to laugh at him in my absence.

I’m braver than I think…wait, no. No, I guess I’m not.

I hate to be scared. I hate it  more than I hate to be cold, more than I hate the sound of nails being filed, and even more than I hate the smell of fish sticks.  And there is nothing I find scarier than a scary movie. I do not technically “watch” scary movies. I more sit in a room with my head buried into my husband’s chest with a pillow pulled over my ears while a scary movie is shown on a nearby TV.

This is how the dog watches scary movies. Look at how brave she is: she can actually look at the screen.

Monster movies, psychological thrillers, slasher films, they all scare me out of my mind. This past week the hubs was gone for a business trip so I should have known better than to watch anything scary right before bed. But I foolishly watched a particularly scary episode of a certain show that I like, which will remain nameless. (Here’s a hint, it rhymes with “hassle.” And it has the guy from Firefly in it. There, that’s two hints.) And it was really scary, and ended on a cliff-hanger, and the CIA may be bad guys and not actually the CIA and then it ends with someone getting shot! So after watching this terrifying episode I climbed into my hubs-less bed and was so scared I couldn’t sleep.

Thankfully, I had reinforcements cleverly hidden in a seldom used tote bag on the second shelf down in my closet. I had to bring out the big guns: my teddy bear. Yes, it’s true; when the hubs is gone and I start to get scared and can’t sleep I, a grown person who pays bills and does adult type things, pull out my dear little bear.

"Sweet Halloween Dreams," by Alex Panagop

(To those of you out in internet land now judging my bear-snuggling, I say nothing, but I look at you with shark-eyes and give you the silent treatment. The hubs can attest to the fact that my silent treatment can last for some time, so you might as well stop judging.)

The Ted - Keeping me safe from scary movies for decades

Thankfully, with the bear there I was able to fall right to sleep. And with the hubs being gone I got to sleep all the way through the night with no sleep-talking interruptions.

The hubs is the opposite of me, he’s not scared of anything. He’s brave and strong and I highly doubt he has a stuffed animal stashed somewhere in the apartment that he pulls out when I am gone overnight. Last week he proved his bravery yet again as he lectured me about monsters in his sleep.

I was laying in bed, in that in between phase of almost asleep but a tiny bit awake. All of the sudden the hubs thrashed around and started talking loudly.

Hubs: You gave me a monster, and it’s the wrong type!

Me: What? What are you talking about?

Hubs: Well, you know there are different types, and this is a MATERIAL monster. Don’t you know that? It’s not the right type of family… Of monsters…

(I started to laugh at him.)

Hubs: Why are you laughing? It’s not funny, and I’m trying to go to sleep!

Me: Babe, you are asleep!

Hubs: No, I’m not asleep! I’m awake! It’s just that you don’t understand how important the monsters are!

Me (cracking up): No, you’re definitely asleep.

Hubs: No! I just wish that you would take the material monsters more seriously!

(I snorted into my pillow, it was so funny.)

Hubs: And I’m awake. I’d LIKE to go to sleep though, once you figure out the monster!

Me: Oh, dear. (chuckle) Hon, you are definitely asleep.

Hubs (turning away from me angrily): I’m not asleep. You just gave me a monster and it’s the wrong FAMILY!

I kept laughing for some time, but he didn’t say anything else.

Oh, my hubs. Thankfully his musings about monsters were just funny, not at all scary. But with him there to protect me, I could never be scared of anything.