What were you doing today at 7AM?  I had just gotten home from a run.  It was a hard run.  I was tired.  I thought that perhaps the kids would still be asleep and I could have a few quiet moments with my coffee on the porch to wake up — and armor up — for the day ahead.  I was wrong.  This is what was going on in our house at 7AM.  And, if you’re wondering where our fifth kid is, he had an early departure for a special day out with Dad.  Leaving me home alone with this:



I’m now on my third cup of coffee and I still don’t have the energy they have.  Which, I suppose, may not be such a bad thing… after all, I wouldn’t look nearly as cute bouncing off the walls and, it might be kind of inappropriate once I get to the office.  Wherever your day takes you, I hope it includes a bit of the energy and a lot of the joy that kids bring into our lives… even if they bring it a little earlier and a lot louder than we might hope for!

You may have noticed that this post has a new look to it.  That’s because I recently bid Blogger a fond farewell and officially made the move to WordPress.  I hope you’ll bear with me as I learn how to navigate this new platform, continue to pull my old content over here and ideally, get back into a groove of more routinely sharing my musings on motherhood — along with some weekly tips and quips that I hope you find helpful and at the very least, hope give you a chuckle!

I am often asked why I write this blog and, for that matter, why I write at all.  The short answer is I love to write.  That’s why I’m thrilled you can now find me on The Huffington Post, Moonfrye and Irish Central in addition to some occasional stints on Parents.com.  The long answer is that for me, writing is a great way to capture the memories as the days drag on but the years fly by.  It is my way of preserving the minor moments, major triumphs and everything in between.  With that in mind, my “tip” for this Tuesday, is to keep a journal and jot down the funny, crazy, endearing things your kids say.  It need not be fancy (a simple notebook will do) but it should always be handy (in your purse, on the counter, etc.).  And if it is, you too will soon have a collection of gems just like these — all of which our clan has proclaimed in the past few weeks…

  • Overheard from the back seat — and delivered with compelling confidence: “Don’t you know that reindeer don’t live in the rain?!  They live in the forest dummy!”
  • An exasperated cry emitted far too often from our only little lady: “Ma, ____ peed on me!  AGAIN!!!!!”  (Such is the hazard of one little girl sharing a bathroom with three three-year olds with bad aim!)
  • From an uninvited three-year observer as I got out of the shower: “Hey Ma, your boobs got bigger!”  “Really?!” I responded rather gaily. “Nope, they just got longer.”  And then my heart sank. Apparently just like my boobs.
  • At the vet as one inquisitive fella interrogated the owner of a guinea pig:  “What is that? Why is it in a towel? What does it eat? Hay? Hay isn’t food! Is he sick? What is his name? Where does he live? Why is it in a towel?”  This is just a small glimpse into a long and priceless interrogation that only ended when the vet mercifully appeared to care for this shell-shocked animal… and equally shell shocked owner!
  • An unfortunate observation from our 7 year old “Ma, are you having another baby? Your belly looks big!”  Short answer: no. Long answer: your belly would look big too if had held five children, the last three at once and with a birth weight of over 17 pounds! So there!
  • A poignant observation from that same 7 year old: “Why is that man asking for money? We should help him.”
  • And, perhaps my all time favorite thus far: “Wow Mom, I love that skirt! You look like a princess!”  So what if he’s only three?  I now wear that skirt every other day.  Well, almost…

Let me know if you have some personal faves — my understanding is that commenting should be a lot easier here than it was before.  With that in mind, I’d love to hear from you and hope that in addition to sharing the funny things your kids say, you’ll give me inspiration for other “Tuesday Tips!”

We have five children. The oldest is seven.  Clearly, we’ve had a fair amount of sex – although, perhaps not quite as much as you’d suspect given that A. I’m pretty much Fertile Myrtle and B. our last three came as a package deal. When identical triplets were revealed on an early sonogram, I nearly fell off the table.  And pretty much swore to never have sex again.
As they say, “never say never” but it took me a really long time to “get my sexy back.”  Truth be told, I’m not 100% sure it isback.  Or that I ever really had it at all.  I have curly hair, freckly skin and a big smile.  On a good day, I might be cute.  But sexy?  I’m not so sure.  Sexy women usually have sleek hair, smooth skin and a sultry stare.  Or maybe that’s just what the media would have us believe.  Maybe sexy really does come in all shapes and sizes.  And maybe, just maybe, cute is my kind of sexy. 
Knowing as I do from a whole lot of candid girl-talk, I’m not the only one who has struggled to “get my sexy back” after having children so, having been inspired by the good folks at ParentsConnect and, in the spirit of sharing, here are a few things that actually do make me feel sexy – in a confident, sassy, cute kind of a way.  And, a few that most definitely don’t. (more…)
Nields_the band
This week I am feeling lucky once again thanks to a sneak preview of The Nield’s new album, The Full Catastrophe.  The thirteen songs swing from soulful ballads to upbeat, catchy tunes as The Nield’s, led by the powerful vocals of Nerissa and Katryna, share the trials and tribulations of motherhood and parenting in general.  Listening to this album is like having your favorite mommy blogs set to music – great music with a hint of folk, a smidge of country twang and a whole lot of honesty in lyrics you can’t help but sing along to.
I have to say, they had me at song one.  “Ten Year Tin” hits close to home since my husband and I will celebrate our ten year anniversary this October.  There are parts of this song that I – and in fact, most of us – might have written ourselves… “Things do not always go according to our plans” for instance or “We’ll save up for a trip across the sea; leave the kids, it’ll be just you and me.”  Isn’t that we all think on the day we say “I do”?  We think we’ve got it all figured out; we think, as the title track notes, “When I met you, I thought the journey was over.”  But, as we all know in retrospect, the journey had only just begun – and, there is nothing like motherhood to remind you that things often don’t go according to plan!
Our plan was to have two or three kids; we ended up with five thanks to #3 arriving as a trio of identical little fellas who will forever be our babies; our precious miracles who beat the odds and arrived at almost full term, in perfect health, and cute to boot!  When I look at our sweet angels snoozing in their cribs and then check in on their brother and sister down the hall, I have a burning desire to savor these times, to keep them close, keep them safe, keep the world at bay.  It is this emotion that comes through loud and clear in “Choose this Era” – yet another song on this album that comes from the heart and touches the heart.  “There’s danger in the paper, on the radio; I want to put my arms around you, will not let you go.”  What mom hasn’t felt this way?  I know I do.  Every day.
Last but not least, there is the fantastically funny last tune that you will play again and again.  It’s called “#1 Reason Parents are Cranky.”  Want to venture a guess?  Yep, you got it – they don’t get enough sleep!  It’s not the teething or the tantrums; it is the sleep deprivation that gets us every time.  I for one have long been advocating that the “world would be a better place if we all took naps and got eight hours of sleep!”
Parenting just might be a “full catastrophe” but you’ll get through it with your toes tapping and fingers snapping if you let The Nield’s be your guide.  To buy their new album, visit:  http://bulletproofartists.com/onlinestore/index.cfm?fuseaction=product.display&Product_ID=209   You’ll be glad you did!

It was dark as night with a thick fog swirling around the street lamps as I wiped the sleep from my eyes and looked out the window.  “Do we really need to get the kids up this early?” I asked my husband as he slowly awoke from his slumber.  “Of course we do, it’s St. Patrick’s Day!” he responded without hesitation.  And so it began. 
First Liam and Ciara were hustled out of bed, into their Sunday best and down the hill to the train with their Dad.  Why?  To make sure they got to church on time – and not just any old church, but St. Patrick’s Cathedral.  I know what you’re thinking because I had the same thought, “Gee, nothing says fun for kids on St. Patrick’s Day like being dragged out of bed, stuffed into fancy clothes and squeezed into a church pew!” Fortunately for them, this was only the beginning.  And, I have to admit, it is a huge honor to be invited to Mass at St. Patrick’s on March 17th – a point which is lost on them now at five and seven years old but, I hope they will one day realize.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I was hustling our three-year old triplets out of their cribs and into their Irish rugby jerseys.  Kevin, Declan and Cormac awoke with their typical cheer and joyful anticipation of the day ahead. “Is today the day?!”  “Today is St. Patrick’s Day, right Mama?”  “Today we go to the parade!”  These little Irish eyes were smiling up at me as I hurried them out of the house to catch the next train to the city.  That thick fog was just starting to lift as we headed south along the Hudson to Grand Central Station , eliciting some keen three year old commentary about “smoke on the water”  and cute questions like “Is it always smoky on St. Patrick’s Day, Mom?”
We arrived at Grand Central and did what any mom with a trio of three year olds would do next.  We rode the escalator.  That’s right, it caught their eye while we were waiting to meet my parents at the clock tower and I just couldn’t resist their amazing powers of persuasion.  The problem though, was that once we rode up, they were petrified to go back down.  After several failed attempts, I finally left my mom a message explaining that we’d been foiled by the escalator and were going to start marching toward the parade.
What a sight we were as we battled the growing crowds along Fifth Avenue and headed toward St. Pat’s.  I had one wide-eyed, fair-skinned, freckle-faced boy in each hand and one tagging along behind, clinging for dear life to the back of my green sweater. We paused a few times along the way, taking in the wonder of the windows of Build A Bear and American Girl.  Their excitement and enthusiasm were contagious as passers-by stopped to smile and wish us a Happy St. Patrick’s Day. 
We finally arrived on the steps of St. Pat’s where we met my husband, Liam and Ciara and were eventually joined by my parents, brother, sister-in-laws, niece, nephews and friends old and new.  As the pipers played and drummers drummed, I said a silent thank you to St. Patrick.  Not just for chasing the snakes out of Ireland but, for giving us one day a year to honor our heritage, tap our toes to the music, wear our green with pride and truly cherish our family; St. Patrick’s Day is a good reminder of just how blessed I am to look into smiling little Irish eyes and see the wonder of the world from their point of view – for it is a very nice view indeed.

People have a lot to say about motherhood, especially when you’re the Mom of five kids six and under, including identical triplets.   The commentary I receive runs the gamut from the obvious (“Are they triplets?!”) to the intrusive (“Was it IVF?”) to the complimentary (“You deserve a LOT of credit!”).  My responses tend to be “Yes” (even though I’d sometimes prefer to say “No, they’re cute clones I got on sale at Target!”), “No” (although really it’s none of your business!), and “Why?”  Why do I deserve any more credit than any other Mom?  Did I miss the memo where I had a choice to opt out of fulfilling the basic needs of our children?  I don’t think so. Actually, I think I’m just like most Moms in that I try my best every day and will candidly admit that some days are better than others!
Since I am often asked, I always tell people that the trials we face as parents are universal, as are the triumphs.  Whether you have one kid or five of them, you will inevitably be faced with the challenges of sleep deprivation, potty training and discipline and the rewards of those first steps, wet kisses and joyful leaps off the school bus at the end of the day.  There are general life experiences that unite us as parents yet as the years pass with our identical little boys, (who are now 2 ½), I can’t help but notice that there are a few things that actually do set us here at the Lyons Den apart from the rest of the herd.
For starters, there’s the undeniable fact that wherever we go, we always seem to draw a crowd; people are fascinated by our identical little fellas and delighted to ooh and aah over them as they pass by.  For a while, this was a neat little ego-boost; I couldn’t help but get slightly caught up in the wonder and remarkable cuteness of these little people we created and thus far, seem to be successfully nurturing.  Yay us!  More recently however, the thrill has started to fade. Since it’s rare that I’m out with only the triplets, I am increasingly sensitive to the impact the triplet adoration has on Liam and Ciara. They are often overlooked; at only six and four years old, the big brother and sister get very little of the glory although, they deserve a lot.

Liam and Ciara inherited a lot of responsibility and high expectations when Kevin, Declan and Cormac were born.  Ciara turned two just a few days before they arrived and Liam was not yet four; both were charged with holding bottles, fetching diapers and setting a good example from that day forward.  Though they are truly remarkable kids in their own right, they often go unnoticed while the adoring public fawns over their little brothers.  Truthfully, Liam and Ciara deserve medals for essentially serving as baby nurses for the past two years and I need to try harder to remember that it’s not easy to have inherited a trio of identical tots to follow in your footsteps; this is one of my unique challenges as a parent.

Another unique challenge is specific to Kevin, Declan and Cormac.  Though they look exactly alike, I have to constantly remind myself (and others!) that they are not actually three of a kind but three individuals with their own personalities, preferences and, for better or worse, their own primary colors so everyone knows who’s who.  Kevin is “red”, Declan is “blue” and Cormac is “green”.  This color-coding system seemed like a really good way for family, friends and neighbors (and yes, even us in the beginning!) to tell them apart… unfortunately, since Declan has begun to introduce himself to folks as “Blue”, I think this clever tool has backfired but, once again, I was just trying my best.

I suppose that’s the universal theme here.  As a new day and new week begins, I know will once again try my best.  I also know that there will be good days and bad days and highs and lows. I know I’ll regret the mistakes I’ll inevitably make (like last night, when I lost it after Declan peed in Liam’s Croc!) and I’ll relish the little moments that later turn into major memories (like yesterday morning, when we had them ALL in the tub, basking in bubbles and brimming with grins.)  While there are undoubtedly unique circumstances in raising all of our little “Cubs”, we’re really just like everyone else in that more often than not, we’re just trying to make it through the day and make the most of it! 

“How was your weekend?”  It’s a perfectly normal question for folks to ask on a Monday morning.  The thing is, I’m pretty sure they don’t want to hear how my weekend really was.  And that’s ok.  Because the reality is, my weekend – our weekends – are often so exhausting that my husband and I are happy to see Monday morning arrive.  Monday morning means back to work.  A place that while challenging and stressful at times, also affords the opportunity to pee without anyone sitting on your lap and to eat sitting down… both minor indulgences  after 48 hours at home with our five little Lyons Cubs!
As I’ve mentioned in the past, people say a LOT of crazy things to me.  One comment I hear frequently goes something like this… “You have ALL those kids and you WORK too?!   Wow….”  Then they walk away, leaving me to wonder if I’m a terrible person because I have “ALL” these kids and leave them behind for roughly 40 hours a week or if there’s something in my appearance that suggests we are independently wealthy and therefore I don’t need to work.  Given that I’m cruising around in a minivan too beat up to even be called a “swagger wagon” and most of my clothes date from the 90s (at best!), I’m pretty sure it’s not the latter.  And, I know in my heart – and my checkbook! – that it’s not the former either.  Five kids (and one 99 pound dog!) are expensive.  And this past weekend was a real doozie in terms of dollars and sense.  Here’s a rough breakdown…
  • Trader Joe’s for groceries                               $170
  • Dog to Vet for annual checkup & shots              $175
  • Return trip to vet for antibiotics upon discovering dear dog has lyme disease   $275
  • Birthday gifts for upcoming parties                   $60
  • Oil change and inspection for minivan               $75
  • Car #2 to mechanic to repair failing brakes       $175
  • 2 cases of diapers                                           $70
  • Trip to Urgent Care for 6 year old with presumed pink eye      $50
  • Antibiotic upon confirmation of pink eye                                $80
  • Spring plants/soil/essentials for backyard clean up                   $100
  • Stop & Shop grocery delivery                                                $150
It’s a lot, right?  I don’t have the heart to add it all up but at a glance, a weekend full of essential expenditures (not even including Friday night pizza or a date night!) looks like it’s close to $1000.  Granted, this time around our lovable lab accounts for more than his fair share but, we’re not about to give him up – the entertainment he provides our kids is priceless.  And I don’t think we can give up the diapers yet either although trust me, we’re trying! 
As I assess this list, I’m reminded that my paycheck is pretty important to our bottom line.  And as I assess my aching limbs after a weekend of chasing, lifting, wrestling, battling, tickling, and twirling our kids well, I’m grateful for the time we’ve had together and, I’m glad that tomorrow is Monday!

When our firstborn Liam arrived, Des proclaimed “There are two things that are non-negotiable: he will be Catholic and he will be a Yankee fan.”  I’ve always wondered if he sees these two things as equivalent and with each passing year, I’m more convinced that he does.   With baseball season upon us, there will be plenty of time to share my musings on raising five little pin-striped fanatics so, today I thought I’d dwell on raising five little Catholics.

For starters, we go to church on Sunday.  EVERY Sunday.  We’re as reliable as the US Postal Service; we show up in rain or shine, showered or unshowered, with sick kids, cranky kids, and sometimes need a spanky kids. And now matter how early our day starts, we always show up about fiften minutes late.  Now that Liam can tell time, I’m pretty sure he thinks we attend the 10:45 mass when in fact, the rest of the congregation dutifully arrives at 10:30.  

Now, as you might imagine, there is nothing subtle about our arrival at church — or anywhere else, for that matter!  When the triplets were babies, we would walk to church because it was easier than getting all five kids in and out of the car.  Our entry procession included two strollers – a standard issue double for Liam and Ciara and a front to back triple as long as a Cadillac for Kevin, Declan and Cormac.  Today, as Liam and Ciara bolt down the aisle and the triplets toddle behind them, our entry is less impressive but far more vocal. “I see Jesus!  I see Jesus!  I see Jesus!”  the triplets can’t help but announce, sometimes adding additional commentary like “Why he has no shoes on?” 

Thankfully, our priest and our parish are both friendly and forgiving.  Our tardiness isn’t looked down upon and we seem to get a fair amount of credit and goodwill for simply showing up, no matter how late we may be.  Given the antics that we provide (typically from a front pew since that’s the only space left by the time we arrive!), it’s a wonder they don’t just lock the door at 10:44.  They continue to welcome the Lyons Family Circus and we continue to show up.

Here are a few of my favorite moments from our weekly 45 minutes of religious obligation and observation:

  • Cormac following the guy with the collection basket, taking a $20 and running for the door.  Hey, charity starts at home, right?
  • A lady who told me that “my kids just LOVE watching your family at church; it’s better than reality TV!”
  • The day an elderly woman who had kindly settled down a distraught Declan suddenly dropped him back in my lap noting  “I think he has a present for you,”  as the stench from his diaper nearly knocked us out.
  • The time that Kevin ran to the altar to check out the Nativity scene but left his pants behind. Turns out that I shouldn’t have ingnored him when he said “pants too big Mama!”
  • Advent.  Between the Nativity scene and Toys for Tots collection, our kids provided a lot of comic relief… which, granted, isn’t why most folks go to church but it never hurts to have a good laugh, right?  Some highlights were the attempted removal of toys from the altar, failed attempts to “wake up” the Baby Jesus and the near demise of one of the wise men (courtesy of a wobbly triplet).

I clearly recall looking for diversions at church when I was a kid; now my family is the diversion.  It started when Liam was just a tot himself, clapping along with the choir and shouting “YAY!” when they finished a song.  I’m not sure if or when it will end but, until it does, I plan to just embrace it and enjoy it.  While I may not always hear the message of the gospel and while we may never get to church on time, at least I have 45 minutes a week to sit down (when I’m not shooing tots off the altar!) and reflect on just how lucky I am — lucky to have happy, healthy kids; lucky to be embraced by our community and, well, with the season in full swing, lucky to have so many little Yankee fans… more on that later, to be sure!

When you have five kids and the oldest is only six, you realize that kids say a LOT of funny things. You also realize that as a parent, YOU say a lot of funny things. One of the things I will always remember saying is “Liam, please don’t drive your tractor through the feta cheese”. This is when I knew I had most certainly crossed a line and was most definitely not in Kansas anymore. I thought it might be fun to share with you some of the most silly, absurd, incongruous things that my kids and I have said in just the past few weeks and, invite you to share a few random remarks of your own. I’m sure that you and your tots are just as insane at times as me and mine… I hope you are anyway. If you’re not, it proves that I just might be insane! But, since I am willing to take that risk, here are a few of my recent favorites:

Last week, we took the kids out to celebrate Liam’s good report card. Mind you, Liam is only in first grade but he seems to be on the right track and that seemed to be worth celebrating so, last Thursday we went out to dinner and that event yielded a handful of colorful commentary:

  • As we loaded the kids into the car, explaining that we were headed out for a celebratory meal, Ciara whined from the backseat “But what about MEEEEE? Can we also celebrate that I wished upon a star?!” Really, this is true. If only I could get someone to take me out to dinner every time I wished upon a star!
  • After he begged, kicked and screamed for chocolate milk, we finally caved in and ordered it for our little man Cormac. Upon delivery, he took one look at it, pushed it away and loudly proclaimed: “NO LIKE IT! This milk is DIRTY!!!”
  • When Liam’s plate of mini-burgers and major fries arrived, he gobbled down the burgers and just picked at his fries, prompting me to ask “What’s the matter buddy, you don’t like them”? His response? “I do Mom but don’t you know that fries aren’t good for you?” So much for celebrating!

Last Saturday, we were taking the kid for haircuts and noticed a helicopter hovering overhead. I’d heard on the news that there had been a bank robbery a few towns away and commented that perhaps they were doing an aerial search for the bad guys. This prompted some priceless remarks, including:

  • From Ciara: “So Mom, do bad guys usually run on the right side or the left side of the street?”
  • From Liam: “I don’t think they usually run, do they Mom? Ciara, I think they will be the guys you see tip-toeing down the street all hunched over. They’ll probably be wearing black tights and masks.” Thank you, classic cartoons, for providing this timeless image of bad guys!
  • From the triplets in the third row of the mini-van: “Bad guys! Bad guys! I see bad guys! Over there! Bad guys over there!” I should have known. The pint-sized police are always on high alert!

This weekend prompted a classic. After 36 hours of tripping over Legos, blocks, trains and rocks (yes, the rock collection somehow made it inside!), we’d had it. The “clean up song” has lost its allure, the notion of teamwork wasn’t working and we were at our wits end. Des, who never loses his cool actually yelled at them. He yelled “IF YOU DON’T CLEAN THESE TOYS UP, I AM GETTING A TRASH BAG AND THROWING THEM ALL OUT!” Liam, unable to contain a giggle and a smirk was put on the hot seat. “You think it’s funny?!” , Des asked. “No Dad,” he responded with a grin. “I’m just thinking you’ve never done it before so you’re not going to do it now.”

Yikes. Where is the owner’s manual for these little people when you really need it?! Since I don’t have one, we’re just doing the best we can and trying to laugh as much as possible. If we don’t, I’m quite certain we will in fact go insane. Until then, I’ll keep sharing the crazy things our kids (and we!) say and hope that you will do the same.

Manic Monday

March 16th, 2011 | Posted by Kerry Lyons in MaMa Moments | parenthood | Pollyanna - (0 Comments)

One of my first bosses, who is now a close friend, dubbed me “Pollyanna” after knowing me for just a few days. Even in the workplace at the beginning of my so-called career, my unfailing optimism and extreme idealism couldn’t be missed. Indeed, it is these very qualities that allow me to pop out of bed each morning, genuinely happy to face the day ahead and the challenges it entails.

Each day most certainly contatins its own challenges – some big, some small. Liam might miss the bus or we might run out of milk or there may be three or four kids with raging fevers as I scramble to make myself presentable and get to work on time. As I’ve mentioned before, most days are good days and thankfully most of our challenges are small. But sometimes, even our small challenges add up to something bigger than I can gracefully manage; in those moments, the Pollyanna in me disappears. She is replaced Cruella deVille or the Wicked Witch of the West or some other such character with a dark disposition and menacing laugh. Last night this dark alter-ego appeared and I have to say, I think I dislike her as much as my husband and kids do.

Yesterday was the most Monday of Mondays. Everyone was tired and loathe to get out of bed, suffering as we were from switching the clocks over the weekend and waiting for our bodies to adjust. Work was, well, work. A lot of work! The day passed swiftly by and before I knew it, my tired, cranky bod was on its way home and fielding a call from Des who was going to be an hour late. The expletive I muttered under my breath wasn’t missed and it’s a wonder that the poor guy got on the train and decided to come home at all!

As I turned onto our block, pondering the mayhem and dinner preparation that awaited me (and just me!), I was almost run down by five tykes on trikes and bikes all of whom, as it turns out, belonged to me and none of whom were eager to go inside to accompany me while I started dinner. That was Battle #1. Simply getting them all inside was a Herculean effort with a resulting deafening roar of dismay and disagreement. With my head pounding, I did the only thing I could think of to quiet the masses – I offered them a snack. This kept them busy for about approximately three minutes while I popped the salmon and potatoes (prepped before I left for work!) into the oven.

With the snack gone and dinner cooking, the chorus of whining and wailing began. “I’m tired. I’m hungry. Can I have a banana? When’s dinner? Can we watch TV? Mac Mac bit me! I have to pee! Kevin’s taking his pants off! I don’t want salmon! Can we have more Goldfish? I’m STARVING! Declan threw a block at me! Where’s my baby stroller? Can I have another snack?!” And so it went. And so I texted Des “This is a NIGHTMARE. When will you be home?!”

That’s when the smoke started to come out of the oven, one of the kids fell off the counter barstool and I literally started to scream like a banshee. I just lost it. I was tired, they were tired. They were screaming, I was screaming. Dinner was burning, the table wasn’t set, the dishwasher needed to be unloaded and the groceries that had been delivered cluttered the counter. It wasn’t pretty. Des walked in shortly thereafter to a smoky scene that resembled a warzone. It was me against them and I’m pretty sure they were winning. Somehow, we salvaged dinner and by the time the sun came up this morning, I had almost found Pollyanna again. She’s still reeling a bit from her alter-ego’s violent outburst but firmly believes that today will be a better day. And tomorrow will probably be even better. Phew. She’s back!