Gift Ideas Before “Lunday”

Posted on March 29, 2011


Dear Time Change,

I am enjoying the sun staying in the sky longer each day! Today when we finished Judo it was still light outside at 6:30. It feels like the days are longer and is finally warming up a little at night. The sun went down around 8, just as we were finishing dinner. I ate slowly while Tommaso shoveled in his two courses so he could get back to his Nintendo game. I knew as soon as I finished he would beg me to play. I was hoping that Mario and would have a clean break up but today he slipped right back into my life and was in the palm of my hand three times before dinner! I was happy to not play for such a long time but now playing again I really get into it! I literally sat at the edge of the bathtub while they looked over my shoulder and watched my play while they bathed earlier! I have to give them each credit for using ALL English words and short sentences when convincing me to play. These kids have made quite the progress in this short time I have been here, which reminds me that I pretty much put a stop to path towards speaking more Italian. I should practice more outside the house. Which in turn means that I must get out of the house more often! One day…soon…I will go to the Vatican.

On the way to pick of the boys from school I bought another “Ricarica Telefonica” to recharge my phone since it is running low on its Italian “juice” to communicate. I realized today that getting more credit is not as exciting as scratching off numbers on a lotto ticket. Sure, the 16-digit numbers vary but I never “win” anything! Perhaps it is similar to lotto. I spent 10 and my numbers were not the winner. I don’t want to buy them but every 10 days I make myself scratch off the lucky numbers and once again I can send texts or make short calls. Strange thing to me is that I can still receive calls and texts even when I am out of  charge. At home if you don’t pay up your phone doesn’t let you do anything! Not that I have had my phone turned off but I know people who have had that happen to them.

On the way to Judo I can see Tommaso doing something like a “pee-pee” dance while playing his Nintendo. His voice seems to escalate when he has to pee so after he confesses that he has to “make a pee-pee” we pull the car over and T asks me to find a tree or something for him. OK? Just like that I get out and he hurriedly pees on a wall then dabs himself with a kleenex and offers it to me. Really? I have to take this from him? I make a face and take it while trying to help him pull up his pants while he bends over and moons the gas station behind us. He found a dirty broken plastic gun and I told him to leave it and “lets GO! we’re late!” We piled back in the car and his hands are back on his Nintendo before I can put his seatbelt on him. T tells me to hand her his wipe and she tosses it in a bag with a banana peel. I am sure when it is my kids piss I will be just as nonchalant. But until then…I don’t have to be graceful with unfamiliar urine. Just wait, the peeing incidents don’t stop there.  Matteo goes first in Judo so I find him a seat and help him to dress for his class. He now is doing his version of the well-known “pee-pee” dance and I tell him “let’s go” now before we change his clothes. He argues with me and tells me he wants to change his pants first. Fine. I help him out of his shoes and socks and pull his sweats down and I can tell that he already started to pee. His little blue underwear are apparently wet and now I must search for some extra underwear for the boy. I turn my back from him and dig in the front pocket. There are extras there for this reason. When I turn around he is continuing to pee slowly but surely on the green fabric covered chair! “Matteo!” I scream and tell him to stop. I put his white Judo pants on then shoved his little feet in this sandals and pushed him all the way to the bathroom. Before he lets me escort him he takes his other pants and attempts to hide his accident/purpose? I am fully unsure since before this happened soon as I took off one of his shoes he picked it up and threw it at the very top of a nearby book shelf. I am not tall and this shelf was probably 6 or 7 feet up. Perfect. I will have to figure that out later. I make him use the first stall while I wash my hands. I can’t believe that he still has that much to pee but it goes on and on! “That’s some good peein’ ” (A league of their Own comes to mind) Again, he refuses to wash his hands and runs out. I change his shirt and tie his Judo belt around his little waste and get him to his class on time. I walk back and think about how I am going to get his shoe down. T already saw the shoe since he proudly yelled at her to see his masterpiece. I rolled my eyes at that moment and told her I will figure it out. I search for an alternative chair to his green “pee” used toilet chair and find a sturdy wooden one. I place it close enough and hold on to a higher shelf while making two attempts while jumping. I look around before my final jump and this little barely 2-year-old is watching me and giggling. He mother looks over to me and laughs and asks what I am doing. I point at the shoe, jump and say “ahhh Matteo..” She laughs and says, “Lo so (I know!)” with a nice smile. It is the same people each week and we all know most the children’s names and who is their nanny, mother, father or Nana.

I watch Tommaso play Mario while his brother practices Judo behind the closed-door. I sneak away slowly and check out the mini library of English books. We are going away to the mountains this Thursday so I need some new reading material to keep me entertained. I AM NOT going without a book like I made the mistake last time we went in December. No internet was hard enough but nothing to read was painful and unfair. On the ride home from Judo I tell T that I am so happy about the time change and the fact that it is still light outside! She agrees and tells me a little more about our 4-day mountain trip. Not only is the boys’ birthdays this weekend but we also have dinner plans to go out to eat. I still need to find the boys some gifts but am having a hard time finding something that is worthwhile, makes no noise and won’t break after one day of use. I must find something by tomorrow and have it ready to go and hidden in my suitcase from them. T and I have a good laugh at a word she accidentally made up, “Lunday!” it is a mix of Italian and English for a day of the week. Monday+Lunedi=Lunday. I like it and we both know which day we are speaking of! We come home Lunday and then next  Sunday is mio ragazzo’s birthday as well. All my boys birthdays this month!

For Mickey I have decided to make him some cupcakes and bring them to him at work. I met him because of cupcakes so it seems appropriate to make him some of his own personal cupcakes for his day. This is such a nice thing for me to do I am still surprised that it will actually happen. I also know that his favorite berry is Raspberry so I am hoping to find those to do something with the cupcakes. Lemon cake with vanilla frosting and raspberries sounds pretty tasty. It will take me the entire week to find the ingredients, this I know. I am usually really great at gift-giving at home. I am always the one to bring gifts to the party or occasion. I will never show up empty-handed. Being in Rome is not easy to be creative and think up great gifts. He doesn’t need anything that I can think of. I know that he wants shoes (as do I! Sorry me first) but I am unsure what size shoe he even wears at this point in our relationship. Plus, he is picky as me and unless he showed me exactly the pair he wants this will never happen. And not this month, sorry. From some help from the family at home via Skype we laughed about other gift ideas. A key chain!? My cousin suggests. “What are we in middle school!? He lives here, he isn’t a tourist! Hahahah” I laugh but then realize that it is brilliant! Brilliant indeed! I will find him a red Ferrari key chain so that he won’t ever have to forget our fender-bender and who he was with: me! It is a pretty good plan, it makes sense. Next thing I must do is relocate the Ferrari shop and hope that not every key chain is real gold and super expensive or ridiculous! I am hoping for the best and for this to be simple and done in a timely manner.

Knowing me though….highly unlikely…..


Posted in: When in Rome