This is the one that will push me over the edge

I thought that Benjamin was growing out of the phase...whatever phase it is...the naughty, mischevious, really naughty phase, but I think this may just be part of who he is and we're in it for the long haul! Yesterday we went to Target to kill some time between taking kids to school and when the YMCA childcare opened...we needed toilet paper anyway. Mattie has been really tired lately and started sucking her thumb again in addition to wetting the bed every night, sometimes twice a night for about the last 10 days. I self-diagnosed an iron deficiency for her. I figured that if I am anemic right now, and I never have been before, maybe she is too...maybe our diet has somehow changed and doesn't include as much iron as before and she is being affected by that. So, I bought some vitamins for the kids. Kids vitamins aren't made to taste bad or swallow. They're chewable, so of course now they come in gummy forms too. They've never tasted bad. I remember as a child sneaking a few extra from the cupboard...we used to get Flinstone's and they really are like little pieces of candy...odd tasting candy! I don't remember a time that any of my kids couldn't open a child-proof medicine cap. I don't get too excited about much of it, because the majority of what is in the cupboard has to be taken in huge quantities to overdose. I've tried to lock this cupboard before, but now it just contains vitamins, flouride and toothpaste. Maybe some cough syrup. When I brought home these vitamins though, I put them in a different cupboard in an attempt to reduce the thefts. The iron vitamins need to be put away anyway because the label states that iron overdose is the #1 fatal OD poisoning in children.

Today, Benjamin managed to find the vitamins, take them to his room and hide under his bed until he had consumed 2/3 of the bottle. There is no warning on the label, in fact, the ingredients are mostly natural ingredients that you would find in candy anyway. This was just an add-on to his mischeviousness for the last two days. I don't even want to take the time to go into details. He has learned to play the bully role rather well and takes advantage of doing so whenever he can with Joe and Mattie too. He wanders in stores, sits and pouts in the car instead of coming in, sneaks food from the pantry and the fridge, tears down Mattie's clothes from the closet, runs away, kicks the dog, plays with his food and hides it instead of eating it at meal time. All of this and the same child sings songs, reads books, shares blankets, sets the table, empties the dishwasher, is excited to show you something new he learned, watches a cartoon intently, and of course wears the same football uniform he got for Christmas every single minute of every day. (He was stripped of it tonight and it was put away for bad behavior.)

He doesn't like Mattie right now and objects vehemenently to sharing a room with her. He consumed almost an entire brand new box of fruit by the foot and another box of rice krispie treats, not to mention several juice boxes, all while hiding behind the furnace and leaving the evidence of wrappers in his wake at Todd and Jody's last weekend.

I am planning to pursue options of locks, lock boxes, possibly duct tape. It doesn't help that my dear, sweet, innocent little Joseph is finding his two year old personality either!! he can be something else. He is definitely testing me at every corner right now. I hope it fades before the baby comes.

We're in the midst of modifying our lifestyle once again as a New Year's resolution...I'm not sure if we're trying to fool ourselves or others really. We do this same thing EVERY single year...we're going to eat better, exercise more, spend less, yell less, get things ticked off of our to-do list, organize, declutter, camp, bike, not get stressed out...I think I'm already there (stressed) just thinking about how we're going to destress!!!