Friday, April 29, 2011
Thursday, April 28, 2011
Other things that have gone undone lately:
- returning of library books
- decluttering of the counter catch-all
- calling my mom
- planning grocery trips so we don't go to the damn store 15 times a week
- planning dinners so I'm not throwing together whatever crap we have in the fridge, adding a frozen something-green and calling it good enough
What has gotten done:
- Watching silly boys run around the room playing chase
- Reading 11 books in April
- Some writing
- Some vacation planning
- Trips to the beach
- Trips to the park
- Momma-Boy adventures
- Momma-Lad adventures
- Essential errands (you know, to the beer store and the running store
, doctor's appointments and trips to Starbucks to get a mocha for me and gift certificate for a friend)
- Playdates with friends and alcoholic beverages
- Basic care and feeding of the family
Oh, and I went to a concert last night, the second in as many months after years without live music. I saw the Avett Brothers, whom I like so much I named my kid after them. They were amazing live, and the weather was perfect for the open-air show. We went with another couple and parked in a garage a few blocks from the waterfron venue. Walking back to the car with my head full of their lyrics, we spotted a new bar, World of Beer, and talked ourselves into just stopping in to check it out. The husbands kept saying, "This is awesome," as they looked around at the walk-in refrigerators stocked floor to ceiling with craft beers and the wall of taps. I think we all felt a little like we were playing hooky. I'm still grinning this morning.
And that's always how I feel when we go on the trips and adventures that keep me from dusting my furniture or doing my laundry. Sometimes, mostly when I'm walking into the house after work and scrambling to get the kids fed and things kind of put away, I feel overwhelmed and tired by the cat furrballs rolling across the floor and the smudges on my white cabinets. I clean up the worst of it and feel a little put upon, but then The Boy says something funny or The Lad giggles as he chases the cat and it doesn't seem to matter so much.
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
Tuesday, April 26, 2011
Monday, April 25, 2011
Is it OK to say that about your own child?
Well, I just did.
She is sooooo two right now. Ninety percent of the time she is as sweet as pie and 10 percent of the time driving me bat shit crazy.
The other day, she asked for an English muffin. I made it for her and she refused to eat it. She then asked for cereal. I made it for her and she refused to eat it. (This is a common theme in our life right now). I asked her if she was done with the cereal, she said yes. I dumped it down the drain.
And what did she do? Threw an aplopletic fit because she didn't want me to throw away the cereal she refused to eat. She fell on the floor, thrashing about, generally acting like a rabid animal minus the foaming at the mouth.
And THEN she complained that her belly hurt because she was so hungry.
At this point I prayed for strength and patience.
She has thrown a fit over the kitchen light. She didn't want the light turned on. Once I convinced her that we needed it on, she was angry that she didn't get to turn it on.
She throws fits over going to bed, going so far as kicking her door while screaming. Thank everything holy and pure that her sister, sleeping a few feet away does not seem bothered by the noise.
On Easter she threw the mutha of all mutha fits because I asked her stay downstairs while I took something into the room where her sister was napping. It was a 20 minute screamfest that including 10 minutes of her crying "no" to every one of my questions.
Sometimes I think it would be nice to send her away until she has a toddler of her own so then she can come back and apologize to us.
I hear three isn't much better. Awesome.
Saturday, April 23, 2011
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
My little Beastie-beast probably, almost definitely is my last baby. He is not a first born child, and like so many younger children, he gets short-shrift. In an inbox folder labeled "Baby," I have dozens of emails sent by me, my family and friends while I was pregnant the first time and just after The Boy was born. The "Baby2" folder might have a half dozen emails in it -- maybe. I haven't looked to check. I don't send out updates to our distant families every time The Lad goes to a well-baby appointment, and those check-ups are always late because his birthday put us behind schedule. No one works on Christmas.
- I challenged myself to read 100 books in 1 year. Even though I consider myself an avid reader, I have never done this before. So far, I am a few behind pace but I have managed to read 27 books so far this year. For having a baby, a toddler, a husband a job, I am pretty proud of myself. I read while I pump. I read while I'm making dinner. I read while I'm feeding Gizmo. I read before I go to bed. (The husband may hide my Nook if I keep reading like this).
- I joined the gym at work. Why I haven't done this before is beyond me. We have a great facility that is directly below me. All kinds of work-out equipment and classes that include Zumba, pilates, yoga and high-energy aerobics. Plus it is super cheap and convenient. My plan is to go after work when the girls are in bed. Even if I can get on an elliptical (and read) for 30 minutes that will be better than what I am doing now, which is nothing. I need this as a stress reliever as much as I do to improve my fitness.
- I am planning a trip for the husband and me. We don't get much alone time together given our work schedules. By the time I get home at 10ish, it's time to get things ready for the next day, feed Gizmo and hopefully crash into bed by midnight. Usually the husband plans our trips. Come to think of it, I don't think I've ever planned one for us. Right now I'm leaning toward a long weekend in Nashville.
- I bought my plane ticket to go to The Blathering in October. Hillary and I had planned to take a trip together this fall when Erica encouraged us to sign up for The Blathering. With the hopes of meeting some lovely ladies that we have become friends with through the interwebz, we agreed Austin would be our destination.
Tuesday, April 19, 2011
But I just went in to quiet him. He'd been crying for several minutes and was just getting angrier. Patting his back pissed him off, too. I pulled him and his blanky -- yes, his is getting as stinky as his brother's -- out of the crib and sat in the rocker. His squalling face made me laugh, and smiling, I started singing Dr. Seuss's ABCs in his ear. He screamed past the four fluffy feathers on a fiffer-feffer-feff, past little Lola Lop, past the policeman in a pail. He finally stopped at Rosy Robin Ross and her red rhinoceros. He literally cried himself to sleep in my lap. By the glow of the nightlight I rocked as The Lad cuddled against my chest. Belly to belly, I felt his breathing slow and even out into sleep after one last shuddering sigh. I finished my horrible, off-key song and just listened to my baby's breath and rubbed my face against his soft curls.
I don't want to think about the day my boys are too big to snuggle on my lap like that.
Monday, April 18, 2011
I am sorry. I haven't started a baby book for you. Come to think of it, I don't think I have a baby book for you. I haven't taken as many pictures of you as I did with your older sister, who was the subject of constant photo shoots for the first few months of life (Come to think of it, I'm surprised she doesn't have something wrong with her eyes given the amount of flashes she saw at a young age).
There aren't many pictures of you around the house and I just sent out your birth announcements last week, almost four months after you were born. I haven't even ordered your photos taken at the hospital.
You haven't been held for every one of your naps. Just a few on lazy Sunday afternoons. You haven't been rocked to sleep every night but that is because you don't always need it. You don't have much of a problem going to sleep on your own. You have no problem taking your morning nap in the swing while your sister and I get ready for the day. You just hang out with a look that says, "I'm cool. Do your thing. I'll be here when you're done."
Sometimes you have to wait while we deal with your big sister, change the laundry, make dinner or any one of the million other things that need to be done during the day. But you seem to be OK with that. You don't mind hanging out on the floor while we work around the house, your excited babbling and constantly moving legs signs of your contentment. You are OK with sitting in your bouncy chair, kicking your feet to music like O.A.R. (not Taylor Swift thankfully, unlike your sister) while I fold laundry.
Rarely do you wake up without a smile. You are even sleeping seven-plus hours a night between eating, giving me much needed rest. When you do wake, you just babble to yourself until I come for you, giving me a big, open-mouth gummy smile like I am the best thing you have ever seen. You even gasp like you are surprised I would come to get you.
Only two things make you really mad. A dirty diaper and when we stop moving in the car.
You are growing quickly. Your six-month clothes are so very close to being too small for you and you aren't even four months old yet. Your father and I think you are growing faster than your sister or maybe it just seems like that since you are our last baby.
I love your laid back style. You definitely get your disposition from your father and not me. Your fabulous hair is getting long enough to lay down properly. I will be sad when you don't rock your fauxhawk anymore.
And while we don't have dozens of framed photos of you hanging up yet, know that we love you. It is your lot in life being the second child but just know it doesn't mean we love you any less.
Sunday, April 17, 2011
Friday, April 15, 2011
BUT .... If Sunday goes as planned, there will be a long, lazy time supervising this, preferably while enjoying a cold beer in the warm sun.
Also on the agenda, looking for flights to Austin.
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
(I would show a picture of my hairbrush to demonstrate the immense amount of hair that falls out when I get ready but that just seemed gross. Just take my word for it. Damn hormones.)
* Gizmo's hair is falling out as well. I would guess at least half of it is gone from when she was born.
Going home from the hospital:
At least it is still long enough to sport her rocker chick style.
* This Saturday we have my nephew's soccer games, two birthday parties for three kids and a benefit for a friend's father. I am tired just thinking about it.
* Peanut is in love with the music from Beauty and the Beast. She makes me sing the opening song as we get ready in the morning. She loves the part where they say "bonjour." There is nothing cuter than a toddler singing "bonjour, bonjour, bonjour, bonjour, bonjour."
* I haven't picked up a baby book to check Gizmo's progress in more than a month. It is quite liberating to just enjoy being with her and not charting everything. Right now I am watching her roll from her back almost completely to her side. If she keeps going like this, she'll be mobile before we know it. I am not ready for that.
* And just some cuteness for your day:
Monday, April 11, 2011
Sunday, April 10, 2011
We decided to give it a good effort this weekend but, alas, it did not work. Peanut just does not want to even though she is perfectly capable. Saturday she had seven accidents and three successful attempts. She would not even consider anything but peeing on the potty.
Sunday dawned and she refused to do anything. Finally concerned about her well being, the husband put a diaper on a little after noon. She went straight for a quiet corner and took care of business. She had been holding it all in. Someone please explain what makes a child do that instead of just using the potty.
The husband has been a saint through this. I was ready to give up Saturday morning when Peanut screamed like a banshee while I tried to make her sit on the potty. He wanted to keep going and patiently worked with her through the day.
We rewarded her with things I got from the dollar bins at Target when she was successful and made a big deal of it. But getting there was difficult and included one bed change and multiple changes of pants.
(She refuses to wear underwear so we let her go commando or with just pants on.)
I know we aren't supposed to go back to diapers but I think we are going to while still encouraging her to use the potty. Until she wants to do this, she's not going to, no matter how fun we try to make it.
Peanut 1. Mommy and Daddy 0.
Any advice? Sympathies?
Edit to add: I almost forgot the best part of the weekend. The husband said he needed to change his pants. Peanut then asked if had peed in his pants. He had to explain to her that, no, he did not pee in his pants. He was just hot.
Friday, April 8, 2011
Wednesday, April 6, 2011
The coaches had to remind him repeatedly to watch the ball, not them. He tripped over the obstacle course and completely ignored the cones he was supposed to be weaving through. But he threw the ball hard and far and consistently assumed a proper batting stance.
He loved it. I loved it.
The mother of one of the other boys had his 2-week-old sister with them. My tall, intense boy seemed closer to the gangly teenaged coaches than to that squishy, soft creature sleeping in the carrier seat.
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
Monday, April 4, 2011
The wonderful k is participating in the March of Dimes this year. Go Team Iris!
K, Iris and their family have an amazing story that you should read if you haven't. You can read the Cliff Notes version here.
This is where you come in. K has a badge on her site that if you click on it, you can donate to the March of Dimes. Consider it, won't you? I'm heading over there now.
Sunday, April 3, 2011
My mother got married when she was 18. College wasn't really an option for her, being the youngest of six children, plus it wasn't encouraged. So she married my father and helped him have a successful career, spending part of her time at home with us and then going to work when we were in school. They have made it work together for more than 40 years.
She has done well for herself but she always wanted more for my sister and me. College was our only option and she encouraged us to do what we wanted with our careers (even if that meant becoming a journalist). Her support and guidance helped my sister and I to know that we could have our careers if we wanted.
That is the kind of mother I want to be to my girls.
When I was about 8 years old, my mom took my sister, me and a cousin to the movie theater. The two older kids were going to see "Turner and Hooch" while my mom and I were going to see "The Little Mermaid." I was indignant in all my 8-year-old glory. I didn't want to see some stupid cartoon. Those were for babies. I was not a baby.
But after it was done, I loved it. The music. The whimsy. The princess.
It was years later before I realized what a twit Ariel is.
I finished reading "Cinderella Ate My Daughter" by Peggy Orenstein last week. I wasn't sure I would like it, mainly because I feared feeling guilty for letting my daughter play with all things princess. But it actually made me feel better. Even this woman, who wrote a whole book on how the girlie girl culture is out of control, let's her daughter have some princess things. It is natural for little girls to be drawn to tutus and tiaras.
The problem, however, can be when those are their only options in the toy aisle and they don't feel like they can play with dinosaurs or trucks or other traditional boy toys.
She also tackles the concept of our daughters being marketed for more mature toys at younger and younger ages - make up, cell phones, hooker looking dolls.
We had our own experience with a hooker looking doll. Peanut picked up a doll at the store and the husband wasn't looking carefully. When we got to check out, I looked.
"It looks like a hooker," I said.
The husband looked at it carefully, looked at me horrified and looked back at the doll. It had purple snakeskin knee high boots, a mini skirt, a coat with a faux fur trim not to mention big hair and even make up.
We made some quick plans to distract Peanut and asked the cashier not to ring up the doll. Unfortunately, Peanut wasn't distracted and she realized the doll wasn't coming home with us. The ensuing fit was of epic proportions.
There really wasn't anything to say to her. How was I supposed to explain she couldn't have the doll because it looked liked a hooker? These are not concepts I am prepared to discuss with a toddler and why should I? I would like to talk to the people who created those dolls and ask them that.
Even worse, last week I saw a story about Abercrombie & Fitch selling padded bikini tops for girls as young as seven. Whoever thought of that should really be examined. That is one store we will be avoiding at all costs when the girls get older.
Orenstein's book examines instances like this and so much more. If you have girls, it is really a must read. While we might not be able to shield our girls from hooker dolls and other inappropriate things, being aware of the possible effects is a step in the right direction.
I still enjoy fairy tales. I love all things whimsical and hope me daughters will too. I took Peanut to see a musical production of Beauty and the Beast today.
But I also want my girls to know that princesses aren't their only option. Pink isn't the only thing girls can wear and that they can do whatever they wants (as long as doesn't involve dressing like a hooker).
Most of all, I want them to remember to be their own heroines. To not wait to be rescued and to know that I believe in them to have the ability to do so.