Thursday, December 31, 2009

Year in Review

This year I have:

Had a baby
Not gotten pregnant again (so far... but I think I'm in the clear)
Not lost one single pound since giving birth on Jan 2nd GO ME!
Not gained one single pound either Grumble Grumble okay I'll take it
Nursed two children for an entire year
Not slept all the way through the night even once
Done somewhere in the neighborhood of 625 loads of laundry
Survived a son of a bitch case of PPD
Survived a simultaneous case of colic
Not killed my husband or anyone else in the process
Started a blog
Met so many kick ass bloggers
Spent approximately 1500 hours online
Witnessed my daughter learn to speak in complete sentences, sleep in her own room and ditch diapers
Witnessed my son learn to eat, roll over, sit up, crawl, climb, and just recently walk. He's also pretty awesome at waving bye bye and saying NO!
Picked up the pieces to my kids' Melissa and Doug puzzles at least 1,000 times.
Taken maybe 10 showers uninterrupted
Driven my "non mom" car maybe twice and considering that enough reason to keep it
Bought myself 8 new articles of clothing, yep I can count them
Bought my children 20 times that many
Watched Classical Baby about 700 times
Told my children I loved them 9,000 times


Not a bad year. Not bad at all.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Packing Up

I came to the harsh realization that I will never again (or at least for a very long time) be able to put off packing up all the Christmas decorations. The Peanut's birthday is Jan 2nd and while I can probably get away with leaving everything up until Jan 1, the 2nd is just a tad too late to have up a tree. So, tonight we began trying to chip away at the work to be done to get ready for the birthday party this weekend. As I put things in boxes I started to wonder about next year. Will the Weebles love being read Winnie the Pooh's Jingle Bells as much as she did this year? Will Olive the Other Reindeer get exclusive play in the van next year too? What will our children remember from this year to the next? Where will we be in our lives when I unpack her special "Jingle Bells" ponytail holder? It made me a little sad to be putting all these things away that have been such a focus of their little lives for the last two months or so. Christmas themed dishes, clothes, movies and bedtime stories have taken center stage. What if next year they aren't totally in love with Pooh anymore and the giant inflatable Santa Pooh we just got on clearance isn't such a big hit? It makes me a little sad to see them grow up so fast. By next year it isn't totally unreasonable to expect the Weebs to be in love with Barbie or Princesses (holy beans, please tell me Bratz don't come until much, MUCH later.) I'm not ready for Barbie and Princesses. I like Pooh Bear and Wow Wow. Mama isn't ready for all of this, stay little awhile longer please babies.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas lessons

We had a hectic but fun Christmas that spanned three days of present opening and family visiting. There are several things I have taken away this year on Christmas with children under 3.

1.) Don't bother buying tons of presents. The kids will get hooked on one or two things and ignore all the other ones. Seriously, there are dozens of new toys my daughter hasn't even picked up or looked at. I'm packing them all up and getting them out one at a time over the next few months.

2.) Wear something presentable to bed Christmas Eve or be ready to throw on something "decent", including the requisite undergarments, first thing when the kids wake up. Otherwise you will forever be captured in pictures and videos looking a tad trashy. I learned this the hard way as I found myself on the wrong side of the video camera first thing and went to change.

3.) Don't put candy in the stockings. I know it is tempting, but just don't. This is a recipe for tantrums and who wants to spend a month working hard so your wee ones' eyes will light up on Christmas morning only to have them let you know in no uncertain terms you have ruined their life because they cannot eat a giant chocolate penguin for breakfast.

4.) Freeing toys from the packaging that they come in these days is a royal pain the ass. Be prepared with a box cutter and some heavy duty scissors (at the least.) Bolt cutters would not be overdoing it.

5.) Amazon.com is so named because the entire rain forest had to be chopped down in order to send out one order. Everything will come in a separate box, your UPS man will run over your driveway lights on purpose to get even and you will be left with a mountain of cardboard blocking the entrace into your garage.

Can't wait to do it all again next year!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Monday, December 21, 2009

Get 1000 new followers in one day!

Heather had a fantastic post today in response to the controversy surrounding Shellie. It really made my day to read it because so often I have sat here, thousands of miles away from her wishing there was something, anything, I could do to help her. Turns out, the tweets we send off into cyberspace and the outpourings of love on our blogs do actually matter during our online friends' time of need.

Twitter is an awesome resource. Whether I want to share something funny, vent about something frustrating going on or just see what the world is up to it is there day or night. If I sneak the whole box of Christmas Cookies into the bed to munch on while blogging, I can tweet it and instantly get back up telling me to #putthosebackrightnow! If my kids are making me nuts I might get a response from another mom in Chicago telling me their kids are being ten times worse and I'm able to laugh about it with them. I get up to the minute news, someone to "watch" the big game with or tips on great Christmas presents for those hard to buy for relatives.

And yes, there are lots of us that use twitter as a support group. Why that is so threatening to some people I just don't understand. I have to wonder when I read these scathing accusations of moms that tweet while their children are fighting for their lives have any understanding of the technology that makes social networking possible. Tweeting doesn't involve going into your living room and firing up the old Commodore 64, waiting 10 minutes for it to start up and then dialing into Prodigy. What she did took no more time than a very brief phone call and surely nobody would try to fault someone for calling someone, anyone, when something so shocking and horrible happens. Social networking isn't limited to Farmville and trending topics on the latest hit movie. It can be used for amazing things too. Now if you'll excuse me I need to go check my @ replies...

Friday, December 18, 2009

5 Years

Five years ago we braved the bringing together of all the various warring factions sides of our families for a wedding. Sure, there were arguments, plenty of threats (from me) and perhaps 911 had to be called during our reception with paramedics swarming in.. but all of that is neither here nor there. The important thing is that we made damn sure all the elderly relatives were fed at a decent hour and not left waiting. And that we had an open bar. And really, isn't that what weddings are all about?

In the movies the groom is frequently shown freaking out and considering running off while he still can. Pacing back and forth... or doing last minute nerve calming shots with the best man. My husband to be? He calmly went downstairs in the chapel and ran his hands under hot water because he was "afraid they would be cold" when I got up to the altar. I think the typical concern is cold feet hon.

Happy Anniversary Roo

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Bloggy Holiday Card Exchange



Wishing all my bloggy friends a very happy holiday season from my crazy family to yours!


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Family tradition

Thank goodness NaBloPoMo wasn't in December. Good thinking on their part. Family drama is already heating up. I sure do love the holidays. Every year I feel like I'm having to drag my family through the motions. I buy the gifts for my mom to give my dad, for my dad to give my mom, for my parents to give my husband, for my parents to give my children. I've even started buying things for myself for my husband to give to my parents to give to me. I'm determined my children will grow up thinking Christmas is as special as I think it is. I want them to remember it as a magical time of the year filled with family memories and anticipation. When they are older I want them to understand what the holiday is *really* about both in the religious sense but also the spirit of the holiday too. Thinking of others, appreciating their many blessings and remembering those that aren't as fortunate. I'm determined they won't see it as the time of year that their mom lost her cool at the crazy uncle that persisted in standing over her shoulder saying "another potato? you don't need any more potatos, who is going to eat all this food?" while ridding the entire house of doritos and mixed nuts and eating directly out of the serving pots. Or the time of year that mom and grandma got in a fight about whether or not the TURKEY needed to be refrigerated overnight. Holy hell my mother and her steadfast belief that food never spoils. Sigh, I'm looking forward to it already.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Who in the hell is this guy?


Merry Christmas from the family y'all

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Monday, December 7, 2009

Fuzzy Logic

There is so much static going on in my head I can't seem to get a clear thought out of the lot of it. I have so many half projects and to do's swirling around that it is beginning to induce panic. On top of that I feel like I spend my day chasing down my "half way dones" while not actually finishing anything or spending any quality time with the kids. This is resulting in one broke down mama. How to drop it all, figure out the two or three most important things and focus on them while admitting that I won't get everything done? Won't happen... I'm just not wired that way. Sigh.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

11 months old

Monday, November 30, 2009

Not Me! Monday

It wasn't me that stepped in a puddle while in the kitchen in the wee hours of the morning and upon checking to make sure it wasn't pee from one critter or another walked away without bothering to get it up.

It also isn't me that has no plans for dinner this week or groceries in the house. But if it WERE me, I'd totally have a justifiable excuse because c'mon people, it was just Thanksgiving and certainly I shouldn't still be having to do all this thinking about food.

It was most definitely not me last night that was completely confused by Google Wave. I would never have sat there staring at the screen in confusion for twenty minutes. I'm not that old.. right?

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Children are like hamsters

I came to this realization a few days ago. I wanted to back this claim up with pictures, but I'll never get things together enough for that.

The Peanut has already managed to chew pieces of wood off of both his cribs.

The Weebles nibbles bites off when she eats. If you hand her an apple she will give it back to you when she is done with a dozen little tiny nibbles all over the apple. She does the same thing with celery and potatoes.

Yesterday the Peanut crawled between the sofa and the wall. We were afraid we'd have to move the whole thing to get him out.

While they certainly do NOT sleep during the day, they have been known to be wide awake half the night.

I'm considering looking into buying a large wheel for the living room so they can run off their energy in the afternoon....

Friday, November 27, 2009

Black Friday

My posts of late have been more twitter worthy than blog worthy and I feel bad about that. My on again off again depression has been dragging me down the last week or two and it has taken every ounce of everything I have to keep on keepin' on where I absolutely have to. Some afternoons I'm pretty sure I'm going to collapse on the floor and never get up again. Bleh. I'm hoping the fog lifts soon and things look up. This is my favorite time of the year and I don't want this bullshit depression to detract from that. Bring on the Xanax* people.

*I don't actually know if Xanax is for anxiety/depression per se. I am woefully uneducated in the world of pharmaceuticals. So don't go self prescribing based on me...

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thankful

Thankful for my babies. Thankful for my husband. Thankful for my friends, IRL and bloggy. Thankful for sleeeeep. :)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Naptime Routine

I am a slave to the daytime routine on the days I am here by myself. Admittedly part of the reason I am so rigid regarding naps is that I crave a few minutes to just zone out. However, it is also crucial that the little people get the sleep they need or they turn into whiny PITAs. And I say that as only a mama who loves them can. So the double whammy of no time to myself + whiny children is enough to push me right over the edge into screamy mad mama behavior.

I have documented the Peanut's sketchy daytime sleep record here many times. I seem to have hit on a delicate formula that works. After lunch I nurse him and put him in his sister's old car seat, yeah it is pink gotaproblemwiththat?? He doesn't know and I try not to take too many pictures... ahem. I have to turn on a specific episode I have TiVo'ed of Classical Baby and then I get his sister ready for her nap and we go upstairs for me to tuck her in. Yes, believe me I have tremendous guilt for essentially strapping my poor baby in and forcing him to watch TV but it is the only way he will sleep for any length of time. If I tuck him in upstairs in his room (during the day only, at night he's fine) he wakes up after 15 or 20 minutes and will not fall back asleep. No amount of crying, playing, cajoling, nursing, or witch doctor-y will change this fact. I wouldn't let him cry it out anyway because that isn't my thing, but believe me, not gonna happen. This little guy is STUBBORN. The show is 20 minutes long, I have to manually restart the damn thing (TiVo doesn't have a repeat function, although I can't really imagine why it would..) and if I accidentally let it run out some damn Elmo commercial comes on that is loud as hell and wakes him. Then it is game over. So I spend his entire nap (which with this plan lasts 2+ hours) keeping a close eye on the TV and restarting as soon as it nears the end with bomb squad precision.

What quirky rituals do you or your children require?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Mommy: 0 - Kids: 0

Today was one of those no nap days. So.. yeah. I'm pretty much done for. Night all.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Weekend Recap

We spent the weekend with my in laws. The purpose of the trip was two fold. Saturday was my father in law's birthday and we wanted to celebrate it with him and Saturday was also the Asheville Christmas parade. We tried to go to the parade last year but assumed it was the weekend after Thanksgiving instead of the weekend before and missed out.

We got into Asheville a little after ten Friday night. Peanut did great and slept the entire four hours or so we were in the car. Weebles stayed up until her usual bedtime around eight thirty so she only got in about two hours of sleep. When we got there they both woke up and were immediately thrown into excited ooooh goodie look it is SiSi, Granddaddy and Uncle Yama! mode. This was the first time Peanut really seemed to take in his surroundings there and their house has all sorts of interesting things to look at. As a result we didn't manage to get them settled back down until nearly one AM. Ouch. Someone that doesn't have kids might think "well at least they'll sleep in the next morning..." and to that I say YOU FOOL! That is not how the game is played. Peanut was up and at 'em at his usual five AM.

We spent two hours at the parade and both kids were wild the whole time. Then the Peanut grabbed a twenty minute catnap on the way to lunch. After lunch we headed back to my in laws' and the Weebles took a nice hour + nap until five or so. Peanut meanwhile refused further napping and played. We headed to dinner around six thirty and the kids held up remarkably well for having had such a busy day. Peanut passed out in the car on the way home and we managed to change him into his jammies and tuck him in all while he still slept. Weebles however kept going on strong throughout the presents and cake and called it a night around ten.

Not surprisingly both kids were whiny basketcases all day Sunday. Totally exhausted from the previous day they weren't able to handle much of anything so we piled into the car fairly early to head home. My mood wasn't too far off from theirs so it probably wasn't the most pleasant ride for my poor husband with three whiny folks in the car. Thankfully bedtime went well and we're back into our regular (still up at five AM... groan) routine. Just in time to do it all again for Thanksgiving! :)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Yesterday my kid ate:

A cinnamon roll. Cup of milk.

A handful of cheddar bunnies and a pack of dried fruit.

Two lollipops. They were organic, does that help? No?

Two mini candy canes.

Three french fries and probably a quarter of a cup of ketchup.

Chocolate milkshake.

An orange.

Two and a half french fries and another quarter cup of ketchup. Cup of milk.

The icing off a piece of chocolate birthday cake. It was vegan, does that help? No?

The sad thing is, I'm pretty sure she did better than me yesterday. Sigh.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Christmas Parade

The Peanut really got into the Christmas parade today. Laughing and waving at the passing floats.



Then again, maybe he knows something I don't about this guy:

Friday, November 20, 2009

GAH How many effn days are there in November

I used to like to blog. I looked forward to it. Clearly something has gone awry. Now it's all like ohforfuckssake AGAIN with the blogging? I'm not one for quitting so I'm still plowing ahead. Just be forewarned there is all kinds of written garbage headed your way.

We're in the midst of a sleep regression here in the Slawter household. Two of them to be more accurate. For the uninitiated, a sleep regression is a period in the development of a child where they are on the verge of major developmental milestones and as a result their little brains are so busy prattling on with excitement that they cannot sleep. The definition is way the hell cuter than the reality of it.

You'll be going along, night after night thinking "Hey! the kids sure seem to be sleeping better... we're totally making progress. Just imagine in a few weeks I might not get up at all at this rate." This is where you should stop. Because it makes it even worse when the inevitable happens.

I'm not exaggerating when I say that for the last three or four nights just as soon as my head hits the pillow a child wakes up. You can then repeat that scenario six or seven times throughout the night. Believe it or not, this leaves a person tired, frazzled and somewhat pissed off (if that someone is short on patience as I am.) And after the stretch of pretty decent sleep it is especially crippling to backtrack so spectacularly.

But hey! Good news, I guess this means my kids should be doing some new amazing things in the next couple of weeks! Walking? Talking? Doing the laundry?

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Random Thought Thursday

* I should be packing. The amount of crap that has to go with us when we go anywhere overnight is astounding. Beds, blankets, loveys, food, cups/dishes, clothes, more clothes, toys, movies, medicine, more clothes... crazy. I cannot fathom why my husband and I didn't just pick up and go more often while we still could. Hear that childless people? Travel while it still seems worth the effort!!

* I'm having a hella time finding Christmas + birthday presents for my little guy. Part of the problem is that he inherited so many toys from his big sister that it limits the good ideas. The other difficulty is that he is just now starting to really enjoy playing so I don't have a great handle on what his favorites are going to be yet. And then of course I have the double whammy of back to back gift buying occasions for him so I feel like I need twice as many ideas.

* At what point do you step in when a relative is being obnoxious to your children? If anyone else had intentionally made my baby boy cry and then laughed in his face the mama bear in me would have ripped them to pieces. But today I just sat and stared and then looked at my dad for a reaction, got none and was duly disappointed in him. Should be used to it by now I guess.

* I have so many loose ends to tie up in the coming weeks. Preschool enrollment forms, beach house rental deposits, Christmas cards. Yikes! I'd better find what is left of my marbles and get them all in one place so I might actually get some things done.

* Get well Anissa. I miss teh funny.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

200th Post

There were lots of different directions I thought about going today. I hated to give up a Wordless Wednesday but felt like that wouldn't be a very profound way to mark a milestone. Then last night I got online after getting the kids to bed to this news.

Anissa is the ringleader of the Aiming Low gals, one of my favorite blogging sites. I'm a D List blogger (as you can see from my sidebar) but Anissa? Anissa is what the "A" in A List stands for. I am being reminded again today of why the blogging community is so important to me as everyone rallies around her and her family.

As I go through my day I look at things in a different light. Sure, I could bitch that the kids got up at 5:30 (AGAIN!?!?!) or that my two year old dumped an entire box of Cheerios all over the floor this morning. But then I remember Anissa. I think about her husband, her three kids, all her friends. And I tell myself to shut the fuck up. Now if you'll excuse me I'm going to go eat some kittehs in her honor.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Fight for Preemies Day



Today is fight for preemies day. I remember when I was pregnant being terrified my babies would come early. Each week I would search the internet for statistics on the survival rates for babies born at that point in my pregnancy. I would go on to read about possible complications they might face, length of NICU stays and their future prognosis. What can I say? I'm a worrier.

I was a preemie myself weighing just five pounds when I was born. I've done my very best to catch up in the weight department. ;) I've had friends and co-workers that have had preemies and seen firsthand the stress, worry, helplessness and heartbreak it can cause. I also have a friend that works in the NICU and she amazes me. That isn't so much a career as a calling I'd have to think. I was thrilled she was able to be there right after my first child was born, but even happier that she was there as nothing more than a friend.

Luckily both my babies were born full term and healthy. While there are lots of things we can do to protect our unborn children we cannot control it all. My next child could very well be born early. We are at a time where we are realizing that preventative medicine is crucial and that all starts during pregnancy. Supporting the March of Dimes is one of the best ways to contribute to the fight against premature birth.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Driving me to drink

If my kid asks me one more time what I'm doing I'm going to have to go straight into the kitchen and have a shot of whiskey. That is all.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


Saturday, November 14, 2009

Daddy Guest Post

Weekends are a wonderful thing. Even if they are sometimes tiring as hell. I look forward to nothing more during the week than being able to spend two entire days with my wife and kids. During the week, my play-time with the kids is limited. The majority of my time in the morning is spent getting ready for work, and the majority of my time with them in the evening is getting them ready for bed. I still manage to have a lot of fun with my kids on weekdays, but nothing compares to the weekend. As probably most people do, I spend at least part of every day at work wishing that I was home instead. But the funny thing is, each Saturday, usually mid-afternoon, realizing just how exhausting it must be for Mary to be at home alone with the kids on weekdays.

Regardless of what time we manage to get him to sleep at night, the Peanut tends to wake up, without fail, sometime between 5:15 and 5:45 in the morning. This would be all fine and dandy if he was good about taking a nap sometime during the day (well -- theoretically anyway...I guess there's a good chance I'd still complain about getting up that early even if he did nap). But he isn't good about taking naps during the day, which just adds insult to injury. It's almost like his sole source of energy is from some invisible solar panel up on our roof (I say up on our roof because if the sun is up, even if he's in a dark room being rocked while a nice gentle soother is playing, he's giddy and playful, as though he's in the middle of a playground with jolting carnival music blaring nearby.)

So, without fail, every Saturday, around 1:30 in the afternoon, after I'm already tired from getting up, playing with and helping care for the kids, doing whatever errands we have to do for the morning, getting lunch and helping to get the Weeble down for her nap, just when I'm looking forward to a break -- just for a few minutes -- the Peanut suddenly gets his second (third?) wind and has the energy to go on a Babycrawl 5K. What's insane about all of this is that Mary is with me the whole time, and I still feel that way. I'm not alone with the kids. Maybe the Peanut inherited his ability to harness the sun's energy from his mom -- because as tired as I know being here during the week makes her, she's gotta be getting the energy to take care of them from somewhere.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Random Thought Thursday

** If it doesn't stop raining I am going to go completely mad. We have been stuck inside for what seems like three months. The Weebles asks me over and over "go outside walk?" I wouldn't even care about the rain at this point but its forty degrees outside. The double whammy of freezing AND raining I just can't find a way around.

** How can Thanksgiving be two weeks away? HOW PEOPLE? I don't even want to think about how much cleaning, shopping and planning I have to do in those two weeks. Not to mention we're going out of town part of the time between now and then.

** Looming behind Thanksgiving is Christmas. We have about 5% of the decorations out already so at least I feel like that's a start. But the recipe finding, cookie baking, gift shopping, wrapping, card sending, family fueding, tree installation madness that awaits is a little overwhelming even though it is my favorite time of the year and I love all those things.

** Even after we survive Christmas we have The Peanut's one year birthday to look forward to a week later. So I'll have to be planning for that somewhere in all the Christmas mayhem.

** This isn't so random is it? More of a depressing "oh shit I gots a lot to do why am I just sitting here refreshing twitter?" list. Better get cracking.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Happy Birthday Maddie

Dear Maddie,

I am a stranger to you and your parents. My daughter is only a couple of months older than you and when she was a few months old I discovered "mommy blogs." Reading them helped me not to feel so alone as I sat here with my baby day after day wondering if I were doing this whole thing right.

About a year ago I found your mommy's blog. It got bookmarked right away because your mommy is very funny and the beautiful pictures of you jumped off the screen and made me laugh. I looked at your pictures and could see the joy in your eyes and thought that your mom must be a really good mom for you to be so happy.

Over the months I enjoyed reading about you and seeing everything that you were learning and how much you were growing. When you got sick I worried and checked in often for updates. When your mom and dad were hurting I felt helpless, desperately wishing I could change things for them.

I wish I had gotten the opportunity to meet you in person. I have never seen a child so full of life. I would love nothing more than to be buying you a present today and wrapping it with a million curly ribbons for you to laugh at. But I will do the only thing I know to do today to celebrate your life. Today, and every November 11th, I will make a donation to Friends of Maddie in your honor.

Your mom and dad's posts still make me laugh and all too often they make me cry. I anxiously (but not too anxiously, don't get any ideas Binky!) await the arrive of your little sister. She will have her own light and her own personality but I have no doubt we will all fall in love with her just like we did with you.

Happy Birthday Maddie.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Insomnia

My son doesn't sleep during the day.

That's not totally true. He sometimes will nap a little, but not reliably and certainly not enough. Today, for example he didn't sleep until noon. He was so tired he finally conked out in his high chair. Our usual "routine" is for me to nurse him and put him in the car seat in front of Classical Baby while I tuck his sister in for her nap. The classical music and colorful graphics usually knock him out and he'll nap there for awhile. Hey, there's one of me and two of them. If anybody has any better ideas I'm listening.

Today though he went out before I could do that. He slept all of 20 minutes after I put him in his crib. So I picked up the routine where it would normally be, changing his diaper and nursing him then snuggling him down with his blankie in front of his "baby show" as the Weebles calls it. I got her all settled in her room and came down to find him still awake. Sigh. Forty minutes later he was still wide awake yammering away at the animals on the screen. I gave up and got him out of the seat.

That's when I discovered his dirty diaper. Well played little man. Now I feel guilty for letting you sit there hoping you'd fall asleep.

Not too guilty though, because I plugged the wipes warmer back in this past weekend. Warm wipes for you Peanut! You can't possibly accuse me of being that horrible of a mama. I'll call that one a draw.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Not Me! Monday

It was certainly not me that was all "woe is me" yesterday when I have a wonderful husband and two healthy happy kids. Not to mention a warm safe home and plenty of food (trust me.. I count points.)

All my love, thoughts, prayer and support for MckMama and her family today.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Pity Party

I'm having one of those days where I'm just exhausted. Not really so much in the physical sense, since I've been exhausted physically for at least a year and don't even notice that anymore. Tired of worrying, tired of feeling so heartsick every time I read about a sick child. Tired of fighting with my kids to sleep or to eat. Then tired of them melting down because they didn't sleep or eat. Tired of being snappy with my husband. Tired of feeling like I'm not taking care of myself. Tired of being tired.

Then again, it could just be the two hours I spent in Wal-Mart today. Blergh.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

27 Months

Weebles,

Twenty Seven months isn't really any sort of milestone but you are growing and learning so much every day that I'm afraid I won't be able to keep up with it all.

Thank you so much for being such a wonderful big sister. You are always looking out for your baby brother and it is very sweet. If I look tired or stressed out you say "You otay mama?" and pat my back. You also use please, thank you, and I'm sorry at all the appropriate times.

You love to run and jump. I think your gross motor skills are pretty much all taken care of at this point. We've been trying to teach you letters and numbers but you are totally uninterested, and that's okay.

The potty thing? Is pretty amazing. I never considered that my child would just up decide to use the bathroom on her own without any coaching. Impressive. I finally took your diapers off the changing table. It looks so funny to just have one basket of diapers up there. If you want to teach your brother your mad skills I'd be fine with that...

Things aren't all rainbows and unicorns of course. Some days we go through an hour or two where you are constantly in time out. Other days you aren't at all. It is pretty clearly a factor of what kind of mood both you and I are in. I try so hard not to let my exhaustion from a rough night show in my parenting the following day but find it nearly impossible.

Now that your brother is a little older we've decided to try to split you up for some one on one time more often. The two of us went to the mall this week and it was really nice. Just strolling around hand in hand watching the Christmas decorations go up.

You've gotten into the question asking phase. I didn't think that would get on my nerves. But you ask the same question thirty times in a row and admittedly my patience wears thin on that. :) I assume answering the question the same way every time is the way to go, maybe you are testing to see if it will change? But it is awful tempting the tenth time you ask me what a Christmas tree is to tell you it is a car to see if you will call me on it.

You are upstairs sleeping in your big girl bed. You wake up in the morning and tell me you have to potty. You have definite thoughts on what you want for breakfast and you tell your daddy "be careful, i wuv you" when he leaves for work. You even have your first pair of light up shoes. I'm having a hard time coming to terms with the fact you are growing up so fast. But, I am so proud of you. Sleep tight little girl.

Love,
Mama

Friday, November 6, 2009

Mama's Christmas Wish List

* Stanley Steemer every month for the entire year.

* Eight solid hours of sleep every night for a week. Repeat every three months. I could rule the world with that kind of sleep.

* Total and complete silence for five minutes a day. No white noise, no baby monitors, no WonderPets and most definitely no whining.

* A drive through fast food place with all healthy food. Bonus points if it tastes good.

* Crib sheets that actually fit and don't require superhuman strength to get on the mattress.

* Sheets for my bed that stay on and don't constantly come off at the corners. WTH? My sheets are too big, my kids' are too small. Conspiracy to drive me crazy?

* Clothes that are both stylish and comfortable at the same time.

* Something that goes around and constantly puts toys away, Roomba style

* In the event that some of the things on my list are hard to find, I will settle for a live in nanny/housekeeper/chef/masseuse/hairstylist. Can I get a WOOT for daily blowouts?

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Bathroom adventures

There are a whole lot of times I find myself thinking "huh, didn't really see THAT challenge coming." Although admittedly this one had crossed my mind in recent weeks, still it gave me pause when it actually happened.

I needed to pick up a few things at the grocery store. I have a newly un-diapered 2 year old daughter. I don't really like potty trained because I didn't train her. I bought the potty about a year ago and put it where she could check it out. She decided to run with it about a month ago and she hasn't looked back. Anyway, so I was out and about with both kids. I had the big monster cart with the little car section for the two of them to ride in and we were clunking clumsily down the aisles because that thing is a total beast to steer. We were somewhere in the middle of the baking aisle when I heard the dreaded words.

"Mommy I go potty"

Pause. Pause. Pause. What should I say here? Ummm... okay sweetie hold on a minute. Mind racing I try to distract her by pointing out things on the shelves.

"Mommmm -eeee I GO potty!"

Alrighty so we're doing this are we? Super. So I maneuver the gigantic cart through the store to the restrooms. Take her out and let her run around while I unsnap her brother. Still totally unsure how this is going to play out we head into the ladies' room.

I have noticed in a few public restrooms lately a little fold down seat presumably for just such an occasion but there wasn't one of those handy. I contemplated my options. My little Peanut can cruise but can't yet stand on his own. So strap him on the changing table? Yeah, notsomuch. My boy isn't really one of those "quiet, lie still" types and nothing short of a five point harness keeps him in one place. So I squatted down, sat him on my knee and yanked my daughter's pants down with the other hand. I managed to hold him on my knee with one arm while propping her up on the seat with the other. We were all waaay too close to a public bathroom toilet for my liking, but it was the best I could come up with. Luckily I had the foresight to move us all as far away as possible to avoid the startling that would likely come from the autoflushing toilet as I pulled her pants back up.

Another challenge met!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Let's have a little talk about tweetle beetles..

Bonus points for naming that reference.

I would seriously like to nutpunch whoever came up with Daylight Savings Time. Seriously? Who prefers their daylight first thing in the morning anyway? Only bad things come from this scenario.

A.) My children will never come to terms with the fact that time magically shifted an hour. And by the time they finally do come around damn if it won't be time to do it again. Oh ha! That time thing that we've been struggling with for months? Nevermind.. just kidding. Fack.

B.) When the sun stays down longer in the morning, children *might* actually sleep a little later.

C.) Now that it is dark as all hell early in the day there is no opportunity to get outside with the kids post nap/snack and wear them out get exercise before dinner.

To my dearest son,

When the little hand is on the four and the big hand is on the six, GO BACK TO SLEEP. Sweet Baby Jeebus it is four thirty in the effn morning. Under no circumstances is that a proper time to wake up.

I realize now that bringing you to bed with me for your middle of the night feed the last few weeks has been a poor decision. I suspected something was up when I'd doze off nursing you only to awake what seemed like a couple of hours later to find you still going strong. Mama is not a pacifier. Get your milks on and then be on your way. I just can't wait to see what kind of oversupply issues this is going to cause. Pumping at three AM FTW!


Also that thing where you wave bye bye now? OMG THE CUTENESS.

Love, Mama

Moral of the story: I don't care how damn bright and sunny it is, six AM is still friggin six AM no matter how you look at it and I am still going to be tired and cranky. Give me the sunlight at the end of the day when I might actually get to enjoy it.

Monday, November 2, 2009

10 Months

My little boy. My baby. I can't get away with using that term much longer since you are moving full speed ahead toward toddler-hood. This last month has seemed like an explosion in terms of your personality. All of a sudden toys are interesting to you and you will play with some of them for minutes at the time! You love to drag around the little wooden hammer to the pound a peg set and given the chance you would eat every crayon your sister has.

We had a balloon we picked up somewhere for Halloween and you didn't want to go anywhere without it all day. You'd crawl along with the ribbon in your little fist, the orange balloon bobbing along overhead. Then you'd sit down and yank on the ribbon causing the balloon to bop you in the head repeatedly and you laughed and laughed. I was more sad than both you and your sister when it quit floating overnight. We'll get you more balloons soon, I promise.

You surprise me by being so verbal. Constantly jabbering along. Today you said "Ma Ma Ma Ma Ma" so I'm hoping you'll be getting the hang of saying Mama soon. I sort of assumed you would be a quiet child since you are so close on the heels of your chatty sister but you are determined to have your say as well.

The two of you are still getting along famously. It is so nice to watch you both sit on the floor and share snacks while watching cartoons. She takes good care of you and I hope you'll always get along so well.

You are really into cruising the furniture these days. Going from the coffee table to the couch and chasing the cats around pulling out huge clumps of their fur when you manage to catch up to them. Poor kitties. It will only be a matter of time before you'll be walking on your own and then they'll have to learn to take to higher ground for any peace.

We've been trying to vary your menu so that you can feed yourself more. You still aren't totally excited about the prospect but some foods are starting to stand out as favorites. You LOVE yogurt and will almost always eat that well for me. Spaghetti is another favorite. Everything else is hit or miss.

We've been able to bring you downstairs to our room the last month or so. Since your sister got her new big girl room set up she has been sleeping through the night. We never did figure out how to have both of you in the bed with us without worrying that one might fall off the edge. As you both get older that won't be an issue. You have finally gotten used to sleeping with us. I enjoy waking up to see you sprawled out contentedly beside us snuggling your blankie. That being said could you, for the LOVE OF JESUS, quit waking at five AM? It is really starting to drive me nuts. That is just too damn early. When you are a teenager I swear I am going to wake you every morning at five just to get even.

I can tell that you are going to keep me busy. Every little thing you find on the floor you try to put in your mouth. I have retrieved leaves, wood chips, plastic, rocks, grass and bugs from your little mouth. And you get really ticked off every time I have to do it. As a matter of fact, you get pretty darn upset whenever you don't get your way. If your dad has to go in the kitchen and leaves you on the other side of the baby gate they can probably hear your protests two counties away. If we dare to take something away from you that you want to play with we'd better be ready to hear about it. And you are the most persistent child. When you get your mind on something you will.not.let.it.go. Sometimes I move your sister's milk away from you ten times in the span of five minutes only to have you attack the laptop. Then as I set the milk down to move the laptop you give me a sneaky smile and grab the milk. I am so screwed. You are only 10 months old. What are you going to be pulling over on me when you are two? How about fifteen?

I knew from the very beginning you were always going to keep me on my toes. I love you little man.

Mama

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Season of Giving

November 1 officially begins the Christmas season here at the Slawter house. This is for a couple of reasons. The first is that for the past 11 years I have worked for a mail order company and for the six weeks or so before Christmas there is so much work to be done there that there is very little time left over to shop and decorate. So, if I want time to really get things done right I have to start early. The second is that I really adore Christmas and enjoy dragging the holiday out as long as possible. Also, I don't really have anything in the way of Thanksgiving decor... is there really such a thing? So if I want the house spruced up for Thanksgiving I might as well pull out Christmas stuff. Generally the stockings and tree etc don't go up until right at Thanksgiving but otherwise... yeah we'll be decking the halls in the next week or two.

I could write for thousands of words about Christmas... and I likely will since it is NaBloPoMo here on my blog. But my post today is about charity. I saw on the local news website this morning that the Salvation Army is already ramping up the effort to get toys donated for needy children. The demand this year is especially high due to the economy. Lots of families won't have food to eat or gifts to give their small children. This totally breaks my heart and I look forward to finding as many outlets as possible to help these truly needy people have the holiday that all families deserve. However. And this is where I get all soapbox-y and pissed off. There are horrible people out there. Horrible, despicable greedy criminals that take advantage of others' good will. People that are always on the look out for ways to get their hands on more for themselves. So I encourage everybody that reads this blog to find some way this holiday season to help someone that needs it. Even if all you can give is a kind word to someone that is having a bad day. But please PLEASE be cautious to make sure that the donations you do give go to the right places so that they can get to those that need the help the most instead of lining the pockets of those that seem to think they deserve it.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Harsh realization

So yesterday I took the kids for a walk around the neighborhood as I do most days. I found myself temporarily concerned with the fact I was still in my sweatpants and wondered if neighbors would think I was slouchy walking around in public like that. As I concluded that there wasn't really any point in putting on jeans just for a quick walk it hit me. Oh shit I'm becoming my mother aren't I? I've joked about that before but never realized just how true it is.

My mom frequently hung out in sweatsuits all day and my dad picked on her for it. I'm not quite to the point of wearing matching purple sweatpants and sweatshirts just yet but really what is the difference? I had been letting getting dressed slide thinking that if we were staying in the house most of the day that there wasn't any point in dragging out more clothes just to create even more laundry. Plus there isn't really any denying that pj pants are more comfy that jeans. And for the record, yeah, jeans ARE dressed up for me these days.

This isn't the only way I've been turning into a clone of my mother either. Countless times I have seen my mother eat something just because it was there. The last piece of bacon nobody wanted. Free cookie displays in the grocery store. The rest of the macaroni and cheese on a kid's plate. Stuff that doesn't even taste good for chrissakes. Mindless eating. And damn it if I haven't started doing the same thing and I have no good explanation for it. The only thing I can come up with is that I am totally exhausted and in constant search for an energy source.

Then of course there is the negative self talk. Every meal I cook I'm critical of. Everything I do I find fault with. Do I really want my children, my daughter especially, to grow up hearing her mom put herself down like that? What kind of example does that set? So I'm recommitting myself to make a mindful effort to actually participate in the world around me instead of focusing so exclusively on feeding, clothing and nurturing the smaller members of the family. Now where the hell did I last have my hairbrush...

Friday, October 30, 2009

Brag on Him Friday

I wasn't going to try to post today since I'm still exhausted from our big pumpkin carving soiree yesterday, but then I saw Malia's Brag on Him Friday feature over at her blog Blissfully Domestic and couldn't pass it up.

I have to drop everything and brag on my husband for being such a terrific daddy. True.. his time out routine sucks and he definitely doesn't do things the way I do. BUT he can play with his kids for hours at the time. HOURS. This is the one area of parenting that I am totally inept at. I try. I really do. I flop down on the floor and try to engage them in a puzzle or by building a block tower. But they see right through me. They know I have no idea what I am doing. When daddy is on the scene they are all over him and whatever he is doing. He never seems too tired for a "soccer ball game" or to chase them around with puppets. On our beach trip this week he spent the majority of each day down at the beach building sandcastles or at the pool swimming with the Weebles. Our children are so lucky to have such a hands on father. Thanks Andrew!

Thanks for such a great idea Malia! It is so great to focus on the positive for once. I'll be back to my snarky self tomorrow though. ;)




Vacation

Apparently our family vacation to Hilton Head meant a blog vacation too. But don't worry, I'll be back! NaBloPoMo coming up in November!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Monday, October 19, 2009

Shopping Fail

I've been having a little problem with shopping. Ha, well yes, there is THAT other problem with shopping but that really isn't a problem at all. I love shopping.. it might be considered a little problem of having no money. Anyway back to my shopping dilemma. The kids need clothes. And there are none to be found.

I remember when Weebles was born. It was around this time of year even when I really started getting into buying her clothes. The overalls.. holy cuteness. There were adorable overalls, sweaters, jackets, mittens.. the list goes on. I have boxes and boxes of hardly worn baby clothes in my attic to prove it.

The weather is getting chilly and it is time to update the kiddos wardrobes. So I've been engaging in some pretty serious online shopping only to come up empty handed for the most part. I have found ONE pair of overalls in my vast shopping endeavors for my son. That was found at an Osh Kosh outlet in Hilton Head and is really pretty cute. But where are all the others? The only other pair I found had horrible little tractors or something embroidered ALL OVER them. One on the bib? Yes please. Maybe another on the lower leg.. sure okay. But this trend of embroidering little bitty logos all over the garment is ugly. And don't even get me started on overalls for my daughter. I haven't seen a single pair. Anywhere. I've looked high and low. I could see the argument that in her size you have to take into account potty training and they might not be very popular... but I haven't seen any in the girl's section in any sizes at all.

Kids pants just aren't terribly comfortable (at least for my kids.) On both my children in order to get the right length so they won't be stepping on them, the waist is almost always too tight. So it's either overalls or sweatpants if I want them to be comfy. So where are all the damn overalls??

This brings me to another peeve. Who the hell is designing this stuff. Holy hell on a cracker the clothes in the stores this weekend were some of the ugliest shit I have ever seen. I don't think I'll ever go in another Children's Place again. It was nearly all bright ass clashing colors together. I especially enjoy the shirts that say things like (and I'm not making this one up) "I'm just here for the DRAMA!" Uhh on a two year old? I also particularly enjoyed the onesie that said "Mom says I'm a great catch!" And the leggings. My God the leggings everywhere. I'm going to be up front and say that I can't imagine any place where leggings are a good thing. I grew up in the 80's... I've seen them in their glory days and it wasn't cute then, it isn't cute now. But the really mind boggling part to me is... how do they look over a diaper? I've put tights on my daughter before and it is totally lumpy. I can only imagine the hot mess leggings over a diaper is.

The real kicker this weekend though was in trying to locate coats and knit caps for the kids because we were going to be outside and it was cold. I had some sweatshirt zip up hoods for them but that just wasn't cutting it with temps in the 40's. I could not find any jacket at all in my son's size that wasn't just a lightweight hood like I already have. The only jackets I found for my daughter was a Dora the Explorer one in JC Pennys (oh yes, I went there out of total desperation) and one at Children's Place that was sixty dollars and a horrible pink/grey striped design. As for the caps? I couldn't find any. I finally went in Belk thinking surely a department store of all places would have the basics to be told by the sales clerk "We don't sell things like that here. You should try those other stores... you know the ones I'm talking about..." Clearly I don't lady because this is the fourth store I've been in. She whispered that I should try K-Mart. Apparently trendy folks don't like to be warm.

I know styles come and go but with kids' clothing it isn't like they can just pull out stuff from last year to wear if I they don't like this year's fashion. You'll know my kids at the playground.. they'll be the ones in sweatpants.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Early to bed, Early to Rise

My definition of sleeping in has changed drastically. I consider it a luxury to sleep until seven. I know right, I'll wait here while you collect your jaw off the floor. Generally our days start somewhere in the 5:30 range.

The Peanut has always been an early riser. I just don't get it. Why? Why get up? It's warm in bed. You're already all blissed out and comfortable. FortheloveofGod just hit your mental snooze a couple of times. Ahem... sorry.

The Weebles has always been good about sleeping in. Probably because she slept with us from the beginning and just got used to our schedule. She routinely would not wake up until seven or even eight ::heart flutters:: Even the days she would wake up a little early, or on weekends when we wanted to take our time getting up we could just prop her up between us and turn on cartoons. We could easily get an extra hour of sleep that way.

This plan just doesn't fly with Peanut. He sits still for nothing. So when we try to put him between us he spends all his time hell bent on climbing over one of us and taking a header onto the floor. This is surprisingly not conducive to sleep. One longstanding option we had was for one of us to get up with him and put him in his bouncy seat in front of Classical Baby. Yeah? Haven't I already made it clear we utilize the TV in order to get more sleep? Quitchyer "I cannot believe these people with the TV" cause mama needs some sleep or she might start hugging folks a leeetle too tight. Anyway.. unfortunately he has outgrown the bouncy seat. He has a mini crib in our room so we have managed to get him interested in Wow Wow Wubbzy for 15-20 minutes while hanging out in there. Every little bit helps.

But what is really the long term solution here? Are there parents out there that just hop out of bed and start playing Legos at that ungodly hour? What do you do with your early risers?

**I think my posts still show up at a funny time. FTR it is just barely after six. Andrew is upstairs with Weebs reading stories and Peanut is just barely asleep in our bed. I can't sleep because I'm afraid he'll go over the edge. Now that Weebles has discovered she can get out of bed on her own she is excited to do so and has been waking a little earlier. The pumpkin patch opens in three hours. It will easily take me that long to get everyone ready anyway.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

STTN

Every parent... okay well every interwebby parent knows that acronym all too well. It hasn't been something I have worried with too terribly much. With my first we co-slept. It was the only way I would have ever gotten any sleep what with my insatiable need to make sure she was still breathing every thirty seconds or so. This went on in some form until... let's see. Five days ago?

And I honestly haven't minded. Sure there were times I worried that our nighttime parenting, or whatever the term is in AP, too lazy to google, was going to make it where she had a really tough time ever sleeping on her own. When she calls to us, we go get her. When it is time to go to bed one, or both, of us lie there with her until she drops off to sleep. In the last month we have switched her from her crib, which never saw much use at all, to a new twin bed. She freaking loves that bed. She loves to play on it, she loves to read stories there and most importantly she loves to sleep there. I'm not sure if it is related but several nights ago during what will come to be known as the "great holy hells we all have some sort of H1N1Y2KEbola virus" I was in the midst of tucking her in when the entire contents of my head started to make a beeline for the nearest exit. I gave her a big hug and told her I'd be right back and headed downstairs to try to make the insanity stop. I expected her to freak out as she has in the past when we left her at bedtime. I didn't hear anything from upstairs. After about twenty minutes we snuck up there to see what trouble she was getting into. The girl was asleep! No freaking way! That was maybe the second time she had ever fallen asleep on her own.

The night progressed. No sign of Weebles. No calling over the monitor for daddy to come get her and bring her down to our room. Wha? Whose child is this anyway? What a fluke... except the same thing happened the next night. And the next. We are now on night #5 of tucking her in, leaving the room and *hopefully* a full night's sleep in her own bed. I must admit I miss her a little bit. But I am really happy that she can put herself to sleep and feels confident and safe enough to make it through the night without us. And with nary a cry it out episode necessary. Sure it took two years and two months for her to sleep through the night on her own but I'd do it again in a heartbeat. I know that CIO was just not right for our family. Don't get me wrong though. I'm not counting my chickens here. I know all too well that any minute now it could all go to hell in a handbasket and we could be up all night watching Oobi with Walden, Widget, Wow Wow, Bear, Penguin, Pooh Bear, Dancing somethingorother Elmo and a sprinkler (yeah that's right, a damn Elmo sprinkler has been in my bed at times.. not as risque as it sounds.)

And in case you are thinking "hey good for them! finally getting some sleep..." don't forget about Peanut. He's already been up THREE times in the last two and a half hours. I'm not worried though, he'll STTN when he's good and ready.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Potty time

Here is the obligatory potty post. I think every blogger I read has had one, or twelve, in recent months. My daughter is 26 months old and I am really not interested in ditching diapers just yet. I don't see the hype. Sure, they are expensive and horrible for the environment whether you go cloth or disposable. I have done both over the last two years. But I find diaper changing to actually be rather easy. That was almost always the first comment I got when pregnant with my son. "Oh my you'll have two in diapers.. you poor thing." Really BFD on the diapers. It should be "oh my you'll have two that REFUSE TO SLEEP OR EAT OR GIVE YOU ANY PEACE FOR MONTHS AND MONTHS ON END..." but I digress.

Where was I? Oh the potty. So when my daughter was a little over a year old I ordered one of those little potty chair things. Mostly because I like ordering things. Yes, I'm aware I have a tiny shopping problem. She has loved sitting on it, standing IN it, carrying it around, putting toys in it, yada yada for the last year or so. Then a few months ago before bathtime I jokingly asked her if she had to pee and pointed at the potty. Lo, the girl sat down and peed. After that every so often I'd mention it to her when she was already running around nekkid and she'd sit down and go. It was a novelty.

In the last three weeks or so she was started to take it seriously. At first she totally did not get the concept of her pants coming off before going which was a bit of a funny problem to have. Poor kid just thought you peed right through your pants. She still doesn't know how to get her pants on and off, or perhaps is just unwilling to try. So now if she has to go she will run over to me and yell "MOMMY PANTS OFF!" and so I'll yank them off and she'll run to the bathroom. It's actually quite adorable and if I didn't have a "no photography/videography of naked children" policy I would HAVE to get video of her running bare assed, curls just bouncing away into the bathroom. It cracks me up every time. She's had one or two accidents when she was concentrating on her play too much and didn't realize until too late but for the most part we now go all day without diapers. She's even woken up a few times dry in the morning and run straight to the potty.

So, I'm not sure what to think. I'm not ready for her to be potty trained. I'm most certainly not ready to undertake a car trip and have to stop every thirty minutes for potty breaks and no way in hell am I taking her in any bathroom along the road to go. The potty will have to start travelling with us. And what on earth do you do when you go out and about alone with two of them? I can't just set the baby down somewhere to help the Weebs in the bathroom. Diapers are just SO much easier. I may even look into them for future pregnancies...

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Here is a little PSA for all my good friends on the interwebs

** They aren't going to make you pay to use Facebook. Joining a group attempting to threaten Facebook into this already obvious policy is silly.

** I am not going to join your Farming community/mafia family/virtual peanuckle group. It doesn't mean I don't love you, I just don't get a thrill from that kind of activity.

** No matter how totally worth the cause, pennies are never donated from the forwarding of an email. Period.

** Nobody cares "What Beyonce song" you are. I understand the joy one gets from wasting time taking such quizzes online, but is it a requirement that you publish the results? I enjoy reading your genuine status updates, however when you take thirty of those quizzes in a row to kill a boring afternoon at work you are cluttering up my feed and making my "hide" link itchy.

** Sparkly glitter comments/images are always in poor taste. ALWAYS. Just don't go there.

** MySpace is not getting "too crowded." That forward where they tell you to forward it on to see who is really using their account... yeah not real. So rest easy.

** If you get an email from Ebay asking you to login to verify your information... that is fake.

** The King of Prussia.. yeah he doesn't really need your help on laundering money out of his country.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Phoning it in

I've been trying to find some space every day in order to Shred. There simply isn't an option early in the morning before the kids get up. I'm not 100% sure on this, but there may not ever be a time one of our kids isn't up... Anyway, I'm very much at the stage where there isn't one naptime every day that both kids are asleep and it isn't ideal trying to get it done after the kids go to bed because... well see above. Sometimes I'm not sure they ever actually go. So, today I tried doing it "first thing" after the kids got up and had breakfast and had settled into some morning playtime.

This? Didn't go over well. I had planned to blog the entire experience but now that it is later in the day I simply don't have the energy. Suffice to say I had to pause the DVD at least six times and it took me a solid 45 minutes to complete. It also involved doing the bicycle crunches with my daughter lying on top of me (hey it did make them harder.. maybe better results?) and a "poop on the floor" incident. Good times. So, with all the pausing I feel like I didn't go as good of a job as I usually do. Although I can certainly say my heart rate stayed elevated the entire time. Sheesh.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

What ifs

I find myself frequently thinking thoughts about how life would be with only one child. Not so much what it would be like to have an only child and never have any others, more like what daily life would be like with just one. It goes like this:

Wow, if Weebles was my only child I could spend this rainy afternoon curled up napping with her.

or..

If Weebles was still my only baby it wouldn't be a problem to sit up with her all night letting her sleep in my lap. It was so much easier for her to sleep that way when she was sick.

or..

Think of all the fun stuff my preschooler and I could go out and do together if it were just us.

It isn't always my firstborn that gets that sort of speculation either.

If Peanut had been born first I could have just held him all day long when he was so colic-y. I actually DID hold him the vast majority of the day but of course still had another child to look after.

or..

If Peanut were the only baby I bet I could get him to co-sleep more and get more rest at night.

I have an enormous amount of guilt when I find myself having these thoughts because DUH I love both my kids to pieces. The one on one dynamic is something I miss sometimes though. Because when there is one baby and one mom it is easier to be on their schedule. Easier to cater to their needs and practice solid attachment parenting. With two I sometimes feel like no matter how much I'm hitting it out of the ballpark for one child the other is just having a so-so day. Then of course there are the days nobody has a good day.. but let's not go there.

Things are definitely getting easier and easier though. As Peanut gets older he has been able to play with his sister more and more. Now he eats a lot of the same foods she does so feeding schedules are getting easier to manage. And maybe one day, if all the planets align and joy and sunshine rain down from the heavens, I will have a night where they both sleep well and I actually get to bed at a decent time.

And that, I'm sure, will be just in time for baby number three to arrive and send us all straight back to square one.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Not Me! Monday

This past week I so did not get myself a Happy Meal at McDonald's after doing the weekly shopping and then lie to my preschooler when I got home. The girl SMELLED the fries on my breath and said all excitedly... FRIES?!?! I most certainly did not tell her, "no honey, no fries here, LOOK I brought you some more dishwashing detergent..."

It was absolutely not me that got so excited about the Alice.com promotion where they include samples in certain boxes that I divided my order into three shipments in hopes of getting one. Nope, I would never compromise the environment in such a fashion. Speaking of which, probably need to order some Purell.

It could not possibly have been me that allowed my nine month old to get hold of a sippy cup containing Kool Aid this weekend. We have been pulling out all the stops to get our sick daughter to drink something, a.n.y.t.h.i.n.g. puhlease, and Kool Aid was just one of the many attempted bribes. But I never would have been so careless as to leave the cup where my cruising son might find it, surely.

I also certainly did not get up and go to work this morning even though I felt absolutely horrible from a head cold just because going to work is actually easier than taking care of two small, also sick, children. I also did not consider the fact I could stop and get McDonald's for breakfast as a compelling reason to go in.

I DID however participate in Mckmama's "Not Me! Monday" So much fun! Thanks :)

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Friday, October 2, 2009

Nine Months

Little Man,

Today you are nine months old. You love your sippy cup and feeding yourself cheerios. You aren't too interested in feeding yourself anything else though, go figure. Help a mama out and eat some fruit and veggies every now and again. You are getting really good at standing while holding onto something, you even tried to let go a few times yesterday. You also like to climb up in your sister's chairs to try to reach things that are too high for you. Please stop doing that, you are going to give mama a heart attack.

You still aren't too interested in toys unless they involve helping you to stand. If your sister is trying to play with something sometimes you will decide to go steal it from her. You haven't been sleeping worth anything lately. It is getting kind of hard on your old mama. I am hoping to start bringing you downstairs more soon so I won't have to wake up as often but you still seem to love your crib for sleeping above everywhere else.

You have really taken to your blankie just like your big sister. You have two we switch between and I keep waiting for you to show a preference for one or the other. We got you your first Pedipeds recently in anticipation of your walking some this fall. You don't know what to make of them and why your feet all of a sudden can't feel the floor. That's okay, you'll get the hang of it.

Your hair is really starting to get long in some spots and fill in everywhere else. Your daddy was wondering the other day how long it would be before you need a hair cut. Yikes. A first hair cut is going to be hard on mama, but probably not as hard as it will be when that time comes for your sister.

Sometimes I wish that you would sit still a little more. I miss being able to spend quiet time with you playing and talking but you are just so busy right now. No time for it. Your big drooly grins make me feel better though.

I wonder what your first words are going to be. You have started babbling more... but probably not as much as you would if the Weebles wasn't around. I think you let her take the lead a little too often and don't make your own voice heard enough. You sister loves you so much. Everything she does she says "Drew too?" I give her a cracker and she says "Drew some? Drew some cracker?" I ask her if she wants to go on a walk and she says "Drew go too?" I hope the two of you are always close.

I can't believe you are well on your way to your first birthday. I am so proud of you my little baby. Keep on learning and growing.. but please consider stopping to hang out with your mama every now and again.

Love,
Me

Mommy needs a Time Out

I haven't been away from my children over five hours in their entire lives. Just short of 26 months of nearly continuous around the clock care. Even when I had my second son, I was nursing my daughter right up until the minute we left the house and I gave birth less than an hour later. I didn't even manage a few hours without a child hanging on me then. I love being with my children and I am so lucky to get to raise them instead of having to send them to day care to spend the majority of their time with someone else. That being said, it really is a job. I'm not sitting at home all day taking naps and watching HGTV.

I go to work two mornings a week. My job is only about 10 minutes from the house and I can leave whenever necessary. I only stay about three and a half hours so that I can be home to feed the kids lunch and get them down for their naps. Once or twice I have gone to a hockey game or a get together with friends, and I mean quite literally once or twice. I think my daughter has slept through the night five or six times ever. I'm just trying to wrap my head around just how little time I have had "off" in the last two years. Compounding matters is the fact my baby still refuses to have any sort of nap schedule. Some days he'll take two short naps, other days he'll take one long one. Some days he won't take any at all. At nine months.. yeah I know shoot me. Most days I don't have even one minute between the time Andrew leaves at seven thirty until he gets home after six. Then it is the dinner/bath/bedtime battle that often doesn't end until nine. My son often wakes for the day shortly after five. I am totally burned out. As in totally, 100% I don't think I can do this another day burned out. I actually yelled at my two year old today "I'm a person too you know!" Sigh.

I try my hardest to follow an attachment parenting philosophy and admittedly it is really kicking my ass with two so small at the same time. Neither child has ever put up with baby wearing and even if they had I would still have had a hard time carrying one child while wearing the other. I breastfeed both on demand still and am very committed to child led weaning. When they cry I go to them day or night. That's what parents are for. I don't think either of them are old enough to handle the emotional fall out from being made to deal with feeling abandoned in the name of toughening them up. Sure it would make my life easier if they didn't bother calling out for me when they needed me but I don't believe that cry it out makes the need go away. It just teaches them their needs won't be met.

At any rate I am at the point of having to admit that I need some time away. Be it a babysitter a couple of afternoons a week, part time preschool for my daughter, or a night or two a week to be off duty... something has to give. Mama needs to recharge her batteries...

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Snips and Snails and Puppy Dog Tails

"He is ALL boy"

I saw that phrase every now and again before I had my son but it has a whole new meaning to me now. I just can't even imagine what I am in for when he gets a little older. The Weebles was slow to move about, endlessly fascinated with details and manipulating objects. Not my Peanut. He wants to GO GO GO. He spent weeks consumed with learning to crawl, trying to move himself across the floor on sheer will alone. Once he got the hang of that he didn't even pause to enjoy the triumph, he immediately went on to figuring out how to pull up. Now he spends the majority of his waking hours, and there's lots of those on account of the fact he doesn't nap, standing up. Even at three in the morning when he wakes to nurse he's standing up waiting for me. I can finally get him to play with a few things if his sister is also playing alongside him but he still has most of his focus on motion with very little regard for his well being.

Today he climbed into his sister's Anywhere Chair and then used it to climb up on the sofa. I also caught him in his bouncy seat standing up with no hands bouncing. It looked like some sort of odd baby chair surfing experiment. I didn't anticipate this kind of recklessness until at least three or four. At the rate he is going he'll be wrecking the family car before he gets to middle school. I foresee meeting a lot of deductibles in the future....

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Child Abuse

The kind my kids dole out to me on a daily basis... I have never encountered anything so physically demanding as parenting two small children. Even totally discounting what pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding do to you it is a tough gig. I have had my eyes and faced scratched, multiple times, by those razor sharp little nails. I have been kicked and smacked every imaginable place. And the head butts... oh my goodness my children have hard heads. It never seems to faze them in the least which I don't understand. I will be on the floor seeing stars after getting a thrashing head to the nose and they just go right on like they didn't even notice.

I think the most challenging part though is the baby wrangling. Holding a wildly flailing child still while I desperately try to put on clothes or a diaper really takes it out of me. And on a good day I get to repeat this two dozen times. With my son it is still just a flip and crawl maneuver. But when he wants to roll over it takes every big of strength I can muster to keep him from doing so. I don't know how that kid got so strong. (Yes, I've tried giving him a toy to hold. He gladly takes it, then flips over to look at it.) With my daughter she just gets up and runs off. Her favorite it to get on our bed and jump up and down going "Look at me mommy! Look at me!" She knows I can't reach her on the other side of the bed. So I'll have to go around and by that time she's gone out of reach again. Sigh. Then there's carrying them around. That is a whole different breed of wrangling. Peanut really isn't into being carried. He'll tolerate it for a few minutes but then he starts pushing off with his arms and legs and occasionally just throwing his head forward toward the floor with no warning trying to get down. I often wonder how it is I don't have bodybuilder arms by now as much lifting and carrying as I do. How many activity points do I get for hauling a two year old out of Target mid-tantrum?

Friday, September 25, 2009

Regression

So how's that 9 month sleep regression treating you? I am feeling pretty darn tired. The Peanut has been waking up at four in the morning the last few days. It is a little hard not to break down in tears at four in the morning when you realize that chances are pretty good you won't get any more sleep until bedtime. Then once you finally wrangle both kids down to bed it ends up being 8:30-9 and hell you kinda want a few minutes to zone out online or just exist in general without a small person demanding your attention. So no matter how many times throughout the day I swear "I am going to bed just as soon as the Weebles does and catch up on sleep..." I just never do.

Exhaustion makes me very very cranky. I found myself snapping at the kids today and if they were behaving the way I was they would've gotten time outs for sure. I'm hoping to catch up on some sleep this weekend. This cool rainy night is the perfect start!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

RTT

* This is the second day in a row both kids have taken a significant nap at the same time. I would think it was just a dream, but I don't sleep long enough at a stretch to have those.

* I have to take the Weebles to the allergist this afternoon. They conveniently moved their office since last year so now it is a good 45 minutes away. Not looking forward to that drive in rush hour traffic. I'm really hoping that she's outgrown her egg allergy but for some reason I doubt it. It will really suck if she has to go through her whole life avoiding foods without egg in them. It makes ordering pasta, baked goods, hell even a sandwich risky business.


randomtuesday

* Dear Cats, You are walking on thin ice here. You know I love you.. but the pee in my basket of clean laundry this morning coupled with the fact that three of you got in a cat fight right outside the nursery during aforementioned naptime has me rethinking this whole arrangement. Get your act together, mmmkay? Love, me

* I bought my first Christmas present today. It is hard to believe it is already the first day of fall. I am so ready for the cooler weather so I can take the kids outside more. I always love the summer for about the first week... after that I'm ready for the heat and humidity to go away.

* I found out this weekend that the Type A Mom Conference is in Asheville. I knew it was coming up but had no idea where it was being held. My father in law said "hey I think there's some big mommy blogger thing coming to town" and handed me an article on it. It's way too short notice for this year, but I will definitely put it on my calendar for next year. Would love to see some of my favorite bloggers speak.

* I think I'm going to like this random Tuesday thing. See you next week!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Not all fun and games at the playground

It has become evident to me, yet again, that there were a few things I didn't consider when having kids. One of them became clear to me this weekend when we took the kids to the park. Weebles is really getting into the spirit of the playground. After a couple of minutes getting her bearings she'll climb right on up and start playing. She especially loves all the other kids.

Now I do realize that there are two structures for a reason. One is for little kids like her and the other is geared more towards the bigger kids. So when she insists on going over to the big kid side I do understand that we are the ones that are out of place. That being said... I still think that children should be taught to be careful of others. Ten year olds that insist on running up the slides and then jumping from the top of the 12 foot high structure really should be given a warning by their parents that they could hurt the children trying to use the slide properly and they also could very well break their own leg in the process. Watching my tiny child way up there with some of her new tiny friends try to jump out of the way of the onslaught of large children going the wrong way as they were trying to slide down the slide brought out the mama bear in me. I didn't say anything... I didn't even give the one particular offender the look. At least not at first. This little jerk at one point nearly knocked my daughter over and she was leaning down to sit on the slide. He ran down the slide totally out of control and nearly ran into me where I had been waiting to greet my girlie after her ride down. He then looked me right in the eye and said "I'm gonna kill you!" before running off.

Now... ahem. You have to give me credit here because I didn't say a word to him. But I very nearly said "I'd like to see you try you little fucker..." and I'm not really sure what stopped me. Clearly I'm glad I didn't because he's just a kid, even if he IS a little fucker and his parents should teach him better. But I realized that I'm going to be spending a lot of time with children that aren't mine and some of them I'm just plain not going to like. How do YOU handle the insane out of control kids at the playground?

Friday, September 18, 2009

Baby Shower

So today I took a shower. You SAHM's know where I'm comin' from right? Yeah. So today was shower day. My son naps like twelve minutes at a time so you can forget about trying to gather my toddler and get downstairs and wait for the water to heat up (don't get me started on that...) and take a shower before he wakes up. So the upshot is I have to find a way to take a shower with two small mobile children in the bathroom with me. They keep me young...

Anyhoo, so I closed the closet doors and tried to secure things the best I could and hopped in. Of course the Weebles' instantly was all about getting in too. I've found it is far easier to just comply with this request so trying not to drip all over the carpet I yanked her pajamas off. But she couldn't just get in. Noooo, she must first gather all manner of bath toys to throw in too. Because, hey! rubber duckies are fun in the shower too right? Right? **crickets** As I was waiting for her to finally get in, cold air pouring in through the open door, Peanut hauls it over and tries to crawl in too. This is where I draw the line. So I'm balancing on one foot using the other to hold him back and while encouraging the Weebs to hurry up. Finally she gets in and I shut the door. Peanut takes up his spot pressed up against the doors banging with his little hands to get in. Finally. I get to the business of trying to wash my hair while the daily chorus of "Mommy doonee?" (Mommy what are you doing?) starts up.

"Mommy doonee?" - Weebles
"Washing my hair honey" - me
"Mommy doonee? - Weebles
"Washing my hair" - me
"Mommy..." - Weebles
"Hey! What is duckie doing??" - me

Ahhh she's diverted. So where was I... oh yeah where's the shampoo? Hmm wait where'd the Peanut go? I open the door to see my EIGHT MONTH OLD pretending he's really fourteen months or so climbing the little staircase that we have so that Weeb's can reach the sink. He was STANDING ON THE TOP STEP holding onto the counter. HOLY MOTHER OF #$(#$)(*#)$ I jump out of the shower and run across the room to grab him. Whew... still alive. Better hurry up I think. Just as I'm getting back in I see the Weebles' making a horrible face and batting at her tongue going Mommy, Mommy, Mommy... there was blue stuff all over her tongue. What the hell is blue in here?? I start frantically looking at bottles. Andrew's body wash. I see. Weebs is freaking out and wants out of the shower. So I carefully opened the door so as not to knock the poor Peanut over who had resumed his spot at the door and out she went. As I was hastily rinsing my hair I heard the bathroom door open. Oh great. I reach out to grab my towel only to realize it is gone. Dripping wet I chased my crawling (who knew you could crawl so darn fast?) infant out of the bathroom. I found my towel discarded in the middle of the living room. By that time both kids were sitting in front of the big screen watching Pinky Dinky Doo. Why didn't I think to put them in front of the TV in the first place???

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Monday, September 14, 2009

Nap strike

It seems my two year old has decided she no longer wants to take a nap in the middle of the day. Please excuse me while I wipe the tears in my eyes... seriously. I am praying this is just a temporary thing because mama NEEDS that nap like a fish needs water. She really needs it too. The days she hasn't napped she has gone down hard after dinner and most of the late afternoon/evening she is a beast to deal with. Another change I suppose is that I have stopped trying everything in my power to get her to sleep. I used to would lie down with her as long as it took but with a much more active baby in the house I just can't justify leaving him strapped into his bouncy seat watching TV any longer than necessary. So a few stories and a few minutes of cuddles and that's it. I'm up with a promise to come check on her. That actually worked one day but it hasn't worked since. I'm sort of at a loss. Until then I've been making her stay in the bed for at least an hour even if she is reading books and singing. It certainly isn't the same for me as having her asleep, but at least it is something.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Slawter - Party of 4

Let's have a little word about food shall we? Cause I really do love food. I especially enjoy shopping for it and cooking it. It's my pal when I'm bored, or tired or stressed so really that equates to me loving it more than my firstborn because I'm pretty much always all three of those. So interwebs.. here is the question. What is there that is a.) tasty b.) healthy c.) not crazy expensive and d.) not really really REALLY time consuming to cook because, you know, I hate to take too much time away from twitter the kids.

I menu plan. Heh okay I EVERYTHING plan. I make lists of lists that I need to make. That's how many lists I have. So anyways, I plan out a week's worth of meals at the time and then do the entire week's shopping on Fridays. This is both good and bad I suppose. I do it because I just don't have the energy to run to the store every day or two with both kids in tow. However, I'm beginning to rethink that strategy because one big run with two kids is tough too, especially with cart space already at a premium. Also inevitably I decide half way through the week that I've already made the two or three things I thought sounded really good and that chicken can just stay in the freezer until next week... let's order a pizza. But the thought of deciding what is for dinner on the spot on a night by night basis is pretty scary too.

The take away of this post I guess is that something just ain't working with my system and I need a new one. Also, recipes are always welcome. I'm sooo ready for Crock Pot weather...