Monday, May 24, 2010

Random

I'm sick and tired of buying diapers. I hate spending money on them. I hate putting the box in the cart. I hate throwing them out. We've wobbled back and forth between disposable and our Bum Genius cloth diapers but to make the BGs work okay I have to stuff them with two inserts. It makes for a thick diaper but Sophie doesn't mind. But she is at the top of the weight limit for the BGs and they still leak even with two inserts. Not happy.
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Potty training. She needs to get with the program. I wonder if I bought a potty training seat insert if she would be more interested in trying to use the potty. We have a potty like this (no lid) and she sits on it for one second at a time and then congratulates herself. I don't think so kid.
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Hair cut? I go through phases with my hair. Short, long, Locks of Love, short, long, short, I want a wig. Sophie's hair is a hot mess. It is super nappy after a long nights sleep or even a nap. Has taken forever (okay, two years) to get to the "length" it is now, and the disheveled mess makes me want to trim it up a bit. I was going to do this in the tub tonight (even ready to call my niece who is a hair dresser for pointers) but my husband talked me out of it. "You always want to cut it, cut it (talking about my own hair) and remember when you got mad at your mom for cutting your hair short in the second grade?" He begged and pleaded for me to leave it alone. I did.
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Sophie likes to look at my breasts. I often wear v-neck shirts so access is easy. She pulls the shirt away from my body, looks in, and says "booboo" "my booboo" "mine." We'll I guess they were yours for eight months but now they are all mine sister. Do your kids (especially if they were breastfed) still like to look at your ta-tas? I may have to start wearing a turtleneck.
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Babies. A good friend and my cousin are both with child. It's a bittersweet time in my heart. I was pregnant right along with them back in late September/early October. My work friend came to me, closed the door, sat down. I looked at her and said she must be quitting or she's pregnant. My cousin and I spoke on the phone and shared our secrets with each other like we kids in pigtails again. We were finally going to be pregnant together! (She has two girls already and we made a pact at our weddings {which were two weeks apart} to be pregnant together, some pact;) My cousin had her baby, a boy, today. And my friend will hopefully go into labor any day now. She did eat a lot of pineapple at lunch! My heart swells with emotion. A twinge of sadness for me and my husband knowing that we too should have been rounding out the third trimester now but also happiness and excitement for these two boys entering the world. I can't wait to squish the tiny ones (gently, of course.)

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Vegas, baby!

Just because that's what we all say doesn't mean we should do it. Vegas, baby is just a phrase, not an invitation.

I recently went on holiday with my mom and sisters to Las Vegas. We just wanted a time to be together, enjoy each others company now that we are adults and don't hate each other. So off to Vegas we went. My parent go to Vegas frequently and my dad and grandpa used to take a trip there together every fall. For as long as I can recall them taking these trips they have always stayed at the Golden Nugget in downtown Las Vegas. It's "old Vegas" and just my style. Not too busy, not too trendy, and not too expensive. All in all we had a great time. Didn't come back with any extra money but a lot of memories.

I've been to Vegas one other time before I was married and had a kid. I don't recall seeing many kids that first time out. But I'm sure I was self absorbed and only thinking about me. This trip I saw kids all over the place. In the restaurants, at the pool, in the casinos, on Freemont Street at 10:30pm and later. Infants, toddlers, kids. All over the place! In the casinos full of smoke and liquor and breasts and skimpy clothes. What fun is a casino for a kid? Vegas is not on our list of family vacations until the kids are at least 21.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Manners

Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. If you have that awareness, you have good manners, no matter which fork you use. ~Emily Post

Phillip and I have been talking about having another kiddo. For most couples deciding on when to start trying to get pregnant and how close or apart to have kids is always a conversation that requires some finesse. If I had it my way I would have each kid two years apart and I'd like to have about four of 'em! But sometimes our bodies, our God, and our pocketbooks have other plans.

To feed my baby craze I have recently found myself lurking and occasionally posting on the baby website TheBump.com. The parent site of The Bump is The Knot. They suck women into their dark and twisty place when we are so bedazzled by our engagement rings we are too awestruck to realize what's happening. You start on The Knot, get hitched and head to The Nest, and then get knocked up and head to The Bump.

Each of the websites feature a "community" section with a large variety of message boards were you can chat about anything. On The Bump the chatter ranges from dinner, gay/lesbian parenting, infertility issues, toddlers, eco-parenting, trying to get pregnant, etc. etc. etc. The point of the forums is to have a place to talk and connect with other women like you-women with the same issues, challenges, fears, disappointments, and successes. It is a place to be heard and share your story. When I was pregnant for the first time I too turned to the community forums. If you are smart you take others advice with a grain of salt but generally the conversation was helpful and supportive. I don't know what has changed in two years but the women I've encountered on there recently are just plain bitches.

For example a woman posted on there today about coming off birth control, not getting her period, negative home pregnancy tests, seeing her dr., getting prescribed a drug to kick start her cycle, and then testing positive for pregnancy today. She was taken aback by the positive test and the unfolding of her cycle. She was excited about what was happening. Then come the comments on the forum. "You should be posting on 1st Tri though, the women here are still TTC." and "No offense, but I don't think you really know how your body works." Jeez louise! So snarky. The newly pregnant lady just found out she was pregnant and wanted to share her story. She doesn't need people biting her head off because she was confused about her cycle. And this example was very tame compared to some of the drama you can witness on there!

I think I'm going to have to deactivate my account. The world doesn't need anymore rude people and they are festering on The Bump.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Should have listened to mom...

I think most kids are encouraged and even forced to take some sort of musical instruction as kids. I took piano lessons for years. I loved playing the simple Christmas songs that only required the notes GBDFA (Good Boys Do Fine Always) and FACE and something about Cows eating grass. But when it came to the more complex songs I struggled. I struggled because having to practice everyday was such a chore. I hated to practice. I regret it to this day and should have listened to my mother.

In college I came back to my "musical roots" and took guitar lessons. I used my grandfathers old Sears guitar that I nicknamed Stubby Stella. I called her this because the guitar featured a half fret at the top and was shorter than most standard guitars. Every Thursday I would trek down the alley to Blue Eagle Music in Athens, OH and took an hour long lesson from an old hippie named Ethan in the basement of the store. He taught me classics such as Green Sneeze (aka Greensleeves) and Lynard Skynard's Simple Man as a waft of his cigarette smoke danced around my head. I loved taking these lessons but still had no musical talent.

Phillip's kinfolk used to have bluegrass jam sessions at Christmastime. Banjos, dulcimers, guitars, fiddles all banging out harmonious notes. It is one of his fondest memories of his grandparents and aunts and uncles. I bought him a fiddle for Christmas one year. It now is tucked away in a closet mostly unused.

So my question is this: Does Sophie have a chance? I regret that Phillip and I don't have any musical fortitude. I love acoustic music and organic jam sessions. I love all sorts of music. But can she develop musical talent even if it's not in her "genes"? I am envious and amazed at the latest YouTube sensation and wonder if perhaps one day Sophie could be an over night success as well.


Monday, May 10, 2010

To sleep or not to sleep

Google "sleep facts" and you will no doubt have an onslaught of results. One quickly caught my eye with it's teaser info.

"A new baby typically results in 400-750 hours lost sleep for parents in the first year!" Found on Hibermate.com

That's a lot of lost sleep! Toddlers need between 14-15 hours of sleep a day. But getting a child to sleep-yeah, there don't seem to be a lot of "facts" on that. I've done a lot of "research" on this topic - Google searches, asking friends with kids, reading baby forums, talking to my mom and mother-in-law. If only we could teach kids at the tender age of two that they WANT to sleep now because it is a precious commodity when they are older the world world would be a happier place.

We are still having problems getting Sophie to go to sleep. I follow the rules: bath, jammies, brush teeth, soft light, blinds closed, story (or four), hugs and kisses, into the bed. And each night it's the same. Even though she is practically jumping out of my arms and into the bed-she screams when she gets in there.

"Green, green." She shouts, indicating she wants the green blanket. And then the fuzzy new blanket Gramma made her, or the blanket I knit her. "Pillow, pillow." She wants the other pillow. "Doodle, doodle." Meaning she wants another stuffed dog to sleep with. I really don't put up with this long. I tell her I love her, give her another kiss, and make my exit. The screaming and crying continues. Breaks my heart every night. I just want to put her down with a hug and a kiss and have her peacefully drift to sleep. But that's not my lot.

Two nights ago we went to check on her before we went to bed and she was sideways in the crib, blankets askew, feet dangling out between the bed slats. Last night she cried and talked to herself for 45 minutes! And when I heard a banging sound over the sound of the tv I sent the husband in to check on her. She was sideways again and kicking the bed and it reverberated against the wall. Tonight cries and sounds of "MAMA" continued as I got in the shower. Post shower I hear her talking to herself. "No, no, no-no." Who knows.

Luckily nine and a half times out of ten when she is finally asleep she sleeps the whole night through. I guess I've just got to pick my battles.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Mother's Day

Extract from To My Mother
Because I feel that, in the Heavens above,
The angels, whispering to one another,
Can find, among their burning terms of love,
None so devotional as that of 'Mother,'
Therefore by that dear name I long have called you...

-Edgar Allen Poe

I believe that Mother's Day should be celebrated even before the unborn child makes his debut. The work, pain, suffering, joy, compassion, and care of a mother begins well before the birthday of the expected child.

I also believe that Day only gets better with each passing year. My first official Mother's Day was not filled with warmth, an outpouring of gratitude, or breakfast in bed. I recall wanting the day to quickly pass by. I had been a mother for about three weeks. I was exhausted, frustrated, and sad. I remember Sophie not sleeping well the previous night. Because most mother's spend the first month or so awake when they should be sleeping the smallest things upset you and thinking rationally doesn't come easy. I remember screaming and crying because Sophie wouldn't go back to sleep after nursing. I think we both felt miserable. The cards I received from family and friends brought me to tears because I didn't feel worthy of the praise. But now I realize that's just all part of the process and part of what makes us mothers so damn tough.

Last year I received my first Mother's Day card from Sophie and I still look at it from time to time-written in a hybrid of her and her father's handwriting. Sweet, gentle, loving. And this year I have matured even more in my motherhood. Sure, not every day is full of roses, sunshine and puppies but the good out number the bad and I have learned, somewhat, how to ignore the tantrums and I'm learning to roll with the punches.

But now because Sophie can speak and walk and understand, there is no doubt she loves me. I love her soft kisses on my cheek and the hugs around my knees. Her affection and needing me is enough of a gift. Maybe I should have realized that when she was but three weeks old she wasn't trying to deprive me of sleep but give me a gift...her needing me and wanting me close.

I can only imagine with more years and hopefully more children Mother's Day continues to evolve and be a day I will always look forward to.

Happy Mother's Day!

Monday, May 03, 2010

One of those nights

Oy vey. This is a much deserved glass of wine.

Sophie came home from daycare demanding juice, water, to look in the cabinet. (Presumably for the forbidden binkie.) She was saying no, disobeying us at every chance, standing on the chair at the dinner table. Threw a pen at me. And then when I took a frozen waffle out of the freezer and she demanded that and I demanded to heat it up (duh) another tantrum ensued. That was the camel that broke the straws back...I mean the straw the broke the camel's back. (Told you it was a good glass of wine;)

Phillip set up the time out chair in the corner. What did I do? Laugh. That nervous, trying to keep a straight face laugh. I'm not handling the discipline portion of parenting very well. I know she shouldn't say NO to us. But when she says it in a mischievous toothy grin sort of way-how can I reprimand her for that? It's just so cute. And wrong.

Oh heaven help me. How am I going to survive all of the future discipline issues we will surely face?