Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Christmas 2014 - Days 1 and 2

In an effort to recapture my blogging mojo and also to keep track of memories. I'm going to try blogging every day (or close to it) to try to log the ways we celebrated Christmas each day. The posts may not be long or eloquent, but the goal is to capture memories and get back into the habit.

We started our Advent calendar on December 1st. The gift for that night was an ornament for each kid--Elsa (from Frozen) for Baby Girl and Jake (of Jake and the Neverland Pirates) for Baby Boy. They were both incredibly excited and loved hanging them on the tree that we'd gotten and decorated the day prior. 

December 2nd is a Tuesday, which means it's Jump Bunch night. That means a quick dinner, then The Hubby and Baby Boy were off to his class. During that time, I cleaned up from dinner and then Baby Girl and I hung up a garland on our bannister. It was all knotted and tangled by the end, but we had fun with it. I tossed it to her, making her giggle, we pulled the fake garland through the spindles on the bannister, sending the needles everywhere. That meant that we got the vacuum out after we were done and she loved helping me clean up.

The Advent calendar gift tonight was a book of the Charlie Brown Christmas. Because of how late it was, we didn't get to read it, but I anticipate we'll read it tomorrow night!

Saturday, August 30, 2014

A moment to remember

I've wanted to blog about all the changes in our lives lately--my weight loss (37ish pounds from late February to today so far!), Baby Girl starting kindergarten, Baby Girl's new daycare, Baby Boy's potty-training (done!), Baby Boy's transition to the sitter without Baby Girl, and maybe a few more I'm missing--but something happened tonight that, while small, was so wonderful that I need to record it.

We're at my in-laws' house tonight, after being up late last night watching Frozen in The 'Shoe. Baby Boy napped in the car and Baby Girl didn't nap at all. She isn't napping during the week since she's in kindergarten, so it isn't a huge deal. By bedtime, however, Baby Girl was a Mess. She cried and sobbed when we told her that she and her brother were going to share a bedroom. We still don't know why she was so upset, but it went on for at least 15 minutes. During all of her Mess Baby Boy was behaving incredibly well. He laid on his cot and snuggled his Olaf and tried to fall asleep. The Hubby and I had lost patience with it and I'd told her that she needed to calm down or she'd be sleeping in the basement. She did calm down mostly, then was ramping up again when I got up and asked her to get up. She calmed herself fairly quickly after begging me not to make her go and I was so exasperated that I told them I'd be back and I needed a drink of water. As I closed the door, I heard Baby Boy whining a bit about me closing the door (I think), but just moved on. I got my drink of water, made a frustrated comment to The Hubby and his parents, and went toward the door again. I heard nothing. I stood outside the door for another minute, still hearing nothing, and then opened the door and peeked in at them. Their elephant nightlight was off and they were both completely still. 

Let's rewind to talk about why this is a miracle. You see, every night I sit in Baby Boy's bedroom for 30-60 minutes, waiting for him to fall asleep. I just sit in the chair and typically play on the iPad. So it always takes him a very long time to wind down and actually fall asleep. For him to wind down enough to fall asleep within about 3 minutes is truly miraculous. And she'd been so wound up, begging to snuggle with me, begging to touch me, begging me to stay right by her and just generally freaking out, that I thought my leaving would make them both hysterical.

I went back to the family room, amazed that they were both settled down. We sat and watched football for a few hours before Baby Boy woke up whimpering. I went to him, had him lay back down, and was rubbing his back to help him fall back asleep when I saw a small stuffed animal beside him. He'd only had Olaf in his cot when I left him. Then I realized what it was. It was Surgery Bear, Baby Girl's very favorite stuffed animal, one that's been with her for years. Even through her hysteria, she was so kind and caring to her brother and the fact that he was upset that she gave up her favorite stuffed animal so he could relax and fall asleep himself. My heart melted like it hasn't in a long time.

I'm going to do my best to remember that as we deal with the behavior and emotional issues that we've been struggling with as we transition to our new normal. Deep down, behind the irrational crying and screaming, she's the same little girl I know and love dearly.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Heard from the backseat

A little two year old voice:

"Hey met you, hey crazy, number, call maybe, bad bad bad bad bad bad bad bad bad"

(See "Call Me Maybe" by Carly Rae Jepsen)

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

I can sleep when he's older

Over the last few days and weeks, Baby Boy has been making some major steps in growing up. It's happening quickly and has completely caught me off-guard. He's consistently staying dry all day and has starting telling us when he needs to go potty again. He's been putting himself to sleep. He's been sleeping all night. He's been doing many things by himself ("Me do it"). He's speaking much more clearly (I said in the car today, "no, you're not tight" and he said, "yes me tight!"). He has opinions about everything. Today he even climbed almost entirely out of his crib. And lastly, I think we might be done nursing.

But some nights he's still waking up in the middle of the night and this means I get some snuggles with my little man. Tonight he didn't want to fall asleep by himself and instead snuggled in like a baby and let me rock him to sleep. And that's when I had the thought that forms the title to this post: I can sleep when he gets older. For now, I'm going to enjoy the snuggles and watching him sleep peacefully. Because I know from experience that these times go too fast. Soon enough he won't fit perfectly in my arms and won't want to cover me in the sweetest kisses ever. So I'll take it.

Friday, March 14, 2014

The beginning of the end

I'm not even sure if it's the beginning of the end.  More like the middle.

I've removed my pumping times from my work calendar.  I'm at the point now where I'm not even pumping enough milk to cover the bottom of the bottle.  Last time around I was more than happy to break up with the pump, but then it was my choice and Baby Girl's choice.  She had cut out pre-naptime nursing on her own and there wasn't a need for me to keep pumping during the day.  Baby Boy, however, has been different in that we sort of forced his hand on cutting out his pre-naptime nursing session.  He's fine if I'm not in the house and doesn't even ask for milk, so I've been leaving the house before naptime or we've been in situations (not necessarily on purpose) where his naptime has been shifted on the weekends--we've been in the car or in a strange place.  He hasn't nursed on a weekend in 5 weeks now and I only pumped during those times on one weekend.

Additionally, I've cut way back on my caloric intake.  It's going well...for me.  I've lost about 6 pounds in the last two weeks or so.  But it's not going so well for my milk supply.  Baby Boy doesn't seem to notice, which is good, but him nursing on an empty breast isn't the most comfortable feeling, either.

I'm taking time to cherish the time we have to nurse, though, since I'm pretty sure that he's going to be my last baby, my last child to nurse, the last breastfeeding relationship I'm going to have.  I watch him while he nurses (aided greatly by Daylight Savings Time), talk to him, kiss him on his head, and sometimes I let him nurse to sleep if he's close to it already.  We snuggle.  It's our time to spend together.  Do I think it's a good idea to rock him to sleep each night?  No, of course not.  But I need it and I think he does too.  He'll get too big soon enough and he'll become more independent, but neither of us is ready for that yet and it works for us.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

I blinked

Apparently I blinked and missed the day when my baby suddenly became a big boy. What the heck happened? It's left me feeling a little dizzy!

Around the beginning of January, Baby Boy started showing interest in the potty. We got out the training potty and let him try it out. What do you know? He peed! He's been using the potty 75% of the time since then. He consistently stays dry at the sitter besides nap time and generally uses the potty at home as well. He definitely fights it more at home and doesn't tell us when he needs to use the potty as much as he does at the sitter. If he keeps going consistently, though, we're going to try him out in big boy underwear very soon. When he got some for Christmas from my mom, I thought it was funny, but apparently we're going it actually put them to use!

After a week or two of pottying, Baby Boy suddenly went from waking anywhere between one and four times per night to sleeping through the night. His first night sleeping through the night was Monday, January 27th, at just shy of 21 months.  He's slept all night 7 of the last 9 nights and each time he's woken he hasn't needed to be nursed back to sleep! It's a huge change for us. I do wish that I could say we feel amazingly rested,but we're still catching up, I think.

Add these changes to watching him learn letters, counting, and hearing him talk more and I can confirm that he is quickly becoming a big boy. While I know my job as a parent is to help him grow and learn, I'm feeling very melancholy, especially since I think we might be done having babies. I can't believe I might be done nursing forever soon and I won't have too many more middle-of-the-night snuggles. I'm definitely experiencing mixed emotions about it all. But even if I wanted to, I can't stop it from happening!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Who is this person?

I've always wanted to be a runner. If you know me, you know that that isn't me, though. In college I did some athletic activities, but always struggled with running. I've never been particularly in shape and am usually shopping in the plus size section of a store, no matter whether I'm on the lighter or heavier side. Heck, I blogged about my weight loss previously and I was still a 12/14 at my lowest weight.

So yeah...not built like a runner. It doesn't come naturally in the least. 

Back during my major weight loss journey I tried adding in some running to aid in the weight loss. I made it through about three weeks of the Couch to 5K program before I realized that the exercise was actually impeding my weight loss. Then I avoided anything that would cause me to burn too many calories the whole time I was nursing Baby Girl. After she weaned, Hubby and I started up on Couch to 5K again. We made it to the point where we were running 20 minutes at a time, which was huge for me.

And then I got pregnant with Baby Boy and it all stopped.

Yes, I realize that you can still run when pregnant. I've known many women who were runners and kept running through their pregnancy. But I didn't. For one, I wasn't already a runner. For another, I like to relish in the fatness of pregnancy. (Please save your criticisms and judgment--it is what it is for me)

After Baby Boy was born, I tried to run again. Hubby and I have a few sporadic attempts at running, but the kids, laziness, time, and weather have all gotten in the way. We'd love to be able to run together but that isn't really realistic with two children who don't inhabit small spaces well together. 

Today I had spent 45 minutes doing Baby Boy's nap time, which was an anomaly, so I was exhausted. It was almost 50 outside, though windy and mostly overcast. Instead of using nap time as an opportunity to zone out in front of the TV, I decided to go running. 


Yes, you read it right. I chose running over laziness. And no, I have no fever. So I equipped myself with Hubby's smart phone (I still have a non-Internet, paying for texts phone), an 80s Cardio station on Pandora, and headed out, planning to jump into week 3 of the Couch to 5K plan. I walked the 5 minute warm-up, then jogged the 90 seconds. After walking the recovery 90 seconds, I started to jog again. But instead of watching the clock for the end of the three minutes, I just jogged. By the time I looked at the clock, I was at 2:50 and was feeling good, so I kept going. I ended up jogging for five minutes. I did only two minutes of recovery, jogged two minutes, another two minutes of recovery, then set out to jog the length of a street in our neighborhood. I got to the end of the street in four minutes, but decide to turn the corner and jog to the end of my street, one street over. I got there at 4:51, turned up my own street, and finished out to 5 minutes. I shocked myself by how well I did and feel very proud. I'm sure it doesn't sound like much to most, but for me it's pretty huge.

Maybe I can actually meet my goal of running the Buckeye four-miler in November. I've wanted to run the Race for the Cure for awhile in May but don't know if I'll get to train enough for it, but I still might register and plan to walk it.

Running is hard for me and so is getting motivated to get off my butt and do something active. But you know what? It felt good and I'm looking forward to feeling like this again.

Friday, January 10, 2014

I'd expected this day, but not necessarily so soon

To say things at work have been stressful would be an understatement. In fact, things are downright ugly. I come home every night wound-up, frustrated, and irritable. Add on top of that the fact that neither kid has been sleeping through the night and Baby Boy was up 4 times last night and you've got one mess of a mommy.

At pick-up at the sitter today, Baby Girl was being overly silly. She wouldn't sit still to put her shoes on and wasn't listening. We were already running late and just wanted to get home. I was wrangling the little one while Hubby was trying to get her out the door and the sitter was talking to me about her plans for the summer at her new house. As we walked out to the car, Hubby had a very stern talk with Baby Girl, telling her that she wasn't being a good listener and that she'd do time out if she ever behaved that way again. We got in the car and Baby Girl says, "I wish you guys didn't have that job." "What job?" we ask. We initially think she means our paying jobs, that she resents that we have to work at all and we're prepared to launch into the speech about how important money is. But then she says that she wishes we didn't have the job of being her mommy and daddy. After some clarifying conversation, she admits that she wishes we weren't her mommy and daddy. 

I told her that she hurt our feelings very badly, then turned on some music so we could consider our response. I told her about all of the nice things we do for her that many parents wouldn't do. We make up stories from scratch every night. We snuggle in her bed every night. We cook her yummy, healthy food. We comfort her when she's scared in the middle of the night. We let her crawl into our bed when she's scared. We coddle her for hours when she crying before bedtime, claiming that she's afraid someone will break into our house.

Eventually we're all silent, save the 20 month old asking for his water or some pretzels, oblivious to the conversation happening around him, and the sound of my sniffles. I later told her that we could start showing her how mean we could be and listed what we'd stop doing, which elicited many tears from her.

The remainder of the thirty minute car ride was spent mostly in silence, again, save the little man. She eventually says that she was sorry and that she didn't mean it and we make up, but I think Hubby and I are both still feeling pretty awful. She was so hurtful with her words and I know it's only going to get worse. 

Thursday, January 9, 2014

It's a New Year

I fully recognize that everyone and their brother is making New Year's resolutions and trying to make big changes with the arrival of 2014.  I suppose I'm going to try to jump on that bandwagon.

I've found myself crafting blog posts in my head again, which tells me that it's likely time to get back into blogging.  I also have found that there are things about life right now, good and bad, that I want to document and remember down the road.  Things like the fact that Baby Girl says "vacation" like "vi-cation".  Or that Baby Boy slurps when he wants his drink and walks (or runs) up to you with his mouth wide open saying "ahhhhh" if he wants to eat whatever you've got.  And the fact that Baby Girl is struggling mightily with her bedtimes--she's crying for hours on end, shaking, worried that someone is going to break into her room.  And of course I want to write about how *I* am feeling these days, which, to be honest, is not that good.

I might change the format of this blog.  Hell, I might even start a whole new blog--I'm not entirely sure yet.  What I do know, however, is that I feel a need to speak, to get my thoughts out, and my blog is a good outlet for that.  So I'm back in some format and will keep any of you who are still reading posted.