Tuesday, November 25, 2008

This is the easy part

There is a feeling that I always get when I hear about a first time mom who just had their baby. When I hear them complain about their pregnancy, when they have no one to nurture but themselves. When I see them reading books on their pregnancy week by week and not books about newborns and sleep. When they buy only new, never used, anything. It’s like an all knowing feeling, a good luck feeling, an oh my heart aches for the wonderfulness feeling, a never say never feeling, and a you have no idea what you’ll be like feeling. I see myself almost 5 years ago. I imagine what others thought of me when they saw me struggling as a new mom. Or worse, what they thought when I preached my know it all ways as a pregnant gal. You know the one that says, I’m not gonna let my kid walk around with a sticky face throwing a fit in Target. Or that the baby will fit into our lives and not the other way around!

Ha (for us anyway)

Just wait.

When you hear about the new arrival, you know that you can’t expect any functionability from the new mom (unless you are crazy and super human like my sis in law who goes to the mall on the way home from the hospital, and that's when she not HOSTING Thanksgiving once she gets there!) for at least a week, and a week would be if things are easy. Then when you do get the email that says “Things are going great, baby is pretty easy”. My cynical self says, “yeah now, they sleep 24/7 the first two weeks…just wait for it…”

Am I rooting against new moms? No, of course not. Do I find validation within myself when I hear it is hard for other capable, competent, and educated ladies? YES YES YES. Is that wrong? Maybe, but I'm not sorry about it.

Mostly I just look back and long to enjoy those first few weeks, months, years with Lily. Really LOVE them, the way I did with Addie. I look back at my first time mom self and want to impart all the knowledge on her, or kick her pregnant self in the teeth and ask her to listen to the other moms…they do in fact know what they are talking about. Oh well. The truth of the matter is that I did love being a mom to newborn Lily. I didn’t know there was more, so I didn’t miss it. I knew it was hard and I was tired, but I was trying hard and doing my best. In some ways I think that Lawrence and I were better back then because we were trying SO hard all the time. These days things slide a little, but I like to believe WE PAID OUR DUES.

Now we have to children who are extremely well behaved and good natured. They are sweet and loving and kind. We are a little scarred bedtime and sleep-wise, and of course I’m constantly worried about them for one reason or another, but what good kids we are raising so far.

Though moms of teenagers look at us and shake their heads thinking, this is the easy part, those kids have no idea what they are in for…

This. Is the easy part.


So tired. So worth it.

There was no sleep at all for us last night.
Addie woke up at 10pm. Common for her, between 10-11pm she always wake for between 5-30min. She has done this pretty much since she got readjusted to the time zone when we came home from vacation at the beginning of September. Usually we don't even go in there, unless she gets crazy, because she is still mostly asleep. She's been doing great for 2 straight weeks, even when she has a "bad" night, she's usually up from 1-3am. Last night she was up ALL NIGHT LONG. Seriously, every five minutes.

After the first half hour of her not settling, I went in, put another shirt on under her sleep sack (it was a little cold), then rocked her and she went back to sleep. She didn't cry when I left and about 4 minutes after I was back in bed she started crying again. So Lawrence took a turn. He was in bed for 3 minutes. We gave her motrin. An ear, a tooth? She wasn't warm, but at this point it was after 11 so we thought we'd give it a try. No go. We let her cry. I went in after another 20 minutes. She stopped immediately when I rubbed her back and went back to sleep, but when I left more crying. Desperate I brought her into bed with me. Something I haven't been able to do since I was (for a few months of a broken foot) crawling in and out of her room. The last time I tried it, unsuccessfully, was when we were on vacation. She slept on me for about 15 minutes, then in my armpit for about 15 more, then she thought it was play time and was putting her hand in my mouth and laughing. I took her back to her own room. She laid down wide awake and was quiet for about 10-15 minutes so I thought we were golden, but nope. It was now well after midnight. I put my pillow over my head. I'm not sure how many more times I went in there, it's a blur, but I do know that she was still crying when Lawrence went to work at 5 and when Lily got up at 6. Off and on, off and on. Just enough of a break for my brain to think...ahh this is it...and then, nope.


In other news we had a wonderful weekend. Happy THIRD bday to our cousins Tyler and Cassidy on Friday - Nov 21. We can't believe they are already 3.

On Saturday we went to the Griz/Cat Montana Rivalry game party at On Deck, a very clean bar/restaurant in downtown Portland. We left the house around 8:30 and got there right at 9 for bfast and to watch Lawrence's Buckeye/Michigan Rivalry game. It was a lot of fun, they had a huge tent set up outside on the Deck, and Lily thought it was very cool that we were on the roof.

Around 12:30, we got Addie bundled up and Lawrence did circles with her in the stroller, she fell asleep no problem. We then brought out Lily's mini DVD player and put it on the tray of the booster seat. Lawr and I then got an hour of uninterrupted time watching the game and talking with fellow Griz fans. It was really great.
We felt only a LITTLE guilty about breaking out the TV since we'd already done play doh, coloring, and had exhausted all options. Plus, Lily always gets to watch her Dora movie on Football Saturdays on quiet time, earned by good behavior. The kids were great. Addie ate some stuff off the floor and broke out a little, but as usual she was a hit, she was first in her Buckeye Cheerleader outfit, then in her Griz one. With her big sweet smile, dancing, and doing "touchdown" with her hands, she won hearts of everyone whose attention she could get. Lily ended up falling asleep on Lawrence's lap at the end of the game and we actually had to wake both kids up to get in the car.

We stopped at the Ornelas's on the way home for a few minutes so Lily could see Lucy for a few promised minutes. Then we got home, ate dinner, bedtime, and Lawr and I were in bed by 8:30. We were beat, but it was a really really great family day. It was our first day of going out and doing something all together, just us, since I broke my foot, and we really had fun. I can't believe how good it felt to get out of the house all together for a full Saturday.

Lily and I went to church yesterday with The Chappelle's. We had a really wonderful time. Lawrence and Addie had some QT together and we all were in good moods, just in time for nap time and quiet time. I got a short nap in then cleaned our room and did laundry. Then we worked on Holiday gifts for our grandparents, which are turning out awesome. So much fun. The message at church was about Greed. The definition being wanting more of stuff you already have enough of. It was an extremely good message. Lily asked me if she could take her toys with her to Heaven. I told her, no, God will have everything she needs when she gets there, plus, hopefully she will be Grandma Lily by the time she goes to heaven and she won't need toys. Then she started to cry. OBVIOUSLY I didn't do a great job of explaining! Grr. Well, I ended up telling her she could take her toys to heaven. Great. Perfect ending to the Greed message, and the you can't take it with you message. Oh well, if she needs to think at this moment that she can take her bear and blankie with her to heaven, I'm okay with it. There are bigger fish to fry.

Here was her voicemail to Uncle Matt on the phone yesterday. "Hi Uncle Matt, it's Lily, I want to invite you for Thanksgiving. I didn't want to go to Joseph, Uncle Matt, because I want you to be able to come for Thanksgiving. Addie is good, she won't stop brushing her teeth, you will have to get in a fight with her if you want to get her toothbrush back, Uncle Matt. She still likes shoes. If you say shoes she will get you your shoes, Uncle Matt. She's really funny. I love you, goodbye." Click. HA!

Lily will not stop squeezing Addie, her head, her body, her hands. She loves her so much that she can't keep her hands off her. Addie hates it and runs the other direction as often as possible. Except when she doesn't. Sometimes she goes right up to Lily and gives her a big bear hug, and puts her cheek on Lily's cheek. That is her signature move. She likes to be cheek to cheek. Or cheek to anything, really, she'll do cheek to knee if that's what she can reach. As a result her neck is always a little crooked, so cute. Last night we had a long long talk about being more gentle with Addie and me being more gentle in my tone in teaching Lily what's too rough (as I am rather quick to 'rip her a new one' at the moment that it happens). She said, when I think of love, I think of Addie because her head is so soft. I don't want to have the no touch rule until Addie grows hair because her head is just TOO soft.

Smile. Below is Lily's recap of our day of Rivalries...

Friday, November 21, 2008

It's my body mama

Fast forward 10 years and the phrase I heard tonight would have terrified. Okay, what am I saying it horrified me anyway.
"Lily, don't poke yourself in the eye like that honey"
"It's my body mama, I can do what I want to it"

Here we are, 8:00pm and the kids have been down since 7:02pm. Lily actually ASKED to go to bed for the first time in her life, and she meant it. We got in at 6:20, I was out by 6:40 and she was asleep at 6:46! Lawrence was out of Addie's room by 7:02. We cleaned and vacuumed the house, did dishes, laundry, and packed our bag for our big outing tomorrow.

We are headed down to On Deck to watch the "Brawl of the Wild" and "The Game". That would be Montana vs Montana State and Ohio State vs Michigan.

We plan to go down around 9am for breakfast. Then my party starts at 11, free burgers and brats, they'll show the MT game, and we'll just stay for lunch and then as long as the kids last.

Should be fun, we're all packed and ready to go. I canNOT believe it's only 8:06.

Noah Ginnings

Although I did not have, what would have undoubtedly been, the incredible privilege of knowing Noah personally, I’ve followed his story for a long time. His love for life, for people, and for moments, were not only life changing for each person who did know him, but should be a reminder to us all, of the gift we have in love, family, and friendship. Today I mourn for all the people that loved him.


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

In a minute honey

"Mama will you sit down with us?" "Mama come down on the floor with me" "Mama can we cuddle?"
Yes, in a minute honey. I do have every intention of it only being a minute. But by the end of the day I have Cats in the Cradle (the Ugly Kid Joe version) in my head and feel like a terrible liar. I think back to the few times I was actually present the way I want to be, they way it feels good to be, and there are few. So I cram it in right before bedtime, giving them reason not to want to go to bed because it feels so wonderful to them. I do intend to sit, but while they are eating and Addie is strapped in, I can get stuff done in the kitchen. While they are playing nicely on the floor, I can go switch the laundry on my way back from getting a "picnic blanket' for our 'picnic'. AND in the rush of the morning when everyone is late and me getting ready will consist of brushing my teeth, putting on some eyeliner, and throwing my hair in a pony....Where oh where do I find the time to stop and "cuddle" and read a few books? Can we cuddle and read at the the table while you eat your breakfast and I'll just warm up yesterdays coffee add a buttload of creamer and pretend not to notice? Well that's what we do.

I do it, but I'm so half a$$, in my mind, counting down the minutes to get the other stuff done. I hate myself for admitting that, and I don't always feel that way, but I'm late, and it's not fair but they are the only ones who I can make wait. Most days I do get a rushed book in, or scarf down a cup of coffee as they finish their breakfast, or sit down for 10 seconds before one of them distracts me and I need to go get water/tissue/who knows what. Then I'm up and seeing things to do all over the place. Oh praying that my freshly washed - gone to bed wet hair from last night will lay down smooth and shiny without a flat iron.

I am aware that nothing is more important than spending time with them. Than cherishing this every moment. Sure you can say "leave the laundry, the dishes, the sweeping", trust me, I'm leaving a lot and talking BARE MINIMUM here, but you can't really leave filth, not with a baby who puts everything in her mouth and is allergic to milk. You can't not have clean laundry. You can't be late for work, and after sleepless nights, you can't wake up earlier or go to bed later. So instead you lie to your child day after day, as they first patiently, then impatiently, then whiney voice...."Maaaaaaammmmmmaaaaa"?
Oh how I love them...
And I will be there for them. In just a minute.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Getting my sh$t together

I've spent the last several weeks taking 2 or so hours every night or every other night and organizing, making lists of what to organize...organizing, merging and purging, merging, purging, rinse and repeat. The progress is great and very rewarding, but every cabinet I open, every corner I turn, every drawer, bin, desktop, counter top...more papers, projects, to dos, photos, bills, coins, pens, boxes, wires, scissors, cds, tape, stamps, calendars, magazines, catalogs, mp3 players...it's overwhelming. Paper coming into the house and leaving the house on a daily basis, is NOT even a fair battle. Not to mention my little 4 year old "treasure" keeper who makes a project out of a piece of junk mail and Wa La, now I can't even discard junk mail in the light of day. My piles are getting smaller, boxes are getting emptied, 3 boxes of sh$t to go through becomes one. The garage becomes bigger...it is progress. But it's a lot of work and I'm working alone. Some how my dear dear hubby seems to have forgotten how to put ANYTHING in it's place. Now don't get me wrong, he does a LOT around here, with kids and cooking and even laundry folding. But at some point he started stopping at the top of the stairs. Fold a basket of laundry, THANKS hon, get to the top of the stairs, there it is for me to step over. 3 more steps to our bedroom, but he couldn't make it. Bring a cord from the garage to the computer room, no problem, oh wait, here it is, on the ledge at the top of the stairs. Is there an invisible barracade he can't move past the top of the stairs with ANYTHING in his hands? That's gotta be it.

I've gone through all the kids plastic dishes and cups, threw out about 2,000 of those restaurant kiddie cups (don't worry my clutter-teaching mom, I kept 1000 more), I am on my feet the entire nap time cleaning the kitchen and such. I give him about 6 cups to take upstairs to the kids bathroom, put under the sink, so that when the cup I use to wash their hair becomes to grimy..wa la...new cup. It's the only chore I've asked of him for an entire college football watching Saturday. Come up stairs, and there they tower, you guessed it, on the ledge next to the hall railing. Doh.

Now I'm actually not mentioning this to complain about him, for once. I'm only mentioning it because of how impossible it is to stay organized whilst finishing ALL the tasks for the rest of the family. I also won't complain because I can WALK, and walking, even with stiff shoes and some pain, IS THE BEST. (For those of you who don't know I broke my foot at the end of August and couldn't walk for 2 full months) I am so grateful that I CAN take that laundry basket the rest of the way or put those cups back under the sink. I just wish I wasn't fighting the loosing clutter battle alone.

If you happen to know the story of the lights in our bathroom, um, we still don't have any! Guess why? It's on his list, and out of principle, I will not do it. I will get ready in the kids bathroom or do a poor job of make up applying (the three days a month I have time to apply it), I WILL NOT order those bulbs. I do not know another woman who would or could live without any light in the bathroom. I'm pretty much a trail blazer...uh huh...

Anyway, despite all of this, I have a great level of satisfaction from trying so hard to declutter our lives and some how set up systems in the house that makes this all manageable.

Okay, it is 11:37pm and I have a croupy girl so I need to get into bed. I feel like I don't have time for more than a one line update on facebook lately, even though writing on here makes me feel organized and productive, so I know I should find more time for it. Oh well. This is me.

Oh- and I did have one more point with the organizing and Lawrence. He thinks that once you get organized and everything has a place, it is easy to keep up. He thinks that the reason our house is a mess is because we never got it organized in the first place. Umm. This from the guy who leaves his clean shirts on my side of the bed and crawls into bed. Well that shirt certainly has a place. I'm gonna blame this one on you, Carol. He was so used to growing up in a decluttered environment, and you obviously did a good job of making all the "behind the scenes" stuff look easy, he just thinks things take care of them self. I'm not as good at it as you, and he's not as good at helping with it as Steve. And now mom, it's your turn for some blame, DID YOU HAVE TO RAISE ME AS SUCH A PACK RAT??? I mean, I'm about 1000% better than you at getting rid of stuff and going through stuff and staying organized in general. But how did it end up that I married a man whose standards for how it should look and how easy it should be to make it look that way are so out of balance, and me, working so hard and keeping things so much more organized than what I was raised with, can never ever ever achieve the standard?

Not that I'm doing it for him! I'm doing it for me, and for keeping our nice things nice, and to have free time, believe it or not, living in clutter wastes a lot of your time. Ugh. 11:45pm, what am I DOING? still rambling about this. Yes, mom's from opposite sides of the spectrum, we get it, I'm a genius. So what. Get to bed! Good night! Hope neither of you took offense to your deserved blame! You both worked hard to earn it! Love! J

Croup and Stuff

Saturday night we went to Tanya and Jonathon's for dinner and came home for the Rose's to come over for a game of Cranium. We talked rather than starting a game and we had a very nice relaxing do nothing but be grown ups time. They left about 11:30 and we fell asleep around 1ish. Addie had a cough so we set the humidifier up in her room and I was prepared for her to wake during the night. Since Lily just had the shots, I got Addie's ears checked and knew she didn't have an infection. Around 11, we heard a really weird cough. It was Lily, but she seemed fine and asleep, no biggie. At 1:26am the same cough woke me and I was startled by Lawrence yelling SHHHHHHHH from our room to Lily's. He came back announcing that she wanted me. I went in and the poor girl could barely breath, she was wheezing and barking. I got some steam in her and some cough medicine, tylenol and water. She was crying and panicking so I laid down in her room to settle her.

I lay there and lay there and lay there...she did not go back to sleep, she didn't talk, but she tossed and turned and breathed her Darth Vadar breaths of sicky sick right into my face. I wondered what it must be like for most parents, whose kids will just go to sleep when pulled into bed with mom and dad, or laid down next to. After the age of 4 months neither of my children will sleep with me sleeping next to them, my bed or theirs! Why I keep trying it out of true desperation, I'm not sure. I laid with Lily until around 4:30am, maybe catching a few minutes of sleep. She got up to pee several times and started to cry and freak out several more as I tried to leave. I thought for sure I'd only be in my bed for moments before I heard her cry for me again, but I didn't care, I was so tired and my bed felt so great at 4:47am. Lawrence snored soundly. I was woke by Lawrence at 7:15am. "It's your morning to get up with them.". WHAT? WHO? HUH? Addie's up? Oh, yes, let me get my lazy a$$ out of bed. He gets up 20 minutes later after catching sports center in our room. We all know he can't sleep past 7am anyway.

The day was started. We had made plans with the Chappelle's to go to church that morning, me and the girls, because Lawrence was going to be in Seattle. When his plans got canceled, he volunteered to keep Addie so Lily and I could go. Lily was devastated that we couldn't go, because "we never got to go there before" (meaning their church), but she was wheezing and I knew she had croup. Lawrence questioned me and said I was no doctor, but I knew. After nap time, which Lily slept, I did not (I organized cups??) she woke up wheezing and chest retracting worse than before. I had called the advice nurse in the morning to see if we should come in and she said if we had left over prescription, just give it to her. We didn't, but Tanya and Jonathon did from Nathaniel, so Lawrence went to get it. After sticking her head in the freezer in the garage (while I organized) yesterday, last night Lily slept better and we've kept her window WIDE open for the freezing air to come in. She seems to like it. Today she still seems pretty wheezing, so she may have to take her first sick day from school tomorrow.

Addie continues with the ULTIMATE shoe obsession and an insanely running nose. She blows it well and is usually smiling. But she is so rarely barefoot that it has started to look weird when she is shoeless. It is the first thing she asks for when she wakes. Since we don't wear shoes in the house, we have to have inside shoes and outside shoes. Since I have to wear my shoes in the house, I can't really argue with her. She started getting "time outs" for pulling hair and biting. She likes to laugh at you and run away. She LOVES to dance. I'll have to get some dancing of her on here to post because it is FUN-NNY. She gets her feelings hurt easy when you say no, she wrinkles her brow and puts her head down, looking at you from beneath her eyebrows.

She is now in a size 3 shoes and can wear a 4, tho pretty big on her. Lily moved into a size 3 around 7 months! And the shoes that are too big on Addie were Lily's before a year.

While we haven't had a full week of good sleep from Addie since we got back from vacation, she continues to go down easy for bed and naps and has good nights 4-5 nights a week, with one killer, up all night, night. I still consider her a pretty good sleeper, of course don't ask me the morning after an up all night, night. But I would have given a limb for Lily to sleep like this.

Work is good and busy, I'm in the process of interviewing software companies to choose a new accounting software for the company. The revenue recognition rules around software is very complex (you think other software companies would get that, but few do), so it is a very tedious, time consuming process. I'm not looking forward to doing my first reviews for my employees coming up in December. "Luckily" there are no raises this year, so I don't have to worry about that portion. There was a lay off a few weeks ago, so I am just grateful that no one in my department was affected by that. My industry isn't largely affected by all the economy issues, but the marketplace for our software has slowed marginally. We were estimating a 40% growth as in years past, but are now forecasting 15%. So we are still growing, which can't be said for a lot of companies out there. I guess pharmaceuticals are still in big business and they need my companies software to make those drugs, so we are still going strong.

I stepped too hard last night on my foot and pain went shooting from the spot of the break. I just froze there on the stairs for about 2 minutes, afraid to step and again and see what it meant. It was sore today, but not tender to the touch on the break and not bruised today, so I hope it is fine. I wore my cast home on the bus, just to be safe.

Friday, November 7, 2008


Does anyone else notice that their house looks messier in videos than they remember it looking in real life? I think that's my problem with video posting. Well don't go look for mess in the ones I posted. Of course I don't POST those. Or at least not yet, it's only my second post.

Lily saying good morning. Addie busy body.

Just trying to get the hang of this to see if Blogspot is the place for me. I'm feeling right at home, so I think it just might be...now is there a space issue here?? Hmm...let me go investigate. The last thingI want to do is end babysites, only to find I'm running out of space on blogspot too! Here is Lily jabbering on the swings.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Babysites comes to an end

To all of my faithful babysites.com followers, the time has come to an end. The site is for babies, and my children are not. Two years of blogging and pouring my heart and soul of becoming a mother for the second time over has reached the max capacity, unless I want to pay $35/year. All good things must come to an end. I'm more and more drawn to blogspot as read the entries and look at photos from my dear friends.

So here we are. I will continue to share way too much information, pour my heart out, roller coaster from crazy frazzled mom to heartfelt deep thinking philanthropist. I'm frustrated and annoyed but gracious and thankful, all in a matter of 10 minutes. No matter what I always feel overwhelmed and have too much on my plate. And that's probably how I'll keep being. And for some reason, you, my friends and family like to read about it. It means I can update you at 11:56pm and you can read it from your desk at 11am instead of finishing your excel schedule or paying your bills or (gasp) playing with your kids.

This site isn't password protected, so I'll probably have to be a little more PC than in babysites which I had under lock n key. But that's okay, I'm a pretty open book and if I don't want the masses reading about it, I probably could get away with not writing it.

I'm crazy in love with my husband of 6 years, Lawrence. We make a good team. I'm still always analyzing us anyway. Sometimes I say go us. Sometimes I don't. Even so, we're in this together for the long haul and I'll make us get better at everything we do if it makes me even crazier and more overwhelmed, because, well, that's what I do. I'm a relationship junkie...no relationship will go un-worked on and worried about by me!

Now on to the highlight of the show...my amazing kids. Lily just turned 4 and Addie 16months. Oh how I love them. They are sweet and loving. They make me smile every time I look into their eyes. I constantly want to be better for them, I worry and I never feel good enough, but they think the world of me. They are so happy and grateful. I'm doing a good job, gol darn it, and I'm going to keep writing about it. Oh, I'll write about the times when I'm not too so that the rest of you remember, we're all only human...doing our best of keeping control when we aren't the ones in control. AT ALL.