Thursday, July 28, 2005

Car Seat Hell

That's where I've been for the past 2 plus hours. OMG! What a terrible experience. I thought tonight would be the perfect time to install the princess' new carseat as she is starting to outgrow her infant carrier. I was thinking there was no way it could take more than 40 minutes tops, right? Do you hear the sound of the entire universe laughing? Good Lord - who designs those things? I've never had this much trouble ever.

The only things I can think of that are different is:
a) we have a different car than the last time I had to have a convertible seat rear facing
b) the back seat slopes (unlike our previous vehicle)
c) the seatbelt locking mechanism is completely different in this vehicle making it necessary to use a locking clip (even though the belt locks too snug and tips the seat)

I worked up quite the sweat (and am in serious need of a shower) andended up reinstalling the infant carrier base. ARGH!!!!!!!!!!!

I think I'll need to find a safety seat tech to help me. I apparently need all the help I can get. (E...WHY do you live so far away and why did you have to teach me so much about seat safety? I'm so paranoid now! :) )

On a different note, we are getting ready to go up north to visit my sister tomorrow so I better get back to packing and cleaning.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

A Much Better Day Was Had By All

Today was a much, much, much, much (did I mention much?) better day. After feeling like the world's worst parent yesterday (and wondering what type of life changing damage I was doing to my children by my inability to cope) I decided to alter the way our days have been going. It seems to have had a positive effect - though still not without its challenges (but that's to be expected). I focused on the prince a lot. I watched his beloved TV shows with him instead of settling down with my cup of coffee to read email while he was entertained (no small sacrafice, I'll have you know. I love Higglytown Heroes, Clifford and Mr. Rogers as much as the next guy but a steady diet of them I cannot take).

We played Candyland (as best as a 3 year old can play), Playdoh, and various other things. We read and played outside. Took a trip to the post office (E - keep an eye out for your package) and stopped by our favorite coffee stand for a chocolate chip cookie (the prince's all time favorite thing to do) and an iced coffee drink (my all time favorite). I even sewed the Thomas the Tank Engine quilt I'd been planning to make for him and fixed the binding on his favorite blanket. I even tried, in vain, to fix the mobile he cut apart (I'm stil working on figuring out a solution, Brenda). Between the two kids, I took next to no time to do anything for myself. The day flew by in a blur of child centered activities, like it used to when I didn't have high speed internet. It was good and yet - I missed my connection to the outside world. I missed checking my emails, the blogs of friends and the message boards I regularly visit. I missed adult interaction and yet, my child thrived.

Is there a happy medium? I hope so because honestly I can't be 100% child-centered all the time. I do need some activities that feed my needs for a social outlet. Afterall, isn't it true that if you give all you have to your children and don't replenish yourself then you can no longer give them the best of you?

Sure- I'm the first to admit that the internet has been sucking up a lot of my time lately but I also know that I don't get the social interactions that people get when they work outside the home. I have to find that somewhere. I have my moms group and my playgroup but that only account for about 3-4 hours a week. Hardly enough. And yet, part of my feels incredibly selfish. I love these two little beings more than anything and there isn't anything I wouldn't do for them - that goes without saying. It's just that I also need a bit of time thrown in for me and since there is no solid block of time in any given day that is all mine, I have to squeeze it in along the edges (I'd love a lunch hour and two 15-minute breaks!). I just need to find the right balance because it's clear that we need to have better days than the one we had yesterday.

It's going to be a challenge to find time to do things for myself once D starts school (in FOUR short weeks). But if I don't - won;t the kids be the ones who suffer in the long run?

This mommy stuff is hard. Nothing is cut and dry and everything is as clear as mud.

My Child, The Genuis

Today my little princess, at 5.5 months, did an amazing thing - she held and drank water from a sippy cup. I am so proud of her!!

I would never have dreamed of giving the prince a cup of water at this age but the princess seemed to really want one today so I thought "what the heck" afterall, the literature I have says I can introduce a cup starting at 6 months (which I thought was way, way too early but I guess not!).

I am constantly blown away by this child.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

No Nap - Now There's A Good Idea. NOT!!

ARGH!! The tears of frustration and sadness have stopped and now I'm just plain irritated. I cannot believe what the prince has done. Let me see if I can make a simple equation from the situation:

Three year old + scissors + unattended + borrowed Fisher Price cradle swing + dangling animal mobile = do the math.

So now we're on the hunt for a replacement mobile so that I can return the swing in it's almost original condition. (Brenda, I am so, so, so sorry!!!)

I can't believe he cut off the animals. I just can't believe it. Never in a million years did I think he would do something like that. Cut a toy, his hair, his clothes, a pillow. All those things I can see happening but I never saw this one coming.

Of course it boils down to my fault - which only makes me angrier. He was working on his craft project this morning and when we left to go meet D, I left it all sitting on the kitchen table. I was going to come home and put him down for a nap but it was already late and I was easily talked out of it (which again - is my fault). If he had been napping I would have put away the craft supplies (probably) and it wouldn't have happened (probably).

So now the hunt is on for a replacement part. Wish me extremely good luck.

Why Oh Why Do I Keep Believing Him??

What? Am I am complete idiot? What the hell is wrong with me?? I keep believing this child of mine only to be greeting by a complete diaster.

The prince is working on an art project.....scissors, tapes, paper and glue (do you see it coming?). He's right here....I mean RIGHT here beside me. He proceeds to get glue on his fingers and says "Gotta go wash hands." I say "Let me help you." He says "No Mama. Do MYSELF!" To which I respond "Ok...go in and wash your hands and DO NOT MAKE A MESS!" He says "OK." I say "Don't play in the water. Just wash your hands and come back." O. K." my smartmouth boy shoots back in a rather loud voice.

He's back alright. In record time, too, so I figure "Hey good - that was easy." Then he says "Mama - come see. Skating." Huh?? So, I follow him and guess what? He hadn't played with the water...not at all. But the soap? Now *that's* a different story. There is foamy soap ALL over the bathroom floor and, true to his word, he is skating in it. ARGH!!!!!!!!

So I ask you...what is it in me that thinks for a single second that I can believe him when he says he won't make a mess? If it wishful thinking? A love of cleaning up messes even though I say I don't like them? Am I just cracked in the head?

I think it's the last option.

I need a 12-Step Program

Yep - you read the correctly. I need a 12-step program.

Hi, my name is Casey and I'm addicted to blogs. Any blog. Yours, mine a complete doesn't matter. Just keep 'em coming.

What is it about blogs that entices me? It's almost like reading someone's diary. I get the same feeling in my tummy as I used to get when I'd sneak into my sister's room to read her journal. Sneaky. That's it - I feel I'm peeping into someone's life without their permission. Except I *have* their permission. They did, afterall, leave their personal thoughts wide open on the internet for all to see.

I find I can't walk by my computer without peeking into a few blogs....or at least see if there are new posts. This is sucking away my time. I haven't read the paper in who knows how long (it arrives in the morning) because I now use my paper time to be on-line. High speed access is sucking my time!!!!! Maybe I should have stayed with dial-up. Maybe I'd still have a life outside of this screen.

Then again...maybe not. Maybe it would just take me longer to read all the blogs. :) I thought about going internet free for one day. Just one day. I started to head started to spin. I can't do it.

I need a 12-step program.

Monday, July 25, 2005

If You're Crazy And You Know It Raise Your Hand!

Come on, everyone, sing it with me - I know you know how it goes:

If you're crazy and you know it raise your hand
If you're crazy and you know it raise your hand
If you're crazy and you know then your life will surely show it
If you're crazy and you know it raise your hand

See? Told you you knew the words. :)

What a freaking crazy day we've had here at the OK Corral. Nuts. Pure and simple and yet I can't pinpoint exactly what happened. I know there was paint (lots of paint), water, crying, whining, stomping, pouting, sassy looks and comments and probably lots of other stuff I have blissfully put out of my mind. All I really know is I'm tired and practically seeing double. If it wasn't for the phone calls from a couple good friends, I just might have gone completely over the edge.

I'd like to say it's calm now but that is far from the truth. D is trying in vain to get the prince to stop moving and go to sleep out in the tent. I'm not sure what she was thinking when she suggested camping out again tonight. She has to get up before the crack of dawn (4:50AM) to get ready for work and she is thinking that, like this weekend, he will be in the house and in his own bed by that time. She may be right - if he doesn't settle down soon he'll be in the house before I finish this posting.

The princess is sleeping and has been for almost 90 minutes. She will, as usual, be stirring in about 30 minutes which will mean she is ready for her "dream feed". After nursing, she will be back down for a few hours. I have to say, I am definitely onto something with letting her fall asleep on her own. I wish we had done that with the prince - maybe he'd be a better sleeper. I admit though, it's hard to listen to her awake in there and just let her be. She isn't crying (I'd go to her immediately if she was) just making a fussy sound as she lies there with her eyes closed listening to her music. I call her sounds her "I'm so tired and I need to sleep" noise. I'm determined to not make the same errors in judgment when it comes to teaching her to sleep as I made with the prince. On one level it feels mean (no one likes to hear their baby fuss - even if they aren't really upset) but in my heart of hearts, I know it's best for her (and, let's face it....for me too. I would seriously jump off the nearest overpass if I had two sleepers like the prince.

It's hard to take responsibility to screwing up your child - who wants to admit *that*? but......we all make mistakes in life and parenting is no different. We can only do our best in any given situation and I know that's what we did with the prince. 85% of the time we made the right call, I know we did....but that other 15% we could have done better. Live and learn, right?

I'm sure the princess will have her 15%, too. I just hope it isn't in the sleeping department.

The bottom line is this: the prince is a great kid, too smart for my own good, but a great, amazing and wonderful kid.....even if he doesn't sleep well. :)

And speaking of sleep...that's where I'm heading. Wanna bet I'm asleep before the prince and D are? :)

A Call From Bob the Builder

You will never believe who just called the little prince a few minutes ago - it was Bob the Builder! The prince and Bob talked for a few minutes and when the prince handed the phone back to me he said "Mama, Bob wants me to go potty in my potty today!" SCORE!! You just gotta love an animated character who encourages using the potty. :)

Ok, actually it was my friend's boss, but for all the prince knows it really was Bob the Builder.

I'm not sure how E was able to convince her boss to talk with the prince but I'm very grateful. But now the prince wants to know if we can call Bob after he uses his potty. I told him that we would have to wait for Bob to call us back - after all, he is very busy building things. :)

Thanks, E! It was a great surprise and I now have one happy little prince who, with any luck at all, will want to use his potty today! :) :)


Oh my gosh - I'm so tired. So, so tired. It was a long night with not a lot of sleeping being done by the mamas. I have learned something very valuable about the princess; she sleeps so much better at night when she has drifted off to sleep by herself as opposed to walking/rocking/holding. Or at least, that has been the pattern and I'm holding onto that to keep my sanity.

Last night the princess was awake five times, three times to nurse and the prince was up three times. One time required a sheet change as his nighttime diaper had leaked all over the bed. Thankfully I have always doubled the sheets and waterproof pads on the kids mattresses so all that is necessary for middle of the night clean ups is removing the top sheet and pad and presto! Another set awaits. I highly recommend this method to all parents. It has saved us many times over the past three years.

Anyway - it was a rough night. It's 8:30AM, the prince and I have been up for 90 minutes and the princess is still sleeping. Lucky little girl. I'd give a lot to be snuggled under the blankets right now. With two kids there is no such thing as "sleep when the baby sleeps" - it just isn't possible. So not fair because it's definitely when a mommy needs the chance to sleep.

Anyone want to come over and watch two kids while I get a nap? :)

Oh - and before I forget...the person who came up with the idea of glitter paint for kids should be shot. Holy cow - you can never get all the glitter up. Not ever.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

"I might like it.....but I'm not sure."

"Wow! I might like it.....but I'm not sure." Not exactly the words of reassurance I was looking for today when I arrived home with a new haircut. The stylist called it "sassy" and said that D would probably hire a sitter and take me out for dinner. I'm no fool - I knew *that* wouldn't happen but I expected maybe something a little more comforting than what I got.

In her defense, my hairstyle is completely different. No two ways about that. It was shoulder length and now it's's not. It's more at the nape of my neck - right at the hairline. It's short. Really, really short. Probably shorter than it's even been in my life. Short, short, short.

The weird thing though? I hardly notice the length, or lack thereof. But then, I rarely ever have the time to look in the mirror. I think this is a good change for the hot summer days and I know it will help with the hair pulling I've been getting from the princess. She has a vicious little pull - she's a strong little thing for only 5 months.

I asked D tonight what she thought of it now that's she's had a few hours to get used to it. She says she likes it now but that is sure is different. I guess that's good. I was going for different. :)

It's been a long and exhausting weekend. We finally finished painting and arranging the prince's room. It looks great - so calm and peaceful. Of course it helps that I've taken out many of the toys that were cluttering the place - I'm sure it won't last but at least it made me feel better today. The prince likes his room (though he is distressed that things are not where they were and that other things are missing. He is *very* attached to all things his. It's a challenge to sneak things away from him but I have to start doing that - there are just too many toys in this house. The prince went without a nap today and after all the excitement of yesterday he went to bed at 6:45PM. Thank goodness. He was the epitome of stubborn and out of control.

The big camp out went pretty well though they only made it until about 2:30AM. I heard them come through the sliding glass door in our bedroom and head off to the guest bed to finish out the night. D said that the prince actually fell asleep really easily outside (easy to believe since he was still up at 10:30PM and hadn't had a nap) but was restless as the night wore on. As far as the prince was concerned though - camping was a huge success and his opinion really is the only one that matters in this instance.

The tent is still up and I'm sure it will get more play time tomorrow. He just adores playing in it and what's the harm? The grass will always grow back in the fall. :)

The princess is fussing and doesn't seem to want to give in to sleep so I should go to her (though D is walking around trying to soothe her). She and I had a great play session tonight - I just love that she can interact so well.

More later.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

A Great Night For Camping

The tent is pitched, sleeping bags rolled out, marshmallows roasted and teeth brushed. The little prince and his mama are camping out tonight in the backyard. It's strangely quiet in the house. The princess is asleep and all the lights are out except for the one in this room. I wish I could hear what was going on in the tent - something tells me that the prince is probably fast asleep already - it's been a busy day, he didn't get his much needed nap and it's now 10 o'clock PM. I'm sure the excitement of his "adventure" (as he has been calling it all afternoon and evening) has supplied him with enough adrenaline to keep him chugging away.

The morning started out at 6AM when the prince woke. By 7:30AM we were in high gear clearing out the prince's room for painting. By 9:45AM, D had cracked open the first gallon of paint (dark blue) and had begun rolling it onto a wall. 11:00AM found me saying "Twenty minutes before we have to be out the door!" as we had an 11:30 birthday party to attend.

The party, which was for a playgroup friend of the prince, was quite the event. A bounce castle thing that was a huge hit, lunch, swimming in their full-sized pool, present opening...the whole she-bang. We finally said our goodbyes at 2:45PM.

We started talking about the camping adventure and decided that one of those patio fire circles would be a lot of fun (I know - we're crazy!) so off we went in search of one. Big Lots didn't have any left but we did find cool beach umbrellas that we are going to need in a few weeks when we head to the coast for vacation. D also found a really great kids camping lantern for the prince's adventure (BIG BIG hit!). We decided to try Target since we were close to one and yep - they had a few to choose from. We ended up getting the floor model (30% off) of the cheapest one but it will more than do the trick for us.

We were finally on our way home - it was 5PM. Ugh. We still had the room to paint, the princess needed to nurse and nap and the prince was hyped up on sugar, adrenaline and lack of sleep (which, by the way, has the opposite effect on 3 year olds than it does on 40 year old adults). D started painting while I tried to herd cats...errr...I mean, tend to the kids.

Finally, at 7PM the room was finished and we were in the yard putting up the tent. 8PM was dinnertime and then it was on to the adventure part - we built a fire. It was fun but I have to say, I think the prince listened and stayed away from the fire much better last year, when he was two, than he did this year. All was not lost though, he had a grand time roasting marshmallows (if you can call putting it on the stick, waving it at the fire and then eating it roasting marshmallows but hey - at least he didn't catch it on fire. I'm sure that's next years excitement) and I had a chance to be really, really thankful that we aren't going camping this summer. :)

I'm exhausted. Time for this girl to hit the hay....probably just in time for the princess to wake to nurse. I had hoped to have a few hours to myself tonight (thinking, in error, that camping would happen much earlier in the evening) so I could start the new Harry Potter book but I'm certain *that* isn't going to happen. I doubt I could even focus on the words let alone try to follow a plot.

Maybe on vacation... though probably not. There is one sure thing about a stay at home moms job - it has a way of being the same at home or at a hotel on the coast. Same job duties - just a different location. I'm still really looking forward to it though.

Good night!

Friday, July 22, 2005

The Never Ending Laundry Saga

A friend of mine says she does one load of laundry a week. That's for her *and* her load a week. A WEEK! How does that happen? I'm lucky if I only have one load a DAY to do. Today alone I have done four loads and this on a day I thought I wouldn't have to do a single one. HA! That's what happens when you have an infant sleeping on your bed and their diaper leaks...that means a load of sheets (luckily, she wasn't on the comforter) and a load of baby clothes because her swaddling blanket got soaked and she needs it for bedtime. that point if you're in for a dime, you're in for a dollar so I did a dark load as well the the bath mats.

Never fear - there is still more waiting. The dog beds need washing, the floor blanket that the princess plays on top of needs washing and well as the sheets I took off the guest bed last week. By this time tomorrow there will be even more. I swear, we have a never ending supply of dirty and, now that the prince plays in the water on hot days, wet clothes.

How is it she only has one load a week? Someone help me do the math on this - it makes no sense. My comfort comes from the fact that she is expecting a baby any time now. And to that I say HA! The laundry? It's coming! :) :)

Yep - sadly, that makes me feel better about having a zillion loads a week to do.

Oh - and something very exciting happened today. I received my first ever text message! I know, I know - big whoop. But for me it was a thrill. Damn I need to get out more. :)

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Yowsa - this is much longer than I thought......

There are five hundred million other things I should be doing right now. My To Do list for the day is only half done (with a few more things added in increase the stress level) and there are a bunch of things that I would like to get to sometime before the prince and princess go off to starting a handwritten journal for them. I have a file of letters I have typed to them while they were inside me (and the prince has a few more pages of misc. stuff from his first two years) but I heard someone say once that she handwrites things because she cherishes the only handwritten thing she has from her mom...a check she wrote years and years ago. I thought that was sad....that all she had to remind her of her moms writing was a voided check. I want to leave my kids more than that. I want to write journals for them to document the life we share - all the things we do, the cute things they say - all those moments that happen once and then are soon forgotten.

The princess will do something that will remind me of something the prince did when he was her age and suddenly it will dawn on my that I had forgotten all about it until that very moment. It's sad to me that I have forgotten so much. I don't want to be the mom who says to her grown child "Oh honey - I don't remember. That was a long time ago." I think it's important to give our children the gift of our memory.

I'm not sure where this is coming from - maybe because I read a friend's blog tonight about her mom not being there and the fact that she is really needing her mom at this point in her life (as well as every other point, I'm sure). It makes me sad to know she is hurting and it also makes me worry that someday it might be my little ones that are hurting this way. No one should be without a mom...some of us have moms still on the earth but who, for one reason or another aren't able (or don't want) to be there.

Technically, my mom is still on the earth. It's also true for my dad. The kicker though is they aren't the parents I used to have and sometimes I long for something I'm not even sure I would have ever had. My parents are living in an assisted living facility. My dad had a serious stroke about 12 years ago that left him very child-like - he doesn't resemble in any way, shape or form my father. He is a shell of the father I knew. He doesn't even sound the same - a stroke like his affects every thing, even his voice. My mom has a progressive neuro-muscular disease called Primary Lateral Sclerosis (PLS) which is very similar to ALS or Lou Gehrig's Disease. So can no longer walk unassisted, her writing is getting harder and harder to decipher and she seems to have lost the ability to think of anything but herself. She hasn't been available to me for more years than I can count. It's only been in the past year that we have a name to give her condition. Trying to have a conversation with her is like trying to herd just can't be done. It's frustrating and infuriating at the same time.

Here's an example of what it's like to deal with her. The princess was born and then admitted immediately to the NICU for breathing issues. It was a terrifying time. I called my mom to let her know the baby had been born and what was happening. She seemed stuck on trying to get the name and weight and didn't seem to register the rest of the conversation. I was so frustrated and angry. I finally got her to understand the baby was sick....and that was the last I heard from her for 16 days. SIXTEEN DAYS!!! It's hard to have parents and yet, not have parents. Harder still because they are only 66 years old. I might expect this from someone in their 80's or 90's but not in their 60's.

I seem to be on a rant. Wild. Sometimes this stuff just comes pouring out of me. I know that life isn't fair and I know everyone has pain and their own private hells to face and yet - I still don't cope with it well.

This entry was supposed to be about my day and the kids and what life was like today and I guess, in a way, it was. I'm feeling very conflicted about things - life feels out of control and I wish I could pinpoint why.

The prince and princess are tucked in so I should end this and get back to straightening up the house for playgroup tomorrow. Clearly the vacuuming isn't going to get done. :)

Monday, July 18, 2005

A Few Minutes of Quiet...and then not

I know what you're thinking, E. You're thinking "Instead of writing go read your Harry Potter book! How are you ever going to get it read if you don't freakin' START it?" Yeah yeah - I know BUT..........hmmm..I guess I don't really have an excuse except "I don't wanna." Lame, huh? :)

I want to read it but I also want to write and read emails and feel well...connected to the world of muggles. :)

So - here's how my day is shaping up......
The little prince woke bright and early (ugh!) at 6:20AM. I wake to him standing on D's side of the bed, little tears in his eyes asking "Where's Mama?" Mondays are the hardest mornings for us. I tell him she's at work and he gives me a sad little look. Soon we are up and out of the room so as not to wake the sleeping princess. We head out for a little quiet TV time (and a few cups of coffee to shake the cobwebs from my brain).

Later in the morning, while the princess takes her morning nap and after I have taken my shower, the little prince plays "Monster Under the Bed" and entices me to play along. Luckily, these are nice monsters so we are able to have a pleasant little chat with them. When I first explained that I wasn't sure I wanted to talk with monsters and showed him my scared face, he looked at me and said sternly "Only pretend, Mama." I think it's so funny that he "gets" what is pretend and what is not.

Then came time to get him dressed for the day. It's going to be 92 today and it was already creeping up on 80 and what does my prince insist on wearing? Long sleeves and sweats. No, I'm not kidding. And remember from earlier posts....we don't have A/C. I try my best to get him into shorts and a t-shirt but he insists and I try to remember that I must pick my battles and really, in the end does it really matter? Nope. Though I try one more compromise: ok on the long sleeves but let's go with shorts. He looks at me and then finally, reluctantly agrees. Until naptime. Then he insists on wearing sweats. Fine. *sigh* (I think this might be a genetic thing - my brother once spent the entire summer of his third year wearing long sleeves, long pants, gloves and a hat. Or - maybe it's a weird three-year-old thing.)

The princess has learned to play peek-a-boo which I find hysterical. She will pull a piece of fabric over her face and then pop it down with a huge smile. I'll say "Pee-a-Boo!" and she will laugh for all she's worth.

It's later now, much's been a full day and I am whipped. The heat really makes me cranky and tired. I worked so hard to keep this house as cool as possible (no easy task, I'll have you know) but no sooner was D home from work than she was flinging open doors and windows. HELLO??? It's 94 outside and 80 inside. Yes, it's hot inside but IT'S HOTTER OUTSIDE!!!!!!! "Look." She says "There's a nice cool breeze. It's not that hot." Oh for crying out loud. It's STILL 94 degrees. That just pisses me off. I work all day long on making sure the prince doesn't leave the doors wide open when he is in the yard playing but all my work is undone in the blink of an eye. He looks at me suspiciously, as if to say "See? I told you it wasn't hot!" and then he proceeds to waltz out the back door - leaving it wide open behind him. Can you feel my frustration??

Ok and here's another vent. Friday is Moms Night Out for my moms group. It's the last one I'll be able to go to without hiring a babysitter as D will be in school. So the reality is, I probably will go to very, very few events because I don't really enjoy leaving the kids with anyone besides D (I will, if I have to but I don't like to). So she hits me with an email (because she *knows* I'm going to be upset) that says "Since you're going out I made plans to go out with N for a few hours." Ok THIS is what gets wasn't ok to ask her sister to come over and help her watch the kids while she paints the prince's room but it IS ok to have her come over to babysit so D can go out. WHAT? Last night she was making me feel guilty for wanting to go out because we had so much to do but now??

Lately, whenever I get some much needed time away from home/kids I get hit with "Since you did X, I'm going to be gone for 6 hours next Saturday for X" So basically, I feel like I'm being punished if I ever take time for myself because in the end, I wind up being alone with the kids for another day. It's almost to the point where it just isn't worth it and I think that is SO unfair!! D, of course, fails to see it that way.

And the kicker to my taking issue with this Friday is that it feels like she is constantly taking time away from the kids (and me) in these last few weeks before classes start. Once school is going, the kids will hardly ever see her and yet every time I turn around she wants to go to this event or this one or the one over here. Sometimes I feel like I talk but that no words actually come out because often I am feeling like my opinions/wants/needs ect are just not important to her.

Yeah yeah - I know that probably isn't right but it's how I feel.

And on that note, I'm signing off. Hopefully tomorrow will be a better day and, please God, cooler.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Weekend? More like Work-End

Weekend? Work-end is more like it!

The princess is crying - she's tired but won't give in. D is rocking her trying to lull her off to dreamland. The prince is watching Higglytown Heros after a two hour nap (please note the time: it's 8PM). We had thought he might sleep through the night given that he didn't have a nap today (for selfish reasons - we wanted him to crash early so that we could have some much needed down time and lately getting him to bed is taking a very long time) and fell asleep on the way home from visiting an aunt and uncle. No such luck. I think we *might* be able to convince him to return to sleep in the next hour or so. It doesn't look promising for finishing the movie we started (Hitch - for those of you who are interested).

The weekend was busy, crazy and hectic. It started Friday afternoon when D arrived home from work. We had decided to clean out the old den, now the princess' room, and get it ready to paint. To make it "easier" for us, D took the prince and princess out to run two errands which took 2 hours....go figure. Who knew it would take that long to get cat food and drop cloths? Turns out it was a very good call (except for the part that it meant I had to do all the work in the room - not so easy alone) - it gave me time to box up the books from the bookshelf and empty out the room (did I mention we don't have A/C and the back of this house heats up like crazy. I was a sweaty mess!). I even had time to start taping it for painting.

They finally arrived home and after D encouraged me to go into the much cooler livingroom to cool down we continued prepping the room (with the little prince pulling off the tape in several areas. *sigh*). D decided to take the kids out to the pool to play for a while which gave me the chance to finish prepping and start painting. I painted two walls before the prince decided he wanted *me* to help him go to sleep...which meant cleaning up and switches places with D, who finished painting the room.

Oh but the work was worth it! The room looks amazing! I have decided to hold off moving the crib in but the guest bed and glider are in there as well as pictures on the wall. It's such a sweet room and I have to say, the princess looks fabulous in there! :)

The prince has decided that instead of a blue color in his room, he wants pink. Oy. Not like we don't have the paint (over bought, don'tcha know?) but pink doesn't really go with his stars and moon theme. Hopefully by next week he will want to go with the blue tones he picked out already - because next Friday we start his room.

So - we painted the room. Big job. But we weren't done yet. There were blinds to hang in there and our bedroom needed new window coverings and a rod for the sliding glass door (note to self: remind D to never let the prince or princess wrap themselves up in the curtain. Doing so may cause the rod to fall off the wall - taking a large chunk of the wall with it. Molly bolts have a way of doing that.) The new curtains/rod look great, by the way - and they really needed to have new ones so all in all, it's good that it happened.....except for that hole in the wall that still needs to be patched before we tackle painting out room.

We had company coming over for dinner Saturday night which meant grocery shopping, cleaning up the back yard, scrubbing out the pool, refilling it and mowing the lawn. Oh - and cleaning off the patio and prepping food. Somehow, we managed to get it all done and we had a great time with our friends.

Today we had a bit of shopping to do so that I could make a meal for one of the moms in my mommy group who just had a baby. It was 94 today and there I was - in the kitchen making a meal, making sweet tea, running the dishwasher and doing laundry. Let me remind you again - we do not have A/C and this house gets HOT!! UGH!!!

Now it's Sunday night. The breakfast dishes are set out. Animal food is ready for morning. Kitchen is cleaned. The princess had her bath and is ready to sleep for a few hours. The mommies are tired and ready to sleep....all night long (Yeah - like *that* will happen). And the prince? well - he's rested and ready to go.

It's going to be a looooooooooong night.

Friday, July 15, 2005

"My goodness he's a busy boy!"

If I had a dime for every time someone said that to me when I am out with my little prince I'd be....well...I'd have a nice savings account going. I'm never sure exactly how they mean it when it's said. Does it mean "Good God woman! Control that child!" or does it mean "Better her than me - I'd never want a child like that." or maybe "Does he ever stop?"

The answer to the last one is no. He never stops. He has two speeds - super fast or cuddled in a heap on the couch with his blanket watching tv. And people wonder why I am known to ask "Hey baby, do you want to watch Mr. Rogers? Come on - let's go watch it!" It's not that I think he loves Mr. Rogers (though I know he really does love that show). It's not like I want him to be a couch potato but good grief - a mom needs a break every now and again.

We went to the mall today to have 5 month pictures taken of the little princess. Of course, while mom is busy trying to make sure the baby doesn't roll off the table the little prince is busy climbing behind the photo backgrounds, over props, into the office.......I'm saying, over and over "Come here and stay here." "If I count to 3 and you aren't back here I'm coming to get you and I will strap you into your stroller seat. One, Two...." Ziiiiiiiip! He's back by my side.

And then the minute I'm distracted again he's off and running. I feel like the only mom in the world who can't control her 3 year old.

So the second time someone commented about "how busy" he is I started it sympathy, pity or their way of saying "Get him out of here."

I think next month I'll see if someone can watch the little prince while I take the princess in for photos.

Pink Pink Pink

Pink. If you had asked me 2 years ago how I felt about the color pink I would have said "Oh - it's ok. Personally, I don't like it but it's ok." If you had asked me a 10 months ago I would have said, with tears in my eyes, "I hate it."

Why the tears? Because I had recently found out I was having a girl. A daughter. Someone who would be wearing clothes in the hated color. I had tried hard to get used to the color. I'd gone to stores hoping against all odds that I would find *the* article of clothing in pink that would change my mind about the color.

Then finally about 8 months ago, I found a soft pink fleece jacket from Baby Gap. It cost way too much for what it was but it was the first pink anything that hadn't brought tears to my eyes. I bought it (in a size 18-24 month as I knew she'd get to wear it longer than if I had bought it in a 0-3) and took it home.

And so began my adventure into the land of pink.

By the time our little princess was born I was used to seeing pink hanging in the closet among the blues and yellows and purples. I thought "It'll be ok. Pink every now and then will be ok. I have all these other colors to dress her in." But then - the biggest shock of all.....the princess looked good in pink. Not just good...but sweet and innocent and ......wonderful. I fell in love. I fell in love with the color pink. Pink. Of all the colors to fall in love with it was pink. But there it was.

I tried putting her in yellow one day. She looked ok in it but not nearly as wonderful and precious as she looked in pink. I brought her into the livingroom where the prince was. He took one look at her and said "No yellow, Mama. Change her to pink."

There it was again. My daughter looks best in pink. It was true.

Fast forward 4 more months - I can't seem to dress her in any other color but pink. Friends have even commented "Does she own any other color?" "Yes...but I don't like them. She looks best in pink."

We're getting her room ready to paint. Any guesses what color? :)

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Please Mama, choose me.

Oy. The things that can break a mommy's heart. Tonight, after a huge meltdown about getting out of the pool, we finally had the little prince in his pajamas, the stories were read and he was ready to be tucked in (the little princess had gone to sleep in the midst of all the getting ready for sleep activity). The prince said to me "Mama, you nap in bed with me." which means, in my 3 year old's lingo, "I want you to sleep with me and cuddle me all night long."

I told him I could snuggle with him until he fell asleep (after the huge meltdown I figured it wouldn't take long). I climbed in next to him and he snuggled in tight. Within a few minutes, the little princess was awake and crying...and crying and crying and crying. D went to her and tried to calm her. After 5 minutes I whispered to the little prince "I have to go take care of the baby. She sounds hungry." My little prince snuggled as close as he could get - our bodies were almost one - and he said in a sad little voice "No Mama. Please stay. She no hungry. She ok."

What is a mommy to do? Her little prince needs her desperately, he is rarely as needy as he was tonight, and the little princess is screaming her lungs out searching for her comfort, which is me. I felt completely torn in two. Stay? Go? I just didn't know who's heart to break.

I stayed with the little prince and in a few minutes the princess calmed down. I knew she was safe her other mommy's arms and yet still......

These are the choices I dread. When I'm standing there and they both need me at the same time - who do I go to first? I think that *this* is the hardest thing about having more than one child.

One more thing before I go....

....Who do you tell about your blog? Do you tell your partner? Friends? Which ones? Strangers?

I want to share this with D but at the same time I want a place that's all mine where I can vent when needed and just talk about things going on in our lives. I'm not sure I am ready for her to know about this place yet...maybe not ever.

I wonder what others do.

Alone for a while

Ahhhh. The sweet sounds of......nothing. It's so quiet I can hear the hum of the air conditioning unit in the other room. No loud talking. No TV. No washing machine (which seems to always be running). No sounds of the baby swing rocking. No splashing in the pool. No sound of water running. Silence. Wow. I can almost hear myself think.

D, bless her, took the kids with her on an errand. They've been gone almost an hour and its been bliss. As much as I love those two little munchkins, I long for solitude. What errand, you ask? I'm not sure I completely understood all that she was saying - I think I stopped listening when she said "What would you think if I took the kids and went...." :) No need to go anything further. I'm in! No - I do know where they are. I'm not *that* sucky of a mom. They went to a friends house to pick up some Cyberwize stuff. Cyberwize is a business venture that D is involved in. Like we don't have enough going on, right? I know, I know. Just keep piling on the stuff...adding to the stress. Why not? That's why they invented anti-depressants. :)

Someday I'll go into more detail about Cyberwize. I don't have time now - I can hear the silence quickly coming to an end. The tick tock of the clock is growing louder. *sigh*

Why is it when I think about what I will write I have all these great topics to discuss. Great insight. Great questions. But when push comes to shove and I'm sitting in front of the keyboard my mind goes blank? I wonder if that means this experience shouldn't be thought out and well planned - at least not for me. Maybe I'm just supposed to do a brain dump to clear my head. Who knows. Truthfully, by the end of the day it's amazing that I can string words together to form a sentence or heck, even type words (mostly) correctly.

Before I go I want to share the sweetest thing about my day today. My little prince and princess were outside together, the princess lying on a blanket on the grass and the prince running around like the wild man he is when suddenly he stopped, walked over the the princess and laid down beside her. He took her hand and said "I love you, baby sister." and gave her a very gentle kiss. Then, faster than fast he was up and running around again. I tell you - it's those moments that keep this tired mommy pushing forward. Thank God for moments like that.

Just another day in paradise

The kids are both sleeping - at least for the moment. I wish I knew a secret to getting them to stay asleep for the same duration of time. I should be doing so many other things and yet the computer is calling my name - in my mind I've been creating and recreating a post all morning but now, for the life of me, I have no clue what I was going to write about. Mommy brain is a wicked, wicked thing.

A friend of mine is anxiously awaiting the birth of their child. She's been on my mind most of the day as I can feel her anquish and frustration when I read her posts. I know her little one will arrive when s/he is good and ready but for her sake, I hope it's soon. I'm not sure how many more days of uncertainty she can stand. I remember those feelings well with my little guy was late. I remember wanting to smack people at work when they would say "Are you still here?" or "Hasn't that baby come yet?" or "Are you still pregnant?" ( I had the baby last night but thought I'd come to work anyway - I am *that* dedicated! Idiots.)

It's a nice day today. Not too warm yet but it should be in the 90's by Saturday. Ugh. Central air is not a huge thing around here and our house was built before it started to become "the thing". Needless to say, we don't have it and our house feels like a friggin' furnace by the second warm day. We have a window a/c unit in the livingroom which helps but I would love to have the whole house cooled. I am just way too miserable as the mercury climbs upward. The prince has already been out playing in the water and in his pool. That boy is a wild water child. No doubt about it.

The little princess is awake - I should go tend to her. I'll write more later.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

A boy and water

Oh my. My three year old is outside (again) playing with water (again). This love affair with water from the hose has been going on since he was 15 months old. Water water water. It's everywhere. He christens his play structure, the patio, the house, the swings...everything. Every day. It drives me crazy and yet it makes him so happy and when you have a child - their happy moments are worth their weight in gold. So much of the day, or so it seems, I am constantly saying "No." "Don't do that." "Don't wake the baby." "Quiet please!" "No hitting." "No you can't." "You'll have to wait - I'm feeding the baby." Sometimes I feel like my son isn't getting all the attention he needs, wants and deserves. Heck - even my computer time cuts into time I could be spending with the kids. Ever since I got high speed (last month) I feel like I live on this thing. It's just so fun and it's so much easier to stay in contact with a world that I normally feel completely cut off from.

Anyway - the water. It's going to cost us a fortune and it's probably completely irresponsible considering the lack of snow pack and the below average rain fall we've had but like I said - it makes the boy beyond thrilled and happy.

....and 30 minutes later
I'm back to finish. We had an issue with the water and I had to play bad mom and turn it off. I don't know about you but I'm not a fan of the hose being sprayed in the house. :) After a mini-melt down, my water prince is watching Postcards from Buster and my little princess is hanging out in her exersaucer. Oy! Sometimes I'm not sure how I get through both kids melting down at the same time. The minutes feel like hours.

D will be home from work soon. Thank goodness. These days are fast coming to an end - who will be at the door to rescue me when the clock strikes 5? No one. I'm terrified. What if I can't do this by myself? I already feel like I can't but it's not like I have a choice. I had asked D to think about deferring for a year (which she could have done) so that the kids were older (which would definitely be easier on the little prince as he is all about the other mama. He worships the ground she walks upon) but she opted to not wait. There are days when she will say "I shouldn't be going to school this fall. I don't know how you are going to do all of this alone. I should have waited." I try to stay calm when I say "Yeah - that would have been nice but you made the choice not to." All the while I am silently screaming at the top of my lungs "NO FREAKIN' KIDDING! I did everything but beg you not to start this year. Don't lay this on me now - I told you this wasn't the best of timing. I don't take responsibility for this decision." Part of me is pissed off that she didn't take my concerns to heart. Ok - a big part of me. Mostly I'm just scared to do this alone. Maybe this situation will surprise me and it will all come easily and naturally to be alone so much of the time. Yeah - like that is going to happen.

Sheesh- I could prattle on and on and on but why bore you right out of the gate? (E - are you *sure* you're going to read a blog that I write? Guess we'll see.)
Ok - that's it for now. I should get back to all the things that need my attention: the kids, laundry, setting out the breakfast dishes and animal food for the morning - all those never ending chores of life. At least I don't have to do a lot of cleaning.....we have a house cleaner for that. So far, that is the ONLY perk of D going to school. It sure is a good perk though! :)

In the beginning.... this is a blog. Interesting. I've never done anything like this before but thought "What the heck." It might provide me a space to talk about all the things that are taking place in my life. My partner is starting law school in 8 weeks. That's EIGHT weeks. In and of itself, not a big deal, right? But....I'm a stay at home mom to two kids; a 3 year old boy and a 5 month old girl. Still not such a big deal? Add to it that my partner will be working her regular full time job during the day and attending classes at night. Four nights a week. For four year.

Starting to get the picture?

Eeeeeek. Being a mom to two kids is hard enough *with* someone else to help but doing it alone? Wow. Not really what I signed up for but what else could I do? What other choice did I really have? Part of loving someone is supporting their choices. Part of loving someone is doing all you can to help them achieve their dreams and goals. So.....this will be my life.

Ready to make the journey with me?