Thursday, October 18, 2012

This parenting gig

It occurred to me that this parenting gig is a work in process.  It has really helped over the past few weeks to keep that in mind.  I've never done this before, and I'm learning as I go.  Some things work, others don't.  As the kids grow, I grow with them.  Cool.

On the days that you really aren't too happy with the way things went, its a good reminder that we get to try it again the next day.  We can make up for our mistakes, learn, and move on, take a new approach, try something different. 

On the really great days, take a lot of pictures and REMEMBER them.  Lavish them.  Make them come again.

The best part is that we (parent-kid teams) are in this together.  We are making our family history.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Can't catch a break


It seems we just can't catch a break this month.  Matt had his vasectomy last Thursday (things went well), so I had full time care of the kids, since he was in some pain and couldn't lift anything. I honestly can't understand how single parents do it.  Maybe I'm just a wimp, or maybe my kids are really high maintenance, but there is no possible way that I could do this full time.

I tried to go to the YMCA for yoga class on Saturday morning, but was called out 25 minutes into it since Lu was crying non-stop in Child Watch.  Twenty five minutes of yoga was just not enough to get me to where I needed to be.  The rest of the day wasn't terrible, but I was already looking forward to Tuesday.

Saturday was our 10 year anniversary.  We didn't plan too well, but did get a babysitter at the last minute.  We got to go to lunch together on Sunday.  It was a nice break....but I felt like I couldn't relax.  I felt tired and worn out.  Not too fun to be around.  I feel like I'm just less fun to be around since having kids.  I feel less interesting.  Blah.  Matt thinks I just need to relax.  And I'm trying.

Cy got a fever on Sunday after we got home from lunch.  Of course this means he was whiny and cranky.  This kid hardly ever gets sick, and this is the second time this month.  His daycare just admitted a bunch of new kids, so I'm wondering if there are just a new set of germs to deal with.  Ugh.  Now I'm just waiting for Lu to get it.

Monday was okay, but it just felt like a long day.  I tried to get some work done so that I would be able to stay home someday during the week if Lu comes down with a fever.  (fatalistic or realistic?)
There was a nice 2 hour block in the afternoon of QUIET (the boys and Lu were napping).  It was a nice, and I got some photo editing done. I actually felt a bit better after this break. I felt more able to deal with the rest of the day after getting a little time to myself.

After we put the kids to bed, we even had a little time to watch another episode of Breaking Bad on Netflix. What a great show!!!  I'm glad we only watched one episode, though...since both kids were up a little after 3am.  So, today I'm tired.  Again.  Like I said...we can't seem to catch a break.  Oh, and allergies are starting, too.  Bonus.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

A rough day

I feel like I'm having a rough day today.  Seems like a trend.  I guess I don't feel as compelled to write in this space when I'm having a great day.

After a stressful vacation, and a rough few nights....I'm feeling pulled thin.  I am tired, exhausted even.  I feel like I need a break.   A day or two to clear my head and get back on track.  Being the mom often times means self-care is put to the back burner while making sure everyone else is taken care of.  

The baby has continued to be clingy (to me) even though all traces of sickness are gone.  She wakes up multiple times at night and is tough to get back down.  We've started to let her cry in hopes she will soothe herself.  I can't stand to listen to her cry, but I don't know what else to do...I'm at the end of my rope with it. She isn't eating well....meaning I have to pump more often to relieve the fullness.  She is just "off" right now. Maybe this is a phase or she is just recovering from a stressful week.  What ever the case, I'm just hoping this passes soon.

Cy is pushing limits.  Not listening, or at least not paying attention.  My patience is gone.  I feel like I am punishing him more often lately, and need to examine whether it's because his behavior has been worse or my tolerance is at an all time low.  Instinct tells me its a mixture of both.

Tomorrow is the day that my husband has his vasectomy.  I am worried for him (just cause that's me) but also happy that we will mark the end of our baby making days.  It couldn't come at a worse time, since I really am not looking forward to doing full time care of both kids this weekend (no heavy lifting for him).  I'm hoping he heals quickly and that I can enjoy this time with the kids.  I need to just come up with a game plan.  

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Vacation Woes

I can't even start to describe how bad vacation was this year.  Someone told me today that when you are travelling with young children, it should have a different name than "vacation".  Amen.

To summarize:  the baby was sick the whole time.  A temperature of 103 that persisted for the whole week.  She was clingy (attached to me the entire time) and didn't sleep.  I've never returned from a vacation so exhausted.  

Luckily, Cy had a blast and really loved spending time with his cousins at the lake.  There is my silver lining.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

A letter to my girl

Dear LuLu, 

While rocking with you at bedtime tonight I stared at you and felt like I know your path. I know the heartaches and joys of being a woman. I can connect and relate to you in this way.  I know that there will be drama.  There will also be growing and learning.  I feel lucky to be a part of that.

Thinking about raising a girl is a little intimidating to me.  There are so many things that I want for you (and even more that I don't).  Be strong, independent, and stubborn.  Fight for what you want and go after it with enthusiasm.  BUT, embrace your softness.  Don't mistake emotion and vulnerability for weakness.  It's not true.  Let someone love you and love them back.  Invite people in.  Offer help easily, and remember to accept help just as easily.  

I'm struggling with some of these things myself these days, and it makes me so aware that I want so much for you.  I'm making changes to be a better role model for you.  

I love you.  

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

I have a lot of work to do

Well, therapy session number two is under my belt.  Ouch.  This stuff isn't easy.  I feel mentally weak, or lazy....something like that.  This mental "tune up" is what I need to keep me healthy and make me a better mom.  It's like going to the gym for my brain.  And it IS a workout. 

I hate feeling weak.  I hate crying so much.  I really feel the need to get this under control.  

Tuesday, July 24, 2012


So, I had a therapy session.  She says I have postpartum depression.  

I don't feel like I'm going to harm my kids.  I don't even really feel depressed.  I feel anxious and edgy a lot, overwhelmed at times.  I am snapping at my husband more than I should.  I feel like I'm having trouble adjusting to life with 2 kids.  I keep waiting for it to get easier. I feel like I'm riding a hormone roller coaster.

The worst part is that I feel bad for feeling this way.  I never felt like this when I had my son.  My daughter is an easier baby than he was, so why is it harder this time?  I feel like I should be able to handle this better. 

I feel isolated, and that I want to isolate myself even more so people don't see my weakness.

I almost didn't publish this post.  Why is there such shame associated with this?  Why does it make me feel like a failure?  I know why people don't talk about this very much, cause I don't want to talk about it either.  I'm lucky to have a really supportive husband who urged me to call my doctor. 

If you feel any of the symptoms, please don't feel shame in asking for help.  Feeling better and being the best mom to my kids that I can is my goal, and for this, I can swallow my pride and get some help.  I have lots of excuses to not get help: I don't have time, I really don't need the help, this will pass, things will get better, I should just suck it up and deal.  I have 2 very good reasons to get help:

Reason #1:

Reason #2:

Monday, July 23, 2012

Random Monday thoughts

1- I'm tired.  Damn.  Can this baby please start sleeping through the night soon?  We've recently had a stretch of about 2 weeks of bad sleep (waking 2-3 times per night).  I'm in the process of enforcing the "you can only eat one time a night" rule, while hoping for the "you don't wake up at all" part of her sleep.  UGH.  I know it gets better.  I know she will eventually sleep, but dang....I'm ready for it.

2- Lu started crawling on Friday.  She's slow, but she's got it down.  Our house is on Lego (and all small piece toys) lockdown.  Poor Cy.

3- I'm having some extreme highs and lows lately.  I'm really sure that it is hormone related, but I'm going to talk to someone about it tomorrow.  I'm kind of nervous about that.

4- I got a haircut this weekend, and hate it.  Why do I always hate my haircuts? What do I do wrong?

5-We are taking the kids to Storyland this weekend.  Our first themepark adventure.  Am I ready for this?

6- My yoga teacher is moving to North Carolina.  I'm really going to miss her is so fantastic.  Guess I'm on the hunt for a replacement. 

Here's to a great week, and hopefully better sleep.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Old ladies

Seems like recently I've had several older women approach me while I am out with the kids.  They feel the need to tell me that these are the best days of my life, and that I should really enjoy them.

I know this is not a new theme.  I know that they are sincere and mean no harm.  I know.
BUT, I think they need to remove their rose colored glasses and leave me the hell alone.

I'm on a streak of really bad night's sleep, my 4 year old DOES NOT LISTEN, and the baby is imminently teething (aren't they always).  Nursing has become a contact sport, where there is hair pulling, pinching, and complete distraction.  Just getting out the door in the morning requires bribes and coddling.  There are endless dishes and laundry.  I don't get any alone time (except for the 10 minutes I spend in the shower).  Did I mention that I haven't had a full night's sleep in over 8 months?

So, yes.  I realize that your children are older now, or have even left the nest.  I know that you think you miss these days.  Please don't remind me.  There are several moments that I love and cherish, BUT if these are the best days of my life?  Please.  Take me now.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Nighttime Feeding

It happened to me last night.  I wondered when it would.  I was up at 1:30am for Lulu's night feeding, and I just gazed at her.  I took the time to really look at her and try to remember that cherub of a face.  It's not a time for cameras, but I really wish I had more than memories to preserve this image.  Beautiful.  Really.  So peaceful.

I remember with Cy that I loved the nighttime feedings.  Even though I was exhausted, I always enjoyed the quiet and special alone time with him.  I was really sad when they ended (although, I really enjoyed getting sleep, too!). 

Something struck me last night, and I realized that this time was going to come to an end soon.  I haven't really enjoyed the middle of the night feedings with Lu, and I chalk that up to being more tired with two kids. However, last night, I just wanted to hold her close and not let her go.  I wanted to smell her and look at her and remember how precious this time is.  I know that pretty soon I will have to guide her into sleeping through the night without waking to eat, but something is holding me back.  I'm pretty sure she is ready, and that I am not.  

I guess this is why the "baby" of the family gets babied so much.  The parents are holding onto their "lasts" of each stage.  I don't know which night will be the "last" time I nurse a baby to sleep, but I'm pretty sure it will make me a little sad (even though I'm really looking forward to a full night's sleep!!).

Monday, July 2, 2012

Learning to chill

When I'm busy, I get stressed because I feel like I have too much to do.

When I'm idle, I get antsy if I don't have something to do.
I guess that as an adult, it's easy to lose the ability to "play" and forget about everyday adult concerns.

Please.  Let me re-learn the fine art of relaxation.  Let me stop trying to plan and schedule each waking moment.  Let me enjoy the day as it comes.  

I worked on it this weekend, and feel like I succeeded.  On Saturday afternoon, Matt took Cy to the movies, and I had some free time with Lu.  We just relaxed and "played". After they returned, Matt and I were actually able to sit outside and drink a beer while we talked and let the kids play.  It was really nice....relaxing, even!

While Lu had a long nap on Sunday morning, I spent some lovely leisure time playing with Cy.  It felt easy and fun.  I think he enjoyed it even more than I did.  Earlier in the morning, I gave him a few options for what to "do" that day, and he chose "stay home and play".  It's funny how in-tune kids are.  

I don't know why it should take conscious effort on my part to relax.  Seems contrary.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Food "Sensitivities"

It looks like poor Lulu is having "sensitivity" to some foods.  UGH. When we started solids with her, we weren't very careful in keeping track of what she was eating and did not follow the 3 day rule.  Bad mommy.  Really, it wasn't on my radar since things had gone fine with Cy, and there aren't any food allergies on either side of the families.

Well, a few weeks into solid eating, Lu slowly developed a pretty nasty rash on her face.  I initially thought it was due to drool (and imminent teething).  The rash kept getting worse, and spread to under her chin.  I still thought it was teething.  When she started to get a few spots on her arms, I thought maybe it wasn't teething. Duh.  In the interim, she was enjoying lots of yummy things: bananas, avocado, sweet potato, pears, peaches, even cherries.  Whoops. 

I took her to the doctor to have her checked, and she said she thought it was a sensitivity to something she was eating.  She advised that we stop ALL solids until the rash was healed.  Then she said to introduce one item at a time, waiting 5 to 6 days in between each.  Oh my.  I was pretty sure that the oatmeal cereal we were feeding to her was not the culprit, so I went against orders and continued the oatmeal while she healed. (Cortisone is amazing, by the way!)  The rash was gone in a few days, and I started with pears as her first trial food, assuming that this would be the least allergenic food to try.  WRONG.  I gave her the pears on Friday, and by Sunday the rash started to come back on her face.  Damn.  Who is actually allergic to pears?  

So, now we are waiting for this rash to heal before starting another food, but I'm concerned for my baby girl.  How can she have a "sensitivity" to pears?!?!?!  Odd.  I'm worried about what to start her on next.  Making it worse, one of the girls at daycare said her rash looked exactly like that of one of the older kids who has a TON of allergies.  I don't want this path for my little munchkin, but I guess it's out of my hands.  We will try sweet potatoes next, and are keeping our fingers crossed.  I suppose some Benadryl wouldn't be a bad thing to have on hand, either.  

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


I feel like I've been in a bit of a funk lately.  It comes and goes, but always seems to be underlying.  I don't know why.  It's putting a bit of a strain between Matt and I, which is just not cool.  I think it is just the stress of having two kids and working full time.  

I'm having a tough time finding the balance.  I'm having a tough time staying present and enjoying life.  I feel like I spend a lot of time either "planning" or "doing", and that I can't just relax.  I really need to work on this, cause I think it's just making me cranky.  I'm finding that the yoga does help, but I don't have enough time to do it more than once a week.  I know that the first year of having a baby is the hardest one (at least it was the first time around), and that this will pass....but I really just want to snap out of it.  I'm TRYING...I really am. What I can't figure out is WHY I'm not happier than I am.  I should be.  I have an awesome husband (who puts up with a lot of my crap!), two really great kids, a job that I really like, a nice house, etc.  These things should add up to elation, right?  Maybe I just need some sleep and perspective.  Maybe I should just stop complaining.

SO...on a happier note, the kids and I had a great day on Friday.  It was warm outside, and a little water play was called for.  They loved it.  I love watching them "play" together.  Those moments really are the best of times.  

Bathing suit beauty

My sweet and happy boy

Happy kids in the pool

Monday, June 18, 2012


Oh my.  I really need some decent sleep.  

Lulu is wonderful.  Really.  She is.  I couldn't ask for a better baby.  But, damn!  I really want a good night's sleep sometime soon.  I think I've had ONE full night's sleep since she was born.  (And I know I didn't have many in that last trimester).  She usually wakes up once a night to eat, sometimes two. I think I was getting used to this schedule, but the past week has been hard.  I don't know if it's because we've been really busy, but I just don't feel rested.  

I make sure to go to bed by 9 every night...and last night I was in bed at 8!!!  But, I'm still tired, and it's making me cranky.  GRRRR.

I guess it's about time to think about cutting off the night feeds, but I don't know if I'm ready for that.  What a wuss.  I guess until I bite the bullet on that one, I have to stop complaining about sleep.  

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Secret Fears

I've been having much more fear and doubt since the birth of our second child.  I really can't figure out if this is just hormones or really part of me.  I didn't feel these things after Cy was born.  I might have been too stressed out to notice these things back then.  I was really just in survival mode.  I think the reality of the situation is that the more happiness you get in life, the more you realize how miserable you would be without those things that make you so happy.  It's easy for some of these things to move to the back of my mind during the busy parts of the day, but when I have a moment to stop and reflect, they can creep in.

I fear that I'm becoming boring
I spend most of my time either working or taking care of my kids.  I don't have great conversations lately, and really don't have much to talk about (outside of my kids).  I seem to remember that before the kids came along, I was fun.  It doesn't always feel like that lately.  

I fear that something tragic will happen to Matt or one of the kids
This fear borders on the irrational side, but when I think of it realistically....almost any bad thing could happen at any time.  I know this all too well, remember that Cy and I were hit by a car as pedestrians?!?!? I try to use this as a reminder to savor every day and to take the time to enjoy what I am doing at the moment because you never know when it will be taken away.  I don't always succeed at this, and I get very scared.  I really don't know what I would do if I lost one of them.  How do you continue living after a tragedy occurs?  How would I raise my kids without Matt?  It makes me teary just thinking about it.

I fear that something will be terminally wrong with my children
Again, I never felt like this when Cy was born, but since Lu was born, I have an intense fear that one of them will get terminally sick (either cancer or some freak illness).  I don't know where this comes from, but it definitely plays into my germaphobia.  I don't know how I would survive the death of a child, but furthermore, I don't know how I would parent the surviving child.  

I fear that I won't know my role in life once my children are grown
I know that I have many years until this issue will arise, but I think about it alot.  The kids are at a stage in life where they are very needy.  I'm used to this, and comfortable with it.  I know that they will slowly become more and more independent beings as time goes on.  I realize that the goal is to raise confident and strong children who will contribute to society.  I know this means they will be grown ups someday and move away from home.  As much as I long for the "pre-baby" days of spontaneity and date nights and travel, I'm saddened knowing that they won't be a part of my everyday life forever.  When I'm not a "mom" anymore (at least on a day to day basis), what will I be? 

I fear that I'm not a great mom
I think most moms must fear this.  I feel like this is a normal fear.  This role defines so much of my being right now, and I want to do a great job.  I want to be there emotionally for my kids, and to teach them everything I can.  It's easy to get distracted by the small stuff and let the worry take over.  Am I doing the right thing for my kids?  Am I making the right decisions?  Will they love me?  Will they love each other?  Will they turn out okay? Should I do more, should I do less?  It's really enough to drive a person crazy.

I fear that if I spend too much of my time being afraid of things, I will miss out on LIVING LIFE.  I'm trying to chill out and to just have fun.  I'm really trying.  I've been doing yoga, which really helps a lot.  I'm trying to quiet the fears and concentrate on the great parts of my life.  And there are so many of them.  I am thankful for that, and have to remember it more often.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Second Child Syndrome?

When I had my daughter, I was worried about what kind of mother I would be to her.  I was keenly aware that she would not be raised the same as my son and thought for some reason this meant she was being "cheated" out of something.  

Six months into it, I realize that while things are different for her, this is might not be such a negative after all.  I am a much more confident mother now, and I think she definitely benefits from that.  She also has my son to entertain her.  She has constant attention from him, and never has the chance to just "sit" and be bored.  I think that if Cy had constant activity around him, he might have been less demanding of us.  I thought that she would miss not going to all of the classes that we did with Cy, but looking back, it appears that those were more for us (or me) than they were for him.  I think he really liked going to the Music Together classes, but I definitely see that it was something for me to "do" with him.  Lu is happy to sit at home and listen to music with us, watching Cy dance around.  

She is so much more easy going than my son.  I don't know if it's because she is a girl, or second born, or just her personality.  My pediatrician suggested that most of the "difficulty" of the first born is actually just the baby feeding off of the parents' anxiety.  If that is the case, I feel badly for Cy, cause I was mega stressed out by him!  In retrospect, I really didn't handle being a first time mom very well.  I loved him more than anything, but most of my memories of that time involve stress, anxiety, and extreme fatigue. He was the we learned to parent.  I guess we should really feel badly for the poor first borns, not the second child.

Meanwhile, Lu is the sweetest thing, and she has all of us wrapped around her little finger.  I'm pretty sure this means we are going to pay for it big time when she is a teenager!  Yikes!  She is patient, she is calm, she is so happy.  

I have come to terms with knowing that both kids have had different experiences to this point, and that it is okay.  They have each other now, and are very lucky.  

Happy girl at 6 months old:

Partners in crime (not napping!)

Monday, June 11, 2012

Busy Weekend

This weekend was incredibly busy, but fun!  We had Tball with Cy on Saturday morning, followed by a birthday party in the afternoon.  It's so much fun watching all of Cy's friends turn 4!

On Sunday, Cy participated in the PMC Bike Ride for kids to raise money for the Jimmy Fund.  He had so much fun and really enjoyed the day.

He got his first Tattoo (a sparkly red dinosaur!)

And was ready for the "race" to start (we had to keep reminding him it was a RIDE, not a race!)

The rest of the day on Sunday was really nice and relaxing.  We got out the baby pool and let Cy splash around and Lu dipped her feet into it.  He plays so nicely with was really fun to watch.  

I made it to yoga class again, which is great!  I've really enjoyed being able to do that on Sunday evenings.  I really wish I could go one more time during the week, but it just doesn't work into our schedule yet.  Baby steps.

For some reason (I wish I could figure out why!!), it seems like Sunday nights are the worst night for sleep in our house.  Most nights, Lu sleeps from 7 until 6 or 6:30, waking only once to eat around 1:30ish.  Last night, she was awake at 9:30, 12, 3, and 5!!!  (Throw in the mix that Cy was up at 11pm...sleep walking!)  She only wanted to eat once out of those wakings.  The others were crying because she was "stuck" in the crib.  She's been moving around alot, and gets here legs stuck in between the slats of the crib.  I'm seriously considering getting some bumpers for the crib to stop this, but figure she will be out of this stage before long anyway.  I'm not sure, since Cy never got stuck...his legs were just too darned chunky to fit,  I think!

Here's to another sleepy Monday morning (Oh, and did I mention that I am off coffee since it seems to make Miss Lu jittery!?!?!).  UGH.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

My leg hurts!

Ever since Cy could talk, he's been using the phrase "my leg hurts" to get attention.  When he first started doing it, we didn't make the connection, but the more it happened, it became more clear.  When the pain would migrate from leg to leg during the same complaining session, we knew!  There have been many occasions, but the one that sticks in my memory clearly was the time I was making dinner, and he wanted me to play with him instead.  He cried and complained about his leg for almost 20 minutes.  It's really quite a manipulative move for him to have learned so early.

He hasn't done this for a while, so when he cried out at 11pm last night, it caught me off guard.  He was sobbing and telling me that his leg hurt.  The poor thing.  It really does tear at my heartstrings, and I wish there were a way to tell if something was really wrong with him.  I sat and rubbed his leg for a few minutes, and told him to try to go back to sleep.  I'm pretty confident that nothing was wrong with his leg, and I guess we might not ever know....but I really wish he wouldn't do that during the night!

In other news, Lu did great last night.  She only woke up once to eat, and didn't get "stuck" from rolling over.

Seems like when one kid sleeps well, the other one doesn't.  I can't win. I really need a good night's sleep soon.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Random thoughts for the week

This week is rough (and it's only Tuesday!).  I'm tired.  I'm at the tail end of a cold (that I originally thought was just allergies).  Probably a small version of what Lu had for the past two weeks.

Miss Lu is a rolling over champion!  Yeah!  But, she does it at night, and gets stuck in parts of her crib, and needs help. Boo!  Just when she is starting to space out feedings, this happens.  I swear, it feels like I will never have an uninterrupted night's sleep again.

We are phasing out Cy's nap time.  It's a tough decision, but he's had trouble going to sleep at night for the past few weeks.  So, we are letting him sleep for one hour if he needs it, and enforcing 1 hour of quiet time if he doesn't.  Although I miss those two hours, this route seems to be improving his night time sleeping.

The difference in Cy's "play" is dramatic.  Over the past few months, I've noticed how much his imagination has grown, and how well he is independently playing.  He loves to role-play with action figures and make them have conversations.  It is really cute, and fun to play along with him.

They make single serve formula!  Hooray!  We are going to need to start supplementing Lu with about 2-3 ounces per day, and this is perfect.  I was worried about opening a can and having it expire (one month after opening) before using it all. I really hope she drinks it without too much trouble....

Lulu is determined to drive me crazy with the eating.  She desperately wants to eat what we are eating.  She almost attacked my water glass last night until I let her have some.  If I try purees or cereal, she closes her mouth and turns her face.  If I persist, she gets really aggravated.  Well, I suppose she couldn't be easy with everything!  So, I'm trying the Baby Led Weaning thing, and giving her real foods.  I still use one of those mesh food feeders, cause she can't grasp the food very well, and she seems to like it.  We've done banana, avocado, and watermelon.  Tonight we'll try some sweet potato.  It all seemed like so much more fun the first time around (but Cy was very easy and enthusiastic about eating).

Overall, things are going pretty well.  I've felt that the past few weeks were really touch and go, and felt a little edgy or "off".  Not sure exactly why.  Things feel a little better now, so maybe it was just a phase.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

A fun birthday party

My oldest is 4 years old.  You don't even have to ask's the first thing he will tell you when you meet him.  He loves being "old".  Ha!  Since his birthday was on Thursday, and his party was on Sunday, he thought he turned 5 on Sunday.  Slow down, fella!  You have another year to go!

The birthday party for Cy was great!

Even the little one had fun for part of the party (even though she was sick and needed breathing treatments the next day!)

The bouncy house was a hit!  My husband made a good call on that one!!

Cy was in his element.  Being the center of attention is no problem for him.  He especially liked playing with the "big boys" (ages 7-10).  Water guns and times.

Another gratuitous baby picture.  How is she so sweet?  

Happy birthday to you, Cyrus.  May your years be filled with happiness and delight.  May you always feel the excitement in everyday joys that you do today.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Happy Birthday to my sweet boy

You have been with us for 4 years, now!  It really is amazing how fast time flies.  I still remember bringing you home from the hospital like it was yesterday.  I was terrified!  I couldn't believe they let us leave with you....we really had no idea what we were doing.  I guess we are learning that the first kid is the experiment.

You are full of life and a very energetic little boy!  You love all transportation-type vehicles: Trains, Planes, Cars, Rocket Ships, Trucks, etc.  I think your favorite food is Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich.  You eat it almost every day for lunch.  You love to ride your bike (fast!), and are quite a daredevil.  You are constantly trying to "pop wheelies" on it, even though it still has training wheels.  You love to write your letters and draw.  You are the sweetest big brother that I know, and take very good care of your sister.  You love to play Wii with Daddy (I don't think you like to play with me, cause I'm just not very good).

I have loved watching you grow.  You amaze me everyday, and I'm so proud to be your mama.

Cyrus at one day old:

Cyrus at four years old:

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Things I say 8 billion times a day

Here are the phrases that can be heard in our house OVER and OVER and OVER

Please be quiet

Please be gentle with your sister

Please give your sister a little space

Please don't touch the top of your sister's head

Not so LOUD, please!

Because I said so

Is there a better way to do this?  Am I just too picky?  Am I too sensitive to noise in my old age?
I have come to the conclusion that it is the role of a kid to drive a parent crazy.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Almost time to supplement

My freezer stash has dwindled. I have enough to make it through next week, then I will need to supplement for Lu. It will be about 2 weeks shy of 6 months of exclusive breast feeding!! I'm really glad I made it this long, and surprised that I feel a little sad right now. I don't have anything against formula, I gave it to Cy at 3 months old when he was away from me, and he is fine. I didn't have the patience or the desire to pump for him. For some reason, I felt that it was very important to pump for Lulu. I don't know why. But, it's been a source of pride. I feel good knowing that since things are working well for us, that I am doing my best to keep it going.

Now we are at a point in time where she drinks 18 ounces when she is at daycare, and I'm only pumping about 15 ounces per day. I was tempted to add pumping sessions or even start pumping on the weekends when I realized that the frozen supply will be gone after next week, but I decided against it. Adding 3 ounces of formula a day is fine. I'm just wondering if I should add it to the 3 ounces of pumped milk, or make a separate bottle?

We started solids with her, and she couldn't be more opposite from how Cy was. She shows very little interest, and appears to enjoy chewing on the bib more than anything else. Although, she really seemed to enjoy the avocado. Yum.

Monday, May 21, 2012

First Ear Infection

Little Miss Lu has her first ear infection. Poor sweetie pie is the example of how every sick baby should be. I took her to the doctor this morning because she's had goopy eyes for a few days and was awake coughing for most of last night. I honestly thought she was just having bad allergies, and didn't suspect an ear infection at all. She was smiling and happy during most of the exam. What a ham.

Now is the scary part: waiting to see if she has a reaction to the antibiotic. Cy doesn't have any allergies, so hopefully she will follow suit.

Does this look like a sick baby?
Love her.

Thursday, May 17, 2012


Okay, so I've always been a bit of a germ-a-phobe.  I think things got worse when Lu was born.  I've been struggling with this, but am not really sure if being careful about bacteria and viruses is being a good mommy or a problem.  Maybe since I am "aware" of the problem, it isn't a problem.  Is this too logical?  Do people with psychosis know they are psychotic?

Things have definitely gotten better since I went back to work....Matt's theory was that I was so damned bored on maternity leave that I had plenty of time to obsess over the smallest of things.  I think he was partially correct.

However, I'm still super conscientious about hand washing and my poor hands are so dry.  It seems like I'm in a vicious cycle of handwashing.....I drink a TON of water, leading to lots of bathroom breaks (handwashing each time), I have to handwash before pumping (twice a day), and then I  make sure to wash up before "handling" the baby.  Then there's meal prep and cooking the food, always washing before that, too.  That's a bunch of washing.  I should buy stock in soap.

The other component is the mental part.  I think about germs a lot.  I just don't want to get sick, and especially don't want to get the baby sick.  This seems rational, but I think I might be thinking about it too much.  I never really felt this way after Cy was born.  What's even more strange is that we don't really get sick too often, so I'm not sure why I'm so focused on it.  It would seem that whatever I was doing before was sufficient to keep us healthy, so I don't know where this came from.

I suppose all of this could be hormone related, and I really hope that it eases up a bit.  It's not to the point where its debilitating in any way, but I would really like to stop thinking about it so much.

Monday, May 14, 2012

A Great Mother's Day

Being a mom is really the hardest job there is....but it is also the most rewarding.  My kids make me incredibly happy and I feel so lucky to be their mom.  I never thought this was the path my life would take, and now I can say that I can't imagine my life without them.  (Although, I do reflect back and wonder what the heck I did with all of my free time!?!?!)

My son adores my daughter, and she smiles the biggest for him.  My hope for them is that they have a lifelong friendship.  


So, this weekend was really busy, but the weather was great, and we had a lot of great "family" time.  We had T-ball on Saturday (cutest thing ever) and then a party at the neighbor's house.  Watching Cy play with the "big kids" (they were all in the 10 to 15 ish range) was a hoot.  They are such great kids, and let him tag along with them, throwing Boccie balls, climbing trees, and playing hide and seek.  He was worn out at the end of the night, but exhilarated at all of the excitement. 

On Sunday (Mother's Day), I got to sleep in for a bit (until 7:30!), then Matt made pancake breakfast.  When he went for a run, I got to spend some quality playtime with the kids.  It was nice to just sit and play Legos, and not have to rush around and go anywhere.  It was a great way to reflect and realize that this is what its all about.  Sitting with your kids, interacting, playing, watching their wheels turn.  Amazing.  Little minds at work.  Cy was busy building a robot (deciding if he would be a good guy or a bad guy), while Lu just wants to grab things and put them in her mouth.    

When Matt got back, we planted the Gerbera Daisies that Cy had picked out for me for Mother's Day.  He was so sweet with them, and Matt said he picked them out on his own, without any prompting.  He was so cute when he gave them to me....almost shy.

Later in the evening I got to go to Yoga class.  WOW.  This was the first class I've ever attended, and it was awesome!  I felt so great, very energized.  I'm going to make an effort to make this my Sunday routine.  Getting out and away to do something for myself is exactly what I needed.  I think this will be the key to my sanity.  I'm definitely sore today, so the physical benefits will be good as well.  Hopefully I can prevent "mom butt".


Friday, May 11, 2012


Time magazine used a photo of a breastfeeding mom as the cover, and it is making quite a buzz.  The article that goes with the photo is about attachment parenting.

Here's what I have to say: WHO CARES!?!?!?!?!
The article is obviously highlighting extreme cases (and in the case of the photo, the mom has extended breastfeeding for 4 years).  Seems to me like these parents really love their kids, and are making a choice on how to raise them.  The kids are not suffering and are fine.  Why can't we just butt out of other peoples business?  Why don't they highlight stories of crack babies who really need some help and attention?

As far as breastfeeding goes, it always seems to create quite a conversation.  People get very fired up about the topic, and I really don't get it.  Breasts have a function: to make milk and feed a baby.  Just like any other body part, sometimes they work, sometimes they don't.  Also, some people just don't want to breastfeed, so they choose to use formula.  Is this really such a big deal?  As long as the baby is being loved and nurtured (AND FED), why put effort into judging someone?

Personally, I fed my son with a mixture of breastmilk and formula, and have chosen to exclusively breastfeed my daughter.  Both kids are fine.  The formula didn't harm my son.  I don't know how long I will continue with breastfeeding my daughter (I assume until she self weans), and my son self weaned at 9 months.  I like the closeness I feel to my children when I breastfeed, but I also like the convenience.  Not having to make a bottle in the middle of the night is super convenient (although, having to pump at work is NOT!).  There are pros and cons with both scenarios, and finding the perfect balance for your family is what works best.

The point is, parents (specifically mothers) have a hard enough time.  Give them a break.  This issue is not as big as everyone makes it.  Just be "pro" feeding and butt out.


Thursday, May 10, 2012

Feeling better

So, this week is so much better than last week.  I really think that some kind of hormonal shifts were making me feel so miserable, and they might have evened out.  Who really knows?  I just know I am thankful to feel like a normal person again.

With Mother's Day coming up this weekend, it reminds me we really do go through so much (physically and mentally) for our children.  It amazes me the full spectrum of feelings that children can cause...from joy through frustration and even anxiety.  I'm also amazed by the realization that when you keep thinking things will get easier, they really just get more complicated.  The "problems" of a newborn are nothing compared to the power struggles of a 3 year old.  I can't even imagine the challenges of the teenage years.

I'm learning to savor all of it.  I'm reminding myself that this time really does fly by and if I don't take time to enjoy it, it will be gone. It's easier to remember this with the baby, since I *know* this is the "last time" I'll be doing all these things.  The finality of it makes it easier to deal with the not-so-fun parts.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

maybe tears really are toxic

I broke down last night.  I cried during dinner...the whole time.  I just couldn't stop.  Things have just been simmering, and I couldn't keep them in any more.  Poor Cy kept asking why I was sad.  Poor Matt kept telling him that sometimes people just cry.  And clueless little Lu sat happily looking around.

Matt and I talked about things, about how to make it better.  I think we got to the heart of the real issue, that I need to let go of some control.  My inner control freak is trying to kill me (ha!).  I need to let him take over doing some things, even if he doesn't do them the same (or as good) as I do.  I know that he is right, and am lucky to have such a supportive husband.  (However, there is such a huge part of me that just wants to do everything, do it right, and feel good about being able to do it ....recipe for disaster, eh?)  Maybe I will let him do the dishes.

Even though there was no real resolution, I feel better.  I read somewhere one time that (emotional) tears can contain toxic byproducts, and that letting them out can make you physically feel better.  I might actually believe it.  Nothing changed, but my anxiety and anger level went down after I was done.

I don't know why all of this has to be so stressful.  I wish I really do want to get back to enjoying life.  I know that having a young baby is a temporary "problem", and that things will evolve on their own time.  I don't like wishing this time away.  I am constantly trying to remind myself that in a few years, I will look back and see this as the "easy" time and not understand why I was so stressed.

Monday, April 30, 2012

one of those days...

I have days....THOSE days more often lately.  I don't know if this is normal stress or what, but it's hard.  I am just very unhappy at times.  During those times, I can find fault with everything and everyone around me, and am unable to figure out what I can do to feel better.  I lose my temper with my husband and my son.  I feel like I have too much on my plate, and don't have time to "enjoy".

Here are some things that have been on my mind:

I've been trying to make a conscious effort to be "present" instead of doing things ahead to make things easier for the next day, but it isn't working.  I get stressed.  I am taking this "control freak" thing to another level.  Trying to be super organized, make great meals, be a great mom, keeping it all together.  I think it's just all starting to crumble, and I feel kind of shitty about all of it.

I've been trying NOT to be the "mom who yells."  That's not really working, either.  My son pushes the limits...and I stay calm for a while, but in the end, I feel like I can't take it.  Then I yell.  It doesn't really work and doesn't even make me feel better.  So, WHY?  ugh.  I really need to figure out how to deal with him more effectively.  The problem is that he is really sweet 80% of the time.  It's that 20% that really gets me.

I've been trying to convince myself that having my life "on hold" during the years that my children are young is okay, and that I can resume some semblance of normal living once they are a bit older.  More and more, I find myself questioning this.  I feel like I'm shrinking.  I don't know how else to describe it.  A shell of a person that just feeds, diapers, plays.  I feel myself wishing this time away, wanting for the kids to be a bit older so that I can "enjoy" them more.  Then I feel TERRIBLE and start crying because I know that this time is supposed to be magical.  They are only young for a short time, and I should be enjoying the present.  I get nervous that I will spend my whole time with them wishing for some time in the future.  Before we know it, they will be gone, and I won't know what to do with myself.

I've tried to find something to do on my own to help with all of this.  I've decided to start going to some yoga classes to help me "quiet" my mind, and to help me to focus.  Since I've made the decision to do this, I've been putting it off.  I'm scared.  What if it doesn't work, what if I look silly, what if I can't do it?  Self doubt, fear.  It's easier to remain status quo.  I have got to get on board with this plan and just do it already.

Anyway, I've been wondering if any of this is just hormone related, and hoping that it will subside soon.  I try to rationalize and tell myself that it really is stressful to have a full time job, two kids, and responsibilities of taking care of a home, oh, and being a wife, too.  It's a bit overwhelming right now, but it should be, right?  Who can do all of this?

Friday, April 20, 2012

Hello, 2012!

It's been a long time since I've used this space.  I've thought about it often, but haven't quite had the time or motivation to visit it.

Since my last post, we've welcomed a baby girl into our lives.  What a joy she has been.  These baby days have been very different than the first time around.  She is such a happy girl and rarely finds time to fuss.  She adores her brother and he loves her more than anything.  I couldn't have asked for a better scenario.  

Pictures of the kids both in the same pose and at about the same age (4 months).  Funny stuff, eh?

Well, it is proving true that the hardest job around is that of MOM.  Juggling work and home life and finding the balance to enjoy both isn't the easiest.  Staying "present" and enjoying the moments as they pass is a goal of mine.  I tend to spend time doing things that will make the next day "easier" instead of just concentrating on the present.  These days will fly by and before we know it, our babies will have grown into adults and we won't know where the time went.  This is my biggest fear, and the most inevitable truth.  I can't say that the baby years are my favorite, they certainly aren't....but at the same time, as my kids grow older, I appreciate the fact that we only get this time with them once.  I am actually already afraid of what life will be like when they spend less and less time at home and needing us.  Although, since this last pregnancy, I've had some exacerbated fears and phobias, so it could just be hormones!

Well, I'm wasting away precious naptime (BOTH kids are sleeping at the same time!).  Time to get some real work done.