Sunday, March 6, 2016

Peek A Poo

Yes, you read that right. Poo. Peek A Poo. It's a game I've invented since I never, ever, ever, ever get to take a crap by myself. Ever.
I'm sure I've written about this before. It's an occupational hazard of becoming a stay at home parent. Inevitably the call of nature bellows and you must answer. Whether your child is not walking yet, crawling or hey, just wants to hang, you are going to have to make room for one more in the most private of places. The shitter.
These days I've worked out a system. It includes a booster high chair and some snacks (for her...not me). But let's back up.

You have a beautiful baby, you're in bliss. You gotta drop a deuce. No prob, your partner lovingly takes the child and you head for the potty. Flash forward 2-3 weeks, your partner returns to work and you are left with your amazing child...who cannot be left alone (really, like legally you shouldn't leave her alone). But really, the moment will come when you need to use the restroom. You'll be good at first, you'll hold out until she's asleep...she will, I repeat she will wake up the moment you sit down.
I started by laying her in her carseat right in front of the open bathroom door. However, the dreaded day will come that yes, you will need to hold your beautiful, perfect, pristine newborn as you drop the "other kids" off at the pool. Yep, I said it. We, as parents, have all done it (and frankly, I'm not convinced you truly are a parent until you've had a staring contest with your kiddo while blowing the butt trumpet).
Now all of this is well and good. It happens, right? Shit, I mean.
Now add another kid.
And a dog.
Because even when Ty has both of the girls, Tootsie feels the need to come and check on me.
Butt (see what I did there?) back to that second kid.
I'll have RP all set up with snacks. She's smiling and happy, I'm about to back up the brown trailer in the garage and ESC come barreling in to "help".
"Hi, Mom. Don't worry I got RP. Whatcha doin? Are you pooping? (giggle, giggle) Peeeeyooooo"
As you can imagine this is all veeery fucking helpful.
So yes, most days there is a party/audience in my bathroom. And some days RP and I even enjoy a little round of Battleshits (yep, what it sounds like, yep, stolen from the White Castle movie).
My point of this post (besides grossing everyone out and finding new euphemisms for pooping) is to point out that we are never alone as parents. I can't cook without a child underfoot. Phone calls often include telling at least one child to shut the hell up please be quiet. Uninterrupted sleep? Doesn't exist. Car ride without kiddie songs? Nope. Dinner alone would need to be booked months in advance and you'd better pray nobody gets sick!
But when I get in my car alone, I find myself looking up the song from the movie ESC and I watched last night. If Ty and I ever get a night out, we often chat about our lovely ladies. If I ever find myself with a moment or two to myself, my heart is filled with thoughts of my girls.
Yes, I can every so often be alone, but my heart and soul are always filled with my babies. So while I pray that one day I do, in fact, get to do a number 2 all by my lonesome, there are 2 that I will never be without.
And I'll never want to.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

The Babes

So we had this second baby...and it all went to shit.
Of course that's not at all true.
Except that it sort of is.
They say 2 kids is more like 100. I say its more like 872.
872 monkeys. With choking hazards. Who all want attention. Right now!
My house will never again be quiet. Because once you have more than one child I think it's actually a rule that the decibel level in your home needs to go a gazillion. Imagine your sweet newborn crying. And then the big sister wants to sing a lullaby to help out however the baby is having none of it so she cries louder, so big sister sings louder and so on and so forth until you actually understand torture techniques and goddammit you'll give up every fucking secret for just 5 minutes of silence.
Which brings us to bedtime. My first daughter, ESC, slept through the night at 3 months. Once we got her to sleep (which was a pain in the butt there for a while) she stayed asleep, for the most part.
Along comes number 2 and I must've bragged at one point or another because at almost 11 months I am still waiting for more than 2 hours of sleep at a time. And what really sucks is that I just can't figure it out. There is no pattern. She sucks at sleeping whether she's teething, growth spurting, going through a cold or just feels like chatting at 2 am.
They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.
Well, welcome to fucking Parenthood.

And then my older one tells me that her baby sis is her best friend and her favorite thing about her is her heart.

It took us a while to decide whether or not to have a second. We had a lot of reasons not to. Money, space, our ages, overpopulation, we thought 'Hey! We could be perfectly happy, just the three of us."
Then the reasons to...we both have siblings, is it fair to Evie Sue to not have another, I LOVED being pregnant, it might be fun...
In the end I think we realized we would regret it more if we didn't try and have another.
And that's how you make a baby, kids!
But seriously, two kids will always be infinitely harder than one. However, it's also harder to imagine your first baby without her baby sister. It's harder to not remember that moment in the hospital when they met. It's harder to think about not saying 'the girls".
So here are my girls.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Take Two

Well bust my buttons, I'm back!
Take Two...children...please!
Since last we spoke I have birthed another gorgeous, sweet, smiley little girl. She joins her big sister and makes our family exhausted. She's 10 months and still doesn't sleep thru the night. Like, at all. But more on that later.

Take Two...thousand miles. (Well more like 1200) We've moved back to my hometown of White Bear Lake, Mn. We did this for a few reasons but one of the most important was to be near my parents. (And it certainly doesn't hurt that I am a stone's throw from my bestie of almost 40 years!)

Take jobs. Well to be fair, Ty still works for a certain neighborhood grocery store but I left my beloved My Gym and now work for the very school district that graduated me! I am currently working in the extended day program which translates into me getting up at 5am everyday to go hang out with other people's kids and then heading home by 930am to feed mine breakfast!

2016 will be a very interesting year. I'm looking forward to continuing changes and challenges. I look forward to the ups and downs of life as we figure out this new adventure we've embarked on. The move, preschool, new family dynamics and good old Minnesota winters!

Life is different. Life is good (it has to be right?). Life is life.
Get ready folks. I'm back and I have feelings and stuff that I am going to let you all know about.
Duh Duh Duuuuuuh...

Monday, April 8, 2013

Work it.

Just over a month ago I went back to work. Full. Time.
After 14 months at home with my sweet girl I joined the workforce again at full force! I am the new Director at My Gym Annapolis and I couldn't be more excited. Or devastated. I've had some time to get used to it. Or really I should say that I hardly had time before I HAD to get used to it. Within a month I got the offer, found the daycare and started. It's awesome, my boss rocks, I really enjoy my days and as expected, Evie Sue is doing great at daycare.
But life has changed dramatically. I went from spending my days crawling around after my girl, finding fun, educational stuff for us to do to crawling around after 15 kids, teaching 3-6 classes a day and barely having the time to desperately miss my darling daughter.
It's been hard. Really hard. I miss her every second...but I really like my job. I feel as if I have had the best and worst of each world. One second I feel guilty for enjoying my job, the next guilty for wanting to be at home with Evie all day long again. It's a lovely never ending cycle.
And other aspects of my life have changed.
I've said this before too. You know who your real friends are when you have a kid. I know that all of our lives move forward and people lose touch for many reasons and get busy and that it takes effort on both ends...yes, I get it.
I have been lucky to have a couple of friends who have been incredible as I made the insane transition into Motherhood. They were supportive, proactive, and just...there. Of course these girlfriends have since moved far, far away...or in one case, already lived far away.
Ty and I are on almost opposite schedules these days so we try and take our time together as seriously as we can. But it's difficult on the nights when he is gone to pick up the phone, call a girlfriend and say "I've worked a 9 hour day and my kid has to go to sleep in an hour...wanna come over and keep me company while we quietly sip our cheap wine as to not wake the babe?"

Sounds like fun, huh?

I get overwhelmed. I get lonely. I get sad. I get tired. I need to be alone with my daughter and I need to spend time with girlfriends. Guess I'm human huh? I miss nights out. I miss certain people. I miss, for lack of a better term, freedom. I know it sounds harsh but it's kind of true. I don't get to go out on a whim. I missed a show with a group of friends because I couldn't get a sitter. Evie Sue is in bed by 8 at the latest and I...hang on my couch.
But as usual, as I rock my girl to sleep and she sits up just to smile at me, I couldn't imagine a better night. Nothing, and I mean nothing, tops your kid smiling at you and throwing her arms around you, ready to snuggle to sleep. I would give up almost anything for that.

Being a mom is hard. Being a stay at home mom is hard. Being a working mom is hard. I am proud to say I have had the great fortune to be both.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy Year

Here's the thing about the New Year. New Year's Eve, New Year's Day, New Year resolutions....New Beginning.
I feel like we've all seen this changeover of years as a new start. "This year, I'm getting my shit together!"
It's like a do over almost. If the past year sucked, you get to start over and try again...right?
As I move forward into said New Year with *gasp* a toddler(!), I realize how far from the truth these thoughts are.
I don't want any sort of do over. And let me tell you, my darling girl isn't slowing down for anyone!
I feel like in the past, when it was just about me, I could trick myself. "This year will be better", "This is THE year".
The year for what?
I also feel like we use this time of year to throw away the past year. "Last year sucked, I'm glad to be done with it!" I certainly know that in the past I have said these very words. But every day that passes we are "done" with. It is done. Finished. Over.
And that kind of sucks!
Yeah, things are always gonna go up and down in our lives, that's what makes it fun, ask the Grandma from Parenthood. But they keep moving forward, whether we like it or not.
I look back on thoughts I've had about New Years passed. And I'm pissed at myself.
Things are hard. For everyone. But I hate the fact that I have wished days, years, moments away simply because they didn't go the way I had planned or they hurt. Life hurts. I'm mad that I ever so easily dismissed months that have gone before because I was bored or I didn't get off my ass and do something...anything!
Yes, stupid, annoying, heartbreaking, frustrating things happened in 2012. And guess what? Other stupid, annoying...etc. things will happen in 2013.
But amazing things happened too!
If my darling girl has taught me anything, it is this. Life keeps going. And I want it to! I don't want to see 2013 as a "new beginning" or another shot to get it right. I want to see it as my daughter's second year of life. My 6th year of marriage.
And I don't want to "say goodbye" to 2012. I mean, yes, 2012 is over but good and bad it happened. I can ignore it and wish it away or I can relish the memories.
I guess what I am saying is the same thing we always say. Life is short and it moves fast! I've found my focus. I've found my reason to be in the moment every day, to love my year and not wish the passed one away. My daughter doesn't need any "do overs", she needs life. She needs to grow and learn. She needs to build memories. I want to help her. And to do that I need to remember, not to throw away, dismiss and forget.
I really loved 2012. Because it was my life.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

One Year

525,600 minutes, 525,000 moments so dear. 525,600 minutes - how do you measure,
measure a year?
In daylights, in sunsets, in midnights, in cups of coffee.
In inches, in miles, in laughter, in strife.
In 525,600 minutes - how do you
measure a year in the life?
How about love? How about love? How about love? Measure in love. Seasons of

Jonathan Larson could easily have been writing about a first year of parenthood.
My daring girl, my soul, my life, my one year old.
How do I measure that? The daylights I get to spend with her. The midnights I stayed up until(and past). The cups of coffee...well, I've always loved my coffee.
The inches she grown, the miles we've traveled. The laughter she's brought us and the strife we put ourselves through as we try and provide for our sweet baby.

But in true Broadway show tune fashion I will in fact, always measure this year in love. Because before this year I had no idea what love was. I truly learned how to love unconditionally.
What else have I learned in this past year?
Patience. Parenthood is a true lesson in patience and I know it's only just begun. I have never been a patient person, really. But Evie Sue has taught me how to slow down. Slow down and appreciate, slow down so that the diaper is put on correctly, slow down, Momma!
How to breathe. I learned how to take a deep breath and apply it to what is happening. No nap? Deep breath. More whining? Deep Breath. Heavy eyelids? Deep breath. Baby falls on her butt? Deep breath. Daddy gives her a massive piece of food you are convinced she will choke on (of course she doesn't)? Deeeeeep breath.
How to let go. As a Mom, and more specifically a stay at home Mom, you figure out how to do it all. And dammit it better be done your way...all the time...right?
Oh how very wrong. I had to learn (and I continue) to let Ty do things his way. To allow Evie Sue to explore on her own. To let the dog lick her face. To let her learn. On her own.
In the wake of recent events this last one is hard. Very hard.
They say you should congratulate parents at the first birthday. For making it through. While I do agree, this day will be about her and all the joy that she is. She won't remember. We're not doing anything big. I making her favorite, banana cupcakes, and really I'm not even sure if they are her favorite.
But we will celebrate her. Her. Who is everything to me and mine. Who is love.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

The Last 5 Years

It is 9am. I am sitting at our kitchen table watching Evie Sue shove handfuls of scrambled egg into her mouth and giggling. I am drinking coffee that my hubby had set for me before he left and eating a slice of cranberry almond bread I made from scratch.

Who am I!?

Two weeks from today I will be frantically baking banana cupcakes and decorating our place for my sweet girl's 1st birthday!

How did that happen!?

11 months have come and gone. I took Evie out for lunch and a practice cupcake. She did great, making a sufficient mess for the restaurant staff!
5 years have come and gone. Yes, my husband and I have been married for 5 years! We celebrated with pizza, wine from our honeymoon and a cheesy movie.
5 years! Wow...
Where do you want to be in five years? That question is posed to us so often.
When I was 5, the answer I'm sure would have been "in a castle, with a pony."
Age 15 I would have said, "in college or a famous singer."
Age 20, "Married"
Age 22, "living in a city, NOT married"
Age 25, "an actress"
I was married and living on the east coast by the time I was 30. I joked once to my husband that by the time I was 35 I better have a baby or another dog...hmmm.

Were the 5 years that we have been married exactly as planned or hoped? Far from. Wonders, tragedies, heartbreaks, triumphs have all occurred.
As we move forward into the next 5 years of our marriage where do we want to be?

Well now, that's not entirely up to us anymore now is it?
Personally, I would like to have a bigger home, a space for my daughter to really play, a space for my husband to write, a reliable car.
But my daughter will be 5 years old by that time. While a bigger home and nicer "things" would be great, where I truly hope to be in 5 years? I hope to be in a special place in my daughter's memories. I hope in the next 5 years I can help her create traditions and memories and fun of her own.
It is always difficult to say where we'll be in 5 years because (thankfully) life takes us where it wants to. No couple knows that better than us!