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Friday, November 30, 2012

Hodge-podge Friday.

I decided that Christmas lists are super lame when you're a parent. Or maybe we are just super lame. I literally put things like diapers and wipes under the "Lucy" category because SHE WON'T KNOW ANY BETTER and dude, I hate buying diapers. I also asked for gift cards for myself for places that I know I'll most likely end up using on my kids. Or "babysitting" so that we can go on dates.

Oh, and then? We asked for a better coffee maker. We all know I started drinking coffee once I had children. Hence why coffee is necessary. Sanity.

IT'S ALL ABOUT THE CHILDREN. And they say parents lose their sense of self once they have kids....pffttttt.

--

Somehow my girls have ended up with four sets now of matching Christmas pj's. To be fair, some are more "winter" than just "christmas" but they are all Christmas suitable. I'm also pretty proud that they were not expensive so I probably spent the same on 8 pajamas that some spent on just 2. No, really. I got some black friday deals that were crazy good.

I find it SO stinking cute that Emeline is obsessed with matching Lucy. She will hate it one day so I will soak this in now. I don't have almost anything matching in regular clothing. But footie pajamas? I mean, they're so cute. And I'm afraid I've passed on my love of the comfy-clothes to my kid because every.single.day is a huge battle getting her to take them off. "No mom, but 'der so tozy!" She also insists on having legit pajamas for every nap. Do you know how annoying that is? Yea.

--

I went out last night to the mall and target....alone. It was nice, and quiet, and quick. But I stopped for a tollhouse cookie because I CAN and I just felt like I had to indulge in something since I was alone. Weird, right?

It was delicious. And necessary.

--

I'm going to be featuring a few weight loss stories of fellow bloggers in the coming weeks. I think it could be something really motivating, especially before the holidays. These are girls who followed along in mine and my sisters weight loss and encouraged us along the way. I'm kind of excited! I hope you'll like it. Plus, it's always fun to introduce other bloggers who you can follow along with and get encouragement/give encouragement. Real life ladies, who lost (and are losing) weight the good 'ole fashioned way. Gotta love that.

--

I've been sick all week. This head cold, feel like it will burst open when I bend over, sore throat, raspy voice-thing. It is annoying. I am running another 5K on Sunday...this happens to be The Busiest Weekend Ever. Figures. I very rarely get sick. Ba-humbug.

--

Today I realized that tomorrow is December. I have now made it my goal to figure out how to make a really cute advent calendar by tomorrow. I never used to be a procrastinator, but now? Story of my life.

Wish me luck.

Have a happy weekend!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Winter Bucket List Printable for 2012

I've had a few of you ask for my updated bucket list. For a while I just kept saying, blah blah I'm too tired/busy/fill-in-the-blank. But, it really only took me a few minutes to update it. So here you go. And you're awesome, so you deserve it.



Remember, you can put it behind an 8x10 (or 5x7 if you print smaller) frame and then check each thing off with a dry-erase marker. It's easy and no-fuss and looks kind of cute, too.

Obviously, "play in the snow" may not work for every parts of the country. Sorry, friends. ;)

****

Have a good night!

(check out other printables here, and what it looks like behind a frame, etc)

Lucy, 4 Months Old.


Sweet Lucy girl,

You are 4 months old today. I'd say that it feels like yesterday that you came into the world, but the sleep deprivation I feel tells me otherwise. It's been 121 days since I've got a lick of sleep. But who's counting? 

You are still awesome. The sweet, smiley girl that everyone loves. Adoring your sister, your puppy, of course, your mommy and daddy. You know your name and smile big when someone calls it. You have a cute little raspy voice. You tend to "talk" more when big sister isn't around. Hmmm, wonder why? :)

You're a little chunka-muffin. So cute with your little wrist rolls and inner thigh rolls. I'd like to nibble your cuteness daily. You are 15lbs 10oz, 25 3/4" long. You can wear mostly 3-6 month clothing, but I put a 9 month sleeper of your sisters on you today and it fit perfectly. I am SO not used to a baby who wears sizes bigger than her age, but hey--it's obvious I don't starve you. Healthy little lady.

You mastered rolling in both directions this month. The big one is you now go from back to belly.  You try to sit up on your own, and if we prop you up, you will totally sit there all big-girl-status. It is crazy and you're too young for that shenanigans.

You still have that beautiful dark hair. It's been coming in a little lighter, but I'm not sure if you'll go blonde yet or not. I kind of hope you keep your dark hair and blue eyes. You've done your fair share of rubbing off a bit on the back and sides. You have a little toupe look going on. Don't worry, girlie, you're still cute.

We have not figured out how you like to sleep at night. It's a daily struggle. Day sleeping and napping is smooth, and your schedule seems just normal and fine. But for some reason, nights have been an issue since day 1. You "sleep", but you wake up A LOT. Like, a lot, a lot. It is exhausting. However, I forgive you each morning when you smile at me like you do. Lucky you're so cute, Lucy.

Overall? You're pretty much smothered with love on a daily basis. Your sister is awesome and all day long tells you how much she loves and adores you. We all squish your cheeks with tons of kisses. 

We love you tons and tons, girl.

Love,
Momma

***

Smiling's my favorite.

*we had a big, fat, fail of a photoshoot this morning. We will try again this afternoon, you know, now that the the 4 month sticker has been ripped to pieces, sigh. None of what I got does you and your happy-self justice*

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Yesterday I was the cool mom.

We woke up yesterday to a winter wonderland. It wasn't, well, a lot of snow per-say....but it was a beautiful, big-falling-flakes kinda snow. The first official snowfall. So you can imagine my toddlers delight when she woke up to see that.

"Mommy! SNOW! Santa is coming to town! (hilarious, no?) It's Christmastime! I'm soooo esssited! I LOVE SNOW!"

So I sucked up my hatred for snow and put on my mom-game-face and told her how awesome snow is, how much I love it, and what a special day it was gonna be, because, duh, SNOW(!!!!!!!).


It was freezing out. But I could see her excitement and she wanted to get out there and play. When it finally started to snow big flakes again, I bundled her up and let her outside to play on the deck. It was the perfect place where she was closed in, I could watch from the window and still hold an awake-didn't-want-to-be-put-down-Lucy. I was even able to sneak out and get a few pictures.



It made me laugh because one of the first things she did was drop to the ground and start making snow angels. Then, she jumped and jumped and watched the slushy snow fly everywhere. Her giggles were endless. Her gloves got wet and her fingers got cold, but she kept on flinging snow--even throwing it "at" Lucy & I and the glass door.




I wanted to be like, OKAY TIME'S UP and bring her inside to get warm after about 5 minutes. But  I continued to let her play until she told me she was ready to come in. I think the kid stayed out there for almost a full hour.

"I had so much fun mommy! I love snow! Brrr I'm told (cold)!"

My kitchen became a mess, with slushy snow and wet clothes strewn everywhere. My insides wanted to be like "noooo clean this right now"....but instead, I told myself to chill out. And breathe. It's just stuff that can be cleaned up later.

So, I made her a cup of hot chocolate.



I didn't care about the sugar before naptime. Playing in snow and coming inside to hot chocolate? That's part of my childhood memories and I want the same for her.

I may have even given her a cookie, too.

And let her watch Elf again.

The first snowfall is one to be celebrated, after all. Especially when you're 2.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Decorating Gives me an Anxiety but I'm gonna try and treasure it anyway*

Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone, I can talk about Christmas without feeling like it's a...problem. Err. Or before someone comes and slashes my tires. I don't really get into the 'respect the turkey' hype, but I do love Thanksgiving, and so I like to take that all in before I get all Christmasfied. Which means that basically, I don't decorate until after Thanksgiving.

Don't get me wrong--we don't wait long, though. Basically just long enough for our turkey dinner to digest (hardly). So, Black Friday morning, while most of you are out shopping and fighting the crazy herds, we're home in our jams, decorating. We have breakfast. And coffee (we never NOT have coffee, let's be real). Christmas music. And it's beautiful and peaceful and organized and not stressful at all.

Can you see it in my face? I'm lying.

BIG FAT FREAKIN' LIES.

I want to be all, decorating my tree with my toddler was magical! We stopped and ooh'ed and ahh'ed over every ornament! I told her the story of the 394820948 "baby's 1st christmas" ornaments she has! I let her magically place fake snow on the tree and didn't wince an ounce when it all ended up on my floor! I didn't fight at all with my husband over stupid stuff! We kissed under the mistletoe! (we don't have mistletoe)

But they are lies.

Christmas decorating gives me anxiety.

Major, major, almost-meltdown-status-anxiety.

My living room looks like a bomb exploded for 75% of the day.


Most of the day you can't even hear the Christmas music because it's filled with, Don't touch that! Mac, get out of there! This #$@*#*@ strand of lights won't work! Crap, the tree is falling is apart! You forgot another box of decorations in the garage! We forgot to order Lucy a stocking! Here, you hold Lucy while I wrap the banisters. Don't let her roll over that pinecone! 

You get it.

Every year, I like to pretend it's going to be something magical. But it never, ever feels that way.

The end result? Well, that always feels good. But the 99 times I have to vacuum up pine needles to get a clean floor** feels like it will surely kill me before I get to sit back, turn on my YuleLog on Demand (don't judge, we don't have a fireplace) and breathe that sigh of, it's done.

The good news is--I think that despite the fact that I feel somewhat crazy and out of control in the Christmas set-up madness? I still think Emeline loved every bit of it.

Every day, about 40 times a day she'll proclaim, "It's Christmastime! I love it! Mommy, I love my Christmas tree! It's so boo'ful! Oh, the sparkadally lights!"

She makes all the crazy worth it.


*I find nothing fun about Christmas decorating at all. At ALL. It's hard to fake it. I'm not sure that will ever change, but we'll just pretend there is hope.

**Let's be honest, it never gets clean.

------

Let the good times roll.

Friday, November 23, 2012

It was a good one.


***

So very thankful for them.

Enjoy your weekend...

Thursday, November 22, 2012

I feel better, so much better.

Doc McStuffins fans, anyone? It's basically my whole life right now, so I cannot get the songs, phrases, sayings out of my head. Hello, toddler mom.

But I do. I feel better today.


We just got home from running the Turkey Trot 5K, and it was my husbands first official race---and it was fun! I honestly didn't know how I'd do. But like usual, I end up pacing right alongside my sister, we run so well together--and we didn't stop. Not once.

It felt so good. Really good. We weren't fast, but we were consistent--and really, that's all that matters. My back held up great while running (afterwards though? OUCH)--but I'm okay with that, I'll deal.

Right around the 2.8'ish mark my sister started encouraging me about how awesome it is that I'm out here, running already, not even having a 4 month old, and told me it was inspiring. I believe she used the term "kick-ass mom", which I love her for. I'm not sure I'd say all that, but it was still nice and it kind of made me tear up a little and gave me that umph to finish strong.

My goal was to run a 5K by December 1st after having Lucy....and it feels good to accomplish that. We have another race (for Girls on the Run) on December 2nd, too.

The guys went ahead and finished about 7 minutes ahead of us. But it was fun to have them there cheering us on as we came in.

So? I feel kind of good today. On a little bit of a runners high. Still de-thawing a few hours later. Seriously, it was cold.

And now the holiday begins.

This afternoon, Thanksgiving meals with my family.

Tomorrow, Decorating for Christmas.

Saturday, Thanksgiving with his family.

Insert big huge holiday sigh (but a good one).

***

Happy Thanksgiving. I'm thankful for you.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Not your average pre-thanksgiving post. Sigh.

I have to be honest---I am so overwhelmed today. I would love to ooze and write a thankful-grateful heart post...but I'm struggling. It's not that I'm not thankful, and grateful--I am. But my head is tired and just...like I said, generally I'm feeling overwhelmed today.

I can't even tell you how much I've had to rely on my family for last minute help with my kids the last few days. Part of it makes me feel so terribly guilty. Like, why I'm not yet super-mom status, feeling confident enough to drag two kids to the doctor at the same time. Part of me feels guilty---why should I get to run in a 5K with my husband. I should have just let him run the race and I stay back with the kids this time, rather than get help to watch them.

Every time I need to go into work to do something...again, it requires help with the kids. I just feel so bad, like I don't want to burn out people I love. But. Ugh.

Anyway. It's stupid. But yea. These are the things overwhelming me today.

I had to schedule a last minute doctors appointment for Emeline. I didn't think they'd get her in until maybe Friday--but upon explaining some things to them, they want to see her like, now. Until I know further details about what's going on, I don't really want to write about it. As far as I know it's not serious--but just keep us in your prayers.

I'm just feeling stupidly anxious about it. We're heading there soon.

My back is in killer-pain. And yet, I still want to run this 5K tomorrow morning even though I'll probably be hobbling like a 90 year old woman by the end.

The back pain though? It's really, really starting to bother me and make me unhappy.

I'm fully aware that the things I feel anxious about today are minimal. But for some reason, today, they don't feel that way.

For now, I'll look at these photos of my girls that make me laugh and smile...and remind me that IT'S OKAY. It is all okay. More than okay.


And tomorrow, I will stuff my face with turkey.

****

I hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving!

(also, if you didn't see my new blog design--get out of your reader and come check it out)

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Life lately...

When I don't write for a while, I get buildup. You know, like, where do I start? So then I end up with a hodge-podge. Like this will inevitably be.

There hasn't been anything pressing going on, really. Things have been kind of normal. Which has been great, actually. The normalness of life is where I learn to find true contentment. True gratitude about this place in life I'm in, when sometimes knee-deep, feels messy and exhausting, and needing a break from it all.

Life lately has been filled with toddler meltdowns (ironically, all happening after I wrote this ooze-fest about Emeline, NOT shocking...that's how this stuff works), followed up by the sweetest moments ever. It's weird how that works. I thank God for the juxtaposition. It helps makes The Crazy seem a little easier when The Sweet comes shortly after.

Life lately has been filled with a sweet little Lucy girl, who is now all grabby-grabs with her toys. One of my favorite stages ever. She is adorable and so fun, and it's a joy being her mom. I was reminded that this time, last year is when I wrangled my toddler in a Target Restroom and found out that, indeed, WE WERE HAVING A BAYYYBEEEE! Last Thanksgiving I strategically placed a wine glass in front of me, but Declan nonchalantly sipped on mine, so we wouldn't give away the big secret quite yet. I'm so glad she's here now, and it blows my mind every day that I have two kids. (I know, I should be used to this by now? I'm not. ha.)



Life lately involved giving up meats & sweets for a fast---and while it sounds hard (for some), it honestly was a ton easier than I anticipated. I didn't really miss meat. Which goes to show I could probably be okay if someone told me I could never eat meat again (fish doesn't count). Giving up sweets? Again, easier than I thought. It helped me kick my halloween-candy-habit to the curb, and lose a few pounds, too.

Life lately has Declan and I signed up for 5K on Thanksgiving morning. Yup, we'll be Turkey-Trottin' away for the sheer fact of being able to stuff our faces more later that afternoon. I guarantee the other 1,999 people there have the same reasoning as me. I'm pretty proud of my husband. A few months ago he decided to take up running, and of course, he's one of those 'set your mind to it' types, and now the dude runs about 10 miles a week. Which is a whole heck of a lot more than I do lately (ever).

Between the way my back is feeling and the fact I haven't really run that far in a while? It oughta be an interesting 5K. I'll be shocked if I can run the whole time, honestly--we'll see.

Life lately had me try on my size 6 skinny jeans, while scared to death---they pulled up, zipped and buttoned. I was in shock. Still am, actually. Totally afraid Thanksgiving and Christmas will ruin the good thing I got going here. Still 7lbs away from pre-pregnancy weight...slow and steady wins the race, right?  Just reminding myself that when Emeline wasn't even 4 months old I was stuffing my face like a pregnant lady, never even remotely "worked out", and was about 40 pounds heavier than I am right now. Baby steps.

4 wks/12wks/15wks postpartum
Life lately means wedding planning and prepping with my sister. Last weekend we went and tried on bridesmaid dresses and it felt amazing to fit into cute dresses and actually feel good. It was fun playing dress up and there is so much more fun weddingy stuff ahead. I love, love, love that this is my sisters special time...she deserves nothing but the best.

And life lately has me preoccupied, in a good way. With ways to make this holiday extra special for my kids. With explanations of What Is Christmas. With discussions about what being thankful means. With family returning home after long trips away.

...it's pretty good. So I may be there more than I'm here. And I'm okay with that.

****

Have a happy Tuesday...

Friday, November 16, 2012

A little Burlap/Lace Holiday Wreath DIY Action

I was so excited when Chelsey over at The Paper Mama asked me to be a part of her 50 DIY Days of Christmas a few months back.

So, today my step-by-step (and you all know I'm not a step-by-step gal) tutorial on how to make this stinkin' cute wreath I made is up on her blog.

Check it out?



***

Follow the steps to make your own, right here.

Happy Weekend!

xo,
k

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Let's just call this her 2 1/2 year old photoshoot.

I've been dying to get some good pictures of Emeline recently. Back in the day (ha, pre-Lucy), I used to pack up and take her out to take pictures a few times a month. It was like a little field-trip. Then I'd return home with little nuggets of gold on my camera. Those were some of my favorite times.

However, it's so much different these days....toting around a baby, too. It just makes it so much harder. So much so.

I didn't care though. I was determined this morning to finally get my camera on my girl. She was excited when I asked her if she wanted to go to the park to take photos, and she eagerly helped pick out a fun outfit, too. She even insisted on wearing a size 6 month baby Gap dress as a shirt. And honestly? It looked pretty cute if I do say so myself.

Good work, kid.

ANYWAY.

It went nothing like I had planned. The baby was crying. She was tired and couldn't fall asleep. Emeline started complaining that her foot hurt and saying "Hold me mommy, hollllddddd meeeee!" I honestly thought I got ZERO photos. But when I came home and unloaded my card, to my surprise, there were a few little gems.

I'll take it.

****











Totally worth it.

Totally.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

I'm sorry, not sorry. She's kind of awesome.

Lately I just cannot stop staring at my kid, thinking, how the heck is she so....old. So tall. So kid-like. Such a decent human being. So easy to have a conversation with. So fun to talk to. A pleasure to be around. So silly and unique and goofy with such an infectious joy.

She's two and a half. And so darn pretty, she kills me.

I know. It's so cliche to be all, my kid so cool! She's my favorite human being! But, dang it--I'm serious. If it was socially acceptable to have a toddler as a best friend, yep, I'd totally call dibs on her. She's great.

She's had her days of being such a little booger that I literally thought the day could not end fast enough. There's been times I've dropped her off to my parents in tears, begging for just an hour alone before I lost my sanity. It's happened. We have our days, our moments.

But right now? I want to revel in this good stuff. Because it comes and it goes with kids. Right now, though? It's a good spot. Two and a half is so good I could eat it with a spoon. It's so freakin' good. I love it.

Last night I was stressing out majorly. It was crunch time. I was trying to make dinner, put away all the groceries, and get us ready to head out the door to our weekly community group. Emeline was so insistant that, "I help you, mommy!"---and so I let her help. She listened to exactly what I needed her to put away, and where, and did it with a cheerful heart. She ran a pack of diapers, and a pack of pullups to the correct bedrooms. She took two packs of toilet paper to various bathrooms. Every time she came down (each one took a separate trip, those things are 'heavy' for a 2 year old), she'd proclaim, "I did it mommy! I put away the ______! I help you.

I thought, dang--this is awesome. I so need to bottle up this stage where she can help do things like this, because it's kind of amazing. And? It totally did help me.

She's like a contributing member of the household now.

Rock on.

Every time I hear her little voice sing songs in the back seat I totally grin from ear to ear. If Declan is beside me, we give each other the eyes and then bask in the sweetness that is toddler-singing-and-botching-the-words. There is nothing better.

When her sister cries, she says, "Oh Lucy, I'm so sorry. What's wrong Lucy? Feel better, sister." She's got a genuine, good heart. She loves so well.

Every time I see her little pantied butt I just can't believe how quick and painless that whole thing was. It was like a little blip on the radar. And it amazes me that every time I fear something in this whole parenting journey, she kind of just breezes right past it like, psshhhh no big deal mom, not sure what YOU were worried about, woman, I got this. And she does. And she did. I'm so proud of her.

And she may command me out of the room when she needs her privacy to do her business, but--when the deed is done, the first person she wants by her side is me. "Mom! mom! I DID IT! I'm SO PROUD OF YOU! I NEED A HIGH-FIVE!" Every.single.time. I will give high-fives until my hand breaks off. Because if that's what makes her happy? done.

She loves to get dressed and help me put together outfits. She loves to have me do her hair and she sits perfectly still while "Emeline get her hair done!" She requests her hair-do's and which bow or accessory to wear. And she loves her shoes. Everything about this makes me smile. Whenever she requests braids I die a little from the happiness. I always dreamed of the day I could do my daughters hair.

Right now, I love this. I love so much about this. I'm fully aware I could win Sappy Mom of the Year award. But I don't really care. It's possible that in a few days I'll be crying Whyyyyy didddd I have kidddsssssss (kidding.maybe.) But like I said, I want to bottle this up. This, here, now--good.

We still have our moments. But overall, there's just so much newness. So much good things to share with her. So much inquisitiveness. So much fun. So many sweet, unprompted hugs and love and hilarious things. So many new things about life that she teaches ME, too. Like slowing down and enjoying the little things.

Living life with this 2.5 year old little girl is kind of the best thing ever.

I just wanna save it & remember it forever.

Monday, November 12, 2012

hi random monday.

I appreciated all the stories and fellow dentist-anxiety-ridden folks who decided to join in my pity party last week. I had a few people, some of whom are dentists (hi!) and hygienists write me and I assured them it was nothing personal. Nor do I disrespect their career choice. It's just. My mouth. Is wide open. For so long. And the tools. And the drilling. And ohmygaw cue anxiety.

I swear it's not personal. I wish I loved it. I mean, it's a break from mom life for a few hours. I wonder if they could start adding simultaneous manicures to the 'menu'? That would surely brighten up a dentist trip for me, just saying.

Anyway.

Mornin'.

It's Monday. Also? Back to the dentist I go today. Yep. You can be thinking of me today, sending good dentist vibes, and also praying that I don't lash out in anxiety and fear in the chair at the poor guy. I was thinking last night...I wish I could do something while getting the work done. Play on my phone. Or watch a movie. Or heck, listen to music or something. Instead, you're forced to sit there and just watch, listen (oh.the.noises.), and feel each second slowly ticking by. It's kind of....inconvenient.

Crap. I'm talking about the dentist again.

In other news. This weekend Emeline turned TWO POINT FIVE! Half birthday! I now have a 2 1/2 year old. I could eat this age up with a spoon. It's really, really good about 95% of the time. Since I feel that way, I guess I'm doomed for age 3. But right now? I will enjoy age 2 1/2 because it's pretty darn good to us.


She's inquisitive. Hilarious. Sweet and charming. But you already know that.

***

I took a poll on Facebook the other day, literally, out of complete curiosity, asking couples with small children how often they try to get a "date" night. Like, a legit, leave-the-house, date. Doesn't mean it has to be fancy---just, alone, without kids. Even for an hour or two.

The answers were staggeringly different. They ranged from 2-4x a month (seriously, luckiest people ever), to maybe once a year. I realize answers vary based on a lot of things. Babysitters, mainly. If you have family close to you that are willing to watch your children. If it's in the budget, etc.

I was not, by any means, trying to passive-aggressively suggest people watch my kids. In fact, I feel guilty about people watching my children most the time. Okay, almost all the time. They're my responsibility. I worry a lot (not so much about Emeline anymore). But, I think I got 3 offers of people wanting to watch my kids after that---which is hilarious, and sweet. Seriously, that wasn't the purpose of that post AT ALL. But hey, kind of a nice result.

With that said, I am totally dying to get out alone with my husband. To dinner. Just us. For TOPS 2 hours (my boobs can't handle much more). We went out for the first time after Em was born when she was 6 weeks old. Lucy? Well, she's 3.5 months old and there's not been a date (without her) yet. So we are (over)due. I think we're gonna make it happen late this week sometime. I probably will look forward to those savory 2 hours until then. I love my kids, but I miss time with just my husband sometimes.

We've mastered the at-home date. Been there, done that. I just want someone to wait on me. Bring me food. And eat it in peace and quiet without the possibility of a kid waking up and needing to be held, that's all.

I want to gaze into my husbands eyes and....talk about our kids. Okay, not exactly--but the truth is that's what happens 75% of the time. (Don't lie, you know it happens to you.)

***

Okay, time to get this day rolling---and get this dentist thing over with. Hold me.

Happy Monday.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

A good mom fail (or two) & holy dentist hater batman.

Yesterday, I was the mom who sent her kid to preschool with just a winter jacket and no mittens or hat. I totally got 'scolded' by the teachers with a cubby-note for this and my poor baby had freezing fingers during playground time. I felt like such a loser. I wonder if I'm labeled already as the delinquent mother?  To my defense (ha!), I honestly thought they'd keep them inside and didn't realize there was a "rule" about rain being the only thing that keeps them indoors. Since she started late, I totally missed all that info. Andplusalso, she was wearing TWO hoods (one on her sweater, one on the jacket...helllooooo USE THAT.)

But, also. Yesterday? Chance for snow. And this weekend? 60 degrees. SO REALLY---? I mean...? It's kind of confusing to stay on top of weather to dress your kid properly all the time, just saying.

I was also told I was not allowed to send her in TOMS again. So long, fashion. Preschool wants you in "grippy" shoes, m'dear.

Mom fails all around. I should start charging for these, I'd be rich.

***

If you know me, you'd know the dentist is not my friend. I'd rather go to the va-jay-jay doctor a million times over than go to the dentist once. Ick. There's just something about the dentists that...they just come off...so....high and mighty. OK OK, I mean, they're allowed to, BUT STILL. They're all Floss more! Blah blah. You know, in that tone. And I hate leaving with a sore mouth. And dry mouth. AND I NEED TO SWALLOW, OMG I FEEL LIKE I'M GOING TO DIE. (I am a bit dramatic about this, but...yes...I don't like the dentist, mmk?)

Anyway. I have always been an every 6 month'er dentist kid/teen/adult. Then the occasional go in for a little cavity fix. I've always been prone to little cavities here and there (don't you dare blame candy or I'll throat punch). It just was the story of my life.

Even though I've always hated the dentist, I've always had a really good report for the most part. A little cavity here or there, but they always blamed that on having soft white teeth, and I always got ooh'ed and ahh'ed over that "She never had braces! But look how great her teeth are anyway!", and the dentists used to always say, "great job with your flossing!" (when I secretly didn't do it but once a week...MAYBE). I felt like I duped them, it was awesome.

Anyway. The gist of the story is, after I left my teaching job after having Emeline, I lost my dental insurance. Womp womp, right? But--secretly I was kind of glad. I hate the dentist! Yay! I'll just use money as an excuse and never go! And then, time slipped by like whoa. And self-care? Yea, that goes out the window when you're a mom of two kids. And finding babysitting to go get your teeth checked? Um, if I have a babysitter, I'd rather go to target. How cruel to use babysitting time to go to the dentist.

But I finally knew I HAD TO. My new insurance kicked in October 1st, and I had a tooth bothering me. Well, yesterday was the day. And holy mother of I-still-hate-the-dentist.

After all the fancy x-rays and digital images and 'assessment of my teeth', I just let out a big sigh and said out loud to the dentist and hygienist, "I FEEL LIKE I FAILED A TEST".

It's like 2 years of not going totally ganged up on me and kicked my butt yesterday. It was bad. I'm like THE WORST teeth grinder ever (hello stress, and headaches, and yes I knew this was an issue), and one experience with a bad dentist has led to some fillings breaking out, needing repair, and a......wait for it.......potential root canal. FOR THE LOVE. Not only that but he felt and apparently I have some jaw issues or something and he even used the words, "that's not normal" when he felt me open and close. FABULOUS.

In the end, they both assured me though, that even though it all seemed kind of bad, it really wasn't. Everything looked pretty decent and once I get a few teeth fixed up, I'll be good as new. But still?

Awful way to spend a few kid-free hours. And I will never, ever go 2 years without a dentist appointment again. I can't believe people go their whole life without visiting the dentist. Can't imagine what their first visit must be like.

***

Anyone have a good mom-fail story? Or dentist-hating story for me? Anyone else loathe the dentist like I do?

I don't know what it is...but that place just has me clawing the walls with anxiety.

***

Is it Friday yet?

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Fleeting moments....thank God for cameras.

I happened upon such a sweet moment with them yesterday.



She grabbed her snack and a book, parked next to her sister, and began 'reading' to her.

So I grabbed my camera, quiet as a mouse...and crept up to try and sneak a few photos of the sweetness before it ended.



But then, she caught me. 

Busted.

And suddenly I ended up with a 2 year old on my back.



Moment over. 

But that's okay. 'Cuz I got it.



Love this sweet big sister.

***

Monday, November 5, 2012

Explaining life-stuff to a kid...is there a handbook for this?

Now that Emeline is 2 1/2 she is (beyond) chatty, picks up on everything, very interested in little details, adds new sayings, phrases, and facial expressions to her repertoire daily. She sings new songs all the time, she's starting to learn new concepts, routines, and she soaks everything in. Everything.

I've found that with this age comes a whole lot of explaining, too. It's fun, and it's hard. We're really trying our best to explain things to her in a kid-friendly way, without being confusing, but also without sugar coating stuff, either. It's like---a teeter-totter balance. A fine line. Of being very honest, of using words she understands, of making sure the look in her eye stays the way a 2 year old should look. If you know what I mean.

My kid doesn't forget much. It was just a few weeks after she turned two that her Great Poppop (my grandfather) passed away. She came with us multiple times, back and forth to their home, as he was lying in a bed, plagued with a short & aggressive form of cancer. She knew he was 'sick'.

On the way to visit my Grandmother after he had passed away, I remember Emeline saying in her sweet, innocent, sing-songy voice, "I go see Gate Poppop! and Gate Gandmom!"  And Declan and I just looked at each other. I gave him the nod, like you've got this. And he gently explained that he was sick, and so he's now in heaven. Great Grandmom lives alone and Great Poppop went to be with Jesus. That's what seemed fitting at the time. She followed that up with, "Oh, Gate Poppop in heaven..." And every time we've visited since she's remembered that its just Great Grandmom there, because Poppop was very sick and went to heaven. She still remembers.

I don't know, though. I just don't know how to handle everything. How to explain it correctly. How to handle strong, life-altering things like the concept of death.

Then there's different scenarios. Funnier, more light-hearted things. The concept of Christmas, for example, is one we've been talking about recently.

She keeps saying, "I went to Christmas! Daddy, I went to CHRISTMAS!!" And I finally realized that she meant that we went to THE MALL, which is (already! for the love!) decorated for Christmas. She kept telling us over and over again about Christmas, and then when we try to explain that it's a holiday, and not a "place", she still asks, "Can Daddy come to Christmas, too?" Bless her heart, girlfriend's confused. To try and differentiate the two, we now refer to the mall as "The Christmas Mall". As if that will help.

We tell her that Christmas is about Jesus' birthday. That he was a gift, that's why we give gifts. That people brought him gifts when he was born. We tell her about the trees and decorations. And every time she see's twinkly lights, a christmas tree (again! the mall! for the love! target, too!), she shouts, "MOMMY IT'S CHRISTMAS! THE SPARKADA-DLES! (sparkly lights)"

She knows about Santa, and that he's that jolly, old fat guy that brings presents, too. She already knows he's an icon of Christmas, it just is what is. But we try to focus on what we want to teach her is the real reason. But in kid terms. We try to explain in the way we think makes sense to her. We do our best.

Another thing that has piqued her interest lately is Communion time at Church. We only take it once a month, and it's nothing too fancy. A small little cup of grape juice and a small cracker. Well, it's a really hard concept to explain to a 2 year old. Really hard. So I hadn't really attempted to yet, even though I know she was dying to understand. Or dying to drink the juice, if I'm being honest.

But one day a few weeks ago as we were driving to Church, Emeline was talking about how she was "So 'cited (excited) for church today!" We asked her why and she replied all peppy & quick with, "So I can eat Jesus' BODY!" 

I nearly choked on my gum. Whicka-WHATdidyoujustsayKID?

I gave my husband the look of death as he gave me the little shrug and a I tried to explain communion to her-explanation.

Yea. So. Then it led us down the rabbit trail of how the cracker is a symbol and how it's not actually Jesus' body, but that it's so we can remember. AND WHOA. Enter in a WHOLE!LOT!MORE! complicated stuff.

I mean, she's 2 1/2. We know that. But it's hard. It's almost like a rabbit trail. One question leads to another, which leads to another, which leads to that I'm not sure I'm ready to tell her all this right now thing, but it still leaves questions in their mind. It's hard. It's a hard balance, and we're learning.

It's been an interesting journey so far. And honestly? I think we're doing okay for the most part. But there are times we just laugh and think, Nope, should have waited to talk about THAT.

Parenting is no joke.

***

So tell me, are you just going with the flow with this kind of stuff with your kids? Serious and non-serious things...? Have any funny stories of things your kids have misinterpreted because their little brains just can't get it fully right now?

Do share...

Friday, November 2, 2012

Friday rambling.

I have not been feeling much like writing this week. But then again, maybe that explains why I've been in a funk? Writing=sanity. Me not writing=slightly insane. Sorry, sweet husband, I'm sorry. (He's the one who has to deal with me, you know.)

ANYWAY.

I am hoping to get my writing mojo back. But things have just been weird this week.

It started off with this god-awful storm. I am grateful my area got hit much less hard than anticipated but I'm also so sad and heartbroken for those in so much worse situations. All the beach towns we know and love have had a lot of damage. People have lost their homes. There is lots of devastation and that just sucks. So while I feel grateful, I also feel sad about those whose hometowns faced so much destruction.

So because of the storm, the week just felt...off. Declan worked from home for two days and trust me, he was clawing at the door to get back to his (quiet, peaceful) office on Wednesday morning (don't tell him I told you that, he'll deny it). I was even craving a little normality too, not gonna lie.

While Sandy came and left, she brought Winter in her path so while our Halloween remained in tact, it was FREEZING COLD. Thankfully, we got to still see our friends and Emeline and her little BFF, Finley got to trick-or-treat together. There is no denying these two are the freaking cutest things ever. They slay me.



This past weekend we went wedding dress shopping with my sister, and it was the best thing ever. We've waited for that day for much too long and I can't even tell you---this girl is going to be a stunning bride. Like, drop dead gorgeous. Just.you.wait.

Her mother-in-law threw a little Afternoon Tea afterwards for us all at her home, and it was adorable. She wouldn't let any of us lift a finger and served us all, and she just wanted it to be special for Susan. I realized two things, 1) I love tea & 39408390 little sandwiches equal one normal size (so I like to tell myself) 2) Afternoon tea is relaxing. But I need to learn how to relax. Dilemma.

(photos taken by my SIL, Lyryn...a few from dress shopping & the afternoon tea)


Somehow, this year--I decided I would be on the ball when it came to Christmas outfits for the girls. I bought them both their dresses yesterday and I feel super accomplished. So probably what will happen? I'll get all excited that I did ONE!THING! early and then save all the rest of Christmas'ey stuff to The Last Minute because I'll think just because I have their matching dresses, that's all that matters. And it doesn't. But that's how my brain works. So cheers to being ahead of the game on one thing, for once in my life.

Did I just write about Christmas? For the love, how is it that time again? I refuse, REFUSE, to bypass the goodness that is Thanksgiving by going too Christmas too early. Thanksgiving is an amazing holiday, my favorite, actually. The delicious food. Family. But no pressure of gifts. It's pretty much the best ever.

With that said--Happy November (frack, NOVEMBER? Sigh. Life. Stop.going.so.fast.....)