Tuesday, December 23, 2008

No Brainer

I swear I have no brain. About halfway through the day yesterday I realized that the bodysuit that I had dressed the Squirt in in the morning had been backwards. I then decided that since it had already been half the day, we weren't going anywhere, and he wasn't complaining that I would leave it that way.

This year for Christmas dinner we are going Mexican. I've wanted to start a tradition in our house for a long time of having a different ethnically prepared dinner but never got around to it until last year. Don't get me wrong, I love a good turkey dinner, but not 2 of them so close together. Last year was the perfect time to start. H@ ll m@ rk started a new ornament series called Doors Around the World or something like that. Last year was Germany, so we had a German menu. This year is Mexico so we are having Mexican. It saves me a lot of trouble narrowing down the country myself. ****This all feels familiar being typed.... maybe I explained this last year?****

With my decreasing mental faculties, I am so glad that my brother is coming out to visit. He can help me cook. Today and tomorrow we have cookies to bake, a pork roast to cook, tamales and empanadas to fill, and guacamole to make. I still have to get a few things from the grocery store. I also have to finish cleaning the house.

Do any of you have special family traditions?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Exposed

I just got home from picking up a few odds and ends from my grocery list.

I put those few things away on the shelf in my laundry room and walked into the kitchen.

Then I heard a horrendous crash.

My shelf fell off the wall. I currently have cereal, bottle pieces, popcorn kernels, soup cans, cartons of broth and stock and several other things sprawled across my laundry floor.

The crash woke the baby.

I went into my room to change my shirt because long sleeves were not cutting it and I need to turn on the A/C.

When I whipped off my shirt I discovered I have been running errands around town with my nursing bra unhooked.

It's not even noon.

How's your day going?

Monday, December 15, 2008

Lost and Found

Just when I wonder if the internet hinders my relationships with people instead of helping them, I get a kick in the pants.

About 9 years ago, my very best friend, her then husband, and their 4, soon-to-be 5, children moved to Japan. We both promised to keep in tough with phone calls and emails. We even played a game online together that we spent several hours on. I was sure that with the ease of electronic communication we would never lose touch. Well, we did. Changing emails addresses, both of us moving, then her separation and divorce from her husband and we quickly lost touch. We only exchanged one phone call and email until 2004, I think. There has been nothing since.

At least once a month I would search for her on MySpace, but I had no idea if she had gotten remarried and changed her name. So, my searches were in vain.

Then last week, a great thing happened. She found me. I have been elated ever since. We quickly exchanged phone numbers and started catching up. We cried over each other's pictures and how much our children has grown. We talked about old friends and where we've been. We still have lots to talk about. Her life is different now but still wonderful.

I've missed her so much. It's perfect that she found me this time of year. We spent 3 or 4 Christmas' together and they have always been my most memorable.

The best thing about finding a soulmate is that when you lose touch and reconnect again, its as if no time has passed.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

I'll Have Cheese with my Whine

I'm having a kind of crappy day. Mainly because I just feel like it. I really look forward to the weekends because that is when E and I try to spend some time together.... remembering what the other looks like mostly. Well, he got nominated/volunteered to videotape a Christmas party on base for the kids of the squadron. It's for good cause.... most of the kids have at least one parent deployed and its nice for the families to get together. However, Dani had a Scouting commitment to go to the local art studio to Paint with Santa. They had already paid when E told me that he was going to the squadron thing so we couldn't cancel.

So, we've not been together for most of the day. Well, I take that back. We were together this morning, or at least he was here whilst on the phone trying to find a troop to go to GA to inspect a plane. A plane that isn't even from our base. And evidently, the 4 bases in between E's and the one in GA do not have any personnel/equipment to do the job. I find that hard to believe.

A prime example of your tax dollars at work.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Anon

To what degree do you rely on blogging or other avenues, such as MySpace or Facebook, for communication with other people? How much do we rely on our computers for interaction? Are we losing some aspects of relationships by relying on the easy technical availability of email, personal websites, or online picture albums?

I know that I rely on them close to 100%. And sadly it is all one-way communication. Meaning it is me looking at other people's blogs or profile pages to see what is going on in their lives. Rarely do I ever participate in a discussion or even start one. But I am trying to get better.

I look at my MySpace friends and I can tell you what they are all up to. But I couldn't tell you when the last time I actually sent them a message or comment. I forget that just because I know that I am stopping by and checking things out doesn't mean that they do.

But I also like the anonymity. Sometimes I don't want people to know that I read their blogs. Sometimes I don't want to comment leaving a URL because I don't want them to know that I have a blog.

I joined Facebook about 2 weeks ago I think because Jeneflower passworded her site for hiatus purposes. She said that I could join Facebook and keep in touch that way. So I did. And the other day, my mom added me as friend. Now I don't even want to be on Facebook anymore. I like having a part of my life that she doesn't know about. I now feel that I have to censor myself. But how naive is that thinking when I am brazen enough to put my point of view out there for her to see? She could find this blog if she tried. I don't really cover my identity at all.

And I've said before, in a weird twisted way I almost want her to find me here so that she can see how I feel without it being turned on me. But I fear it at the same time. Because even though she aggravates me and frustrates me I don't want to hurt her feelings.

So how often do you interact with the bloggers and internet contacts that you follow? Or do you at all? Do you like being anonymous? Or are you extrovert and enjoy having several more ways to communicate with people?

Friday, December 05, 2008

Nipple Watch

Well, I think I had a period the other day. That was easy.

That is right around the timeframe that they came back with Dani. Along with a decrease in my milk supply. So far that doesn't seem to be an issue but I'll have to keep aware of how much the Squirt eats. He still seems really happy after he is done eating. When I pump I get 6oz. and when he eats a bottle he takes about 5oz. sometimes 6oz.

This kid is a monster. 14 pounds!! I am not concerned at all that he isn't getting enough to eat. However, I have to accept the possibility that in the next month or so I will be completely dry.

Damn PCOS.

I think we are nearing the end of middle of the night feedings and on our way to sleeping through the night. I've been working this week on keeping him awake until 7 or 8 and giving him his last feeding at that time. He is in bed and crashed by 8:30 or 9. I've had to get up a couple of times but only to plug in the bink and wrap him up tight in his blanket. To keep him from fidgeting himself awake I pin his arms to his sides and do a half assed swaddle. It seems to help quite a bit. I try to wrap slightly over his chin to help keep the bink in but I don't always get it.

He loves baths. I gave him one last night and he kicked and splashed that water into next week. It took an hour for my shirt to dry. What? Change my shirt? Ha... I don't even have time to go pee.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Teeter

Balance
Shifting
Out of control
Family
Demanding
No where to go
I'm tired
and sore
overwhelmed.
I'll give all that I have for them
But I'm afraid there will be nothing left
For Me.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

30 Posts in 30 Days

I did it. 30 posts in 30 days. That's is great sense of accomplishment considering how long it took me to make the first 30 posts to this blog. Wanna guess?

......................................................................................................


It took one year and one month, give or take a few days. I am a lazy slacker.

BUT I think I am in the habit of writing more. More things come to mind that I want to write about. Oddly enough it has become a sort of communication for me. It may not be much of a two sided conversation but I know that someone reads everyday.

My first NaBloPoMo is a success. And it has inspired me to post more. Maybe someday I'll post 2 or 3 times a day? But for now.... I think I'm going to take a couple of days off. My fingers are typed to the bloody nubs.

WOOT!!!!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Baby It's Cold Outside....

Or not. Florida is the winner in meteorlogical trickery. In the past 2 weeks I cannot tell you how often I have switched my central unit from A/C to Heat. Somedays I've turned it off completely and just opened the windows. Now for the past 2 days it's been raining. The tree in my front yard, one of 2 in the neighborhood that actually sheds its leaves, is finally almost bare. Dani is begging for a fire in the fireplace but it is just not cold enough.

Last night we put up our Christmas tree and I had to turn the A/C on. December is only 2 days away! I'm a northern girl at heart. This tricky weather gets on my nerves. And it wreaks havoc on mine and Dani's sinuses. We also still have flowering plants outside which makes it worse. At least the rain will settle the pollen down.

Wow... NaBloPoMo has reduced me to blogging about the weather.

Friday, November 28, 2008

3 Months

The Squirt’s third month of life was nothing extravagant. At least not for him. For me everyday was perfection. We started getting smiles this month and I even got my first giggle on the 26th. It happened while I was kissing him on his neck. That’s was Dani’s first tickle spot too.
He loves baths. He has discovered his feet and likes to kick them in the water. He seems mesmerized by them and I think that he has grasped that he is controlling the movements.
I seem to call this baby any other name except his given one. His nicknames so far are Mr. Peanut, Peanut Butter, Boo-Bear, Cutie Patootie, and Senior Poopypants.
I have always made Dani’s Halloween costume and I wanted to make the Squirt’s too. I thought that since I have been calling him Peanut since he was born that I would make him a peanut costume. I used an old brown towel, stitched it into the shape of a peanut leaving head, arms, and leg holes and slipped him into it. Meh… it was cute, but he looked more like Captain Caveman.



So, I decided that since I had an Undead Bunny, that I would even it out and have a live bunny. I bought him his first Halloween costume. I added a bow to distinguish that he was a boy. E took this picture of him this morning. I didn't get one of him Halloween night. I was so freaked out about Dani and my mom's dog that I didn't get to it.
He has gotten much more vocal and he has started squealing. Especially when Dani starts talking to him. He really loves her.

He’s not really sleeping better. He is much easier to read though. I’m getting better at noticing when he is getting tired or when he needs to burp. And we all look out when he needs to burp. It always seems to be accompanied by some sort of spittle in varying amounts. Poor Dani was trying to help wipe spit up off me the other day and she started gagging. I can’t blame her. There is a reason that I can’t help her when she is throwing up. Thankfully E has a stronger stomach than I and he can handle it.

The transition to his room is going well. He hasn’t slept through the night yet, but he is getting longer stretches. Which in theory I would be too, but that isn’t always the case.


We endeavored out to the beach last weekend to try to get a family Christmas photo, but it wasn't a good day. It was windy, and chilly. The Squirt had just woken up and was hungry so we weren't getting much cooperation out of him. This is one picture that I did like though. The water was gorgeous that day.

E is officially in uncharted territory in baby raising. He deployed for the first time when Dani was just over 12 weeks old. He missed the part of her babyhood when she became socially aware.

Now he gets to share in the smiles and giggles of the Squirt and it makes me very glad. I have always been sad that he missed that with Dani.
Ah, one more thing of note. He has started biting me. Biting hurts very much and he doesn’t even have teeth yet. I guess he gets bored on the boob and decides to exercise his jaws. I don’t know what to do except yelp.

He has a prominent dimple in his right cheek. Dani's is on her left. I don't know where my kids got dimples from. E nor I have them. Can you see the chunkitude that this baby is made of? He is huge. He weighed 12+ pounds at his 2 month appt. and I would guess that his is close to, if not, 14 by now.
So, month 3: smiling, laughing, biting, chunky, sleeping in his own room. I think that wraps up the major milestones this month.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

Well it's another day of cooking and baking for me. At least I don't have to make the turkey.

Our menu today is
Turkey
mashed potatoes
sweet potatoes
green bean casserole
corn
mushroom and walnut stuffing
fresh baked rolls

For dessert we have
Cherry-Apple pie
homemade cheesecake with an oreo crust and covered in a chocolate ganache
pumpkin pie
a fruit pizza for the kids

Oy, I'm glad a bought some new pants the other day. I'm going to need the room.

Here's to a Happy Thanksgiving to you all!! I'm so thankful for the internet!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

NaBloPoMo Under the Wire

I have been cooking and baking all day getting ready for tomorrow. We are spending our Thanksgiving with our dysfunctional neighbors. When my friend's husband came home from Iraq I jokingly told him that I needed him to make a turkey for me. He does a fantastic job. Well, she kind of assumed that I wanted to have dinner with them so that's what we are doing.

I know that she really appreciates it. She never had a real Thanksgiving dinner until we met. The first year that we lived here we had dinner together and she cried the first half hour of dinner because she felt so lucky to be with us.

Funny, because according to my Mother all of those turkey dinners that we had while growing up weren't Thanksgiving dinners... because we didn't celebrate Thanksgiving. We had a turkey dinner because turkeys were always on sale that time of year. She got really angry at me the one time I asked her about it.

Good times.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Hi-Ya!!

Dani has never been aggressive in her extracurricular activities. It has been difficult for E and me to find something that she is really interested in. She has been in Girl Scouts for 3 years, and played soccer last fall. She is still in GS because it is a good time for her to be with her friends. Her troop is made up of the girls just in our neighborhood. Soccer did not peak her interest. Her favorite part was snacks at halftime and by the time the season was over it was difficult to get her motivated for practice.

About 6 weeks ago however we went to an Arts Festival on the beach and one of the demonstrations that we saw was from a local Martial Arts studio. Two boys who live in our neighborhood happened to be in the demo and Dani was so excited to see them.

They were jumping around, breaking boards, and fake sparring. They even had someone dressed in a dragon costume who happened to be handing out flyers for a free 2 week membership with uniform, and an invitation to attend a Board Breaking Extravganza.

We decided that we would go, see how Dani liked it, and see if she would try to break a board. When we got there she was very nervous and only wanted to watch. I asked her if her Dad went out with her if she would go and she said yes. But when the instructor said it was time to go onto the floor, she forgot about her Dad. She listened to the instructor, followed his directions and when it came time to break her board she looked at us, scrunched her eyes, and kicked. And she DID IT!!! Of course it was a thin piece of pine specifially for breaking but I swear it made her confidence grow by 100%. She looked at us, looked at the board, and yelled, "Mom, I am signing up!!"

So we did the 2 week membership and she liked it. And as much as we could have saved the money, I enrolled her in classes when the time came. She is really enjoying it and I am so glad to see her still excited about it. She has always been respectful but I like seeing how she remembers to be respectful more often. She is learning her routines and getting better with her balance. I think what I like the best is that noone else in her group of friends is doing it. This is her own thing. I like seeing her strike out in a different direction than her friends.

On Dec. 6, she will have earned her Yellow Belt. That's level 2. I'm really proud of her.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Showing my age

Internet, today is my birthday.

32.

In my teens and twenties, I loved this day. I felt so grown up. Now, in my 30's, it doesn't hold the same joy for me.... I guess because I really am grown up. Last night we went to a little Chinese place for dinner. Afterward we wandered around a grocery store and E and Dani "snuck" a cake and some ice cream into the cart. E told me he would like to and I suggested telling Dani and making it a surprise. So, I played dumb the whole time. Dani was practically bursting with excitement the whole way home and she even suggested that I "fold a load of laundry or something as soon as we got home". The expression on Dani's face after I had folded that load of laundry and they had called me out of my room was priceless.

I would like to commemorate this day by listing things that show my age; bullet style.

  • I started clipping coupons. You can now hear me squealing down the grocery aisles at E saying, "Wait, I have a coupon for that!"
  • I misplaced our house phone last week and didn't find it for 6 days. 6 DAYS!!! It is now absolutely dead and will not recharge at all. Thankfully we have another handset.
  • I am wearing socks and Crocs.
  • I can remember my mother turning 32.
  • I can remember taping songs off the radio.
  • For that matter, I don't understand the music that kids are listening to nowadays.
  • I yell at everyone else's kids as much as I yell at my own.
  • I'm quite grumpy the majority of the time.
  • I'm starting to enjoy waking up at 6 am because it gives me a few more hours in the day to get things done. (Though I currently spend that few extra hours on the computer, but I'm getting stuff done on the computer.)
  • I drive the speed limit.
  • I don't like other drivers.
  • I started reading the Sunday paper and tsking at the headlines.
  • I regale Dani with tales of how little I had at her age and how she needs to be more grateful.
  • I seem to have lots of advice for other people.
  • I think 25 is young.
  • I don't answer my phone unless I know the person calling. And sometimes not even then.
  • I cried when Dani sang "Happy Birthday" to me.

What do you do that makes you feel older?

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Sleeping [HA!] through the night

Since we brought the Squirt home he has been sleeping in a cradle in our room. We currently have the pins out so that we can rock him when he is fidgety. He's very funny. He wiggles himself so that he is laying against one side of the cradle and that is how he sleeps. It may look alarming to someone walking into the room because it looks as if the cradle has been stopped in mid flip. But, that's just how he likes to sleep. I think it may simulate someone holding him and he likes to be constricted when he sleeps so I think mashing himself agaist the edge of the cradle accomplishes that for him.

The Squirt's 3 month birthday is coming up next week so we have decided that it is time for him to sleep in his own room. I think it will help him to learn to sleep through the night. It seems that's what worked for Dani. So last night, our little baby went to bed in his room. I put him in there at 6:45 and I think he fell asleep around 7:30. He just laid in there awake. No fussing or even cooing. Just chillin'.

I passed out before 10 in my bed. E was still up playing on the computer (which is better by the way. He did something to it when he got home and now it works great) and at 11:30 the baby started fussing so E gave him a bottle. The next thing I knew it was 1:30, too early for him to eat again, and I could hear him fussing and fidgeting on the monitor. I went in, gave him his bink then went to lay back down. And I didn't hear him again until 4:15. So, not bad for the first night.

However, I have effectively been awake since then. He has dozed a few times since then, not really wanted a full meal, or to go back to sleep until about 20 minutes ago. So, I've been back and forth across the house since then trying to feed, rebink, or rock. I finally gave up at 6:30 and just laid him on the floor to play. Which I guess is what he wanted because he cooed, squealed, ahhed, smiled, and kicked until he wore himself out.

Dani woke up at 5 [HUH!!!] and wanted to watch TV. Sorry sister, I'll let you snooze on the couch but we are not watching TV at 5 in the morning.

I think with a little schedule manipulation in the evenings I can have him sleeping through the night by the end of next week. I'll try anyway.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

NaBloPoMo Obligation, and a Shout Out to my Blogging Friends

Alright. 8 more posts of NaBloPoMo after this one and I am starting to scrape the bottom of the barrel. Since I started this blog... hold on, I'm going to check my archives..... *elevator muzacc*.... Wow... almost 4 years ago I have rarely ever posted more than twice a week. In fact, I don't think I even posted once a week. Now, for 22 days, I have posted every day.

It's fun... it's starting to become part of my routine. When I first started this blog, I don't really know what my intention was. I remember I had read an article in one of E's Discover magazines about someone who had started making a substantial income through blogging. Click revenues I think it was. I had never heard of a blog before, so I started skimming through Blogger, the service mentioned in the article.

I thought it was a really unique way to journal. It looked fun. We were in the middle of our nonadoption at that point and by browsing using the "Next Blog" button I found Soper who was in the middle of their adoption of Moonpie. It was wonderful to find someone that I could relate to. Through her blogroll I found a lot of infertility blogs of which I could also relate. Then through their blogrolls, I found all of you. I haven't been truly lonely since.

I could always get on the computer and find someone who was going through the same frustrations, or joys as me. We commiserated together. We built each other up. We supported each other through losses. And gains. We've cried together, and laughed. And we continue to do so.

I haven't met any of you. But I feel like I know you all very well. We've gone through some of the best and worst parts of our lives together. When I talk with my RL friends I talk about the rest of you all the time. I refer to you as 'my friends' though I don't really know if the term is valid since we only know each other through our words... not even through conversations in most cases. Just a few sporadic emails following up on comments.

I'm glad that I blog. I'm glad that you all blog. I'm also glad that a couple of my RL family members found me. Hi T! Hi Lynn! I look forward to the future and reading about your lives from here on out. I hope I always have something to write about.

These past few weeks I've been wondering if I want to continue to blog more regularly. I'm still thinking about it. It's therapudic in many ways. *MOM* It is a way that I can always look back and see what I was thinking and feeling at certain points in my life. Its fulfilling.

I just need topics to write about.

Friday, November 21, 2008

They say the hardest part is admitting it

Well, I'm ready to admit it.

My son is growing. I put a pair of 3-6 month old jammies on him last night and they fit. In fact, he was able to even stretch out his legs. He looked very relaxed.

*sigh*

I thought it was about time to move up when he threw a tiny fit the other day and when extended his body fully, he popped open a snap on his jammies.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The Itch You Can't Scratch

I'm still itching. That is 12 weeks since delivering the Squirt that I have been itching. It really looks like an allergic rash. But I have changed nothing in my habits regarding laundry or perfume, lotions, or new clothes. I put lotion on in the morning, spray with Benadryl, and use vaseline throughout the day. I am still itchy.

It's great for my sex life.

Meh.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Sandman on Strike

The only thing consistent with the Squirt's sleep schedule is that he likes to go to bed for the night at 7pm. And I mean, 7pm else we are subject to "Ohmygawdits7pmwhyhaventyouputmetobedyet" crankytime. So, I do my best to have him in bed by 7. He used to sleep until 2:30 then again until 5:30 but lately has been waking up anywhere between 11 and midnight for another feeding which puts him waking up again around 4. I try to feed him at 6pm but he usually cannot make that far of a stretch from his 1-2pm feeding.

Yesterday afternoon he was uncharacteristically cranky and I wonder if it was the Spicy Chicken sandwich I had for lunch. I swear he spit up everything he had eaten for the last 4 days.
So by the time he went to sleep (late because of the crankitude), I have no idea how much food he had left in his belly.

Last night and the night before he woke up at 11:30pm, then again at 4. And stayed awake until after 5. Then I have to get up at 6 to help Dani get ready for school and walk her at least partway to the bus stop before my baby monitor loses signal.

So lately I've been getting by on less than 5 hours of sleep a night. And it wouldn't be all bad because I can lay down for a nap most days. Unless I have a day like yesterday and I have to be out all day. On the road with crazy drivers.

I could go back to bed now, except it is 7am and he last ate at 4, which should mean that he is getting hungry again. Then maybe I will go to sleep.

Maybe.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Blood Pressure... Again

I saw my midwife today so that she could check my IUD strings to make sure they haven't migrated. They are fine, but still, my blood pressure is too high. I don't like making excuses, but they did take it the first time right after I had arrived at the hospital after driving for an hour and then another 10 minutes trying to find a parking spot. That's not to mention being forced to an almost complete stop on a 3 mile long bridge over the Pensacola Bay because there were very slow moving trucks ALL OF A SUDDEN!!! On a bridge, there is no where to go except up the tailpipe of the person in front of you. It was a little nerve wracking.

So the first BP was 140/92. They took it again right before I left and it was 132/82. Now I wonder if the constant headache that I had last Friday was not due to caffeine withdrawl, but actually an episode of high blood pressure. Maybe I have to start taking Zoloft again. I know it's not blood pressure medication, but maybe I am too stressed and don't realize it.

Do you think that your child taking a bad tumble can have that much of an effect on BP?

So what do my internet doctors think?

Monday, November 17, 2008

Computer Woes

E and I have 2 computers. A laptop that I got in '04, and desktop that we got in '05. I haven't been using my laptop much lately because it is ungodly slow. It takes forever to boot up. We looked into upgrading it, but it was so touchy to new hardware that nothing we tried worked. So I have been using E's desktop. And that's been working. I just use it during the day and it is available for him to use at night for whatever he wants to use it for.

But when my mother came to visit, we had to share it with her also. And she doesn't have very good computer etiquette. Since her visit it has been acting very odd. The keyboard doesn't seem to register all of my keystrokes and it has been getting increasingly slower. This morning I went through the add/remove program wizard to see what old programs were in there and I deleted almost 1MB of things that she put on it while she was here.

Then I went online to check my email, then opened another window... and waited. And waited. And waited. Nothing happened. I couldn't even bring up the task manager. So, I had no choice but to restart the computer. And the same thing happened again. So, I had to get onto the laptop and email E and tell him I was afraid that his computer had died.

I haven't tried to run it since, but I am going to. If we have to wipe it, we need to try to get several things off first.

I don't think that we will have to replace the desktop, but we do want to replace the laptop. But, not necessarily with another laptop. So if you were going to get a new computer what would you want? What brand? Anyone use Vista and how do you like it?

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Halloween Pic

Not much to write today.. but I have to keep up with NaBloPoMo. Here is Dani's Halloween costume based on the story Bunnicula. The story about a bunny vampire.




Saturday, November 15, 2008

Dumb Idea

The next time I get the bright idea that we will all go grocery shopping together as a family, I hope I will remember today.

It did not go well. Sure, I got the stuff I needed. In between telling Dani to quit asking me for things and E huffing because the Squirt started fussing... again.

Exhausting.

Which is probably why when E and I got the groceries put away we both collasped into bed.

And babies don't know how to sleep in on the weekends. As much as I love 6am play time during the week when I have to be up; I don't love it so much on the weekends when it forces me to be awake when I want to sleep. But 6am grins and coos are priceless.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Relocated

Dani's elbow that is. It went missing from its assigned joint yesterday afternoon after a daring jump off the slide. Not her idea by the way. It was one of those neighborhood kids that I love so much. Dani learned a valuable lesson last night about doing what the big kids do and telling them that all of their ideas aren't that great.

The staff tried to sedate her last night at the ER but she refused to go to sleep. So she was awake when the doc put her arm back in joint. It was so gross. They asked me to leave the room, but I was able to peek through the door's window.

There is nothing worse that walking out in your backyard, seeing your child laying on the ground after a fall, and not screaming. Your heart just sinks because you know it can't be good. I think I did OK with keeping my cool. Instead of screaming, "OH MY GOD HOLY HANNAH JESUS ON A CRACKER WHAT HAPPENED TO YOUR ARM?!?!?!", I said, "Hmm... wow.... looks like you popped your arm out of joint. Let's go to the ER."

Today she is back to herself. I kept her home from school as a precaution but she is fine. A little sore and annoyed at her wrapped arm and sling. A bonus to the sling? She might quit sucking her thumb because it is too far away from her mouth.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Work

I'm very lucky in that mine and E's lifestyle does not require me to work at this time. But we are far from well off. We live on one income and I try to stretch that income as far as I can. Once Dani started going to school, I couldn't justify staying home, so I started taking classes again.

This time, I knew what I wanted my degree in and it made a big difference in my motivation and success in school. I had a purpose other than just attaining a general degree. I haven't gone back to classes since the Squirt was born but I am looking forward to going back in January. I have a friend who has volunteered to watch him for the 2 days a week that I would be in class.

Currently, I am 5 classes from my AA in Accounting. It's so close that I can taste it. And when I get it, I want to start on my Bachelor's. E has 7 more years to retirement and he is also working on completing his Bach. before he retires. Before he retires, I NEED to be working because we cannot live on his retirement alone and we can't rely on him getting a teaching job immediately after retirement.

I mentioned to my mom that we were making plans for that time period and she told me that I should get my AA and then start doing people's taxes. I'd be really busy for a few months out of the year, but that would be best for me.

.....

.....

But I already have a plan. And that isn't it. But she wouldn't let me finish my thought to tell her my plan. So I just gave up.

As I write about this stuff I wonder why I even start conversations with her. But what am I supposed to do when she visits; just glower at her out of a corner?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Date

While my mom was here, and I hate to admit it, E and I took the opportunity to go out on a date. I have no idea why, but I was comfortable leaving the kids here with her. I guess that's a mother/daughter thing that won't change. And there were no catastrophes, so all is well.

When E and I decided that we would go on a date together we decided to make it really nice. Like call ahead to the restaurant and make reservations and everything. Which we did for 6pm. Mom and SDad volunteered to run and pick up some fried chicken for their dinner and bring it back to the house. They left around 5pm. The chicken place is maybe a 10 minute drive. Yeah, they didn't get home until 6pm.

Because they went to the drugstore to buy me a backbrace and a pull behind grocery cart.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Birth Control

In case anyone forgot. I have struggled with infertility induced by Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome for 12 years. For 12 years I mourned my inablitity to have children and sat on pins and needles the times that I did concieve. Dani's pregnancy was the easiest because I was so happy. The 2 losses were terrible, heartbreaking, and sickening to endure. Lana's adoption was equally painful for me. First by the fact that we lost her, and second from the lack of understanding from our friends and family. The best support I got from our loss was here, on this blog and your comments. The Squirt's pregnancy was also easy until the high blood pressure, diabetes, and early labor came about. However, it was difficult for my mind and heart because I was always afraid of something going wrong.

Before I got pregnant with the Squirt E and I decided that we weren't going to try anymore. We never considered the possibility of a natural conception either. So it didn't occur to us that we should need to entertain the idea of a birth control method. I had never conceieved naturally in my, to date, reproductive life so the entire subject seemed like a waste of time.

Fast forward to me actually getting pregnant and carrying the Squirt to viability and the subject came up between E and I. If it could "happen" once, then it might "happen" again. I honestly don't think I can do it again. Aside from the strain on my body there is a huge emotional strain for me. I am constantly worried about my baby dying. Also, the Squirt's delivery scared me. I went into labor 3 weeks early, my blood pressure would not go down, I hemorraged, and he couldn't breathe on his own. I am literally afraid of what will happen if I give birth to another child.

So, E and I decided that we would use a form of birth control. Neither one of us really wants to go the sterilzation route. I want something long term that I don't need to think about. The pill drives me insane. Condoms are a pain and mood killer for any spontaneity and the rhythm method? Please. I opted for the Mirena. I liked what I heard from other moms and I like how it could actually ease some of my PCOS symptoms.

When my mom asked when we were having another baby (yes, she really did, because I guess she forgot our conception struggles) I told her that I had had an IUD placed. She asked, "Do you know what they do?" I said yes and I understood where she was going. And IUD prevents the uterine lining from becoming thick and squishy enough to support the implantation of an embryo. And I had to remind her. That I had only ever concieved naturally once in 12 years. I really don't think that I need to be concerned with that happening.

So now my mom thinks I am killing my future children. The End

Monday, November 10, 2008

Religion

E and I live a very devoted life to each other. We each have strong morals and we are teaching our children, and other children who play with our children, the right way to treat people and the things around you. When Dani asks theological questions we do our best to answer her and she has an amazing ability to reason out her own inquiries. We also read a lot on the subject. I have several versions of the Bible, including the Quilter's Bible heh, and a copy of the Koran. Let me just tell you; being raised as a JW really ruined me for any other faith. I don't hold to their teachings because they are too extreme for me, but I can't really find another faith that sits right with me.

My mom still practices the JW faith. And I leave it alone. I respect her decision. I don't send her holiday or birthday cards, I don't give gifts for those occassions.... I don't even bring the subjects up (My mom however refers to the Squirt as a Christmas miracle, and gives Dani holiday related presents). E and I do celebrate. I love to decorate for the season because I happen to have a creative nature. I love to make my own holiday cards and I love to hear people tell me how much they appreciate it. I love to show people how much they mean to me and a holiday is a good way for me to remember. Especially holidays like Father's Day, Mother's Day (for my friends), birthdays, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Those holidays cement the celebration of the one thing in this life that is more important to me than any other. Family.

I celebrate my family. And that is why I celebrate holidays.

I usually have all of my books cloistered in my room. However, with the Squirt's arrival, we did some rearranging and the books ended up in the living room. My mom loves to read and was looking through and she saw all of the Bibles I own, and the other spiritually natured books that E and I enjoy reading. One morning while we were talking politics mom said to me, "The signs of Revelation are all around us. The Bible tells that the governments of the world will be destroyed. You and E are so clouded over by this stuff (fluffing her hands at our books) that you don't see that."

It's a big world out there. There are lots of interesting things and people and cultures and beliefs. I stopped looking for one for me to fit in. But that doesn't mean I'm not interested in learning about them. I think its fascinating to read other people's interpretation on things. That doesn't mean I'm going to go and join some cooky cult (which my mom thinks that any other religion besides JW's are..... ironic being that almost every Christian I've met says JW's are a cult). I guess that's what bothers me the most. There is an inability to accept.

Can we just live our lives the way that we want without everyone else telling us we are wrong?

Ghandi said, "I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians. They are so unlike your Christ."

When I get attacked, then I feel the same way. I am a loving, and accepting person regardless of where you come from, or what you believe. If I don't like it, then I don't try to change who you are. If it is too caustic for me, I don't hang out with you often. If you can't accept me for what I believe and respect the path that has brought me here, then we just can't discuss the topic. Just don't attack me or make jokes about me.

This doesn't mean I don't believe in God. I do. I believe in Him in a very big way. I believe he is in everything that I do and who I am. And everyone else for that matter whether I agree with them or not. I also believe, contrary to Christian dogma, that I am in control of my feeling and decisions. And I am of God, so me being in control is also God in control.

And I have given myself a beautiful life.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Politics

My mother doesn't vote. Any practicing J's Witness don't vote. They believe that by voting you are putting someone else in charge of your life instead of God. At least, that is the way I understand it... I could be wrong. They also don't say the Pledge because they believe that is a form of idolotry. Meaning worhiping the flag instead of God. However, she did have her opinions on the election and who should win and why and if a particular candidate did win, then he would be assassinated and another particular candidate has been tortured and my flip out during his presidency and go crazy.

Now, for 3 weeks before the election, I spent hours reading each candidate's website and what their proposals were on the issues. And I liked one more than the other and that is who I voted for. My mom however had listened to a lot of the propaganda that was flying around and was very concerned about what she had heard. So, I had to educate her on several issues.

Politics came up a few times during the visit mainly when SDad would joke that he voted for "a dead man walking" (meaning Obama). That made me sick. And he didn't anyway, he just thought it was funny. And I think that's what really bothered me about most of the election. The public, and journalists seemed to always bring race into the equation. And I kept thinking it didn't matter. He is a man. Running for President. And he has good ideas and actual plans. Can we just look at that?

I liked Stephen Colbert's obsersavtion best (loosely quoted), "America, for the first time in history, we have a..... Hawaiin president."

Aloha.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Bedtime

We all know how vital it is to a child's day when they get enough sleep. Especially when you have to make sure that your child catches the bus in the morning and can get through their long school day without a meltdown. Coincidently, by 8pm, E and I are pretty wiped from the day. And we need some time that is kid-free. We use that time to clean up the kitchen, E gets a shower, and lately I've been having to do something with the Squirt as he is still a little squirmy at that time. That's why 8pm is bedtime in our house.

Thankfully, Dani has never been the meltdown type, but she does need her sleep. We follow a strict nighttime schedule for her. At 7pm, she gets her shower and starts getting ready for bed. By 8pm she is in bed and finishing a story or visiting with either E or me. She is almost always asleep by 8:15 and we wake her up shortly before 6am. She catches the bus at 6:40. This routine is essential in our house, but on the special occasion, like visitors or weekends, we can be a little flexible.

When my mom visits, Dani loves to snuggle with her before bed. I don't mind that so much as I mind that my mom tells me that Dani needs to have someone lay down with her to go to sleep. Which isn't true. Dani has been going to sleep on her own since she was 3 months old. Now, if she sat on the edge of the bed, or stroked her back, WITHOUT talking; I could deal with it. But my mom lays in bed with Dani and they talk and giggle. One time she didn't come out of Dani's room until 8:45. I had thought that whole time that my mom was outside talking on the phone so I didn't go in to check.

She always said that she didn't realize the time, or something similar. Then, the day that we changed our clocks back, she did it again. Only we hadn't changed the time on Dani's clock yet so when the clock said 8:45, it was actually 7:45. E and I thought this was odd that Dani's door was closed and the light was off. We knew that they were in there, but we also knew it was way early to go to bed. E went in, turned on the light, and started putting some clothes away. Mom said, "Don't you want her to go to sleep? It's 8:45." E said, "No, it's 7:45, we haven't fixed this clock yet." That tells me that my mom was fully aware of the time and was just scoring some extra time.

And I don't mind that.... I just wanted her to respect our routine. The next night, I had Dani get an early shower, and told her that she could have extra time to snuggle that way. We got lights out and mom evacuated out of the room by 8:15. I can deal with that. And by the time they left things had worked themselves out in that area.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Sisters

Day 7 of NaBloPoMo. You all might get tired of me venting about my mom, but I really need to get it out else I fear I will explode. I also like getting the support in the comments. E supports me fully which helps a lot but I guess I need to know that I'm really not crazy and making myself see things about my mom that aren't really there. Of course E will agree with me, but it feels good to have you all justifying my feelings.

I'll only write a little bit about my sisters. Sister1 is still with the loser who said he was leaving her last year. Over the summer he was going to leave again and asked my mom to come up to PA to be with Sister1 when he left because he feared for her mental wellbeing.

Well Jackhole never left. Apparently he grew a spine and is staying out of obligation to the kids. Cause that always works out. Sister1 is confusing love with obsession. She practically stalks him and freaks out when she can't pinpoint exactly where he is. (Of course this is all related to me by mom so I don't know how much of this is actually true. I don't talk to Sister1). I don't blame her; in 14 years he has never proven to her that he can be trusted.

The reason I don't talk to her? Would you be able to talk to someone whose significant other molested your youngest sister and still stayed with the pervert and had 2 kids with him?

Sister2, according to my mom, is an alcoholic and needs 'parenting classes'. Because, you know, therapy solves everything. Mom ought to know, she's been in it for 10 years. Sister2 did leave her Jackhole and is now a single mom to her 2 girls ages 10 and 5 I think. Mom is still bailing her out finacially by paying her rent now and then, trash, and leaving her money. When she and SDad left from their last visit SDad asked mom, "Did you leave her any money?" "No" "Did you leave her a check?" "No" So, he dropped it. Later he found out that she left my sister a credit card. A lie of ommission, to her husband.

A husband who she says that she'd leave him if she could. But "there is no way that he could stay in the house without my income." (I guess she's staying out of pity?) Um.... Mom... you are on disability. You're income is squat. If you hadn't taken out mortgage after mortgage on your house, then he would have left your ass about 3 years ago.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Dad

My Dad. He is a hard person to love. And talk to. And understand. Of course while growing up I thought he was mean and once I reached adolescence I even wished that my parents would get divorced. Well, they did. When I was 13. Not such a bad age for me. I got the benefit of being raised by both of my parents through my most formative years. I attribute that to the vast difference between my siblings and I.

We had a dairy farm until I was 8. Then my parents went bankrupt, lost the cows, and my dad got a job working in a fabrication shop 3 hours from home. He stayed up there all week, then came home on the weekends. That didn't last long, maybe a year. Then my parents switched roles. My mom started working, and my dad stayed home. This is when things started to go downhill.

My mom started working in insurance sales and her office was about 45 minute drive from home. She also went on client calls which kept her out late several nights. At least this is what she told us. That situation worked for a couple of years, then my mom wanted to move closer to her office. So we did. Within months, my parents were split up. My dad had a breakdown and was hospitalized.

That was a difficult time for me. Looking back on it now, I think a lot of it was my fault. My mom, in kind of a backward way, asked me for advice on what to do about my dad's overbearing protectiveness. The rebellious teenager (barely 13) in me told her to get a divorce. I wanted my dad to leave. So that is what she told him. About 7 years ago I was visiting him and he told me that the reason my mom told him to leave was because I wanted him to. Sure, the kid in me wanted it. But I really resent the fact that my mom used me as an excuse to get what she really wanted.

When they split up, my mom still worked very long nights leaving me in charge of my sisters and my brother ranging from kindergarten age to 5th grade. It was really hard. My brother, last time he visited, told me that all of the late nights that she 'worked' were really a cover for her meeting her lover. Her boss who was married and had several of his own children. T also told me that they had started their affair before we even moved. So, my mom telling my dad that I wanted him to leave.... was a cover up. She wasn't even adult enough to just tell him that she didn't want to be with him.

So that is the backstory. There is a lot more to tell, but I don't think you have all day to read it, and I can't put that much into it right now.

While my mom was here last week, Dani asked who all of her grandparents were. We've had this discussion with her several times as she has quite a few. E's mom is the only one who hasn't gotten remarried. So, I was telling her that my mom and dad used to be married, they had 4 kids, then decided not to be married anymore. End of story, right? No. My mother decides to add that she and my dad used to fight all the time, then they didn't love each other anymore, and that there was something wrong with my dad's head that makes him sick.

What am I supposed to say to that? I didn't say what I wanted to. I just said, "Mom, she talks to him on the phone." Meaning that if she talks to him, she might repeat some of that and really hurt my dad's feelings. She didn't even really acknowledge what I said.

It made me angry. And there were several other times over the week that she would tell stories (not when Dani was here) about my dad's mental state and how it affected her.

All the while, I'm thinking, "Well, I'd be pretty screwed up if my spouse was cheating on me too."

And he knew. He told me he knew. He was and is very hurt over it. Someday I would like to confront my mom about it. To tell her that she's not as slick as she thinks she is. To tell her that just because she has herself convinced that everything was someone else's fault doesn't make it true. To tell her that she made her decisions and she knew it was wrong and she needs to just admit it.

It's draining. I get drained just thinking about confronting her. Part of me wishes that she would even stumble across this blog.... just not while she is here. But I know that it would really hurt her feelings..... then I wonder why I care.

"SDad loves me... just in the wrong ways... like your dad."

Like her's was right.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

2 Months

I'll take a quick break from purging about my mom's visit to talk about the Squirt!! He turned 2 months old on the 26th. Here's my attempt at trying to remember what he did last month.
Bubbles. In the swing. Love it. He likes to sleep in the swing. He has about one nap in there a day. Usually when I really need a break, this is my guarantee. Though lately he has taken to just like sitting in it while swinging and just looking around. I don't mind that either because he is quiet. He's also been having a lot more stretches in the day where he is just awake.

Like this. This mat, however, is a vortex for spit up. I cannot tell you how many times I have washed it. It seems like as soon as I get it out of the dryer and lay him on it, he expells a huge puddle of milk. And I don't notice so he lays there in it. But, then I just move him to a different spot and we are good to go. In the past couple of weeks, he has really enjoyed laying under this thing. He's learned that he can kick his legs and make the toys move and I love watching him get excited.

I had to take this picture because I have one of Dani with the exact expression on her face. It is uncanny how much they look alike. This month he developed that true newborn cry. The one where you know that he needs something and you'd better deliver quickly. Sometimes, I don't right away because when I am holding him and he cries that way I can feel it in his chest. And I remember when he was born, he couldn't do that. He could barely catch a breath and his chest sunk in with every attempt. So, I like to feel and hear his cry. It cements for me that his is stronger, and determined.

He recognizes people, and shows it. He's started smiling and has gotten quite good at it, but I will share those pictures at 3 months. He loves to watch people move around whatever room he is in. I am so lucky to have another content baby. This month he also started soothing himself to sleep. For about a week, I enjoyed the routine that he would eat at around 6:30 then want to lay down at 7. And I mean WANT to lay down. He was inconsolable otherwise. He just wanted to be wrapped in a blanked and layed in the cradle. I was happy to oblige and he would sleep until his 2:30am feed. Sadly, it only lasted a week and went to complete unpredictability a few days later.

Soothing. He is trying to suck his thumb and, to his credit, has caught it several times. It is adorable and I would let him do it if I didn't have a 7 year old who still does. I think thumb sucking would be the only thing I would change with Dani. We have introduced the Squirt to a bink since the hospital and he takes it readily. Sometimes though, it just isn't nearby so he resorts to this. When I see that, I find the bink.

More smiling. This time at the ceiling fan. For about a week, that is all he smiled at. And cooed..... boy does that boy coo. It's heaven.

We celebrated his 2 month birthday by taking our first family photo. This is just one of the several that we took. E set up his tripod in the backyard and grabbed the handy camera remote and we just let the session take off. This was the only pose that I really wanted (I daydreamed about it in the hospital) and it came out so nice. These three people are my most favorite in the whole world.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Canis Major Pain in the Ass

I was really hoping that my irritation by mom's last visit was due to hormones. Alas, it isn't so. She really does bug me that much. By day 3 I was done. I had a hard time the subsequent days keeping my temper. It came out in snarkiness to E and overbearing momness on Dani.

I'm going to attempt NaBloPoMo and it seems to me that if I cover one of the aforementioned topics a day, I should get through the next two weeks. So let's get the party started.

We'll start with the dogs. This time she brought 2. A pug and a 'new one' that they got. She is mostly poodle. The night that they got here I started sneezing and my nose ran like a leaky faucet. Now with an added sore throat. Evidently, I have some sort of allergy to the pug. And I mentioned this several times.

I asked that the dogs not get on the furniture. However, I only noticed this rule in effect when I was in the room. Mom and SDad were sleeping on our futon which is also our living room couch. Half the time that they were here, the dogs slept on the couch with them. They also let the dogs sleep on my favorite soft blanket.... on the floor.

The poodle licked clean a poopy diaper. And she took to shitting on my bedroom floor.

As a bonus: The dogs took to sleeping on Dani's bed.

For extra credit: My mom bred her other poodles together (at home) and are now expecting puppies in December. I asked when they were due and my mom got all excited because she thought I was interested. "No." I said, "Just curious. When Sasha is gone, we are not getting another dog for a very long time." So help me if she gets me a dog.

Her dogs started bullying my dog. My dog is 12 years old and doesn't deserve to have little runts bullying her around.

And I shouldn't have to yell at her dogs for barking at me in my own house. I can't stand barking.

The dogs prowl around under the table whenever we eat because mom habitually feeds them scraps. We don't allow Dani to feed Sasha people food, AT ALL, so enforcing this rule with her was difficult.

Since the poodle was a new addition to their collection, she needed a trim. Guess where my mom decided to give her a haircut..... on my living floor on my clean, newly vacuumed carpet.

When we took Dani trick or treating, she ran back into the house and came back out with the pug. She asked my mom and she let Dani take the dog. The dog pulled her into the street and through people's yards for 2 blocks before E took the leash. Dani of course loved it and squealed with glee.

I think that's about it. I feel the need to disinfect my house now. Excuse me.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Brainstorm

Got to jot down a few thoughts about what to write about when my mother leaves. They head out tomorrow.

-dogs
-dad
-sisters
-bedtime
-politics
-religion
-birth control

Edited to add:
-shopping
-date
-work
-education

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Gah

This morning my mom actually said, "You know, I look around at all of my family and my brothers and sister and I realize that I am the only normal one."

Then I left the room.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Muddling

Our visit is going OK. As OK as it can with a woman that I have so many unresolved issues with. I'm trying to just get through the next few days without harping on the little things that are bothering me. Like one of the dogs they brought is wreaking havoc on my sinuses. My mom has effectively ruined the routine we had with the Squirt because she insists on holding him and taking a nap with him rendering him unable to fall asleep on his own when it is bedtime. She gave her other dog a haircut on my carpet. We no longer have the spare bedroom as a spare bedroom, so my living has been turned into their 'suite'. Their dogs bark at every noise that resembles a door knock or door opening.

And I'm exhausted which means that my temper is short. E is exhausted as well. He has been taking a night class twice a week and the work is very involved. Which means when he is home, he's not really available to help me.

I'm going to keep on keepin' on though. Dani loves my mother and step dad and I can't deny her that relationship.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Surprise!!!

Got a call from E a little while ago. My cell was dead (left in the van overnight) and my mom has been trying to call since yesterday (I never have gotten around to giving them our land line number). They are on their way now. They will be here in about 6 hours. Nothing like a little warning, no?

Well, they want to see their new grandson. This I know. And StepDad loves spending Halloween with Dani. My kid is so creative. She is a Bunny Vampire this year. Her inspiration is the book Bunnicula. Cute story, check it out.

No idea how long they are staying. Not too mention that our old guest room is now the baby's room. He doesn't use it yet though, but we also don't have a bed in there. So, I guess they will be camping on the futon in the living room.

Now I have to figure out if I have enough food for the next few days.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Oops

What do you do when your friend, a straunch Republican (drunk), asks how you are voting on an amendment in your state and you give him the answer (thereby unvieling that you are a Democrat or human.....). And 'lo, it disgrees with his position which opens up a loooong political discussion which leads to everyone feeling very uncomforatable. Maybe I should have said, "I don't know yet." I walked away from the conversation a little uncomfortable, but grateful that I had heard his opinions on things and his reasoning. It made me want to research some topics that he brought up. However, he didn't even look at us the next day.

Throw in military service and dedication and it got bad very quickly.

**Edited to add** Not so insinuate that Repulican's aren't human, rather to say that I am Democrat and human. It is hard to validate my position to someone whose core beliefs are different and it feels as if their opinions of me do not view me on their level. Like I am inferior. Is that more clear? I dunno.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Body Language

I'm watching the last debate and looking at the split screen of McCain and Obama. My attention keeps getting drawn to McCain because I can't figure out if he is trying to look into the camera and smile at the American public or if he finds everything that Obama says laughable.

Anyone else?

McCain also just corrected Obama using the term 'charter' instead of 'voucher' regarding schools and I kind of want to remind that Palin is 'very sensitive' to Down's Syndrome.... not Autism. But we're not hashing words, right?

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Darkness

They say it gets darker before it gets light.

I dunno. It seems to me that light seems very far away at 2:30 am and you are getting sprayed by baby poop... oh and at 6 am getting sprayed again... only with pee added in.

Of course this doesn't help either.

I don't even know what to say.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Tightwad

I found a good slideshow yesterday listing Kiplinger.com's Fabulous Freebies for 2008. Good stuff from free movies online, a food diary, college savings, even learning a new language. See it here.

It isn't easy being a Democratic military family. It is even more difficult being a Democratic military family while living in a very Republican military neighborhood. There is a stereotype that if you are military then you are Rep. But there is a growing underground of military Dems. We are few, but we are out there.

I don't proclaim to be a raging Democrat, and I would probably have a hard time defending my position to a knowledgeable Rep. about why I feel the way I do. But on a few of the key issues I have my opinion and they seem to identify more with the Democratic point of view. I am very ProChoice, ProGay, ProPeace, ProAlternativeEnergy, and ProEducation. If we need to raise our taxes for a few years to get our economy back on track, then do it. If we need to raise our taxes so that people can go to the doctor to maintain their health, then do it. If we need to raise taxes to guarantee that our children get a good education, then do it. Need to pay our teachers what they are worth? Tax me. What am I going to do with my excess money anyway? As long as my bills are paid, mortgage is up to date and there is food on my table; I can get by for a few years paying extra taxes. Well, I would if I were working. But E feels the same way about the money.

The Rep. position on the war seems to say that we need to be in 'those countries' to insure our safety. Well, you know what? I don't feel very safe knowing that my husband could come home anyday from work and have to leave that night and be gone for an unknown time. Or get a phone call saying he won't be home at all. It doesn't make me feel safe that he will be in a place that he could be seriously injured or lose his life.

I have a friend whose husband has to go up to a medical board and defend his right to receive full medical benefits after separation or to remain enlisted. For years, he has sacrificed his health and time with his family, deploying for months at a time in high stress areas causing him to develop a sleep disorder, depression, and a hernia. Now the military medical field is telling him that he isn't fit to deploy because of these problems that our military caused. They want to discharge him with only 10% of his pay and medical benefits only for him, not his wife and their 3 children. Not too mention if can't work how his family is going to survive on only his wife's income. They have a mortgage too. It just makes me ill.

I also get very annoyed when my friends who know that I am Dem. constantly forward emails smearing my candidate of choice. "He's murder, baby killer, terrorist, embezzler, yada, yada, yada". I get sick of it. And I feel it is disrespectful to me. Like I am gullible enough to make my decision based on what filters through the gutters of the internet. I find it offensive and she always says "I'm not trying to ruffle anyone's feathers, just want to get the word out". Well, this chick is ruffled, and I'm about to fly off the handle.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

VP Debate

I watched the VP debates and I wanted to write about it before I forgot my favorite parts.... but that didn't happen. Between not sleeping, nursing, and oh, not sleeping my brain is functioning at about 25%. I should leave all of my typos as proof, but my OCD nature prohibits that.

I liked that we got to see the smart assertive side of Palin. I didn't like that she intentionally didn't answer questions posed to her. I almost felt as if she had researched the topics that she wanted to talk about as opposed to what the issues posed to her were. And she disguised it by "talking directly to the American people". Also, and this has nothing to do with the debate, but why does her husband never hold the baby? That bothers me.

I also very much liked Biden and his ability to correct Palin on her statements regarding voting records. I am not going to take the time to research who voted what when, so I am relying on what I heard and can make my decisions with what they said.

So, I was glad to see that Palin didn't come across as a ninny. I was almost starting to feel bad for her. Also glad to see that Biden knows his stuff.

Offside, the Obama campaign called me last night and was looking for volunteers for things going on in my area. They wanted me to be and "Obama Girl". And I would have if it weren't for that pesky not being able to sleep thing. Oh, and having a 5 1/2 week old baby. Did I mention I'm not sleeping?

Friday, September 26, 2008

1 Month

Today the Squirt is one month old. I don't anticipate doing a monthly post like Dooce, but I do want to write as much as I can before fatigue erases these wonderful memories from what is left of my squishy brain.

Though he doesn't actually smile, he does turn up the corners of his mouth while sleeping and I like to imagine that it is because my Mama Juice has made him deliriously happy. That or pooping feels just that good.

He likes to sleep on his side and will actually squirm until he gets it just right. He has been doing that for about a week now and it is wonderful to peek into the cradle and see his little hand pressed up against his little cheek and see his little lips pursed in a dream-filled kiss.

He likes being outside and thankfully our days have cooled down to the 80's. This makes it very easy for me to stay outside. Except for the damnable love bugs, it's heaven on Earth.
He has found his thumb on random occasions though I am doing my best to provide a pacifier when I can. Dani is 7 and still sucks her thumb, at times, which was cute when she was 3 months old but quickly lost its charm after she turned 1.
He is on a fairly predictable 3 hour feeding schedule. Of course, he's starting to make a liar out of me and stretching closer to 4 hours. In the last week he has been enjoying a couple of spurts of ‘awake time’ during the day. I laid him on his bedroom floor yesterday and he was quite content to look out his window and gurgle. He only complained after he spit up and it had gotten cold making it uncomfortable to lie in.
His cord stump fell off at about 2 1/2 weeks at which time I joyfully plunged him into the baby tub for a bath. He seems to like baths and quiets down after submerging in the water. Or maybe its just easier to relax once you have sprayed pee all over the house from your bedroom to the kitchen sink.... hmmm... *Note to self- Next time I am stressed I will have to pee all over the house and see if that works.* During yesterday's bath he was actually kicking the water and splashing. When he lays on the floor to play he has started to turn around. To date, he has turned 90 degrees. Yesterday he even knocked over a toy that I had placed juuuuust out of his reach. He fills out newborn clothes quite nicely now. He went to the doc. on Monday for his second Hep. B shot and was weighed at just over 9 pounds and he has grown an inch, though I suspect it may be more than an inch because the nurse didn't hold the tape at exactly the top of his head.

Dani = Enamored. She absolutely loves this baby. She kisses him then tells him those are his Big Sister Kisses. She loves to hold him, tickle him, and she still loves it when he sucks her fingers.
Breastfeeding is going well sore nipples be damned. I'll do it as long as I can but I don't know what to expect once my body regulates back to its PCOS status. He only feeds for about 10 minutes on each side, which it twice what Dani ate. I could only get her to eat one side.

As for me. I feel fantastic. So good in fact that it is actually hard for me to remember what feeling pregnant was like. I didn't tear, therefore had no stitches. Other than feeling like I had gotten hit by a truck the day after delivery I have enjoyed a fast recovery. It actually took longer for the epidural to wear off completely than it took for me get over the muscle fatigue. I guess getting out of bed every few hours to feed in the hospital's nursery helped with that. Since I’ve been home, I have been doing laundry, cleaning the house, started my outdoor decorating for fall, and I even got to mow my lawn. I missed doing that. Weird, I know.


Sex. Can't/didn’t wait 6 weeks. I read that as long as your incision/stitches have healed and you are structurally sound then you can proceed. I spent my whole pregnancy not enjoying it, and now it's like a breath of fresh air. Besides, for me, I feel very empowered. My body has accomplished something wonderful. And I feel like a true woman.

E went back to work this week. I love that he took 4 weeks off. I don’t like that we didn’t get all of that time together, but we did have a nice time. He continued to get Dani off to school every morning while I tried to regain some sleep.

Currently, I lose about an hour when the Squirt wakes up. He wakes up between 11pm and 1am, then again between 3am and 4am. Making my morning start between 6am and 7am. E is still here when it is time to wake Dani up so he gets her most of the way ready for school, then I just have to be up to make sure she gets out the door in time. This morning after the Squirt’s 4:30 am feeding, I just put him back to sleep in his stroller which allowed me to walk her up to the bus stop instead standing at the end of the driveway. This is her 3rd year walking up there yet she is ‘afraid’ to go by herself. It’s very aggravating.

Also this morning, since I was still taking care of the Squirt at 5:00; I decided not to go back to sleep. What was the point if I had to get up at 6? So, once E got out of bed, I made my coffee, gathered the laundry and started a load. I wash the Squirt’s first since I try to do all of his separately. There is always a lot because of the diapers. We are using the Bumgenius brand and I am quite happy with them. They fit just as snug as disposables, we have suffered no blowouts (KNOCK ON WOOD RIGHT NOW), and he seems to still be very comfortable in them even when they are soaked and soiled. The inside material is just very absorbent and it wicks away wetness very well.

So, have I forgotten anything? I think that covers it.



Wednesday, September 24, 2008

From Chewbacca to Yoda

Anyone remember this picture of my dog? This was taken in November after I had brushed her out. Last week we took her to get groomed and they kind of talked me into 'The Shave'.

I had no idea how big her ears were.



Monday, September 22, 2008

OPK

........Other People's Kids that is.

I love that we live in a neighborhood with lots of kids. And I love that many of them are Dani's age. I also love that there is almost always someone for her to play with.

What I don't love is kids fighting at my house.

Or going into my garage and playing with whatever they get their hands on.... like my expensive stamping/scrapbooking supplies.

Or finding several pieces of ABC gum spit into my grass while I am mowing because they are too lazy to find a trash can.

I also don't like walking outside and seeing several children on the trampoline spitting out popsicle pieces and smearing them on the trampoline 'because it makes it slippery'.

Also, since we are within walking distance of everyone's house, I don't like random children coming in and asking me for food. Go to your own damn house if you are hungry. Ditto if you want something to drink besides water.

And don't leave my cups outside.

And don't play with my stacked up firewood.

Or my yard decorations.

While we are at it, when we say, "Just play in the front yard and ride your bikes and scotters", don't keep asking us to play in the backyard. We don't have the time to sit and watch you to make sure you aren't killing each other.

Here is my mantra that I am trying to teach these kids, "Just because you can; doesn't mean you should."

I also am a little miffed at a couple of our friends, meaning the parents of these kids. Hello.... we have a 4 week old baby in the house. My husband is going back to work next week and I need to get this house back in order with his help... without the responsibility of making sure your kids aren't tearing stuff up right after I get it organized or cleaned. Oh, and since we are functioning on broken sleep.... try to not let your kids come to our house in the morning before we are even showered or dressed. Can you wait, or teach your kids to wait that until they see our front door open or Dani playing outside, just assume that we are not ready for company. 'Cuz I'm pretty tired of explaining that to them.

Thanks.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Puppp, not Puppy

Itchy. Itchy! ITCHY!!!

I've been going crazy for the last week while my stretch marks heal. This morning I Googled 'Postpartum itching' and found references for PUPPP.
"Pruritic urticarial papules and plaques of pregnancy (PUPPP), also known as polymorphic eruption of pregnancy, is the most common rash in pregnant women. It normally occurs in first pregnancies during the third trimester with an average onset of 35 weeks. Thankfully, PUPPP does not usually affect subsequent pregnancies. "
And also,
"The cause of PUPPP is unknown. It is not associated with preeclampsia, autoimmune disorders, hormonal abnormalities, or fetal abnormalities. Some investigators suggest that the rapid abdominal wall distension damages connective tissue and causes an inflammatory response. One study has shown that male fetal DNA can be found in skin biopsies of the rash. Since 70% of women with PUPPP give birth to boys, a new hypothesis is that male fetal DNA acts as a skin irritant. "
So that explains alot. Also, from what I read, its almost over. I'm going a little slightly insane from it.
Here are some of the things I have tried to help. Scratching- it only results in welts and scratches. Cocoa butter- it only makes me smell like chocolate. Bag balm- it makes me very greasy and alleviates the discomfort for a little while. Hemmoriod cream- gives me relief for most of the day. I've been putting it on in the morning after my shower and again before I got to bed.
Ironic and funny in a way... I didn't have hemmoroids while I was pregnant, but I'm using the cream anyway. As a sidenote; I had the stuff in the house because I had heard that it helps to heal stretch marks because it shrinks inflamed skin tissue. Right now I don't care about the stretch marks. As long as I quit itching, I will be happy.

Monday, September 08, 2008

www.weather.gah/gustav

You may or may not have heard of a little storm called Gustav. Well, for about 4 days, it was all we heard about. We were in the original projected path of the storm. Thankfully, it continued to meander on westerly path. I felt badly for the people in Mississippi and Louisiana, but I was also feeling very selfish about the well-being of my family. The Squirt and I were fine and in about the safest place there was, but if an evacuation notice were issued, E is mandated to go.
So, he had to make plans and submit his evacuation location to base. I did not like the idea that we would be separated by several interstate hours because of a storm. However, we were lucky. In fact, it seems that the whole Gulf Coast was lucky because Gustav downgraded from a Cat. 4 to a 3 before it made landfall. We had some rain and tornado activity the morning of and day after the storm, but as far as I have heard, nothing catastrophic happened in our area. It also appears that the evacuations of Mississippi and Louisiana helped tremendously and I am so glad that the people who live there heeded the warnings and took the city’s plans and recommendations seriously. It also appears that although that area is still recovering from Katrina’s hit 3 years ago, it didn’t sustain as much damage as anticipated by Gustav. Most of the damage seems to be water related as opposed to death, destruction, and greed.

Now all eyes are on Hannah, Ike, and Josephine. However, it appears that those three storms may continue on a course along the East Coast as opposed to bulldozing through Florida and coming up through the Gulf.

Only 3 more months left of hurricane season ‘08. *Sigh*

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Siblings

Dani met the Squirt on Friday, the 29th. E brought her after school that afternoon. I was in the nursery feeding the baby when they got to my room, so they came down the hallway to find me. We wanted Dani to see him as soon as she could but we also didn’t want her to be upset by his appearance so we waited until he was out from under the hood. I heard them come in but my back was towards them and I heard E telling her she had to wash her hands before coming all the way into the nursery. The very first thing I heard her say was, “Dad, I’m going to meet my brother. I’m so nervous my legs are shaking.”

They came around the corner and she saw us. I don’t know who she was more happy to see; me or the Squirt. She kissed me, stroked his head. Kissed him, she smiled; she was concerned about all of the wires and leads. It wasn’t because she was scared but because she didn’t want him to be in pain. And he wasn’t so she was reassured. She loved him instantly like I knew she would. But she has also said over the last few days that she doesn’t think that she is ready to be a big sister. I love it. She wants to be the best that she can for him.

Since that Friday, she has been to see him twice more. When she came on the 3rd (the first time that had seen him since rooming with me), he was sleeping in the bassinet and the first thing she did was run to him. She wished for a stool so that she could see him better. There happened to be one in the room for nursing moms to rest their feet on so I let her use it. I sat on my bed and watched her unwrap every single blanket off him as if she was unwrapping an anticipated Christmas present so that she could see his little body. He was wearing clothes for the first time and she thought he was so cute. She thinks everything about him is cute. His ears, nose, the way he sucks on her finger, his hair, toes, feet, and his winkie.

After they got home that night, they called before Dani went to bed. She was squealing into the phone and I could barely understand what she was saying. I heard the words toothbrush, tooth, and blood. Through deductive reasoning, I figured out that she had lost a wiggly tooth. Evidently, it was so wiggly that it came out while she was brushing her teeth.

And I missed it.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Taking Baby Breaths

On room air. 4 1/2 days old.

August 27- September 3

Around 1 pm that afternoon (on the 26th) one of the nurses brought me in a breast pump and suggested that I start pumping, even though my milk hadn’t come in, to stimulate my breasts so that when I could feed him, there would be something there. I did so religiously for every 2 hours for 15 minutes on each side.

My Gawd it worked. I have had no trouble with supply. In fact, I sent E home the other day with a gallon of frozen breast milk that I had pumped. I only pump when I am engorged to alleviate the pain and after I had nursed. So, I pumped for 2 ½ days while the Squirt got a steady diet of dextrose. At that point, he came out from under the oxygen hood and was able to maintain his oxygen supply with a nasal tube. We were then able to hold him and I was allowed to feed him although it wasn’t easy with all of the wires. For the next 3 days the staff tried several times a day to wean him gradually off the oxygen. The doctor who took over his case decided to have the Squirt on a 10-day cycle of antibiotics. This meant that he would be almost 2 weeks old before we could bring him home.

This threw a monkey wrench into our plans. We had only planned on being in the hospital for a couple of days. Once we realized it would be several days, we had to make the tough decision the E would go home to help Dani stay on her routine and to not take advantage of our neighbors’ hospitality. I was not even discharged yet because of my BP. I was officially discharged on Sunday but granted boarder status so that I could maintain my room and be available to feed the baby. Remember, it is almost and hours drive between my house and the hospital. My going home would be practically pointless as I was feeding the baby every 3 hours.

Finally, on Sunday the 31st, he was weaned to an open crib-- meaning out from under the warmer, and off the nasal tube. He under observation for 24 hours at which point if he did well, he would be allowed to room with me. He did well. Monday afternoon I got the cutest roommate on the whole Labor and Delivery floor.

He wakes me up every 3 hours with a whimpering cry and a smelly diaper. He poops and pees in my bed. He chomps on my tender nipples. He squeaks and squeals. He makes silly little smiles in his sleep. He cuddles on my chest and I hold him until my arms ache.

I love him.

Friday, September 05, 2008

I Had A Baby

Shortly after birth. All kinds of cone-headed.
About 1 hour old. I don't know how I did it, but my barrette stayed in my hair the entire time.


These next several posts will detail, to the best of my recollection, of the past 10 days. All will be explained. But thank goodness we are ALL finally home. Healthy, happy, tired, but together. Pictures will be coming soon. I just wanted to start getting these posts up.

25 August- 37weeks and 3 days

I had had consistent contractions since the false labor episode Friday night. Monday morning they were a little stronger, though not quite on a schedule. They were consistently between 3 and 6 minutes apart. I had a Dr. appt. at 9am. When the doc checked me, I had dilated to 3cm. Although I didn’t seem to be in active labor, my blood pressure was consistently high. I had my BP taken 4 times in the OB Clinic. The doc set me up for an earlier NST/AFI ASAP (I had one scheduled for 1pm that day) so I went upstairs. The NST/AFI came back looking fine. The Squirt didn’t appear to be in any distress, however my BP was still reading high. By this time, it was about 12 pm. I was starting to get hungry because I hadn’t eaten since breakfast at 7:30. One of the Corpsmen on duty brought me some graham crackers, peanut butter, and juice. I asked if I could go downstairs and get something to eat real fast from the Subway, but the doctor didn’t want me wandering around with my blood pressure.

The doc on duty up here decided to admit me for an initial 24-hour observation.
So, the Corpsman ordered me a tray from the galley. However, by the next time (sometime before 3pm) I was checked, I had dilated to 4cm. This threw me into the “In Labor” category and I was denied food until after delivery. My status went from a 24-hour admin. to ‘having a baby tonight’, so I called E for about the 6th time that day and said today was the day. They started an IV and decided to see how far I would progress on my own for the next 2 hours. It wasn’t much. In fact, there wasn’t any progression at all. And of course with my BP, I wasn’t allowed to walk around to help things along. I think E had gotten there by this time and they started running Pitocin.

The contractions started coming more frequently and were getting stronger, so I thought things were going well. I think it was about 4 hours later when they checked me again and I was up to 6 cm. Not as far as I would have liked and they had been upping the Pit. drip frequently. I think by that time I was maxed out on the dosage and I had to concentrate on my breathing when the contractions came on. When the Pit. started we had decided to see how things went with that and if things didn’t progress then we would break water. If I wanted an epidural, they would administer that first then break water. Considering they did the opposite when Dani was born, I thought that was brilliant. I knew that the breaking of the water would intensify the contractions 100%. I think it was around 9 pm when the epidural was given. Within 30 minutes, the doc. broke my water.

I stayed awake for a couple more hours then started drifting in and out until 1am. My left leg at this point was completely dead. I remember how odd it was that I could touch my leg through the sheet and feel a leg there, but I couldn’t feel my own touch. It was as if someone else’s leg was in bed with me. When I woke up at 1 am, the contractions were quite strong. Even the epidural, which had evidently settled on the left side of my body, seemed to barely take the edge off. I was breathing heavily through the contractions now and within 30 minutes or so, my breathing started coming out in moans. I was trying to not scream because it wasn’t that bad, but I couldn’t quite keep quiet. E was sleeping at that point and I woke him up with my breathing. He watched me, helplessly, for a while as things started feeling stronger and he kept asking me if I felt like I needed to push. Which I really didn’t. He couldn’t stand watching me in that pain, so he went to get a nurse. She came in with the doctor and I think it was about 2:10 am at that time. She checked me and I was finally fully dilated. That is when an OB team really kicks into gear. Within minutes, the bottom of the bed was dropped off, stirrups up, legs grabbed and I was pushing. I remember getting through the first contraction having pushed 3 times and thinking, “God, I hope I don’t have to push for hours because I won’t be able to do it.” I kept hearing everyone saying how good of a job I was but I was thinking that they say that to everyone. I pushed another few times through the 2nd contraction. They encouraged me some more. I pushed another few times through the 3rd contraction. E started getting really excited. I think someone said something about seeing a head. I pushed a few more times through the 4th contraction and within an instant, at 2:25, my son was born. 7 pounds, 5.6 ounces. 19 inches long.

My son, who for the past several months had been tenderizing my ribs and stretching my uterus, was here. He was surprisingly quiet, just letting the doctors and nurses clean him off and start observing him. They didn’t offer to let me hold him right away which concerned me. I could hear his breathing and it sounded irregular and struggling. Someone reminded E to take pictures, so he left my bedside and took a few pics of the Squirt, then came back to me. After about an hour, they let us hold him. I tried to get him to latch but he didn’t seem to be able to get the pattern of suck and breathe. The nurses took him back to see if they could stimulate him a little bit.
While they were doing that, E and I fell asleep. I didn’t want to, but fatigue and hunger (at some point I was given some juice and some more crackers) took over my body. The nurses woke us up around 5:30 and said that they didn’t like the way he was breathing so they were taking him to the nursery to give him some oxygen. That was the last time he was in open air for 5 ½ days.