Thursday, May 28, 2009
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Monday, May 25, 2009
So I just finished watching my DVR'd episode of the Jon & Kate Plus 8 Season Premiere...and I am SO SAD. Yes, I've read all the tabloid gossip about them (and am a little bit ashamed for it) and had seen the previews for this season, so I'm not surprised to know they've been having problems. You always wonder what's true and what isn't, but to actually watch them during the confession time of the premier saying that they weren't sure their marriage would make it actually made my stomach hurt. To see a REAL marriage dissolving on television is heartbreaking, especially when there are 8 precious children involved.
Saturday, May 23, 2009
Friday, May 22, 2009
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Monday, May 18, 2009
It reminded me of an article I wrote after I had my youngest, Tyler, and was struggling to find my footing as a new mom of two. I decided to go ahead and share it here. I was hoping to send it in to be published in a magazine somewhere, but never quite got around to it. If you read it, I'd love your feedback, especially if you are a mother (or father) of more than one child!
Making It Through Number Two…and I Don’t Mean Potty Training
By Beth Mann
And So It Begins
You’ve probably heard that once you’ve had two children, adding more siblings is a breeze. That would lead one to assume that the transition from one child to two is anything but. I just recently had my second child, and I would agree, tricky indeed. That’s right, I’ve gone from masterful (or so I thought) mother of one toddler, to the upside-down, barely getting sleep, never getting out, mother of a toddler and an infant.
Don’t get me wrong, I was sleep deprived and sequestered when I had my first baby - there is no paranoia like having your first child, but I have never felt such a need for help in my life! I’m sure there are some mothers out there who are reading this saying, “What’s so hard about it? I did it just fine.” Well, I’m calling your bluff. You must have had help.
Perhaps you were blessed to have a mom, grandma, sister, or best friend nearby that came to your aid while you were adjusting. (Note: I’m not saying husbands can’t be helpful too, but in most cases, they’re just as clueless as we are.) And I’m not talking about for just that first week or two either. I’m talking about those loooong months after the helpful family member or friend leaves, or your spouse goes back to work.
My husband and I found out we were pregnant with our second after just moving a whole state away from our entire family. My naiveté and ridiculous “glass half full” optimism allowed me to convince myself that we wouldn’t need help. I was wrong.
If you insist that you didn’t have, want, or need help making the jump from one child to two, then you truly are a gifted mother and I have much to learn from your expertise. (Ok, that’s not true. I really want to put a stinky diaper in your car that you won’t be able to find for days, but that’s just my own insecurity talking.) For those of you mommies who can relate to my stupor, allow me to elaborate.
The Ignorant Bliss
Remember with me the perfection of those first couple of days of secondary motherhood. You’re lying there in the hospital bed, numerous guests coming in and out of your room claiming how “radiant” and “fantastic” you look, even though you’ve just pushed a watermelon out of you. So what if they’re lying, you choose to believe them for the time being.
You look over at the tiny new life next to you with satisfaction and dream about how well this new baby is going to play with your firstborn when he’s a little older - how they’ll probably share bunk beds and every toy in the closet. The visitors begin to slowly taper off as the evening approaches. (Or the charge nurse tells them to get out…and you love her for it.)
Nighttime arrives, but you don’t panic. You have multiple nurses ready and eager at the press of a button to take the baby to the nursery and allow you some precious sleep. (In my case, that saint of a woman called the Lactation Specialist who comes to your aid when the baby won’t stop crying at three in the morning and wants to take it out on your nipples!) You live in this, often medicated, state of bliss for a few days, and then…you’re sent packing.
The Rude Awakening
Back home. Reality. It hurts worse then your delivery (alright, maybe that’s an exaggeration). You’re still healing, and if you had a c-section like I did, you’re still supposed to be bedridden. How is it possible to be bedridden with a toddler? It’s not. So, up and down you go: making breakfast, changing diapers, holding your pillow to cough in between, and feeding the baby every two to three hours.
I should empathize with you fathers out there as well. More often than not, my husband would come home to a screaming duet in the midst of what I like to call “the bewitching hour”. It usually falls somewhere between five and seven o’clock in the evening.
The children finally calm down, and you manage to re-warm the casserole your gracious neighbor brought over, even though it seems like you’ve been eating it for days - at least you didn’t have to make it, right? Your husband bathes your toddler, and gets him into his bed. Did I mention that toddlers develop interesting new traits when forced to reckon with a new sibling? Mine developed the delightful habit of “the baby sleeps with mommy and daddy and so will I”. Every night, around two in the morning, we had a visitor.
You finally manage to climb into bed after topping off the baby and swaddling him so tightly you might never get him unwrapped. And then, though it seems like you’ve only been asleep for mere minutes, the baby’s up and ready to eat again. You feed baby, and in marches toddler, ready for the middle-of-the-night switcheroo. This goes on for a couple of months, except without the casseroles…those puppies only last about two weeks!
I can’t quite explain it, but it happened with my first baby too. Somewhere around your infant’s three-month birthday, everything clicks. You begin to understand the cries and what they mean. Your toddler (hopefully) understands that he doesn’t have to scream, “Mommy, the baby’s crying!” for the nine hundredth time - as if you were completely unaware of the fact.
Your other child also begins to recognize that the baby is not a threat to them, that they are still a welcome part of the family, and that they are not going to be voted off the island. Hopefully, they will prove it to you and begin sleeping in their own bed again. You may also discover, as I did, that child labor is entirely misunderstood. Put your toddler to work! My two year old learned where the diapers and wipes were kept, and would fetch them when asked. He also knows how to put baby’s pacifier back in when he loses it.
He has also realized that he can make his little brother laugh, and to hear the two of them doing that – as opposed to screaming – is as close to heaven as a mother can be. Daddy still comes home during the bewitching hour, but even Daddy has discovered how to tame the wild beasts.
All’s Not Lost
I suppose what I’m trying to say is… it gets easier with time. The time with your little ones goes by really fast. I only have to look at how huge my oldest looks standing next to my baby to realize that. So, drink it in! Embrace the fact that you can only do what you can do, and the rest doesn’t matter.
If you’re blessed with people in your life who want to help, let them! Take each day at a time, and give yourself credit for the small things. Did you manage to blow dry your hair? Good for you! Did you change the baby’s diaper and teach your toddler how to count at the same time? Fantastic!
Speaking of diapers…my toddler has just pointed out that he wants to go pee-pee on the potty. If I can get through this, then potty training shouldn’t be too hard, right?
Sunday, May 17, 2009
Just Kidding! (sort of...hee hee) We had our garage sale this Saturday, and it went great. We sold a lot of crap that I can't believe we held onto for so long, like my size 8 jeans that I was saving to try and get back into after having a baby and then realized that there's something that happens to your hips when you birth two children that is somewhat irreversible and that I will never fit into them again stuff and I feel so much better about being rid of it all!
Cody was a big helper to Daddy, and sat outside with him and welcomed all the bargain hunters. Although, it was a bit traumatic for him, since he was watching other kids pull up with their parents and leave with HIS toys. I don't know what was harder for him, parting with his toys, or realizing that the kids were not, in fact, there to play with him.
The weather cooperated just long enough to finish up the sale. As we were loading all of the things we didn't sell into the truck to be donated, it began pouring rain.
Tonight, we are celebrating our hard work by.....GOING TO SEE COLDPLAY!!! I could not be more excited...unless I was talking about our upcoming trip to California without the kids...and then the whole sentence would have to be in caps :)
Friday, May 15, 2009
So I was nominated by my life-long bloggerific friend, Jessica, for this fantastic award. I believe I can pinpoint the age that Jessica herself became the Queen of Awe-Sum; it was the ripe old age of 5. It all started in the backyard of her mom's house with making mud pies and her bossing me around in her make-believe play kitchen ;). Since that time she has blossomed into an incredible wife and mother :) Thank you for making my day, Jess!
As Queen, it is my duty to:
1) List 7 things that make me Awe-Sum
2) Pass the award on to 7 bloggers
3) Tag the 7 bloggers and let them know they are Queens also
4) Link back to the one who tagged me
7 Things that make me Awe-Sum
- The fact that I have friends that tell me I am. Ha.
- I found these chairs in the trash! I'm sorry, I'm still really excited about them.
- I can make a mean floral arrangement, however
- I kill every living thing I try to plant in the ground.
- I stalked my husband before I married him.
- I have a crooked right hand ring finger from a flag-football injury.
- I have successfully potty trained one boy (I think that should count for like, 100 awesome points).
My 7 5 Bloggers to Tag:
Pec (okay, he's a dude, but he's still the Queen of Awe-sum to me)
Sherrie (and little Miss Sophie!)
Thursday, May 14, 2009
Aren't they precious?! Real wood adirondack chairs!
I couldn't believe I found them on the side of the road. Someone threw them out for bulk pick up and I just so happened to stumble upon them while driving with the boys home from dinner. I have wanted wood adirondack chairs since we bought our new picnic table, but they aren't cheap. The only thing wrong with them is that one or two of the boards are loose and that they need a new coat of paint.
You should have seen me trying to load them by myself. The boys were watching me in complete silence as if to say "If we're quiet, maybe no one will notice that that's our insane mother out there trying to load heavy, broken chairs into the back of our truck". I had to drive home very slowly, because I couldn't close the back gate of the truck.
Don't worry, I only had to drive up a VERY LARGE HILL.
I remember struggling with the decision to put him in preschool in the first place. I wrestled with feelings of anxiety...would he be ready, would this be too much for him, was I even ready to let my baby go? Mike talked me down from my cliff and helped me realize that it would be good for him, and for me too. I remember freaking out in the parking lot when I dropped him off on his first day. He had no trouble at all, not a single tear, except from me! He has blown me away with how much he has learned and accomplished this year, and I couldn't be more proud.
So as if you couldn't tell...I'm kind of emotional. I found myself staring at Tyler - who was elbow deep in a peanut butter smeared bagel - this morning, and I was choking back tears. (Have I mentioned that he's sleeping all night? Do you have any idea how glorious this is? I have waited FOUR YEARS to be able to get a good night's sleep. He's been sleeping all night for the past two weeks, and it has been nothing short of heavenly.)
So I'm looking at Tyler, and his hair is completely out of control. Most days I don't even bother to brush it because it goes right back to being unruly. Mike refuses to let me have it cut, because it's curly and he loves it long. I secretly love it too, because he's my baby, and I feel like if I cut his hair off it will be even more apparent that he is no longer, in fact, a baby. He's two. My baby is two. It's not like he just turned two, his (and Cody's) birthday was in April. This morning, however, it hit me like a ton of bricks.
They are growing up.
This leads me to only one irrational conclusion.
I want to have another baby.
Honey, if you're reading this...call me when you come back to consciousness :)
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
I have a mound of laundry staring me in the face, countless toys on the floor just waiting for my (3 month post-op from knee surgery) husband to come home and trip over, and a stack of dishes in the sink that would put any table service restaurant to shame.
I woke up with good intentions to clean and get organized for our neighborhood garage sale that is THIS WEEKEND. I decided I would much rather wrestle with my kids until they have hives from laughing so hard...and wrestle we did. Now I'm on to mindlessly perusing the internet and eating grilled cheese while Tyler naps and Cody watches a Veggie Tales movie. I think I'll paint my toenails next. I'm sure I'll get around to cleaning at some point this afternoon, but not right now.
Hello, I'm Captain Procrastination. Nice to meet you.
Monday, May 11, 2009
It's called Soap and Glory. The best part is...you can get it at TARGET! :) It has a DELICIOUS smell that isn't too overwhelming.
This Mother's Day weekend could have been a disaster. If you read my previous post you would know that it started with a sick little boy with a double ear infection. Having a sick child is no fun, especially when that sick little one only wants to be held by YOU. ALL. DAY. when he doesn't feel good (Okay, now I know I should count my blessings here, and realize that someday I will miss the fact that my baby only wants to be held by me when he's sick...consider them counted :) ). However, after a horrific Friday, Tyler woke up Saturday morning like there was ABSOLUTELY NOTHING wrong with him. He was happy, energetic, and ready to have some fun.
We decided to go grab some bagels for breakfast, and on the way there Cody started complaining that his tummy hurt. Hmmm. We got bagels, but he refused to eat one. Hmmm. He sat in my lap with his head on the table, and began looking so pathetic that we decided to head home. On the way home, he threw up. In the truck. Yeah.
One child gets well. The other one gets sick. Such is life.
He actually only threw up that one time, and when we got home he took a really long nap. When he woke up, he was feeling much better. Mike let me go out shopping Saturday night at my favorite store, H&M, and I got a couple of really cute t-shirts and a funky new ring. I also got to see a movie...which was a nice treat :)
Sunday, he took the boys and got doughnuts so I could sleep in (BEST PRESENT EVER. SLEEP!).
It was an absolutely gorgeous day, and both boys seemed to be feeling 100% better, so we took them to get lunch and to play in the fountains at Suwanee Town Center Park.
I sat there watching my babies splash around in the water and it struck me how very blessed I am. Sick or not, I have two of the best little boys in the world, and a husband who loves me and supports me every day.
So I am grateful. Very, very, VERY grateful :)
Friday, May 8, 2009
Okay, so I might be ridiculed a little bit for this, since I'm admitting that I like this Taylor Swift song...but I LOVE the piano/cello/percussion arrangement this guy did. He blends Taylor Swift's Love Story with Coldplay's Viva La Vida. I mean, come on...who doesn't LOVE a cellist?
LOVE STORY (Taylor Swift) meets VIVA LA VIDA (Coldplay)
Cody's school was having a Mother's Day celebration and I was so looking forward to it. However, my youngest, Tyler, was in NO mood to be taken out of the house. He cried the ENTIRE morning, and did not want me to put him down. So held him I did.
I held him while I brushed my teeth.
I held him while I brushed my hair.
I held him while I dressed myself,
for he WOULD NOT SIT IN THE FREAKING CHAIR (I love Dr. Seuss).
Anyway, I finally got out the door and on my way to Cody's school. When I got there, Cody was in no mood to socialize with Mommy. He barely said two words to me when I walked in the door. Now, I know I'm probably expecting a little too much from him - he was at school surrounded by all of his friends after all - but what I really wanted to do was snatch him up and say, "Is it too much trouble for you to KISS THE WOMAN WHO LABORED WITH YOU FOR TWELVE HOURS when she walks in the door?" But I didn't. Maybe I'll wait till middle school.
So, he pretty much didn't want anything to do with me, but he did make me some really special art projects for the day. We ate strawberry shortcake, and by "ate" I mean I let Tyler smear the whipped cream all over me. Cody took one bite of it and said, "Mommy, this is yucky." Add that to the list of Delicious, Sugary, Sweet Things That My Child Won't Eat. When it was time to leave he threw a HUGE fit, not realizing that all of his friends were also leaving school. I can only hope that he will be that excited to stay at school when he's a teenager.
We got home and I fed them lunch, and Tyler wouldn't touch his food. I picked him up to take him upstairs for his nap and realized he felt like he was on fire. I took his temperature (rectally, which I normally don't do since I can barely even change his diaper he squirms so much, but he was REALLY hot and I wanted to get a good reading) and it was 103.7.
Now, I don't know about you, but if your kid has a high fever and won't eat, you generally think he might have a touch of the...say it with me...FLU. But of course, it couldn't be just your normal flu! Thank you mainstream media for making me FREAK OUT and think that my kid might have SWINE FLU.
I resolved myself to see how he did that night before I called the doctor, since he really didn't have any other symptoms like vomiting or diarrhea. I told Mike about the fever, and without my knowledge he promptly FREAKED OUT TOO and called the doctor and made him an appointment (God bless the germaphobic husband). Side Note: That sweet husband of mine also took both boys when he got home from work and went to get us dinner so that I could have some quiet time. Have I mentioned I love him? I love him. I. LOVE. HIM.
We did the doctor thing this morning, and though he does not (PRAISE JESUS) have Swine Flu, he does have a double ear infection. Bring on the antibiotics (with a side of Prozac for Mommy :) ).
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Wednesday, May 6, 2009
This is such an accurate description, since that is exactly what I do when we're under such circumstances; I sit at my window and watch. For tornadoes.
My Georgia friends laugh when I tell them I'm scared of tornadoes. They say things like, "Oh, we've never had a tornado come close to us!" or "It's not like they're the F5 tornadoes out in Kansas or anything, they're just little ones." I didn't know there was such a thing as a "little" tornado. Like it's going to knock your house down, you know, just a "little".
I don't remember there ever being this many tornadic type storms when we first moved here (which will be 3 years ago in July!). I'm used to hurricanes - being blissfully unaware what is going on outside because the windows are boarded up with plywood and I'm too busy stuffing my face with all the "non-perishables" that my mom bought at the grocery store for hurricane preparedness. I put "__" on non-perishables, because in our house that meant Cheez Doodles and Nutty Bars, not cans of soup and powdered milk. Gosh, I miss my mom.
Anyway, so I had a good little scare about a month ago when the sky turned wicked dark and it started to hail.
We were under a tornado warning, and a few tornadoes came a bit too close to our neck of the woods. No damage here, but enough to scare the pants off of this former-Florida girl. Plus, that mother of mine - the one who bought steak instead of Spam for the hurricane - she has ruined me for life when it comes to tornadoes. You know the power of suggestion, right? Well this is what I heard from my mom all the time as a kid. "THE SKY IS TURNING GREEN! THAT SKY IS GREEN, STAN (my dad). I SWEAR IT LOOKS LIKE A TORNADO OUT THERE." Did any of you know that the sky turns green when there's a tornado? Well, it does.
And so I sit, and I watch. For green skies. And tornadoes.
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Pictures will follow when I can get some!
Update: Here's the most recent pic...look at those cheeks!! :)
He comes running at me in the office proudly displaying his bounty as I scoop him up into my arms and say, "What is it honey? What did you find?!" Only then does the smell hit me. The foul, rotten, garbage, stink bomb smell. I peer down into my cherubic child's chubby fist, and lo and behold....HE HAS FOUND POOOOP! (insert choir of angels sound here). Apparently, my devil dog (who shall henceforth be referred to as such, UNTIL SHE STOPS CRAPPING IN MY HOUSE!) decided to take a dump at the bottom of the stairs, even though I JUST LET HER OUT 10 MINUTES AGO.
Here's where I have to explain that I am usually AWESOME when dealing with a crisis....blood, bruises, skinned knees...no problem. But when it comes to poop...I am not a rational parent. A rational parent would react calmly and take the child to the bathroom to clean up the mess. Since I make no such claims of rationality when poop is involved, I did what I do best....FREAKED. OUT. I ran around in circles holding Tyler, with the poop still firmly in his grasp, not knowing which way to go first. I was screaming out loud, "POOP. AHHH! YOU HAVE POOP IN YOUR HAND! DOG POOP! GAHHHH!"
I finally managed to come to my senses and went into the bathroom, pried the poop from his little hand, and threw it in the toilet. I promptly threw him in the bathtub and scrubbed him until his skin came off (not really, don't call child services on me).
Why do I have a feeling this is only the beginning?
Monday, May 4, 2009
Mike: "I'm really excited about California."
Me: "I know, I can't believe it'll be here so soon."
Mike: "We should definitely start planning out what we want to do. What do you think you want to do?"
Mike: "Very funny."
Me: "Yeah, I'm totally kidding (sort of :) ). I don't know...the possibilities are endless!"
Mike: "You know they've had a lot of cases of swine flu there, since they're so close to Mexico. Do you think it'll be okay for us to go then?"
Me: "I don't care if THE BLACK PLAGUE is there, WE'RE GOING."
Friday, May 1, 2009
U2 - Beautiful Day
Leona Lewis - Bleeding Love
Beyoncé - Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)
Coldplay - Viva La Vida
"Apologize" One Republic
Do you have a favorite song to destroy?