Friday, July 31, 2009

What's Worse Than Being Stuck at Home With a Sick Kid?

Being stuck at home with TWO sick kids, of course...

They are both in pretty good spirits considering the fact that they both have pretty nasty colds. The Boy is using this time to get some much needed construction done around the house. Behold the photo below where he is sticking out his tongue to demonstrate to you that he most definitely has "the bad germs:"

The Girl, on the other hand, is not quite as sick as her brother (perhaps the breast feeding?). She alternates from looking completely pathetic and sad... cute and happy as a little clam...
Here's hoping they will both be back in tip top shape when it comes time for them to go to school/daycare on Monday because Mommy NEEDS to get back to work!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

No Matter How Hard I Try, There's Still Just One of Me...

Parenting two kids alone is tough. That isn't a news flash. But the one thing I have found frustrating lately is that even if I understand why things are happening the way they are, I don't necessarily have the ability to change it. Let me explain...

The Boy has been pushing the limits lately. On everything. Push, push, push, push...test, test, test, test. And I get it. He's three and a half. That's what they are supposed to do. Not to mention that he has a new sibling that has encroached on his life as the only person who deserves attention. The good news is that he isn't taking any of this out on his sister. He loves the shit out of her. He is taking it out on me. And if I had to choose between the two, I would obviously choose that he take it out on me and not her, but man, it makes for some hard days.

When I mentioned above that I could understand things but not necessarily have the ability to change them I meant that as a single parent you can only be in so many places at one time. You can only stretch yourself so thin before you break. Let me use tonight as an example.

I took both kids to daycare today (The Girl doesn't start full time until Monday so this is supposed to be my last week at home with her before that happens) so that I could get some work done. And after I dropped them off at 9:30am I literally worked ALL.DAY.LONG. I pumped two times and drove to three different clients and worked for a fourth from home before I left for the other three. So when I went to pick the kids up at about 5:00pm I was already exhausted from a very long day.

So I picked them both up at school (something that my mom usually does, but I was in the area and trying to give my mom a break so I handled it today) and on the car ride home I had long and extensive conversations with The Boy. Good lord can that boy talk. We talked about how he's three and his friend at school is 4 and how he thinks Mommy must be 41 (not sure why, but that's what he thought). We talked about using the potty (oh good lord, that is a whole other post), we talked about the planets and the sun and we talked about spiders and spider webs; his latest obsession. But man did we talk. We engaged and chatted and good lord did those conversations go on and on, but I was there and present and talking away.

We got home and he discovered that his new car seat had arrived. He demanded to have it put together immediately so I stuck his sister in her jumperoo and sat down with him while he "helped" me put it together and get all the straps in the right places etc... He was right there the entire time and while this was happening I was literally ignoring his little sister, who happens to be getting her first cold and was pretty pitiful and probably just wanted a little Mommy love herself. By the time the car seat was together and we were done we had been home a little over an hour. At this point I turned my attention to The Girl who wanted to nurse and be held. The Boy went into the kitchen to torment, I mean help, my mother make dinner. I dealt with The Girl for about 30 minutes until it was time to eat. I plunked her down in her bouncy chair, got The Boy's plate ready and sat down at the dinner table.

Then The Boy not only refused to eat everything he had just told me that he wanted, but he played with his food. He stuck his fingers in the soy sauce from his edamame, he tapped his spoon and fork on the glass table, he did everything he knows he's not supposed to do. So I was reprimanding him. I had no patience. He is too old to be pulling this kind of crap and I eventually took his spoon and drained all the excess soy sauce off of his plate. He burst into tears and acted like I was the most horrific Mommy in the world. It was at this point that my mother pointed out to me that I kept looking down at The Girl, who was falling asleep in her bouncy chair cause she felt so shitty and saying things like, "I'm sorry you feel yucky Peanut," and then looking at The Boy and yelling, "Stop! Use your fork to eat. You asked for those strawberries and we cut them up for you, now you eat them!!"

He wanted attention and negative attention is better than no attention at all. And not only that but he was seeing me give The Girl love and give him grief. So he was acting out.

It was at this point that I almost cracked. I mean, what else can I do? I had given him the entire drive home, and almost a full hour and a half after we got home where I focused solely on him and gave him "positive attention." And I had only done that for The Girl for about a half hour. And during dinner? Well he wasn't doing one goddamned thing that deserved positive attention. And am I just supposed to sit back and let him act like a jackass because he has a new sibling and is feeling like he needs extra attention? And am I supposed to let the beginning months of my baby's life go by with her sitting in a bouncy seat because her brother needs extra attention? What about her? She's little and doesn't exactly understand it, but she deserves love and time too. When her brother was little, he got IT ALL. She at least deserves some, doesn't she? And by default, if I am giving it to her, I am withholding it from him. Sigh.

This is a hard balance. I understand that due to circumstances there are times when he is playing quietly in his room and being wonderful and I don't acknowledge it. And I don't acknowledge it because I am busy emptying the dishwasher, or nursing the baby, or cooking dinner... And that I should probably take that time to go to him and give him a huge hug and tell him how much I love it when he acts like a good boy and plays quietly and basically praise him for being good. But I don't because I am just so happy to have a few quiet minutes to try and get everything done that needs to be done. And I don't think of it. So I relish in the quiet and run around like a crazy person and the next time that he actually gets attention from me is when he is doing something wrong. So I am giving him the attention he desires, but he only gets it when he acts like a shit.

I get it. I get that isn't the right way to go about this. And in a perfect world there would be enough hours in the day to make everyone happy. There would be enough time to give everyone the love and the squeezes and the attention that they so desperately need and deserve. But there aren't enough hours in the day. There isn't enough of me to go around. I try very hard to make sure that they both get what they need from me. I honestly do. But some days I just don't feel like I am cutting it.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

What a Difference a Year Makes

One year ago today was the cycle day 1 of the cycle that became my daughter.

Read about it here.

When I go back and read that post it is amazing to me to be where I am today. I really stuck with the attitude that if it was meant to be, it would be. And I guess it was meant to be. My little precious is having a little cat nap in her crib right now and is getting ready to go down for the night. And I am getting ready to go back to work. So much can happen in a year.

You couldn't pay me a million dollars to go back and re-live the past year, but I can honestly say that I am happier right now than I have been in a very long time. Sometimes the journey is trying, but the outcome is so worth it.

PS--Doesn't she look like she's thinking about kicking some ass in the photo above? Don't mess with her, or she'll smother you with her rolls!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Knock on Wood...

...please don't jinx myself by posting this...please don't jinx myself by posting this...but...

It is 9:00pm and for the first time EVER, both of my kids are asleep for the night. That's right. Both of them. It is a minor miracle and one I am sure I will pay for in a couple of hours when The Girl inevitably gets up to eat. But for right now? It is only 9:00pm and I am getting some alone time. Fucking amazing.

I am going to go watch some mindless TV and eat some Sees Candies and then go to bed.

Here's wishing everyone a fabulous evening.

PS. Don't get too excited for me because like other bloggers out there, my daughter has recently decided that she will NOT, for the love of God, sleep AT ALL during the day. Nope. No naps for her. Unless of course she is laying directly on me. But other than that? No nap longer than approximately 20 minutes. So really...our sleep isn't as fabulous as it sounds...


I totally jinxed myself! The Girl slept peacefully while I wrote this blog post, ate some Sees Candies and got ready for bed. She started crying at 9:38pm...

I brought her to bed with me and nursed her and she fell back to sleep.
She slept in her crib (!!!) from 10:00pm until 1:00am. At that time I nursed her in bed with me.
She slept in her swing from 1:20am until 4:45am when I nursed her in bed with me.
She stayed in bed with me until she nursed again at 8:00am.

But damn...those 38 minutes sure were great...sigh...

Monday, July 20, 2009

My Life In Pictures

My little Peanut is three months old (13 weeks) today! Look at how she's grown...Here she is right after we got home from the hospital...
And here she is on May 20th (one month old)...
And here she is on June 20th (2 months old)...
And here she is today, on July 20th (three months old)...
They grow up so fast!! Happy 3 months my little Peanut!!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

OMG, Could You Die?

Last night after I finished nursing the baby I put her on the couch and went into the kitchen to get The Boy his "milkie" (his cup of Pediasure). When I came back out, this is what I found. They were totally having "a moment."

I almost died with the cuteness. What you can't see in this picture is what was being said. I am not sure what The Boy was saying to his sister but she was responding with the most adorable coos and giggles. Check out the smile on her face as she talks to her brother...
This right here is why I had a second baby. For little moments like these. Absolutely amazing...

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

My Big Girl...

I just took The Girl and dropped her off at daycare for the first time. She is going to the same place where her brother goes to school. He is in Montessori Preschool and the woman who runs it decided she would take babies in a different part of the school. So he will be in the classroom and she will be in the baby area. I am thrilled that I can take them both to the same place every morning. Makes dropping off and picking up that much easier. Also I like that she will be with her brother during the day. Once she gets a little bigger I think that will make her happy. Not to mention that I know her big brother will tell me if anything goes on during the day. "Mommy, sister cried ALL DAY today..." Plus, I know the people at this place and trust them explicitly so while I will miss her, I am not at all worried about her.

She isn't going full time as of yet. Starting on August 3rd she will be going three days a week. I usually only work 4 days a week (I take Friday's off) and starting in August she will be going Monday, Tuesday and Thursday and I will work from home with her on Wednesdays. I decided to take her today as a little "trial run," and also so I can bust out an 8 hour work day. I have a TON of work at home to do and with trying to take care of her during the day I am only getting about 3 to 4 hours of billable work done each day. So this will allow us to slowly get used to the idea of her going to daycare and also give me a chance to catch up on some much needed work.

On that note I am going to go and work instead of blogging. I can't believe my little girl is big enough to be taken to daycare. Sigh... Life moves so quickly.

Monday, July 13, 2009

12 In and 12 Out

I can't believe it is that time, but it is. It is time for the popular blog entry where we show the difference in our babies at 12 weeks on the inside and 12 weeks on the outside.

So ladies and gentlemen (although I am pretty sure that no gentlemen read this blog) I present to you my little girl at 12 weeks old on the inside:

And here she is at 12 weeks old on the outside:
I have said it before, but it bears repeating. I like her SO much more on the outside than I did on the inside.

Let's take a moment to relish in the chub. Oh the glorious chub. You all know that I have a son who do I say this delicately...less than chubby? Look at the rolls on this child. The cheeks deserve their own zip code, and the arm rolls and the leg rolls and well, there are just pretty much rolls everywhere. And I love it. Love, love, love it. It still amazes me that I am the one responsible for her rolls. She is completely, exclusively breast fed and I am so proud of my body for giving her all that wonderful nutrition. One of the first things people say when they see her is, "Wow, she doesn't miss a meal does she?"

No. No she does not. And hopefully she never will.

I think it is safe to say that we are out of what I endearingly refer to as, "newborn hell." She is a little person now and it is lovely. We still have a bit of chaos in our world but for the most part we are following a routine and she is developing her own personality.

She will now sit in places that are not attached to me for elongated periods of time and it is lovely. She loves her jumperoo that I bought her. The Boy had low muscle tone so I am not taking any chances with this one. Sitting in an exersaucer? No way, you could be jumping and working those leg muscles...and tummy time? Oh yes, we have extensive amounts of tummy time. Build up that muscle tone little one! Work it!

Oh, I digressed. She sits in her jumperoo and actually plays with the little knobs and things. She reaches out and grabs things and enjoys watching the little toys we put in front of her. Needless to say, she grins constantly and "talks" to me all the time. I love it.

A typical day at 12 weeks old:

Wakes up at about 5:45am and nurses and goes immediately back to sleep in my bed and stays there until around 8:30 or so. We get her out of bed and get her dressed and nurse her again before I take her brother to drop him off at school. She generally falls asleep in the car at some point during this process and tends to stay asleep in her car seat for at least an hour after we get home. She eats again at around 10:30 or so and then spends the better part of the morning and afternoon eating and napping.

We are getting better at napping in places other than on TOP of me. She will now lay in her bassinet for almost an hour at a time. Although she still definitely prefers to nap either in my arms, or her favorite, next to me on the bed after a nursing session.

She enjoys hanging out in the bouncy seat and she still knows exactly when it is that I pick up my fork for dinner and starts crying at exactly that moment. I personally think she just wants to sit at the table (on my lap) while we eat dinner so that she is part of the family.

She is starting to LOVE her big brother. She loves to watch him and whenever she can convince him to give her any attention at all, she responds with the biggest smiles you have ever seen. She loves laying with him on his bed at night (they share his pillow--his request, not hers) while I read books to him and sing him goodnight.

After he goes to sleep we have some time just the two of us. She eats every hour starting at about 6:00ish and does that all night long. She is storing up for the night time sleep. I have no clue how much she is drinking because she doesn't ever get a bottle for me to measure. Our nighttime routine starts at around 9:45 or 10:00pm (although it is getting earlier and earlier...). We turn out all the lights and then go back to her room and change her diaper and put on her sleep sack. We then go back out in the living room and nurse on both sides (this is unusual...she usually only eats on one boob and then can't be bothered to eat on the other side) and then we rock in the rocking chair until I can tell that she is good and tired (usually about 10 minutes). She always wakes up when I stand up to walk her back into her room and she smiles at me and coos all the way down the hall. I put her in her swing (yup, she sleeps in her swing and I am not ashamed to admit it. Hey, the girl sleeps...don't question it) and turn on her white noise and walk out the door. This is usually about 10:00pm. She sleeps until at least 4:30am but sometimes all the way up until 6:30am. Rock star for 12 weeks old if you ask me.

This little bundle of chub is one of the greatest things that has ever happened to me. I love her more than I can even put into words. I am so happy that she has been on the outside of me for 12 weeks now. Three weeks from today she is going to daycare three days a week. I am going to relish these last three weeks together every single second I can. What an amazing little girl this is, and what an amazing journey we are on together. I love you my little Peanut!!

Oh, and this happens to be my 200th post! What a wonderful post to have as my 200th post. When I started my blog a little over a year ago it was to express myself while going through the process of my breakup and contemplating having another child on my own. And look at us now! Whew!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

You Complete Me

I get asked a lot, "How's it going with two kids?" "How are you managing?" And when people ask they sort of have this look on their faces like, are you regretting your decision to have two kids as a single mom?

In a word, NO. Not in the slightest.

It seems like an awfully long time ago when I was struggling telling people that I was pregnant. But as I think back I remember how very difficult it was. People don't like different. People don't like "out of the norm." And it is definitely out of the norm to be a single woman with a 3 year old son and make a decision to have another child. Another child that is born from a SPERM DONOR (gasp!! The horror!!!) no less. I surprised a lot of people with my decision. And most of the people in my world were nothing less than completely supportive. Of course those few that weren't stick out in my mind.

And now I am being asked about how it is all going now that she is here and we are settling into a routine. Is it hard? Absolutely. Am I tired? Completely. But do I regret it for a minute? Not in the slightest. I have no doubt in my mind that I made the right decision. Not only do I know that what I did was right for us, I am feeling so unbelievably at peace with my decision.

Before The Girl came along it was just me and The Boy. Just the two of us. The feeling I would use to describe it was us against the world. I think perhaps because when he was born there were three of us, and one of those three left us, it became just the two of us. It had to be us against the world. There was a loss there. It went from three down to two and that was one of the greatest disappointments of my life. I didn't want my son to be raised by just me. I wanted him to be raised in a two parent household. But that wasn't our path. That wasn't where we ended up. That is just how we evolved. It wasn't supposed to be just us, but that is where we ended up.

I felt antsy. I felt like I wasn't done. Every birthday that passed I felt like I was working against a clock. I wasn't done yet. There was still more to do. Time needed to stand still so I could catch up. And the thing that was missing was another child. I felt it in my bones. I wanted and needed to bring her here. Not only for me, but for my son as well. I fought hard to make it happen. I went against what everyone thought was "right" and I fought to complete my family. So when she came into the world there was no loss. Only a gain. I brought her here all by myself. She was an addition as opposed to a subtraction.

And now? Now I feel like we are a family. There is no more "us against the world." We are a family. A complete family. She completes us. She made us into a family. I don't know how to put the feeling into words. To try and describe it is impossible. It is exhaling. It is slowing down and breathing and taking in the world around us. I no longer feel like time is working against me. I'm good. I have done what I needed to do. Now I am able to sit back, relax and enjoy the ride. And what an amazing ride it is.

The other night my son came out into the living room and noticed a new collage of pictures that I had hung on the wall of our recent photo shoot. He looked at me and said, "Mommy, dat my family." Yes it is my boy. Yes it is indeed.

Having my daughter was perhaps the best decision I have ever made. Is it tough being a single mom of two young kids? You bet. Are there times when I feel so overwhelmed that I am not sure how to make it through the day? Yes, there are. On the nights when the baby is up every two hours and The Boy gets up at 6:0oam am I more tired than I thought possible? You bet. But it is so worth it. I wouldn't change any of it. Not for anything in the world.

I am at peace. And I am happier than I have ever been in my life. She completes us...

Friday, July 10, 2009

Ok, I Give In...

I'm enjoying having a girl more than I thought I would...

Behold........THE BOW:

Things happen for a reason. My daughter is teaching me how to be more girlie...

More later!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Bullets for a Chaotic Mind

  • We're doing bullets today because,'s a Monday
  • Actually no, it's Tuesday. Damnit! I have no clue what day it is. That's why I didn't realize last night was a Monday night and subsequently forgot to take out my garbage cans and therefore totally missed the garbage pick up this morning. That completely sucks.
  • I only realized this after my son had screamed "Mommy, garbage man! Mommy, garbage man..." like three times this morning. I suck.
  • My daughter slept for 8 hours last night. 8 long hours people. I feel more rested than I have in a year. And I also feel like I am carrying around two rocks on my chest because of the backup of no eating overnight.
  • I am currently pumping to alleviate said pain. It's insane the amount of milk boobies can make. I'm just sayin'...
  • I am nervous about returning to work and what it will mean for breast feeding my daughter. I SO don't want to lose this amazing feeding relationship we have developed and my supply went to shit once I went back to work with my son.
  • BUT, he was never actually put to breast. I only pumped for him. I am hoping that will make the difference and that things won't have to change/end just because I am going back to work.
  • If you are a Mommy who breast fed and who went back to work, please send me your success stories so I can obsess on them and not on how it is all going to end very, very soon.
  • I am mentally and financially ready to go back to work, but am worried about how things will change (see above).
  • Plus, I will really really miss my little Peanut.
  • It is nearly impossible to get any actual billable work done during the day while simultaneously taking care of an 11 week old baby. This I have learned. The hard way.
  • I am SO much more sentimental about holidays (recent fourth of July) now that I have two kids.
  • And I am obsessed about photographing them together to somehow prove to my psyche that they are both mine.
  • See adorable evidence below...
  • My daughter is clearly advanced. She rolled over at 10 weeks old.
  • I have proof. She went from her tummy to her back on Fourth of July.
  • Check out the pics that I took to prove it (see point above about obsessively photographing my children).
  • Here they are upright and cute:
  • And here she goes....!
  • Like I said, clearly advanced. :)
  • I will end this mish mosh of a post now. Enjoy your week everyone!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy 4th of July

From my family to yours...

Friday, July 3, 2009

Behold the Cuteness!!

Yesterday I took the two kids (that still makes me smile to be able to say that) and we went to get professional pictures taken. It was The Girl's first official "photo shoot." I will say that it is A LOT tougher to do that with two kids than it was to do it with one. If The Girl finally grinned or smiled it was inevitable that The Boy had his finger up his nose, or was looking in the other direction. So trying to get pictures where they both looked cute was rough.

I ended up getting two poses of each kid individually, one pose of the two of them together, and then one pose of me with both kids and a final pose with me and my mom with the two kids. Of course the company screwed up the printing and gave me two copies of one pose and none of the one I picked that had just the two kids. So I don't have that one to share with you today, but I will share the other shots of the two kids individually.

Here is The Girl...perfecting her model pose...she is 10 weeks old...

And here is The Boy, being a goofball as usual with his eyes shining with laughter...he is 3 1/2 years old...
This picture of The Girl is definitely not the cutest one out there. But this is also a face that she makes ALL THE TIME. When I see this picture I smile because it is a face that I see looking at me constantly...
And finally, here is The Boy being quiet and pensive and checking out the cool thing they had for him to ride on during the pictures. He was saying something to the effect of, "Leave me alone and let me enjoy my bike..."
I will post the pictures that I ordered of the two of them together once I get a chance to go back to the place and make then reprint them for me...

Happy Fourth of July everyone!!!