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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts

This fun blog hop brought to you by "The Un Mom", head over and check out her super cool graphics.

- Anyone else an old fan of Ace of Base? They have a new CD coming out this year. Check out this link for the latest video. I miss 90's techno!

- 380 million eggs removed from stores due to salmonella fears. Check out the store here. I miss the days when my family raised chickens for the purpose of eggs.

- Speaking of chickens, check out this chick cozy found on Etsy this week:
It also doubles as a wrist cuff, although from my experience chicks poop the minute you touch them so the cuff will likely need washed before you share it.

- Speaking of Etsy, I discovered Regretsy this week, check it out here. There is some weird home made stuff on that site!!!

- On a more personal note, I'm back to working IN the office this week and discovered I miss everyone jokes. I may have laughed a little too hard and loud; something about being home with small children that makes co-workers funnier after two months of absence.

Have a great Random Tuesday ya'll!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Multitude Monday

One of my favorite bloggers, Ann Voskamp, writes a list of things she's thankful for every Monday, here is my growing list:

32. Kids will eventually go to sleep and I can finally get some alone time with husband.
33. Home – it’s more than just a building; it’s a place that houses my family in comfort and safety.
34. Friends from high school who want to visit me in Florida and reconnect.
35. The ability to take photos for family that help to share the special moments
36. Baby boy sleeping on my chest, I know too well how quickly they grow too big for my small torso to support horizontally

I have a plan

My plan is to get up at 5:30 and workout for a 1/2 hour. I missed it today due to a serious set back in Sam's sleeping schedule. The previous nights he slept 4-5 hour increments leading me to believe we were coasting a wave of less sleepless nights. Then last night he was up at midnight, 3am and snorted so loud from 4:30 - 6 I could barely sleep!

Soooooooo, will try again tonight with this plan. Maybe I need to try working out before going to bed? Never tried that before, always been a morning person.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Saturday - off to a good start

Last night husband came home to a wreck of a wife and promptly took over, even though he had to work today and probably needed sleep more than she. Then again, who needs sleep more, the one home with two small children under 2? Or the one on autopilot teaching dog training classes?

Somehow with the combined 8 hours of fussiness, Sam decided he'd gotten through all gas issues and slept throughout the night with one wake up at 1am to be fed and that's it! I was so surprised that at 6am I came out and put my hand on his chest to check breathing and he promptly woke up. Which worked out perfectly since it allowed me to feed him, get him to sleep by 7, get a SHOWER and then take care of Charlotte.

I've shared breakfast with Charlotte, dressed her, done her hair, written this post and he's still sleeping. Yeah yeah yeah! Optimism is running high!

Here she is, proof hair and clothing are complete:

Friday nights are lonely desparate times

Friday is the only evening with one parent.

One parent to get both kids fed, napped and in bed.

I did okay from 2-5pm, both kids got naps and fed, even if Sam was stuck to me like a leech, squalling within 5 minutes of being laid down thus ensuring I didn't get to share in the whole nap experience. And it didn't matter where I put him - swing, boppy, Moses basket - all were unacceptable.

We woke Charlotte up at 5:15 and she was sad that she couldn't cuddle since Sam needed to eat and things went downhill from there when I couldn't get him settled enough to sleep until almost 10 thus missing dinner, any hope of feeding Charlotte and going to the bathroom - which all combined made me quite tired and rattled.

I know I need to put him down more and I did for a moment to change Charlotte's diaper and get her in pajamas but all to the tune of a fire engine screaming in the background. How can anyone eat or sleep to that sound? It's like babies are made with such bone jarring shrieking ability that you can't ignore their cries. There must be something programmed into our DNA that makes it impossible to ignore shrieking baby.

Even Charlotte tries to help calm things. She brings me extra diapers when I'm changing his diaper - lots of extra diapers! She gives him toys and pats his chest saying "are you okay?". It's so sweet.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Working Mom Wednesday

Linking to Work, Wife,Mom...Life! for Working Mommy Wednesday. For this week the discussion is:

#1. Birth stories! {I loved giving birth and love hearing other birth stories... share one of yours!}

I've delivered both my children without any pain medication, no epidural, all natural! Here are their stories:
#2. Do you have your own bank account or do you share with your spouse? (If you have your own, why?)

My spouse and I do share a bank account. I do all the bills and he trusts me to live within our paychecks every month. We pay off our credit card bills monthly. We make all major decisions together and ultimately I let him take the lead in these decisions.

#3 - my addition - Return to work
I'm back to work this week and it hurts! Its like exhaustion from the prior 3 weeks of missing sleep has hit me all at once! My neck hurts and I feel like I've been in a train wreak - in summary it's the worst form of jet lag! I know how that feels, been to Asia and back 6+ times. When I was contemplating my return last week I felt fine. It's too late to push off my return to work now, I'm already back for 2 days. Just need to find a way to get more sleep!!!

Random Tuesday Thoughts

This fun blog hop brought to you by "The Un Mom", head over and check out her super cool graphics.

Rachel is not here right now, please leave a message at the tone.


Oh look I missed the Miss Universe pageant, again, which is really misleading because the other planets aren't getting a fair shot at competing. Yeah, like you haven't heard THAT line before!

Husband, "honey your phone is beeping", me "oh great it's time for my 9:30 pain medication"!!!

I returned to work today optimistic, even worked from the comfort of my own home, but after a 3 hour conference call I felt like sticking my head in the toilet and calling it a day. At least I got to feed Sam throughout the day and take silly photos of Charlotte walking in my shoes:
And lunging at the camera with a red block as I tried to take photos of her hobo hair:
If a website says "Expires 8/24 does that mean I have all day on the 24th to use the coupon or I need to use it before the 24th? Guess I'll find out on the 24th.

So we got 3 votes for our minivan custom paint job (see widget on the right), any more opinions? If not it looks like Ocean theme wins with 2 votes!

Monday, August 23, 2010

So how ARE we doing with TWO kids?

It's funny you should ask.

With our first child, everyone asked "So, how are the PETS doing with the baby???" Now, no one cares about the pets, they are long forgotten, leading a scrappy life of begging us to remember their food and water needs.

To answer the original question I'd have to say Hurricane Charlotte is averaging a category 5. In the 60 seconds it took to change Sam's diaper in the bathroom I came out to witness this scene of destruction (and this is only 1/3 of the room):

Everything seems to end up on the floor these days! The slightest infraction will cause her to throw any held object to the floor and say mournfully "no more, no more" while running to her room. Infractions include but are not limited to:
  • her putting a red block in a box, closing it, opening it till box breaks
  • grabbing anything she's not supposed to have like the camera
  • shoes on or off depending on the day
  • parents not immediately catering to every whim
  • parents not providing adequate supply of gummy bears
And Sam? Well he just sleeps through everything. We have his Moses basket on a table in the center of Charlotte's circus of noise and destruction. Or husband carries him draped over one arm like a sleepy cat.
And Charlotte's hair has gone wild. I got so used to Mema keeping her hair in sweet ponytails every day but since she's been gone the hair has achieved a life of it's own!
But regardless of her constant bid for attention - she likes Sam. She will clamor into the Papasan, sit against the boppy with both arms out in a request to hold him. It's sweet. And when he's getting a diaper change or just having a good cry she will pat him gently and say "poor Sam",while pushing a small toy into his hands.

Oh yeah, I just realized I haven't answered the "how ARE we doing" part of the question. Well I've been up since 4:00am, got minor scraps of sleep after that, returned to working from home, have a stiff sore neck and overall just feel major jet lag with the lack of sleep. Ask me a question and it might take awhile to process. As for husband, he just says he's tired.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

First outing with 2 kids

Oh I was dreading this day, I even imagined it in horror before Sam was born. How would I manage with TWO children???

It wasn't quite as bad as I had imagined. Somethings could have gone better but let's just say it helped to have a minivan, those things really are designed to get kids in and out efficiently.

First I carried Sam in this Baby Bjorn front pack and he liked it!
I did this so I could have arms free to catch Charlotte in case she made a break for it. I've found that Sam is an extremely jumpy baby when he has gas, today he nearly did a backwards dive while I had one arm firmly around his back - the time for swim diving is in 10+ years son, until then please settle down!

Charlotte walked with us to the car without any problems. I was able to load Charlotte into the van while Sam stayed snug and secure against my chest. If I'd put Sam in first it would give Charlotte the opportunity to run around the van and out of sight.

I kept the front pack strapped to my chest and just seat belted around it to save time upon exiting.

First stop - Walgreens - 1 mile up the road. I kept the air conditioning running while reaching back to unhook Sam and reposition him in the carrier. I unhooked Charlotte and let her run around in the minivan and just pulled her out of whatever door she ended up next to.

Inside Walgreens we got Infant Mylicon and Gummi Bears (bribery for Charlotte - I'll explain later). Charlotte threw herself on the floor mid-way through the store but it wasn't a big deal since the store was basically empty. She eventually caught up with us.

Second stop - Chick Fil A drive through - Charlotte and I ate all the fries and milkshake while driving to Starbucks for a latte (my treat).

Upon coming home I managed to lose my grip on Charlotte and she ran around the van and into the neighbors driveway, I screamed at her to not run off in a parking lot and she cried, made me carry her. This might have gone alot smoother if I had less things to carry in the other hand. Next trip out will plan to just have Sam, purse and firm grip on Charlotte after unhooking her.

Oh - and most importantly, Sam slept the entire one hour trip!

Friday, August 20, 2010

First day alone with the kids

My mom left yesterday, thus ending an entire summer of Grandma time.
  • In June, the day the school year ended, my mom came down for a week.
  • One week later my mother in law came down for Charlotte's birthday.
  • Two weeks later she was back and stayed for 5 weeks.
  • My mom got here on the day she left and stayed for 2 weeks; the school starts again on Monday.
So we've had an almost non-stop summer of Grandma time.

Today is my first day alone with the kids; husband is working from 2-10.

This morning I took Charlotte to the store to get her out of the house and have some mom and daughter time. She asked me to hold her throughout the entire store - fortunately it was Whole Foods so not a very big store. Where is my independent 2 year old who likes to push the cart? Fail.

First day without my mom and I definitely over did it with carrying her so long, need a pain med. Fail.

We came home and she happily scarfed down the Mac N Cheese I bought. Success.

As husband got ready for work and I fed Sam she watched SpongeBob on my iPhone for 30 minutes - Success

But in a bid to get my attention threw an expensive baby thermometer behind the couch. Fail.

I put her down for a nap and an hour later Republican Rick Scott called to solicit my vote thus waking Charlotte. Fail.

I did manage to rest for 1.5 hours before the call. Success.

Sam hasn't cried for 4-5 hours. Success.

I've learned the best way to get Sam to sleep fast is to sit outside in the humidity for 5-10 minutes then put him in the swing. Success.

Every time Sam cries and I go to pick him up Charlotte wants picked up. She cries and falls to her knees when I can't hold her too. Fail.

There is no one to buffer her. Thus ends an entire summer of Grandma love and attention.

Sorry Charlotte, you're not the only one missing Grandma's love and attention!!!

However, I do have a chocolate croissant to share when you wake up that might make things a little better!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Working Mom Wednesday

Linking to Work, Wife,Mom...Life! for Working Mommy Wednesday. For this week the discussion is: If you could have one day all to yourself, how would you spend it?

Ooooh an entire day of no butt wiping, no hysterical crying over dinner and no job craziness?

Well this one is easy. I'd spend the entire day at the beach in my current location of Fort Lauderdale or if traveling, whatever beach is nearby. Last year I traveled to Los Angeles several times and managed to visit Manhattan beach each time. My favorite visit here.

So my perfect day would go like this:
  • Weather 70's to start, 80's by mid-day
  • Morning run, walk or yoga on beach
  • Breakfast at outdoor beach cafe eating tex mex omelette with fresh avocado and orange slices on the side, hot coffee (perfect for 70's weather), side of hash browns and tall glass of orange juice.
  • Followed by book from Marian Keyes or Marne Kellogg while sitting under an umbrella
  • Drinking cold Smart Water
  • Occasional dip in ocean, possible snorkeling
  • Lunch at outdoor cafe
  • Afternoon, repeat morning activities, read, swim, repeat
Hey a girl can dream! Maybe some high school friends will come down to join me and we will make a day of it!!!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts

This fun blog hop brought to you by "The Un Mom", head over and check out her super cool graphics.

Super solar storms in 2012 may knock out electricity for vast numbers of people - read it here; of course it could hit anywhere in the entire world so the chances of it hitting your community are scarce but it still makes you wonder if you could survive for long without public electric and water!! I don't know much about survival, my emergency plans are based on evacuation to live with family in Texas or Maryland - two states so far apart that the same disaster will not reach both areas.

Speaking of storms, it's been a quiet Hurricane season, we've managed to get through June, July and half of August with no storms threatening our area. I believe this marks the half way point and at least baby is born, growing AND we have the minivan which will allow us to evacuate with 3 cats, 1 dog, toddler and newborn along with basic luggage.

Speaking of minivan, we are worried our white van will get lost in a parking lot of white vans so husband wants to customize it. On the list of discussed options:
  • painting it a custom Bentley color, adding decals from Bentley and calling it the Mini Ventley
  • painting it a custom Mini Cooper color and calling it the Mini
  • painting it a custom bright orange so it can be spotted anywhere
  • painting it a custom ocean theme with waves to compliment the white
I believe this is all under the notion that we drive it for many years without much plan for resale value. Feel free to vote on top right widget!

Robert Wilson who sang the following in the 70's has died at 53:
say oops upside your head say oops upside your head
say oops upside your head say oops upside your head
pay attention now
say oops upside your head say oops upside your head
say oops upside your head say oops upside your head
now I want all you gappers, and finger snappers
you toe tappers and you love rappers
Anyone heard of this song? Thanks to NPR for odd news bits, I really thought I'd heard it wrong but they really sing these lyrics.

Have a great Random Tuesday everyone!!!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Week 3 - more craziness

Husband works Friday's from 2-9 and is home by 10. Saturday he works from 9-4 and leaves by 8am so he literally comes home to sleep and I take care of Sam all night. Shouldn't be a big deal, he's our second baby. I made sure to get a nap on Friday so I was fine - until he had a crying fit from 10:30 - midnight. Husband helped me out for the 2nd half until my milk supply was back up to feed him at midnight.

Jump to Saturday night and husband determined I needed to get caught up on my sleep and he took over Sam duties until I could get a few hours of sleep to start. I slept from 10-12, fed Sam. Then slept from 1-5:30 and part of that time husband rocked Sam to keep him asleep a little longer so I could get more sleep.

In total - I got 8 hours. Good start right?

Then I fed Sam at 10 and upon finishing he spit up blood. We figured it was probably from a cracked nipple but didn't want to take any chances with a 3 week old so we went to the doctor's office. Doc. has instructed me to pump and dump the cracked side for 2-3 days and only feed him on the other side. Not something I would have come up with on my own. So there you have it folks, in case this should ever happen to you.

Now both kids are sleeping, I should take a nap but I'm going to work on some much needed bill paying!!!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Week 3 - post natal craziness

Exhaustion - to consume entirely.

This sums up how I feel. Breastfeeding is painful after two weeks of non-stop production. Add exhaustion to that and my entire body feels racked with pain. It's a good thing all other parts have healed from giving birth because now I can pay attention to the pains of caring for a newborn.

Guilt - feelings of culpability especially for imagined offenses or from a sense of inadequacy

I'm constantly feeling like I don't give Charlotte enough attention. When I'm feeding Sam I like to hid in my bedroom so I get caught up on drinks and snacks, maybe read some internet sites on my phone. Relax as much as possible because it reduces the pain. But I've started letting Charlotte into the bedroom so I can spend time with her too. She's into everything and driving me crazy, bouncing all over the bed, swinging her feet in my direction so I'm literally throwing her off which she thinks is funny. So while I have guests to help, I'll start locking her out again.

I need to get Sam on a regular eating schedule. He goes 4-5 hours in the night without eating but during the day wants fed every 2 hours. I think it's more due to waking from gas and then wanting to eat to be consoled rather than actual hunger.

I can't believe I'm considering going back to work in a week. These are crazy times!!!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Sam - two weeks old

Samuel John - two weeks old, now 9lbs 11oz

He has an unpredictable eating schedule that's driving me a bit batty. Sometimes it's every two hours and other times it's every 4-5 hours. It's making my breasts extremely full and leaky on the long stretch and I never know when to pump because it could be a 2 hour stretch between eating.

A lactation nurse suggested pumping on the hour after he eats so that I start building a stock pile before returning to work. I think I'll focus on that for the next few days.

I got an award!

The very sweet Mommycrat has given me an award!!! In return I'm to tell you 7 things about my life.

  1. I've just given birth to a giant baby - maybe not giant to some but considering my first was 5lbs 6oz and he being born at 8lbs 11oz - he's my big baby!
  2. I grew up in Hagerstown, MD
  3. My husband and I are both artists but these days our creative outlets are limited due to time spent with children and jobs. My husband's now works on furniture when he gets a chance and my creative outlet is at work developing new toys.
  4. I've lived in South Florida for 10 years, does this make me a Floridian?
  5. I have a fondness for chocolate pastry's.
  6. I love my iPhone, it keeps me company during the 3+ night time feedings with Sam, and awake. Although an iPad would be nice.
  7. I love to travel and write about every aspect from best packing methods to international flight survival to local culture.