Monday, December 30, 2013

The Four Letter Word Every Parent Hates

SICK

The phone rings and it is your child's school calling to tell you your kid is......SICK

Crap.

Of course I cared that she wasn't feeling well, but the first thing that ran through my brain was "NOOOO! I HAVEN'T FINISHED WORKING/CLEANING/HAVING TIME TO MYSELF!"

That thought is followed with the "MAN! NOW I/DADDY/BROTHER ARE ALL GONNA CATCH IT!"

Is that selfish of me? 

As it turned out she had a severe sinus infection and the drainage was causing her to vomit, nothing contagious, but still. I HATE when they are SICK!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Today, My Kid Made Me Proud

I took my kids to the park, and when we arrived there was a small group o girls sitting in a circle under the playground. Miss B. ran over and was accepted in the group. The girls was laughing and giggling when the lone little boy at the park approached and was promptly rebuffed by the oldest looking girl in the group, and probably the ring leader. 

"There is no one else here to play with" he told the girl.
"Then go play with your mommy." she told him.

Part of me wanted to interject, and make Miss B play with the little boy. There has been so many times that we have been there and no one would play with her. I wanted to remind her of how she feels when that happens to her.

But I didn't. I won't always be able to be there to help her make the right decision and it felt like a pivotal moment in her life. She didn't know I was watching. 

She looked at the boy, and I could see it in her face. The dilemma. She knew what the right thing to do was, but she didn't want to give up her acceptance in the group of girls.

Then, she stood up and said, "I'll play with you."

Today, my kid made me proud.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

From SAHM to WAHM

In May I started a new job doing search engine evaluations from home. It's not that I had never planned on working again, I just thought it wouldn't be until the kids were older, and in school full time.

But we all know how plans go in the hood (motherhood that is).

The Big Kid works full time and goes to school. In the past he has kept two jobs, but that just wasn't a possibilty with his school. The whole point of him going to school is so that he can get a better job, but finding the time and funding was proving to be really hard. Plus we wanted to be able to afford things for the kids.

So, I started looking for work. Most everything I could find seemed to scammy I didn't want to sell anything, and since I needed a job for financial reasons, anything that required an "investment" was out. The biggest NO WAY was phone jobs. I can't even talk to my sister for five minutes without one of the kids screaming, much less do some sort of customer service. Uh-Uh-NO-WAY.

I finally stumble across the search engine evaluator thing, applied, and got the gig. I was so excited. I had dreams, goals...PLANS.

Remember what we said about plans?

I never imagined how HARD working at home with kids could be. I mean, I should've known, because just going pee without their help is a challenge, but still. Some delusional part of me imagined I would be able to sit down at my computer for four to six hours a day and earn some valuable income for my family.

This is how it really goes:

I get up a 5:30 in the morning to work before they get up. At six The Big Kid gets up, an insist on talking to me and asking me to find his things.

By 6:30 Dimples is awake, and saying "mamma" which is his word for food. Yes, my son says mamma only when he's hungry.

Miss B. get up at 6:45 and because she's four, jumps out of bed at full speed and stays that way until she drops. There is no slow waking up period for her. So she's usually running circles around me while I'm trying to feed her brother.

By 7:30 everybody's fed and if it's a school day, Miss B. is getting dressed for school.

Sometime in the late morning, early afternoon I sit down again to try and work. I can get about 30 minutes in before one or both of the kids needs me to get up for one reason or another. 

Then there's chores, the animals, dinner, baths, and before I know it it's 10 o'clock and I've managed to work an hour MAYBE two.

At this point my choice is to stay up late, or give up and try again tomorrow.

It's harder than I thought it would be, finding the time. Since Miss B has started school three days a week, I hope to be able to get more in. Twice now Dimples has napped while she's at school and I know I should use that time to work, but I can't help enjoying the quiet for myself (like blogging instead of working). But even two hours a day is better than nothing. I'm lucky to have found something with that kind of flexibility, and so I will make it work...... somehow.




By the way....

If mommas out there need some extra income and are interested in trying it from home, check out Leapforce. They are hiring in the US and internationally and the flexibility is great for trying to work around kids! https://www.leapforceathome.com/qrp/public/jobs/list?uref=d584821c010e8bcbffb9bf9a1fe35e7f

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Poor Daddy

Miss B is popular with the boys....every daddy's worse nightmare

She informed us the other day that one of the little boys in her karate class was her boyfriend, and the little boy's mother commented that he had told her that Miss B was his girlfriend. Of course when you're four that doesn't mean anything, but this is where is starts.


Yesterday at Karate the instructor had to separate two boys at the beginning of class who were fighting over who got to sit next to her, and when I picked her up from pre-k the teacher tells me "she's no trouble, but the boys fight over who's going to sit by her in circle time." 

I think it's kind of funny, and cute, but poor Daddy is not amused.

Monday, November 4, 2013

It Sure Is Quiet Around Here

Well, today was the big day...Miss B. started pre-k. 

She was so excited. She woke up at 4:45 am, wanting to get dressed. She also wanted to wear the biggest, fanciest dress in her closet. It took me twenty minutes to talk her into play clothes.

And when I got home from dropping her off, after I shed a few tears, Dimples laid down for his morning nap. The Big Kid is at work and the dog is asleep on the couch. The bunny doesn't make much noise no matter what's going on.

I spent the first twenty minutes trying to decide what to do first! It's been so long since I had this kind of time to myself. 

So here I am, using my time, to blog about it :)

Thursday, October 31, 2013

I Am Not Enough

Miss B is four years old and I have come to the realization that she needs more than I can give her. Some women are great at being stay at home moms, it comes so naturally to them and they are able to fulfill their children's needs right up the their first day of school. I am not one of those women. Motherhood has never come naturally to me. I often find myself looking at her and feeling at a loss. 

What am I supposed to do with this child?

It is not her educational requirements that I am not fulfilling, but her social ones. I knew that she would need to be with kids her own age, and so I enrolled her in lots of activities. Gymnastics, karate and soccer. But an hour a day a couple days a week it not enough for her, and even more, her new friends all go to preschool. 

Preschool. I never intended to send her. I always thought that I could teach her everything she needed to know before she started kindergarten. Apparently kindergarten is a different beast than when I was five years old. 

No more color wheels and play groups. 

Apparently five year olds these days are learn art and philosophy along with how to share. 

She keeps asking when she can go to school like her friends. She had become obsessed with school buses and stands at the window every afternoon to watch the bus drop kids off.

So after much debate, and scrutinizing of the finances (holy crap pre-school is EXPENSIVE!) The Big Kid and I have decided to let her go.  I have to admit it makes me a little sad, and I'm not entirely sure why. This was not my plan, but nothing in motherhood goes as planned.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

The Mommy Overshare...So Guilty

When you are a mommy of little kids, no subject is off limits, and sometimes we forget that other people still have a shred of decorum left and there are things they just don't want to hear and/or talk about.

The other day at Miss B's karate class, one of the ladies there noticed that Dimples was in a cloth diaper, and she said "oh I didn't know you were using cloth diapers"

I, of course, launched into a detail explanation about how I used to use disposal when we were out because his poops were so runny and I didn't want to carry that mess around with me. I followed up with a detailed description of his current, less messy poops.

Then I saw the totally grossed out look on her face. 

Oops. The mommy overshare.

I'm guilty of this alot. Very guilty. 

I need to remember that most people don't want to hear about poop or vomit, runny noses or rashes. That any mention of my kid is not an open invitation to recap  every gross thing that I deal with on a daily basis. 

And I get it. I'm not offended that other people are offended by my reality. Because that what it comes down to. Poop is a big party of my reality. With a four year old, a one year old, a dog and a bunny I am queen of the poop.

I'm sure there will come a point in my life when my kids are older, and they take care of their own bathroom business, that poop will gross my out again. For now, I will try to save my thoughts on these topics for the mommy blog.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Slow Down Please

When Miss B was born, and I brought her home and began my new life as a Mother, I was so eager and impatient. She was such a good sleeper - and since she was my first I had no idea how good I had it! We would have to tickle her little toes and undress her so she would wake up and eat. I would stare at her for sometimes hours, just thinking WAKE UP AND DO SOMETHING! 

Of course now she's four and all I really want is for her to GO TO SLEEP!

So when Dimples came along, I was a little bit wiser, and a lot more patient. No hurry here. He can take as long as he wants to start walking and talking (talking-back that is!)

But he has different ideas. He will be one next week and last night he took his first timid, wobbly steps. Four of them from the safety of the sofa's edge to his sister, who had a Popsicle. It was the Popsicle he was after, I know.

When Miss B. started walking at around 13 months, I clapped and cheered for her.

What were we thinking with all of that carrying on and encouragement? *face palm*

But like I said, more experienced now..so when I turned and saw my son walking I just stared at him with a mix of excitement (because it is an important milestone) and DREAD.

I'M NOT READY!!!!

I mean, I knew this was coming, because he's recently started letting go and just standing there, but I was hoping to have a little more time. It seems like after the walking things just start happening so much faster. Then they're running and talking and getting ready for school and growing up....big breath. 

I'm not ready for my son to start growing up. Even though I had the same year with him I had with my daughter I feel like it went by sooo much faster. 

*sigh*

But ready or not, here he comes.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Growing up Girl

Miss B has been BEGGING for weeks now to get her ears pierced. She's only four, and I always thought she'd be a little bit older before I let her. 

But as it goes with parenting nothing works out like you thought.

She's has bent her self over backwards to show me what a big girl she is. She's been cleaning her room and helping with her brother, trying to prove her level of responsibility. So, after talking to my husband, We agreed I would take her.

Yesterday I surprised her with a trip to the mall. There's going to be some gasps here, but this is the first time in her four years of life that she's ever been to the mall. Her friend came along and we had a full on girls day. She got her ears pierced - barely even flinched! - and we had ice cream and went to bath and body works where I let her pick out a sample size bottle of scented sanitizer.

The day was fun - and exhausting. What's more, though, it felt like a milestone in her life and our relationship as mother and daughter. She's transiting now and on top of teacher her about manners and right and wrong, I also get to teach her about being a girl. This is the part of having a daughter that I was really looking forward to.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Some Things are Hard to Explain

Yesterday, while driving by a cemetery, Miss B asked about the flowers and headstones. She wanted to know about that place. She thought it looked pretty. I usually have a sort of "open" policy when it comes to telling her stuff. I try to be as honest as possible, while keeping things on a level her four year old brain can comprehend.  This one gave me pause.

This past spring, right before Easter, a friend of mine and her five year old son died tragically in a house fire. While we didn't take Miss B to the viewing or funeral, I couldn't hide my sadness in those days. I wasn't sure what to explain to her, but I knew she would be asking about her friend, when she would see him and play with him. Explaining death to someone so young is difficult. They don't really understand. 

Ever since then, Miss be has sort of had this - I don't know if fascination is the right word - but she frequently asks if people are dead or are going to die. I'll say "don't let your brother get that, he might choke on it" and sometimes she responds with, "and then he'll die?"  

After a few minutes, I decided to stick with my honest is best policy and I explained to her what that place was. She was very quite for a long time and didn't say anything else about it. It's times like these I really wish I could hear her inner dialogue and know what she is thinking.

If there was ever a need for an instruction manual on parenting, I think it would be for this.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Learning to Share is Hard

Learning to share is hard. For Me. Learning to share is hard for me. 

Yesterday Miss B. wanted to color. We had racked up on fifty cent boxes of crayons at the beginning of August when all the school supplies were on sale. So I got her a box and me a box. I LOVE new crayons. Freshly sharpened, not broken, paper still neatly wrapped around the crayon. She had a Care Bears coloring book and I had a Lisa Frank one. Anyone else remember when Lisa Frank was all the rage? Things were going well, and then, she wanted to color MY picture.

To some people this is no big deal, but to the crazy obsessive ones likes me this is a HUGE dilemma. I should teach her to share. It's NOT a big deal. It's JUST a coloring page. 

Except I already had the color scheme all worked out, and she wanted to color my purple unicorn brown and she doesn't color in the lines. 

Sigh 

I wanted to take my coloring book and hide in the closet to finish my picture uninterrupted.  Instead, I closed my eyes and handed over the coloring book to my four year old daughter. Later when my husband got home she proudly showed him the picture that she and mommy colored together. My husband was impressed - with me. And I stayed up late after she went to bed coloring a new picture.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Keeping Me on My Toes


My son is a climber. 

Like seriously. The other day he was in his high chair and I turned around and he was standing on the tray with his hands on the back and one foot over the side about to jump off. This is new territory for me. Miss B. was always happy to stay put on the floor and play with her toys. She NEVER got into things.

Or on top of them. 

He's only ten months, but the crib is already in the lowest position because he tried to climb out of that too. He has long legs (from his daddy, not me) and if he can get he leg on something, he climbs it. 

So gone are my days of putting him somewhere safe for a little while while I get something done. Because with the climbing on top of stuff, comes the falling off of stuff.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Sometimes that Happens to Mommies

I was sitting on the living room floor playing with my ten month old son when suddenly I was besieged by the sneezes. I couldn't stop. And at around the tenth sneeze guess what happened? If you've ever pushed a baby out of your vagina you're only gonna need one guess. Yup. I peed my pants. My husband was laughing at me and when I said "Oh a peed my pants a little with that one!' my four year old was shocked. I wish I'd had a camera to capture her face at that moment. Have you've ever see a child's face when they've just been told something they find unbelievable and they aren't all together sure if you're serious or not? I could have just told her Santa wasn't real, or N'SYNC was getting back together.  She was standing there with her mouth open, half smiling, just staring at me.
 She said, "you're just kidding right?" I wish.
 "Nope, sometimes that happens to mommies."

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Who Needs Sleep Anyway?

wish I could sneak in a car nap!
I have so many things to do. All the time. It's never ending. And the OCD side of me has a little nervous breakdown  when things don't get done JUST RIGHT. I can't help it. I try to tone down my crazy for my kids sake. I don't want them to feel stressed when things are not going perfect, but unless I walk around in a constant state of wine induced intoxication (which actually sounds like fun right?) that's just who I am. And with my husband's recent job situation - we never know when he's going to work or be off - I took on a work from  home job. I had big dreams for this gig. I was gonna work just three hours a day and bring in some helpful extra income. HA! JUST three hours I said! NO big deal I said. Well  I've come to realize that unless I stay up past midnight or get up at four am , or maybe both, three hours ain't gonna happen. If my kids are awake they don't allow me the peace and quiet I need to work. as I type this post I have already gotten juice, changed a diaper, pulled dog food out of the baby's mouth, put Miss B in time out for feeding the baby dog food and taken three phone calls. So my choice is to do this thing in the morning before every gets up or at night after they are asleep. That doesn't leave me much sleeping time. But I haven't slept for eight hours in over a year so why start now right?

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Time Flies When You're Havin' Fun



Why does vacation takes so long to get here and then fly by so fast? Last Thursday we packed up the kids and drove the two hours to Gatlinburg for our first family vacation. This is the first time in a long time that any kind of trip was just about us and not centered around visiting somebody. We did the full on tourist thing (even though we've been to Gatlinburg so many times I don't think we really count as tourists there) and stayed at the Wilderness Adventures of the Smokies waterpark resort. It really was a blast. Most of the vacation centered around Miss B, but that was totally okay. I had fun just watching her have fun and experience new things. This WAS our first trip to the area with kids. I'm not normally a promoter of places, but I would recommend this as a place to take your kids for the weekend. There's loads to do, and a full service bar in the waterpark (obviously for mom and dad). Even being there with the baby wasn't hard. We're going to try and make this family vacation thing at least once a year. I trip for just us. I'm already ready for next year!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Attitude With a CAPITAL A

Dimples is nine and a half month now, and giving his sister a run for her money in the drama department. Miss B was never one to throw tantrums, so I guess her brother is making up for it. He bites me when he's mad and bangs his head on stuff when he's really really mad. I'm almost afraid to take him for his next check up! The boy has bruises and scrapes all over the place. They're going to think I abuse my children. Oh and heaven forbid I don't let him have something he's reaching for. I swear he tried to bitch slap me yesterday when I picked up to keep him from climbing up the stairs.


 
 
 
Photo
 
 
I guess it's only fair. Miss B was a really easy baby. She never got into stuff, never put anything in her mouth, and was a breeze to wean, get sleeping in her own bed, and potty train. Of course, I feel like since she skipped toddler and went straight to teenager, I thought that debt was paid.

I guess I couldn't have two easy babies. All I can hope is that this means he will be an easy toddler. Otherwise I might go crazy, (Pretty sure I already am!)

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

"We Don't Negotiate With Terrorists"

When our children are babies when can't wait for them to start talking right? We put our faces in theirs and say "mama mama" over and over again. Unless your my husband and you are trying to make it your mission for the first word to be "da da." But when they are cute and babbling, we don't ever think about the fact that not long after talking comes talking back.

Nick Jr, late at night, airs programming aimed at moms and one of their shows is called "Take Me To Your Mother."  The show follows comedian and new mother Andrea Rosen as she gets advice from all sorts of women from a variety of cultural backgrounds on raising kids. Last night, in an episode where Andrea was speaking with a group of chic French mommas, one of the women jokingly said, "we don't negotiate with terrorists." She was of course referring to the kids.  (watch this episode here :http://www.nickmom.com/tv/take-me-to-your-mother/videos/andrea-gets-some-grace/)  

It got me thinking about parenting philosophies and how we raise our kids. I was brought up in a household that allowed for no questions or explanations. What mom and dad said was law, no ifs ands or buts about it. This of course frustrated me to no end, especially as a teenager, and I always said that when I had kids I would listen to them. I would hear them out, let them express their opinions, and give reasonable explanations for my decisions. I guess I didn't realize that kids aren't always reasonable.

I never wanted to be that mom that said, "because I said so," but I've reconciled with the fact that sometimes "because I said so" really is the best response. So what about you? Is your house a dictatorship or a democracy? Something in between. I'm sure that just like with everything else when it comes to parenting, there is no one right way.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Dear Daughter

Dear Daughter,

Four years ago you came into my life and changed me in ways I could never have imagined.
Because of you I know love that is unconditional and worry that will never cease.
I only want the best for you in life, and I hope you know that I am doing the best I know how.
When you are happy, I am overjoyed, and when you are sad my heart is broken.
Having you in my life has taught me about the things that matter the most.
Smiles, hugs and kisses.
When I am sad, having you around makes me better, and when you are not around I will always be just a little bit sad.
We will have rocky times ahead. Lord knows we have already had a few.
But no matter what happens in the years to come, as you grown and become your own independent self, no matter how many fight we have over dirty rooms, homework, and boys, you will always be one of the most special things to have ever happened to me.
Thank you, daughter, for being mine, and bringing out the best in me, because you ARE the best of me.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Little Shoes, Big Sigh

Dimples got his first pair of shoes. He's almost walking now and since the weather will be turning in another month or two I want him used to wearing shoes before it gets cold. While I was putting his new shoes on him, it really hit me that this is it. I made the choice of only having two, and I still don't regret that, but I have to admit it makes me a little sad that my kids are growing up so fast on me and then that will be it. This is the last time I will be buying first shoes. Sigh.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Best Birthday Gift

This past Saturday was my eighth wedding anniversary and Monday was my birthday. Sunday was our day to celebrate. My husband told be I could do anything g I wanted. I decided to take Miss B. to her very first movie at a movie theater, while they boys stayed home. Since we are planning a trip in August, we both agreed not t o spend any money on presents either for the anniversary or my birthday. When I got home, though, my husband had indeed given me a present anyway. He did the dishes. We don't have a dishwasher, so it really is a pain and my least favorite thing to do. I would rather clean the bathroom. Even better, he pulled out the baby wrap because dimples wasn't taking a nap. I came home while he was in the middle of it and snapped this picture. Sometime the best things in life really are free.

Photo: A little father and son bonding while daddy does the dishes.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Philosphy and Underwear

Miss B. got new panties recently. She has a serious underwear fetish. I constantly have to tell her to put her dress down and stop showing people her undies. Her new princess panties sparked a conversation that went like this:

MB: Mommy, why don't you wear princess panties?
Me: Well, they don't make princess panties for grownups.
MB: I'm sad for you that you can't have princess panties.
Me: Yes, that is sad. Poor me.
MB: I think it's sad to be a grownup. I think you don't get to have much fun things like princess panties. I don't think you should be a grownup anymore, you should be a kid kike me. Then you could have more fun.
Me. It would be great to be a kid again, but it doesn't work that way.
MB: Well you said I could be anything I wanted. Can you be anything you want?
Me: I suppose if i tried hard enough.
MB: Well you should try hard to do more fun things.

Having this conversation with her made me realise more than ever how much they do notice things. And she's right, I need to try harder to do more fun things. 

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Mucus Plug and Other Things You Never Knew About Being Pregnant

A friend of mine and here husband are talking about starting a family, but her biggest fear is the pregnancy itself. Of course I am living proof that you can go through a lot of comlications and still come out with a beauliful and healthy baby at the end, but it got me thinking. There was so much about being pregnant that no one told me about until it was too late.

  • I knew I would get fat, but I did not know that my feet would too. And I'm not just talking about swelling. They got WIDER too!
  • Two words: linea niga - I had a happy trail that rivaled my husband's. And facial hair and back hair.
  • Speaking of back, oh did mine hurt. I expected as much at the end, but in the first trimester? 
  • I thought I had experienced heart burn before getting pregnant, but I was wrong. It felt like I had swallowed lava.  
  • It's a known fact that pregnant women are emotional, but if I had known the blubbering wreck that I could turn into without notice...I probably should've worn a warning label Warning: May burst into uncontrollable tears for no reason! Seriously. I cried once because the toilet paper was out.
  • And of course there is the mucus plug. I think i could've gone without knowing about that.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Murphy's Momma

We all know Murphy said "anything that can go wrong will go wrong"  This is what his momma said:

A clean shirt will be spit up on
Babies only poop in a fresh diaper
Freshly washed sheets attract pee and/or vomit
Children will not be hungry at meal time; the rest of the day won't stop asking for food
Even with a room full of toys they will be bored
Unless a sibling is playing with one of those toys; then that is the ONLY thing they want to do
The dog will start barking like crazy as soon as they are asleep
no matter how thoroughly you check, a crayon WILL be washed and then melted in the dryer
So will a piece of gum
They will hold their pee until you have to go to the bathroom or try to take a shower
They will start screaming the moment you get on the phone
They don't want to do chores. Unless you are folding laundry. Then they want to "help."

Friday, June 28, 2013

But I Just Had a Baby!

One of the best things about giving birth is the fact that for a few months afterwards it's okay that you are maybe not a small as you otherwise should be. People look at your muffin top and then see the baby and it's accepted that you should be a little heavier right now. Especially if the last time the person saw you you were nine moths pregnant and, if you were anything like me, looking like Andre the Giant's long lost sister. Anybody want a peanut?  

 No one has to know that these pants were too tight before I got pregnant!

But, as my son is turning eight months tomorrow, the time is coming to and end where I can hold him up like a fat pass and expect understanding. You would think, living in a country where two thirds of us are overweight or obese, there would be more understanding, or sympathy, but that's not the case. Part of  it is the media and culture drill into our minds that we are not healthy/beautiful/lovable if we are fat. And I have mixed feelings. Part of me loathes the image I see in the mirror. The kangaroo pouch that was once a stomach, The hips that spread and stayed that way. But then Sir Mix Alot reminds me that big butts are good too and I think to myself that I'm not THAT bad. I could be worse. And most importantly I don't want my daughter to see me feeling bad about myself. I want to teach her about internal beauty and all that. I am okay this way. I want my body back.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Some Things Never Change

It's summer time and watching Miss B. at play I think back to my own summer adventures, When you're a grown up summer isn't as special and exciting as it is when you are a kid. Most people don't take summer off from work. The bills certainly don't take summer off. But when you're a kid summer has a kind of magic, and watching my daughter, it's kind of infectious. Even with all of today's modern technology, summer still means swimming and barbeque's, tan lines and skinned knees. As the kids get older it will mean family vacations and camping trips too. It makes me feel a little nostalgic, and a little sad because I know that all too soon my kids will grow up and loose that innocence. For now though, we are having a great time!

Friday, June 21, 2013

He's Such a BOY!

Other than the diaper situation, new born babies are pretty much the same. Eat, sleep and poop. doesn't matter much what gender they are. As he's getting older, and developing his personality though, I am definitely noticing a difference between my son and my daughter. When Miss B. was this age, she was timid. Curious but cautious. Not Dimples. He seems to lack any sense of self preservation what so ever. Must be that Y chromosome  He recently has started pulling up on things. I have had more fear induced heart attacks in the past month than Miss B. cause me in her entire four years of life. He doesn't care if what he's pulling up on will hold him or not, so things come toppling down. Balance? Not important! He doesn't care if he falls and smacks his head on the ground. I'm told that this only gets worse as they get bigger.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Jelly and Other Things

Every year this time we start our summer canning and for us it begins with Apple Jelly. Miss B has no idea how lucky she is to have home made jelly for her PB&J sandwiches. This year, we let her help. These are the sorts of things I hope to teach her. The kind of knowledge I want to pass on. The was a time when kids had no choice. Gardening, preserving, sewing, building...these were necessary skills for life. Now they are considered hobbies. Now there are so many other distractions. TVs and computers rule, even at our house. I didn't mean for it to happen, and despite my best intentions, I too have a kid is it way too attached to the electronic forms of entertainment. My pregnancy with my son was difficult, and all restriction on things like TV time went out the window. I'm not saying that's an excuse, it's just what happened. Fortunately, she's still at an age where she WANTS to participate in what mom and dad are doing. So maybe it's not to late.

Monday, June 17, 2013

The Mothers Before Us

Sometimes I just don't want to. Like right now. I just want to sit at my computer and feed my social media habit. I love my children, and I am glad to me their mother, but sometimes I don't want to. I just want to be ME. I want to be selfish. I think about the women of the past. The mothers before us. Not just our mothers, or even our grandmothers, but before them. The ones that had even fewer choices than us. The women who didn't have the option of parking their kid in front of a TV for thirty minutes so they could have a break. The women who couldn't just pick up take out when they didn't feel like cooking. The women who had no choices in how they spent their day. The things they did made the difference between survival or not. Life or death for their children. Did their kids follow them around all day screaming "play with me!" ? Was there time for that? Did they get time for themselves? To be selfish? I don't know if I am strong enough to have been one of those women.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Just Us Girls


Today for Father's day, I got to spend alot more time with Miss B. Usually when my husband is home, he spends all of his time with her and I focus my attentions on the baby. It's a nice break for me. Recently I've been having some hard times with her. We are too much alike I think. My husband chose to spend his day just chillin' with the baby. He doesn't get much time with his son. That left me and Miss B. together most of the day. We went swimming, and she took a ride with me to the store. We cranked the music up loud and were having so much fun I took the long way home. I forget how much fun she is. I seem to spend so much time arguing with her these days, that moments like these are rare. It's probably my fault. I get too caught up in the stress of it all, and I fear she takes the brunt of it. I think we need more days like this one.

Friday, June 14, 2013

They call ME mom

Do you ever sit there and think...I mean really think about the fact that you're a parent? Sometimes I just lie there and look at one or both of my kids and I think WOW...what have I gotten myself into? or even, what have I gotten these poor kids into? Am I qualified to do this? I have an okay relationship with my own parents, but honestly we aren't close and we definitely have had some very rocky times. Most of the time I feel under prepared. I feel like I took a job, but I lied on my resume. Yesterday I got mad. CRAZY mad at Miss B. because she was arguing with me about her clothes. I felt like my head was about to pop off! But sometimes I think I have alot to offer these kids. I want to teach them so much and mold them into wonderful people. It's like getting a chance to have the relationship with them I could never have with my parents. It still just blows my mind, though, ever time I look at them and think about it. These two little people call me mom.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Granola Momma

Someone recently described me as "granola"...who me? I mean, I garden, recycle, and have taught my four year old yoga, but..oh wait, I DO wear alot of L.L.Bean...so maybe. And we DO eat alot of cheddar bunnies (if you even know what cheddar bunnies are you might be a bit granola too).  I suppose if I was going to classify myself, that might be it, but there are aspects of me that don't fit into that label either. Do granola people hunt? We do - for food only, NOT sport. Mostly  what we do could best be described as urban homesteading. The more I think about it, though, I really would just prefer not to be labeled at all!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Becoming my Mother....One Chin Hair at a Time

Every woman I know has at least a couple of chin hairs, and I'm no exception. In fact as I'm getting older I'm noticing them more frequently. My mother has always had the annoying habit of unconsciously picking at her chin hair while you are trying to have a conversation with her. It's so distracting, and she usually doesn't realize shes doing it. Last night, while talking with The Big Kid, he looked at me and said, "What are you doing? Stop it!" I immediately had this image in my mind of my mother picking her chin hairs. And I totally get why she does it. Once you feel one of those little spikes protruding from your chin you just can't leave it alone. This is happening to me more and more. Not only the chin hairs, but becoming my mother.

Friday, June 7, 2013

One Hairy Leg

This morning I realized that the last time I shaved my legs, I only did one. So now I have one leg that's a little stubbly and one that is heading to gorilla status. I don't wear shorts much because I'm so fair skinned that no matter how much sun I get I don't tan (but I DO burn!), so I really just shave my legs for comfort. When I was pregnant, I read in one of my books that a woman's brain loses mass during pregnancy, and I'm not all together sure you get any of it back. I find myself doing - or rather forgetting to do - all kinds of things these days...

I ofter put things that should be refrigerated in the pantry instead, like open juice
I sometimes put things in the fridge that don't even belong in the kitchen, like a bottle of shampoo (true story!)
I have to wash the same load of laundry over and over because I forget to put it in the dryer and it starts to smell.
I will put left over food into containers and then leave them sitting on the counter all night.
I leave my keys in the front door on a daily basis.


Is this just me? Have I literally lost my mind?

Thursday, June 6, 2013

These Are the Words That Are Comin' Outa My Mouth

"Good Morning!"
'Eat your breakfast!"
"Do you need to go potty?"
"SIT down and eat!"
"why are you crying?"
"WHAT are you doing!"
"Mommy's on the phone!"
"SHHHH you brother is sleeping!!!!"
"Sit down and eat your lunch"

"I KNOW you need to potty."
"Wash your hands."
"Don't put that in your mouth!"
"EAT YOUR LUNCH!"
"WHAT ARE YOU DOING!!!!!"
"STOP THAT!!!!"
"I KNOW YOUR HUNGRY, YOU SHOULD'VE EATEN YOUR LUNCH!"
"BE PATIENT!"
"LEAVE THE DOG ALONE!!!!"
"DADDY"S HOME!!!!!!!"


"I love you sweetheart, goodnight....."

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Chicken Nuggets come from Chickens

Miss B. made a startling discovery yesterday. Our neighbors have chickens, and the coop is at the back of their property which butts up to the back of ours. Ever since she was little, Miss B. has loved running up to the back fence and watching the chickens clucking around. Yesterday we were outside and one of the roosters was crowing. Out of nowhere she said "Mommy what are chicken nuggets?" Since she was looking at the chickens when she said this I knew she had made the connection. I believe in being as honest as possible with her so I told her the truth. She thought about it for a minute than ran off to pick flowers. She hasn't said anything else, so I don't know how she feels about it, but chicken is on the menu for dinner to night, so I guess I will find out!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Test Passed


The Big Kid in the garden

Right after Mother's Day I did a post about my husband being home from work for a while (A Test). Just as abruptly as he was laid off he was call back, much sooner than we expected. I am really grateful that he is working again, but I have to say I really enjoyed having him home. I wasn't sure that I would. I love the man, but I was worried that having him around constantly would be like having a third kid around the house. Sometimes it was, but most of the time it was having a helper. He entertained Miss B., spent some quality time with Dimples, and even did the dishes a time or two. He also got to devote alot of time to the garden, which puts him in a really good mood. It wasn't as much of a strain as I had feared. Possibly because it wasn't for a long as we had thought it would be. It's probably a good thing he went back early though, because I was starting to get spoiled!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Dust if You Must


Photo: Dust if you must....
I came across this poem on facebook, and it really struck a chord with me. I spend so much time trying to be perfect. I get stress when the house is messy, stressed when Miss B is too bouncy (and since she's four that's always), stressed when I feel like I'm getting nothing accomplished. But then I read this and I think, my kids are so unhappy when I'm stressed, but when I DO manage to relax and just let things be, everything is great. Having happy kids - isn't that accomplishing something? Can just spending a day playing with them being considered doing something? I know it's not New Year, but this is kind of a resolution of mine. To relax more and be able to just let things be as they will.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

We're in Trouble Now

It's official. Dimples is mobile! The difference between him and his sister is making her understand that she can't leave stuff where he can get it. I took this picture after he snagged a bowl from the tea party she was having and took it under his play seat. In Miss B's eyes this changes EVERYTHING. She didn't mind sharing her toys when he would just lay there and she could pick and choose what to let him have, but now that he's helping himself, she doesn't want him to touch any of her stuff. I heard for the first time her screams of "no that's mine!" followed by his cries. I know it won't be the last.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Honeysuckle



Miss B 2yrs old

The honeysuckle is in bloom here. It's a sign the warm weather really has arrived. When we bought our house seven years ago, this honeysuckle bush was the very first thing I planted. It grows all along our front fence, and the fragrance is wonderful. You'll smell it before you see it, and if the windows are open, the scent fills the entire house. When I was a kid in Louisiana, the playground fence at my elementary school was overgrown with wild honeysuckle. When the sweet flowers bloomed, the usually crowded monkey bars would be empty and there would be no line for the swings. All the kids could be found at the back of the play yard enjoying a tiny sweet treat. Of course I can't keep Miss B. out of them. She was overjoyed with excitement when they bloomed this year, and this was the first time I told her their secret. Seeing her standing at the fence giggling and sucking the nectar out of the flowers, it takes me back to my childhood. Sigh.



Friday, May 24, 2013

Co-Sleeping

I've seen alot of discussion on this topic recently. I think it's one of the most debated things between us moms right up there with breastfeeding and circumcision. I think everyone has and opinion (even those with no right to judge on the matter). Here's what I have to say: With my first I didn't set out thinking "I'm going to co-sleep." It just happened. In fact, I was wracked with guilt in the beginning because I felt, or was made to feel by some people, that I was doing it wrong and it was bad for my daughter. People told me I would smother her and it wasn't safe, and other people told me I would never get her out of our bed. I was so scared of the first that for the first few months I slept with her on top of me. I worried about that too because she was sleeping on her stomach and all the "experts" warn against that too, As for the second, when I was ready, about the time she was one, I decided to attempt a move to the crib. I started her off slowly, getting her to nap in there during the day. Then one night, I put her in there and walked out. She cried, of course, but it only lasted a couple of hours
and that was it. She was ready too. With the exception of a few stormy nights, she has slept in her own bed ever since. When my son came along, I knew I would follow the same path with him. He is almost seven months old and he sleeps in the bed with us. Pretty soon I'll get him working on the crib. He is alot different than my daughter, and I'm anticipating it might be a little more difficult, but I don't regret having him in the bed with me. For one thing, when he wakes up in the middle of the night I don't even have to wake up to nurse him. So co-sleeping has worked out for me. But that doesn't mean that I think other women who choose something different are bad moms. I think there are so many worse ways we can worry about messing up our kids, and I think that we all need to stop this pitting women against women, mother vs mother in this who does it best contest. There is no one right way, only the way that's right for you.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Should Every Kids Get a Trophy?

I happen to have a kid that is naturally athletic. She plays soccer, does karate and gymnastics. I know this sounds like a lot for a four year old, but I don't force her, and she loves it. I even had to draw the line because she wanted to take dance too. I don't know where she gets it from because I have neither the talent nor the desire for sports. This past weekend was the last game of the season for soccer, and at the end all the coaches for all the teams handed trophies to all the kids. Now at this age, there is no tournaments so there really is no winning teams and loosing teams, but in the older age groups all the kids get them, even if their team never wins a match. Is that fair? I don't really have a decisive opinion on this issues, because I understand both sides. On one hand, my kid is really good and I feel like she should be recognized as special for this, but on the other hand, I would be heart broken for her if she had to see other kids getting a trophy, but she didn't get one. But by giving all the kids trophies what are we teaching them? Are we really preparing them for the realities of life? Are we just setting them up for future disappointments? I really don't know. What do you think?

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

3 Going on 13

Miss B will be four this August, but I swear she's shooting for 13. I feel like I'm living with a teenager. She's already got down the eye roll, arguing with everything I say, and dramatic door slamming. She cries because I won't let her play with my make up and only wants to wear the ugliest clothes I think were ever made for little girls. The other day, in the midst of yet another argument, I said, "you know your life would be a whole lot easier if you would just listen to me!" to which she responded, "NO, my life would be easier if you would just let me do what I want!"  sounds like every teenager girl I've ever met.

Monday, May 13, 2013

A Test

Mother's Day was awesome. My kids were even kind enough to take a nap at the same time! Miss B. rarely naps anymore, it was especially appreciated. Then, around eight in the evening, my husband got the call we have been dreading. His boss called, and he's run out of work. My husband is a brick mason, so we do plan for some amount of instability. You have to when your income depends on good weather. It's not a permanent lay off. They have a big job starting at the end of August, or beginning of September. We can survive this, if we are careful with our money, but can we survive three or four months spending all day together? Part of me thinks yea! I will have a helper around the house, but another part of me worries that he will be another body here making even more mess. I love my husband dearly, but am I ready to have his constant presence? This will be a test for us.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Push Present

"What the hell is a push present? Don't tell me women get gifts for giving birth? This might sound cheesy but the best gift would be a healthy baby! Just saying"



This was a post from someone I know on  Facebook yesterday that started a kind of debate. The person who wrote this has never given birth, and doesn't have any children. What was most surprising to me was how offended I automatically felt by her comments. (I would like to note that I love this person like a sister). Yes, a healthy baby is the best thing you could ask for, but I kind of think the concept of a push present is kind of sweet. When you've pushed a watermelon out of your vagina, getting a little gift from the person who put the watermelon there in the first place is a nice gesture. I know extravagant  push presents are all the rage in Hollywood, and I'm sure that's what she's referring to, but the point is should she get to have an opinion about this?

Friday, May 10, 2013

Flashback Friday

This being my first flashback post, I've decided to go back to what brought me here in the first place. The birth of my first child, my daughter. This picture is her and her daddy when she was one day old. From the very beginning they adored each other. I had a c-section with her, so we had a few extra days in the hospital and he hardly ever left our side. He changed her diapers, gave her her first bath, and even put her in her first outfit. On the rare occasion he was out of the room, the nurses would gush to me about what a daddy my little girl had. And they're still a duo. Everyday when he comes home from work they play. He takes her outside and lets her help him in the garden, or plays soccer with her, or takes her for a bike ride. He's a big guy, 6'1" and broad shouldered with a gruff looking beard. Paul Bunyan in the flesh. But he can shelve all that rugged masculinity and let her put make up one him and paint his toes. The best thing is he has a kind of patience with her that I can never seem to find. Probably because she is so much like me.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

My Wal-Mart Rant

First of all, let me explain that in some places of this country, Wal-marts aren't as big of deal, and there are plenty of other options. But here, in southeast TN, Walmart is a way of life. I'm serious. There is one off EVERY exit and they are HUGE and open 24 hours. They are referred to as "Wally World". As a person on a budget, there aren't a whole lot of other choices, and they are all big corporate conglomerates anyway. And lets not forget Sam's Club - Walmart's version of Costco, where you can buy everything from sugar to condoms buy the pallet. They even sell gas. I LOATHE shopping there. I feel like even when I "save" I loose. Like everything made for Wal-Mart was made cheaper to start with. What's the point of only paying a buck fifty for a bag of lemons when they are going to be growing penicillin three days after you bring them home..which is exactly what happened and ignited this rant. I told Miss B we would make lemonade today, but when I got up this morning, the lemons, which looked fine yesterday, were covered in green and white powder. It's like that with almost all produce I buy from there - which is not alot. But since lemons don't grow well here, I have to buy them. Or not, I guess we don't HAVE to drink lemonade. Or we could buy it pre-made. But I know this, and yet I continue to shop there.  Isn't the definition of insanity repeating the same action and expecting different results?.......Aaaand end rant.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Since Having Kids..



There is lots of things that I do differently since having kids:

 Beginning with the luggage I now carry around, because let's face it, that's what a diaper bag really is, luggage. And even though you stuff it until it can barely be zipped, it will ALWAYS be missing something you need. Usually it's a change of clothes for one of your children because you'll leave the same clothes in there until they've out grown them, which you don't realize until they are standing naked in a public bathroom, poop/pee/vomit covered clothes in a pile on the floor and you're holding up something they stopped fitting into six months ago.  Can't wait to carry a cute little purse again.      

I stopped wearing dangle earrings three years ago

I spell a lot more words when I'm talking (but ironically enough my spelling when I'm typing is horrible! Thank God for spell check!)
                                             
The song that get stuck in my head are the themes to kids shows. Wanna have a vote on most annoying? I vote for the Dora theme song.

It's not all bad though:

I care alot less of what people think of me.

I'm alot less selfish than I used to be.

I have superpowers.

I'm more loved than ever.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Just Chillin'

I don't write much about Dimples, but he's still here. His personality is starting to show itself, and thankfully, so far at least, he's polar opposite from his drama queen sister. He just sits around, usually eating his toes, or if he's wearing them, his socks. He's popped out a couple of teeth, along with BUCKETS of drool. He's so content all the time, and I'm really thankful. I don't know if I could manage a demanding baby along with Little Miss B. He does get fussy when I'm not around, making things hard on his daddy, but as long as Mommy is in the room, he's a happy camper. Recently we've been getting him more toys - he's six months now so he needs more than little wrist rattles. Miss B has confiscated them all, but he doesn't seem to care. He worships his sister. She was the first person to make him laugh, and she still can get him rolling like no one else. He smiles at everybody which makes me really popular with the old folks at the grocery store. I don't know if this relaxed personality is partly because he's a boy? Either way, I'll take it!

Monday, May 6, 2013

Terrible Twos?

If the twos are considered terrible than what are the threes? Tantrum throwing threes? Torturous threes? I LOVED the twos with Little Miss B. She was funny and sweet....and then like someone flipped a switch on her third birthday she wasn't so sweet anymore. Don't get me wrong, I still love my daughter dearly, but over the past year I have felt a few other emotions towards her too. I'm sure my difficult pregnancy, and then the birth of her brother during this time might have made things a little harder. Soon she will be four and I'm hoping the switch will flip again. One of the reasons I opted to be a stay at home mom was I had fantasies of raising my daughter and imparting all of my knowledge to her. I had dreams of us baking, and my teaching her to knit and sew and garden and cook. Basically I wanted to be the stay at home crafty version of the Gilmore Girls. So far, it hasn't quite worked out that way. We spend most of our time with me standing there just bewildered and absolutely speechless by something she's done.  So I have my fingers crossed for the fours. Fabulous fours maybe?

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Oh the Things They Say

Little Miss B has a fun new habit...she likes to ask complete strangers if they have fur on their privates. Yup, she's asking people about pubic hair. This all started a few days ago when I was taking a bath and of course she had to use the toilet. So I'm sitting naked in the tub, having a conversation with her while she poops when all of a sudden she point to my crotch and says, "mommy, why do you have fur there?" Then she stands up on the stool she uses and doubles over to look at herself. "I don't have fur!" I explained  to her that little kids didn't have fur, only grown ups. She was fascinated.
"Does Daddy have fur?"
"Yes."
"Does Brother have fur?'
"No"
"Because he's a boy?"
"No, because he's not a grownup."
"Doesn't Aunt J. have fur?"

She proceeded to name every person she could think of, questioning the existence of their pubic hair. I didn't even go into explaining to her about the removal of the 'fur' and to what extent that some people choose. I was actually kind of unprepared for this conversation. She's seen me naked a thousand times and has never commented before. When we brought Dimples home I was all prepared for the penis conversation, but she never asked about it. She was more interested in his umbilical cord before it fell off. And now, when we go places and people talk to her, she wants to know if they have fur.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Clean House, Messy House

My husband's cousin and his wife are some of the only people that have stayed regularly in our lives since we had kids. Probably because even though they don't have any of their own, they both really like children and aren't bothered by the noises young kids make that tend to make other spawnless adults cringe. They've been talking recently about starting a family of their own and I really hope they do.It always makes me laugh when I go over to their house and she is all apologetic because she didn't get a chance to clean before we came. I've tried explaining to her that her idea of messy would be what my house might look like if everyone left for like two days and I had 48hours of uninterrupted cleaning. Part of it is that they have yet to accumulate all the stuff that kids come with. At this point, if we are having company, I have to concentrate on a few key areas. I clear the folded/unfolded (or maybe dirty) laundry off of the couch with the least amount of juice stains. I do the foot sweep, pushing all toys off to the side out of the main areas of walking. Check the bathroom and make sure the toilet has been flushed and clean and droplets of pee off the seat, and I might even take a quick glance in the fridge and toss any containers of food that have transitioned from leftovers to science experiment. That's about all I get cleaned for company....which probably explains why we don't have that much.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Mom Has Eyes in the Back of Her Head

nothing is really lost until your mom can't find itWhen I gave birth, along with two kids and a bladder problem I also got MOMMY POWERS. It is amazing. You know that saying "mom has eyes in the back of her head"? She really does along with a few other special abilities...

1. The ability to notice the most random object (like a barbie shoe or piece of string) an hour before someone is looking for it.

2. Can sense disaster moments before it strikes

3. Knows where EVERYTHING is. (You have to be careful with this superpower because if used too often family will become lazy and stop looking for things themselves).

4. Gets an iron stomach. NOTHING will gross mom out.

5. Can "hear" trouble...especially when it's being too quite.

Anybody get these powers too? How about other magical abilities that came along with having kids?

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

I Let Them Eat Dirt

What is it about kids and their vegetables? Do they naturally hate them or is it some self fulfilling prophecy where we automatically expect them to not want the veggies so were start off being aggressive about it, which is what is putting them off? Miss B actually likes vegetables, just not on her plate. She will come snatch a piece of a carrot or broccoli from the cutting board, but if it's on her plate she "doesn't yike dat." Her favorite way to eat her veggies, though, it covered in dirt right from the ground. Even before we had kids my husband and I gardened. I think he wants to be a farmer when he grows up, because every year he adds more and more. Our garden is actually one thing I'm really proud of. Miss B gets a kick out of helping her daddy too. I've always heard that if you show kids where healthy foods come from, they will want to eat them. I guess that's kind of true. But hey, if it gets them eating the good stuff, I don't care if it has a little dirt on it.


Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Embarrassing Mommy in Public

Funny Confession Ecard: Just when you think you might be feeling good about your Mommy skills, a trip to the store with your kids can put you back in your place.I love it when I ask my husband to stop at the grocery store on his way home because we only need one or two things and he's all "why didn't you go today?" Ummm, excuse me? I'm not taking these kids out on my own unless the pantry is bare and they're gnawing on the dog bone. I sure will eat oyster crackers for lunch to avoid a trip to the grocery store. And anywhere without baskets is definitely out. Inevitably, Miss B. will fight me about either riding in a cart, or not getting some ridiculously priced toy that she will loose and or/break before we get to the checkout line. Anytime I see a child having a public tantrum I am reminded of when Miss B. was like two and half and I took her with me to the tag renewal office. First let me explain that she has this weird desire to sit in every chair or bench she sees. I don't know why. Well we were in line, and clear across the room was one lone little wooden chair, that I was praying she wouldn't notice. The place was pretty crowded of course because it was the end of the month and everyone was renewing their tags. Sure enough, she spotted the chair and started pulling on my arm. I wasn't about to let her go over there, so I crouch down and start whispering furiously in her ear. You know, making threats you know you can't keep in public. She didn't care. She started screaming and crying. What made things worse was the little girl in line behind us about the same age who was of course behaving herself perfectly. Everyone is staring at us. Finally, the clerk behind the desk had me cut in line in front of about fifteen other people. I was sooo embarrassed. I have never taken her back there.
      It's funny too when we are someplace and she sees someone's kid misbehaving. She's all "mommy WHY is that girl acting like that?" she usually says it loud enough for the other parent to hear too. I get secret joy out of other kid's tantrums, though, because it makes me feel better about mine. Having children has made me sorry for every judgement I ever passed before I was a parent.

Monday, April 29, 2013

The Choice of Two

I was never sure if I would be a Mother or not. It wasn't something I was against, but neither did I feel like my life would be missing something if I didn't have any children. One thing I was sure of was that if I had one I would have at least a second one if I could. I have three sisters, and I think siblings are important. It's especially something I realize as an adult watching my husband (he's only has one half brother who is severely mentally disabled) deal with the realities of having an ageing father all on his own. When the time comes to take care of our parents, my sisters and I will have each other. I decided that two was enough. After the birth of my son I had my tubes tied. I'm surprised at how surprised other people are about this. I'm mean, have you seen how much kids cost these days? My mom, who is one of seven, was especially disappointed. My other reason for making this choice was the undeniable fact that I don't do pregnant well. My younger sister and I had are kids pretty close together. Her daughter is three months older than mine, and her son is six months older than mine. It would be great if they didn't live twelve hours away. When we were pregnant together the first time, I hated her. This is not an overstatement. She was one of those chipper pregnant women that make the rest of us look bad...like being fat and sick doesn't do enough of that already. She only gained weight in her stomach, getting that cute bump. She wore her regular clothes until she was like eight months. I got pregnant all over. I didn't swell
alot, but simple got wide. Everywhere. My butt, my feet, my face even seemed to get wider. She was never sick. I never stopped being sick. I remember one particularly pleasant day while she was cheerfully telling me about her recent cravings for McDonald's french fries, I was pulled over in a McDonald's parking lot right across from the drive thru speaker throwing up. People in line got to order their lunch to the sounds of me losing mine. She went into labor all on her own and had a fairly quick first time birth - I think it was only like six hours - and she pushed out her baby medication free. At 37 weeks I had to be induced for pre-eclampsia, and after twelve hours of labor that went no-where they told me my daughter's head was swelling and rushed me off to an emergency c-section. They cut me open and the doctor said "would you look at that!" Not her head. Her butt. She was breech and they didn't know. Her but was stuck in the birth canal. So I was secretly thrilled when with her second she had a bad case of morning sickness. Okay not so secretly. I gloated a little. Alot. I was mean to her, but karma really is a bitch because minutes after I saw two lines on the sick I threw up and didn't stop until after he was born. Her second pregnancy went by, with her getting over her sickness by the fourth month. When her time came she literally went to the hospital crowning. At nine weeks I had a tear in the placenta that caused heavy bleeding and I was put on bed rest. At 37 weeks, on a Tuesday, I started having frequent painful contractions. I went to the hospital and I was dilated 4cm. Twelve hours later they sent me home because my contractions were no longer regular and I wasn't dilating. This went on for DAYS. I would have a burst of regular contractions that lasted for hours, then they would subside. Then on Friday in the middle of the night my mucus plug came out and I began having really intense contractions. An hour later the pain was so intense I couldn't sit down. I get to the hospital, just sure I was about to have this baby (I was going for a VBAC), they get me in the triage/observation room (which is the size of a closet), and tell me I'm only 4.5cm dilated. What's more is that since I'm still in my 37th weeks, they cannot do anything to further my labor. They can't give me PIT or break my water. Even better is that they did a quick ultrasound to make sure this one wasn't breech and they discovered that while he was head down, he was face up, and I was experiencing what's called "back labor"...they should find a way to simulate this and use is to torture terrorists. They couldn't give me and epidural either, because I wasn't officially admitted. I was still in "observation." I stayed in that closet in the worst pain of my life - they gave me morphine, which I would equate to taking aspirin after getting hit by a car - for six hours. They checked me ever thirty minutes and I stayed 4.5cm dilated for 5.5 hours. In the last half hour I dilated from 4.5 to 7cm. I got a room, and then shortly after the epidural. They took the needle out of my back, laid me down, and my blood pressure bottomed out and my heart started racing. It took them twenty minutes to get me stable. An hour later my son was born via a successful VBAC.
      So it was an easy decision for me to stop at two. My sister says she's not having anymore either, but I don't believe her. She didn't have her tubes tied, and she likes being pregnant.