Monday, December 13, 2010

Guess What?

Hey, guess what? When you want to microwave something, you should probably put it IN the microwave before you turn it on. Because if you don't, flames will be bursting out of the microwave by the time you turn around and realize your food is still sitting on the counter behind you.

Thankfully I caught it early enough that my microwave is pretty much unscathed. But man, that was freaky.

Also. Had my post-baby check up today, and my OB informed me that since I'm nursing, I need to be consuming extra calories. I forget how many she said, but I think it was quite a bit. And I was all, "MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ME!! I'm a get me some pie!" As long as that pie does not contain dairy, broccoli, garlic, onions, tomatoes, oranges, or anything spicy. Because I can't eat that crap.

Also, too. Mom was here watching Emma today while I was at the doctor with Iz. She taught Emma about Santa Claus, and how he says HO HO HO, MERRY CHRISTMAS! For about an hour after she got up from her nap, Emma was walking around the house saying, "Santa say HO HO HO" in a nice, deep, santa-like voice. It was awesome. For some reason she hasn't picked up as quickly on our lessons about Jesus. Probably because Jesus doesn't have a cool catchphrase.

Also, also, too. Isabella (aka Izzy, Iz, Bella, Squishabella, and Squizzy) has started smiling. And it's frikken frakken amazing. Especially because she will be screaming and crying and making a ruckus, let out a big giant toot, and then suddenly stop, look at me, and smile ear to ear. What's funny is that Mike does that very same thing!

Also, too, too. PEOPLE ARE COMING SOON! So excited for the holiday festivities. I love this time of year:)

Monday, December 6, 2010

My bad...

nice to meet you!
how's my hair?

tuckered out
sleeping some more...
still sleeping...

and sleeping some more!
Emma holding Izzy for the first time

she loves when Izzy dresses like a teddy bear!

Happy Birthday!!
A hat and presents, what else do you need?


Dino shirt
Daddy and his turkeys
Emma didn't feel like sharing that day...
car shirt

loves daddy's hunting hat!
tubby time!
she loves the tub!
Emma checking on sister:)
Ok, ya'll happy now?

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Oh hey, Guys!

Soooo...forgive my tardiness on the new baby post. We been busy up in here! The craziness of a new baby/second child, plus a laptop that is running realllllly slow because of a virus that required completely erasing my hard drive has left me with little motivation to get online and blog. BUT! Life is good! Isabella is snoozing in my arms as we speak (ok in my ONE arm...the other arm is typing this). She is a sweet little thing, who currently having some tummy issues. Otherwise, she is rather pleasant and charming:)

L&D was...well it was L&D! It wasn't nearly as long or as bad as it was with Emma. She was born about 5 hours after we got to the hospital, 7 lbs even, 19.5 inches long with a perfectly round head. The amazing thing is that I literally only had to push 6 times before she popped out. In the middle of my second push, my nurse had to tell me to stop, then she RAN to get the doctors. They barely had time to get the table set up before Izzy made her appearance! The whole crew told me they'd never seen someone push so determinedly, or seen a baby come with so few pushes! Lets just say, after 41 weeks...yes...I was determined!

Ok, so then Emma turned 2! She is such a big girl these days! We had a great party with the family, and Emma was spoiled to near death. She got cars, and blocks, and stuffed animals, and clothes... you name it!! Pardon the advertisement here, but I have to tell you guys about these shirts I got for Emma...

My college vball teammate's sister runs a small business called Caleb's Closet, and she sews really cute kids clothes. I have been frustrated by clothing choices, because Emma LOVES dinosaurs and cars, but all clothes of that variety are super masculine. She still doesn't have much hair, and STILL gets mistaken for a boy, so I'm not about to dress her in boys clothes. So, I special ordered two shirts, a girly dinosaur and a girly car. I will post pics soon, but needless to say, Emma freakin loves 'em. Out of 7 days a week, she's been wearing one of them 4 days. She'd wear them 7 days a week if I were on top of the laundry.

Gotta eat, so lets recap. Had Izzy. Emma turned 2.

the end

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Small Miracles

Heavy, heavy sigh...

Have you ever felt like you were dodging bullet after bullet? Like you were living on the edge of constant catastrophe, and yet you could feel a strange force behind you, stopping you from tumbling into the abyss? Ok, maybe a little dramatic, but that's how I've been feeling lately. The last few weeks just seem to have been riddled with one harsh reality after another. And I have been worried, worried, worried. And it does not help that I tend to over-worry when there's NOTHING to worry about in the first place. (like that time that was my entire senior year of high school, when I never slept, because I would lay awake at night worrying about what would happen to Mom if Dad ever died??) Throw some ACTUAL stuff in my direction, and the worry mode goes into extreme overload.

This has been even more true of the last few days. Emma has been working on her two year molars (her last two teeth have cut through! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!) and was getting up in the middle of the night. Friday at 3 am, she was up again, and Mike, being the good guy that he is, told me to stay put and that he'd get up with her, get her some medicine, and get her back to bed. So I laid back down and closed my eyes, only to hear Mike and Emma screaming as they fell down the entire flight of stairs. I jumped out of bed to find them in a crumpled heap at the bottom.

Fast forward, and Emma very suddenly began showing signs of a cold on Monday. What was minor on Monday very quickly turned into, what seemed to me, a very bad cold. I've been worried enough about how she'll deal when the new baby comes, and the last thing I want is for her to be sick when we bring the new baby home. I don't want to have to keep them separated, nor do I want Emma to feel rejected if she can't come near the baby. So I took her to the doctor to find that she has double ear infections and bronchitis.

Fast forward to just about 2.5 hours ago, and Emma and I were driving on 81S, going about 60mph in the right hand lane, when a car came up behind us in the left lane, and decided to merge into the right lane before it had completely passed us. Its rear bumper was in line with my sideview mirror. I had to lay on the horn, slam on the brakes, and swerve all over the road, nearly hitting a guard rail and two other cars in the process, to avoid being hit by her. The other driver didn't even flinch, just kept on coming.

One thing after another. And yet today, as I was cuddling with Emma on the couch, I could not get past this feeling that no, I haven't been dodging bullets, but I have been reaping one blessing after another.

Friday night, Mike fell and slid down the stairs. He was able to wrap Emma up in his arms so that the worst of her injuries was a scraped chin. He himself has a pretty banged up shoulder, hip and foot, but nothing is broken, and he can generally function as normal, even if he is still sore. I can't stop thinking about how that could have gone wrong. He is a very, very large man. What if he had dropped her? Landed on top of her? What if he had fell head over heals, instead of just sliding? What if either of them had gotten a limb stuck between the rails? But none of that happened...

Take Emma's illness. It cropped up out of the blue, and has only been going for a few days. All instincts told me it was just a cold, and to let her ride it out. But this morning I received a prompting that I needed to call the doctor. Our pediatrician is very popular, and even in cases like this, it can sometimes take two or three days before he has an opening in his schedule. So I called in this morning expecting just to talk to someone from nurse triage. I talked to the nurse and she agreed with me that it just sounded like a simple cold, and there wasn't much to be done except for Tylenol to help ease her discomfort. And then as I was about to hang up, she spoke up, saying "well you know, it wouldn't hurt if you wanted to bring her in and have Dr. Baker take a look at her, just in case..." I agreed, and hung up thinking I'd get a call in the next day or two for an appointment. 10 minutes later I got a call saying they'd had a short notice cancellation, and Dr. Baker would be available in an hour. This never happens, so I jumped on it. As Dr. Baker was checking her out, and gave me her diagnosis, he said to me,

"I'm glad I was able to see her today. These bugs have been hitting hard already this year, and this could easily have turned into pneumonia by the weekend."

What if someone else hadn't cancelled their appointment at the last minute today? What if I hadn't been prompted to call the doctor in the first place? What if I hadn't hesitated long enough to hear the nurse say I could bring her in, just in case? But none of that happened...

Take the incident today on the highway. I have absolutely no idea how I was able to avoid an accident. I have been a fender bender, but I have never been so close to being in a major, high speed accident in heavy traffic. This was the lunch time rush, headed towards downtown Harrisburg, and there was absolutely no room to maneuver. I don't know how the other driver was so oblivious to me, but she was, and yet I was somehow able to slow down enough, and maneuver my car back and forth, so she didn't hit me, I didn't hit the wall/guard rail, and I didn't either of the two cars to my left. I have NO IDEA how I did it. I don't even remember the moves, I just remember a blur of tires squealing. It could have gone so horribly wrong.

What if I hadn't seen her coming into my lane? What if I hadn't been able to slow down enough? What if I hadn't been able to swerve back to my left, before I hit the railing on my right? What if the other cars around me hadn't seen what happened, and adjusted their driving as well? But none of that happened...

In each of these scenarios, what could have gone horribly wrong... just didn't. And I know for a matter of fact, that it's because we are being protected by a force much greater than our own. We have been blessed beyond measure, and so many times in the last few weeks, I have just sat down and wept at the thought of it. I've seen so many small miracles in my life this last month. And I am so thankful for it. I'm thankful for it all, because I'll take an irritating, annoying, or minor set back ANY DAY, over any one of the major catastrophes that could have happened...

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Here are lots of pics from our recent trip to Ashcombe Farms. It was such a fun day! Sorry there aren't many pictures of Emma's actual face. She hates sunglasses, loves hats, and hates the sun in her face. So... there's lots of pics of her really cute hat. Enjoy, I know we did!!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

My Heart...

My Heart... oh how it burns!!

Not to bore you all with details of my pregnancy, but this is my blog, so deal with it. This pregnancy has been pretty different from my first one.

First of all, at my last two visits with the OB I've been told that I am doing VERY well with my weight, and oh, my, I must be exercising and eating right, and blah blah blah. Reality? I have had major cravings this entire pregnancy, mostly for things like brownies and cookies, and ice cream, and homemade whipped cream, and all other sorts of sugary junk. And I have, generally, indulged these cravings. AND? I think I've been to the gym maybe 3 times since I got pregnant.

With Emma? I had NO cravings, spent the entire 41 weeks feeling like I was about to hurl, actually. I had to force myself to eat cereal, bananas and yogurt, and that's pretty much all I ate. Except that one time that I woke up in the middle of the night craving peanut butter bread. But still. I was going to the gym 3-4 times a week, and working full time, where I was on my feet most of the day. AND I PUT ON 40 FREAKIN' POUNDS.

I've only put on 20 pounds with this one. And then I realized the difference. When I got pregnant with Emma I was, if I may say, rather fit and firm. I didn't have a six pack, but I sure did have a 2 pack. And a somewhat nonexistent bum. And my thighs didn't rub together when I walked.

When I got pregnant with Squish, I was still 15-20 lbs heavier than I wanted to be, mostly because I picked the stupidest way possible for me to "lose weight". Sure, training for that marathon was great for my health, and helped me build muscle, and I actually had a great time doing the training with Darin, but after the first 5 or 6 weeks, when I started really piling on the miles, my body became too efficient and stopped burning fat, and only ADDED the weight of more muscle. I know, I know. Sob story. That's not my point. I don't really have a point, except to say that things are different. I know I'm not "fat", and I'm not complaining about my body. I'm just typing things because I was told to blog more, and it's getting late and I'm sort of tired and holding a train of thought is proving to be a difficult task lately.


Also different? The heartburn. I never had heartburn, EVER IN MY LIFE, until about 3 months ago. When I got it the first time, I was like "OMG Mike! There's this burning! In my chest and up my throat! ACK! WHAT'S HAPPENING??" And he was all, "You mean, like heartburn?" And then I was like, "this is HEARTBURN??? THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO HAVE THIS FEELING EVERY TIME THEY EAT?!?! I WOULD KILL MYSELF!!" Yeah, I totally get why people complain about heartburn, now, and why there are so many commercials for heartburn medicines. It totally sucks.

And then today, Mike wanted Mexican for lunch. So we went to El Rodeo, and I had exactly 2 chips with salsa before the heartburn struck. And it got me thinking, what do Mexican women do?? I mean, if that's your daily diet, are you immune to the heartburn that pregnancy can bring on? And if you're not, what do you eat? I don't know if I've eaten a non-spicy Mexican dish, HOW DO THEY DEAL WITH IT?!? I mean, I guess there's guacamole and stuff like that that's not too spicy, but still... what if you couldn't eat anything that you used to eat on a daily basis? Torture. Just plain torture. But I guess that's just not Mexicans, isn't Thai food really spicy? And probably other cultures, too.

Also different? The swelling. With Emma, I was able to take my rings off and on at leisure the whole time. I think I mentioned before that about 4 weeks ago now, I had to take them off completely. And that I had to put my hand in the freezer for about 5 minutes to shrink it up, and then lather it up with soap before I could get them off. And my feet. My poor, poor feet. They are enormous. I knew they were swelling, and my ankle bones disappeared, but I didn't realize how big my feet were getting until I tried to put shoes on last weekend. I've been wearing flip flops or slide-ons (are they called slide-ons? They're not, but I really can't think of what you call shoes that just have a strap over the top of the foot. You slide them on, but that can't be what they're called...) all summer. We were headed to the park last weekend, and my feet were just killing me, so I thought I'd help the situation with a little padded sneaker action. And I could barely get them on my feet. And the laces were so loose that I barely had enough slack to tie them. And by the time we'd driven to the park, my feet were throbbing so badly, that I had to take them off, for fear of my feet losing circulation, and falling off completely. Thankfully, we've finished most of the major projects that needed doing before Squish arrives, so I finally feel like I can sit down and relax more. Thus, my ankle bones are usually showing in the morning when I wake up, even if they're not when I go to bed.

Lastly, there's Emma. When I was pregnant with Emma, I didn't have an Emma to chase around. Strange, I know. But with Squishy, I DO have an Emma to chase around. Which is fun, and everything, but it's getting harder to keep up with her. Because she's fast and sneaky like that.

There's been more differences, but I'm bored now, and Mike's on conference call for work (AGAIN!! GAG ME WITH A SPOON!!) so it's getting even harder to hold a train of thought, so yeah.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

For Amanda...

Here are some pictures for SIL Amanda, who is STILL NOT ON FACEBOOK, and so she can't see these pics that I've already posted there...

One day Emma decided to strip everything but her onesie. Then she found the green shirt that Gramma bought for her in Destin, FL. Then, later, she found a winter hat that is far too small for her head. Then, she demanded that I allow her to swiffer the floor. And then, I took this picture.
Emma is such a daredevil (usually). Here she is sayin, "Look MA! NO HANDS!"

Here she is looking like a big girl

And, generally, she's just a goofball.

And here I am, looking pasty and puffy at 34 weeks!

Monday, September 13, 2010

funny stuff

A few conversations I've had in the past few days... this is why I haven't gone insane. Yet.

1. It was chilly and rainy on Sunday, so I was digging around in Emma's room for a pair of pants to keep her warm for her nap. I came down with a pair of white fleecy, fuzzy pants. Mike says, "you know it's after Labor Day, right?"

2. At lunch with Grandma (who goes by GG, or Great Grandma), Bird and Emma.

Me: So, Emma's been mixing you and Jesus up. She'll see a picture of Jesus and call him GG, or we'll be talking about a visit to GG and she'll say JESUS!

Grandma: Oh Boy! I'm not THAT good!

3. On the couch with Bird, as she plays with her new "random trivia" app on her phone.

Bird: Black Whales are born white.

Me: So... I guess that means once they go black, they never go back.


I love these people.

Monday, September 6, 2010


Been busy up in here.

Paint squishy's room: Check

Assemble crib: Check

Put cute owl motif on walls: Check

Buy lots and lots of NB and size 1 diapers: Check

Wash NB and 0-3 mo. clothes: Check

Fold/Hang, and put clothes away: Check

Re-finish old disgusting spicy-mustard-yellow dresser: Check

Take Emma for last hurrah(s) at HersheyPark: Check

Get play kitchen for Emma to have when Squish comes: Check

Make bulk batches of broccoli soup and fresh corn chowder to freeze for ease of cooking when Squishy arrives: Check

Clean out Garage: (mostly) Check

Recklessly Carry heavy items down into the basement instead of waiting for Mike to get home and do it: Check

Replace mailbox: Check

Finally crush and bundle the empty boxes from the move, to be placed in recycling for tomorrow: Check

Join Book Club: Check

Order me up the latest generation Kindle for an early B-Day Present: Check

Finally wear my "You Can Touch My Belly If I Can Punch Your Face" shirt (a gift from Sam and K, can you say PERFECT??) out in public, and revel in the looks I got from it: Check

Gestate to 32 weeks: Check


Sit down and relax and/or take a nap: Uncheck.

Friday, August 27, 2010

My Girls

I don't remember what I was talking about at the time, but the phrase "for my girls" came out of my mouth. And I immediately fell in love with that statement. It made me think in a whole new way... of course it will be stressful, and hard, and I'll probably continue to cry a lot, but hey. I'll have my girls:) Here's a onesie I made for Squishy, and a shirt I made for Emma!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

And we're moving on...

Alright guys, sorry to get so dramatic in my last post. I know I said I wasn't being melodramatic, but let's face it... it was pretty melodramatic. It was all very real, and very true to what I was feeling, but lest ye worry... let me 'splain.

We have had a CRAZY several months. Let's see... 37 weeks ago we decided to put the house on the market, and set forth on 6 weeks worth of renovations and project clean ups on the house to get it ready. Then, we put the house on the market and I simultaneously became pregnant. Then we spent five weeks being freakishly anal about keeping the house clean and presentable. Then we sold the house, and spent the next 4 weeks looking for a new house to move into. We found one, and then spent another 3 weeks filling out mortgage paperwork, and packing our house. And then we moved when I was 12 weeks pregnant. Then we lived in our new house for 2 weeks before driving to Myrtle Beach, SC for a week of vacation which was splendid, but simultaneously exhausting. And then we came home and tried to unpack from vacation and also still from the move, and then a couple weeks later we packed up again and drove two days to Iowa. Then we stayed a week with Jerry and Sara and had a lot of fun watching Emma run in circles with her cousins, and try to ride Max. Then we drove home and unpacked again, but still weren't done actually unpacking the house. Then we had church picnics and the 4th of July get together with Mike's family, before Chrysta and her three boys arrived at Mom and Dad's. Then we spent the next 3 weeks galavanting with them. It was literally three weeks straight of go, go, go... in a very good way. And then just before Chrysta left, Scott and Christy came with their two boys and were here for another week. And we also spent that week go, go, going which was very fun.

That brings us up to 3 1/2 weeks ago.

And, well, we haven't really had much to do in the last 3 1/2 weeks, except watch me gestate. Which isn't as interesting as it sounds.

Soooooooooooooooo. This week hasn't been bad, but the three weeks before it... Emma. Was. Miserable.

She would wake up every day and ask for her cousins, or cuzzy's, as she called them... and she would ask for them by name. EVERY. DAY.

It was the same thing, every morning. Wake up. Eat breakfast. And then have this conversation...

Emma: Go!
Me: Go where?
Emma: Garage?
Me: What's in the garage?
Emma: Cars.
Me: Where do we need to go in the car?
Emma: Go. Car. CUZZY!
Me: But your cuzzy's had to go home! We could go to the park?
Emma: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! (insert screaming and crying)

And then she would start listing her cousins off by name, and I would tell her where, specifically, each cousin was.

And when she realized there was no cousin to go see... she would just be miserable. Completely distraught and sad. Tears streaming down her face, that kind of sad.

On top of this, Emma simultaneously began having problems sleeping again. She'd gone 4 or 5 months where she'd sleep soundly for 12-13 hours each night, and then take a really good nap in the afternoon. Well, as soon as the cousins left, she started putting up a fight at bedtime, waking up in the middle of the night, waking up 1-2 hours earlier than usual in the mornings, and taking very short, or even NO nap at all. So she was cranky about no cuzzy's to see in the first place, and RIDICULOUSLY tired on top of it. For 3 weeks... same thing every day. I don't think the sleeping thing was really related to the cuzzy's at all, just an unfortunate coincidence that I can't really explain. But regardless of the bags under her eyes, it was apparent that I was THE LAST person she wanted to spend her time with. After weeks and weeks of go, go, go, with tons of people around to entertain her, she was just not happy having to adjust to just mommy. And I took it kind of hard. It doesn't help that I am also crazy hormonal. It also doesn't help that I'm waking up multiple times in the middle of the night on my own, let alone when Emma's waking me up... so we're both just sleepless and cranky. Oh, and then she and I both got sick last week.

After the last 37 weeks we've had, I, personally, would love to just SIT and RELAX. Emma has other ideas.

SO ANYWAY. Sorry if ya'll were worried (mom). We're doing ok up in here, we're surviving at least. And I'm learning a lot about myself and Emma. I really appreciate all your supportive comments. I knew I wasn't the only who had ever felt that way, but it was nice to hear that others have had their moments, too. It's hard NOT to compare yourself to others, but it's true, we often don't let others see these hard moments. It's the shining moments they see.

I'm happy to report that, so far, this week has been better. Her sleep seems to be improving, and her mood is improving as well. She's more tolerant of trips to the park with just me, and the weather has cooled down a bit this week so I can tolerate being outside for longer stretches with her. That helps. So we'll see how things go.

And just so you know that I'm still the same as I ever was...

At church we were talking about Job in Sunday School, and the only comment I could muster was, "Mo' money, mo' problems". And yes... I said that out loud.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Breath in, Breath out

Today was a very hard day. Well, I guess it was just this afternoon, but still. Hard is hard. I've been dealing with feelings of self-doubt lately, and it just sort of came to a head today. I keep asking myself why on earth I thought I'd be able to handle two kids, when it seems like sometimes I can barely handle the one I already have.

I am fortunate enough to be surrounded by women who are wonderful and amazing mothers. My mom, my sisters, my sisters-in-law, and my very best friends are all shining examples of what I want to be as a mother. But that has the unfortunate side-effect of making me feel very, very small, and very, very inadequate. It doesn't help that I've never had good self-esteem, am extremely insecure, and it certainly doesn't help that I am a hormonal mess at the moment. But these are things I've thought and felt long before I began gestating Squishy, so please don't think I'm just being melodramatic. I'm not serious very often, but on this this is just me, and this is just what I'm feeling. So bare with me.

I knew that being a mother wouldn't be easy. I knew there'd be tantrums and meltdowns, and scrapes and bruises. I knew there'd be teething, and crying and pooping and teething. What I didn't count on was what being a mother would do to my heart. I just look at Emma, and my heart melts. On Saturday mornings, when Mike gets her out of bed, I will just lay there and listen to my two loves giggle and play, and my heart just swells with joy unlike anything I ever knew before. And when she falls, face-first into the coffee table, and I hear that scream, my heart stops. And today... when I felt like I couldn't do anything right, and that I was incapable of being what she needed me to be... when she cried out, "I want my daddy"... my heart broke.

I know I shouldn't take it so hard. I know, in the rational part (read: very small part) of my brain that she is 20 months old, and that she loves me, and that she needs me. But the look in her tear-filled eye today as she said just killed me. And my heart broke. And I broke down into tears, and sobbingly asked her, "Honey, I'm trying....what can mommy do for you?"

And she just looked at me. And we both just sat there for a good long while, crying.

And then she looked at me again. This time, it was a kind of look that said, "Oh come on, mom. I'm just testing you here. Get a grip!" And she walked over to her book case, scanned the titles, and very carefully pulled out, "I'll love you forever" and showed it to me.

Choking back the tears, I asked her what that book said.

"I luh you" she answered. "Read"

So I did. She came and sat down on my lap, and stayed there, as I sobbed my way through the entire book. It's kind of a long one, and she has never sat still long enough for me to read the whole thing to her. But today she did. She just leaned back in my lap, and nuzzled the back of her head into my neck. And she waited patiently for me, when I needed to pause to choke back the tears, wipe my nose, and stifle my sobs. And she let me rock her, back and forth, back and forth, back and forth, as I read those lines. And when it was done, she very simply stood up, wrapped her arms around my head, said "Sarmum" (sorry mom), and kissed me on the forehead. And then I sobbed some more.

I just couldn't help but think that this was her way of saying that she'll love me forever, even when I'm crazy...even when I can't figure out what she wants, or what she needs. She'll love me because I'm her mom, and I think she knows that I am trying my very best to give her what she needs, and trying my very best to take care of her and to teach her, and to love her.

And that's my big revelation, I guess... that I'll never be just like the other mothers around me, because I am who am. No amount of wishing will change that, and I just have to know, that when I lay my head down at night, that I have done the very best I could do that day. And some days it will be ugly, and I will just need to survive. And some days it will be amazing, and I won't be able to believe my luck. But regardless of what kind of day it is, I need to remember to remember that I'll love her forever. And she'll love me back.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

29 weeks - a synopsis

So, I'm just about 29 1/2 weeks pregnant, now. Here's a synopsis of how it's been going...

1) I can't stop eating ice cream (you may also substitute brownies, cookies, whipped cream, popsicles, more ice cream, candy bars, caramels, any form of candy, and ice cream).

2) I've been wearing the same 2 or 3 outfits. For my first pregnancy, I had all of Anna and Sara's old maternity clothes. But then Anna got all preggo, so I had to mail the clothes back to her. I am being literal when I say that for Emma I bought exactly 2 shirts and 2 pairs of jeans. I've bought a few things to supplement my wardrobe so far, and Chrysta bought me two adorable dresses so I can look appropriate for church. But otherwise I just have NO desire to go clothes shopping. So I hang out in the house wearing mesh shorts and Mike's t-shirts, and I have a few key items to throw on when I leave the house. And I am sooooooooo ok with this.

3) I can't stop crying. Seriously. Over everything. Emma wouldn't eat the dinner I made tonight. SURPRISE SURPRISE. She never eats anything I make. But tonight, it sent me into full blown tears at the table. And then Emma started immitating me crying, and it was actually really funny. But anyway, yeah, everything makes me cry. Like, Taco Bell commercials. And when we run out of ice cream.

And that pretty much sums it up.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

When Emma picks her own outfit

Bird bought Emma this sweet, sweet Nike jacket, and now she refuses to take it off. I mean, LITERALLY refuses. She had a good 30 minute meltdown when I made her take it off when she wanted to go outside and play. I figured a meltdown would be better than heat stroke.

Friday, August 6, 2010


Ok, I'd like advice now, peoples.

A few months ago we were having terrible problems with Emma acting out and having tantrums. At the time, we tried doing timeouts in her bed, but that just led to problems when it was time for her to go to sleep. We then tried setting up a pack n' play for timeouts, but she learned how to climb out of it within a matter of about 15 seconds (this is a literal statement). Luckily, we were able to nip those behaviors in the bud, and she hasn't really had a need for timeouts lately.

Well... fast foreward, and Emma has been surrounded by boy cousins for the last month. During the course of play, she watched and then joined in on friendly wrestling/horseplay/hitting. And the hitting has carried over.


She doesn't hit angrily, or to cause harm, she always does it with a laugh, and I don't think she understands AT ALL that it can hurt. But it DOES hurt me, and I am trying to nip it in the bud before she starts hitting kids her age or younger, and hurts them.

Soooooo long story short. She was hitting the crap out of me today, and I'd warned her that if she did it one more time, she'd be having a time out in her bed.

So she hit me.

Then I carried her up to her bed.

She started crying right away, and by the time I was about 20 feet away from her (standing at the end of my bed, a walk that took about 10 seconds) I heard a horrible crash, and then screaming. I rushed into her room, and sure enough, she has figured out how to climb out of her crib. And she landed face first. There was blood pouring out of her mouth. It was on the carpet, all over her clothes, and then my clothes, all over her hands and arms, all over her face. It was the most horrible feeling I have ever had. I felt like the most evil, horrible mother ever. Even worse than the 40 minutes I was locked out of the house with her inside.

So I will NOT be using her bed as a time out area, nor the pack n' play.

But I'm left with the question of what to do! I need to be able to teach her that there are consequences, especially when she's hitting, but I just don't know how to do it!!!


Sunday, July 18, 2010


So, did I ever tell you guys about the Death Blow Kiss Killer? The bad guy in one of my few recurring nightmares?

Well, I think I'm totally making progress with life's issues or something, because recently (I can't remember if it was last night or the night before. I was sleeping, ya know) I FINALLY KILLED THE DEATH BLOW KISS KILLER!!!

I'm not entirely sure what this means, though. Does it mean that I'm finally going to act out on my years of death threats to various friends and loved ones? If so, who will it be? I've threatened to kill SOOOOOO many people over the years. And also, which method will it be? My latest weapon of choice has been the knife, as in "I'll cutcha!" or "I'll knife ya!". But who knows, maybe I'll go old school, and it will be a stoning, or a spicing. (Yes, I said spicing. Let's just say, it was inspired by an Indian film I saw in college. I think Jean was a little disappointed she picked THAT weekend to come see me.)

ORRRRRRRRRRRRRR. Maybe I won't actually be killing anyone. Maybe I'll just finally be able to carry out my heretofore idle threats of literally, and physically punching/slapping/kicking someone. Because heaven knows, there are several people in my life who would deserve a good roundhouse kick to the throat.

ORRRRRRRRRRRRRR. Maybe it just means that I'll stop putting up with people's crap, or maybe develop a thicker skin, or start standing up for myself instead of allowing myself to be walked upon. Because, although I've doubted it til now, maybe you CAN stick up for yourself without being guilty of assault and battery. WHO KNEW?

I guess it doesn't really matter. The most important thing is that THE DEATH BLOW KISS KILLER HAS DIED!!! I just hope it stays that way. 'Cause those were some freaky nightmares.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Quiz Time

My picture looks like this because

a) I have started drinking beer. Lots and lots of beer.

b) Chuck Norris commanded my internal organs to expand. And they obeyed.

c) My Atkins Diet has gone horribly, horribly wrong.

d) I am 24 weeks pregnant.

If you guessed d, you are correct! Well done!

Now, lest you go thinking this is an announcement of the Good News Variety, please recall my former pledge to NEVER announce ANYTHING of the Good News Variety on this blog again.

Therefore, I offer the following:

We are not happy about this (yes we are). This was not planned (yes it was), and it was an unpleasant surprise to us both (no, it wasn't a surprise, nor was it unpleasant). We cried tears of angst and misery when we discovered my condition (no, no we didn't). We are not looking forward to the arrival of our new baby girl (yes we are), and we are not happy about the prospect of having two kids, instead of just one (yes we are). So, overall, this is a horrible turn of events (no it isn't) that has left us devastated (nope), depressed (nuh-uh), and debilitated (not even). Feel free to offer your condolences (or congratulations), but we likely won't respond (yes we will) because we are JUST. THAT. DEPRESSED (more like excited) about the whole darn situation.

Depressingly (Ecstatically) Yours,

Alyssa, Mike and Emma

Monday, July 5, 2010

How to Effectively Traumatize Your Child

Tonight, a local park very close to our house had a big fireworks show. With the location, we were thinking that we'd probably be able to see it all right from our driveway. So, about five minutes before show time we got Emma out of bed. Mike was reluctant, because it was hot out, and we weren't even sure we'd be able to see them. But I think he saw my excitement, saw how much I wanted to do this as a family, and gave me the green light to go get her. So, we got her out of bed and went out into the driveway. We saw a few other families camped out, so we felt pretty confident that our driveway would be a good place to set up chairs and get comfy. So, we did. We were trying to explain to Emma what we were doing, and told her she'd hear a big BOOM and then see lights. We got her saying "BOOM BOOM", and she was generally pretty happy. Here she is with Daddy waiting for the show to start. The squinty faces are a result of the pre-flash, which was insanely bright, given the fact that it was pretty much pitch black out.
And then the first boom. She didn't even see the light, just heard the boom. Instantly we heard a small shriek, and in a nano second she had covered her face with her hands and buried her face in Mike's chest. She was shaking like a leaf. We both tried to coax her out of the fetal position, encouraging her to look at the lights. But she wouldn't budge. She wasn't crying or screaming, and she didn't have her binky. She was just breathing really fast, and shaking. After about a minute, Mike handed her over to me thinking that maybe in the transfer she'd see some of the lights and get into the fireworks. But even as we moved her from him to me, she wouldn't pick up her head, or take her hands off her eyes. Or stop shaking. So I was just there holding her, and after just a few seconds, decided to take her back inside. When she heard me say that, I think she was relieved, because she looked up for a few seconds, kind of to see if I was being for real. However, when she looked up at me, it was with her hands still over her eyes, with her fingers just barely split open so she could see through them. I think she caught sight of the lights, but still wasn't thrilled. So, in we went. LUCKILY, the fireworks were perfectly located so that we could sit on the couch in our living room and look out the front window and see them. If you look closely, you can see Emma and I through the window. Emma sat with me for a few minutes, but I think she was looking for Protector Man, because she spent the rest of the fireworks like this. I would like to note that she continued to shake pretty much until the show was over.

When the show was over, Emma stood up Mike's lap and said, "GONE! YEAHHHHHH!"
And that pretty much sums it up.

Friday, July 2, 2010

On Paint

First, I am still boggled by a few things about our new house. For instance, is it worse that two owners previous to us, chose the paint colors and textures that they did? Or is it worse that the owners prior to us just kept those same colors and textures? Or is it worse that they kept those colors and textures, because they LIKED them?? *shudders*

My friend Molly came over this week for the first time, and she hadn't seen pictures of the house. When she walked into the bedroom, her reaction was

"Uhhhhhhh I'm assuming this is the before color??"

And then she kind of let out a little sigh of relief when I said yes. As Anna put it, the color and texture in the master bedroom reminds one of living inside a bruise. It's just not good.

So anyway, we've had, and STILL have, lots of work to do painting. Small potatoes compared to the old house, but still, annoying nonetheless. I've spent more hours this week taping and painting than I care to calculate. But as I was upstairs painting the trim in the spare bedroom, I couldn't help but be annoyed by the fact that the last people who painted that room felt the need to paint EVERYTHING a really nasty off-white/urine-yellow color. That doesn't really describe it well. Imagine this: the color is reminiscent of a wall that was once white, but that has spent the last 30 years housing a smoker who never once washed the walls. It is just a gross color.

So, this color was on the walls, the baseboard, the trim around both sets of closets and the door, the door and closet doors themselves, the hinges, the trim inside the closets, the window trim, the window casing, and so on and so forth. Soooooo much grossness to cover up.

And what's really traumatizing me is the amount of time it's taking to paint over this hideous colors in the SMALL spare bedroom. Because that means that painting our HUGE master bedroom that is covered in DARK PURPLE paint is going to be soooo. much. worse.

BUT. I would like to say that the new Behr primer and paint in one is soooooo worth the extra few bucks!!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Why I can never go back to Iowa

So, we had a lovely vacation in Iowa. The weather was pretty rainy, but it cleared up enough for a couple visits to the splash pad, a trip to the pool, a day of golf for Mike and Jerry, and a baseball outing for the boys as well.

But I can never go back to Iowa, because if I do, I will once again have to deal with the cousin-withdrawal Emma has suffered through this week. She has been running around the house looking for other wee ones to drag around and pway wiff. She's been crying out for Gaby (GAH! GAH!) when mommy is being insufferably mean. She's been endlessly looking for those hiding cousins, and darnit, they hid too well this time! And Max... oh dear. Her stuffed puppies just won't do, anymore, now that she spent a full week with a REAL DOG. I've been a constant source of disappointment to her ALL WEEK, and I just can't handle that kind of blow to my self esteem.

Also, I can never go back to Iowa, because if I do, I will once again have to deal with a husband so disappointed in our dinner options, it's not even funny. I go through phases with my cooking. I have really tried to cook heartily and healthily, and to make the best use of seasonal items I can. I like to try new recipes, and new ingredients. But lately I have been in a SLUMP, mostly because Emma refuses to eat anything I make. It's kind of a downer, and has been discouraging me from making anything other than what I KNOW is a sure fire Emma pleaser. Which limits us to PB&J, chef boyardee mini raviolis, and homemade pizza pockets. Bah.

So, while in Iowa, Sara of course spoils us all to death with her ridiculously good cooking. Pork burritos, egg rolls, Iowa chops, tons of guacamole, homemade pizza, fresh berries out the whazoo, and cheesecake (she didn't make them but that's irrelevent). And it goes on.

And now Mike is just a shell of a man, as he sits down to my pathetic culinary attempts. And I just can't handle that kind of marital stress.

It was great, Iowa. But I don't think we'll ever see you again.

Saturday, June 5, 2010


Remember that one time I blogged about how I was "off the junk"? Ya know, how I had kicked my caffeine habit, and made that major life change?



This is why I'm glad I gave myself the YEAR to do it. Of course, I'm not nearly as bad as I was. I wouldn't say I'm addicted like I was. Which is good. But I slipped back into drinking that dastardly Dr. Pepper probably once a week. We've decided to keep little to no soda in the house, so other than the random drink I pick up while out, I have been good about drinking less soda. So that's progress. And I really DO think I can be completely soda free by year's end. The weird thing is that I will go weeks without drinking any, and then the floodgates will just open for one reason or another and I'll be chugging the stuff. So I just need to fight off those situations (like while traveling, and when I have headaches!) and I think I can do it!

In other news, I BOUGHT NEW TYLENOL TODAY! I woke up this morning and felt like I'd been punched in the side of the head. Right in the ear, really. It was strange. Anyway, Mike was gone this morning golfing with Dad, so when he came home in the afternoon and could see I was hurting, he asked, "Did you take anything?"

Me: no
Mike: Why not?
Me: All we have are those cool caps, and they make me sick
Mike: Well, we'll have to go pick up some of the regular stuff
Me: No, then we'll just be wasting the cool caps.
Mike: But you're not taking the cool caps?
Me: Nope. Don't like 'em.
Mike: You're Stupid.

The man makes a good point. So, I went out and bought the rapid release pills, and am headache free:) WOOHOO!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

What I don't want

You know when you have one of those headaches, where your whole body hurts, and it's kind of making you nauseas... don't you just really get the urge to drink a glass of liquid icy hot?

No? You don't?

Someone at Tylenol apparently does. Because that is EXACTLY what taking one of their "cool capsules" is like. It's like drinking liquid icy hot.

I had a horrible headache when I woke up Monday morning, and I was laying in bed listening to Emma and Mike play downstairs, and thought, DANG IT! I don't want to be miserable on this gorgeous holiday!! So I trudged over to the bathroom closet and whipped out the Tylenol, and threw back two capsules. And immediately regretted it. First I felt the cold on my tongue. Then it creeped down my throat and into my stomach. And it spread through my stomach. And then the burning started. If I was a little bit nauseas before, now I was full on puke-ready. I laid in bed, miserable, for another 20 minutes before the effects wore off. But was the headache gone? No. Not so much.

The headache plagued me all day. By bedtime, I was even more miserabler, so, with a COMPLETELY ABSENT MIND, I said, "hey, maybe I should take some Tylenol." And then I repeated the morning's process all over again. Stupid stupid stupid.

Pure misery. So, why did I buy these cool capsules in the first place? Purely on accident. What I THOUGHT I was buying was Tylenol Rapid Release, which I have found actually works REALLY well for me. And because of that mistaken identity, I bought one of those ENORMOUS bottles. And ya know what? I'm so cheap that I will probably use the entire bottle of cool capsules before I will break down and buy a bottle of the good stuff.


Sunday, May 30, 2010

Small Miracles

So. For the last few weeks we spent in our old house, and the first few weeks in the new house, Emma was being a little terror. We didn't pick up on it at the time, but we're thinking, in retrospect, that the likely spur of her terrible behavior was caused by the chaos in the house, with boxes and packing, and things constantly changing. We think she was just trying to show independence, and take control of her environment, and the way she did that was to throw huge tantrums every time she didn't get her way. I mean HUGE tantrums. Had me on the verge of a mental breakdown. That's when I sent out my SOS to my sisters and asked for advice from their experiences with THEIR kids. And I got some gems, let me tell ya. That's the great thing about being in a huge family - always someone to talk to! Always little nuggets of wisdom to be passed on, always a supportive shoulder to lean on. ANYWAY, I got some great advice that I was able to implement immediately. It was a little hard for me to swallow it all... realizing how badly I was caving to Emma and her rants, but I realized that I needed to start taking charge, and letting her, and showing her how to be independent in appropriate ways. And it didn't take long before we saw changes in her. Already, her tantrums have chilled WAAAAY out when she does have them, and they are few and far between, now. So, THANK YOU SISTERS!!

I just wanted to share one little example of Emma's progress. She had a Dr.'s appt on Friday, and she hates them. HATES HATES HATES them. She knows where we are, and what will happen there, immediately. So, it was ugly. But understandably ugly. She didn't throw a fit or anything, but she was crying and holding on to me for dear life the entire time we were in the exam room. When we got home, however, she was mad. She was mad at me for making her endure such trauma. I sensed a tantrum coming on, so I told her it was ok to be upset, but that we were home now and that she was safe. I then laid her blanket out on the couch so she could climb up there and cuddle with it. But, I guess she was still mad at me. However, instead of throwing her tantrum, she crawled up underneath the blanket, with nothing but her feet sticking out. She laid under there for several minutes, refusing to talk to me. But I was totally ok with it, because at least she wasn't flipping out!!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


Things NOT to do, if you'd like to avoid getting punched in the face. By Me. Or maybe I'll send Bird after you:

1. Come up to my kid in her stroller at Target, and GIVE HER FOOD. Ummm??
a) You are a stranger. How do I know you're not poisoning my kid?
b) You are a stranger. How do you know my kid doesn't have allergies?
c) You are a stranger. How do you know I'm not currently trying to train my child to eat at prescribed times, and trying to get her to eat a wider variety of healthy foods, and NOT the jelly beans you are offering her right before we're headed home for lunch??

What the heck is it with people?? I would NEVER think of giving some strangers kid food in the middle of a store. Emma was just sitting there in her stroller, playing with my water bottle. She wasn't throwing a fit, and it's not like she saw the lady with candy and was begging for some. I get it if you're trying to be nice, but maybe ask me before you just hand her candy? Because guess what, when I took the candy away from her, Emma DID start flipping out. Wouldn't you? And the lady didn't understand why I wouldn't let Emma have the candy! She tried to give her another piece! And then when I told her to stop, she gave me a dirty look, told me I needed to "lighten up", and walked away.


Tuesday, May 11, 2010


So, we had a beach vacation with Mike's family to Myrtle Beach, SC. Actually, we stayed in a sweet beach house, right on the water, in Surfside, SC, about 3 miles south of Myrtle Beach proper. It was sweet in every form of sweetness you can imagine. I'm still beat from the whole trip, so I'll get around to the details later. But here are some pics. Emma absolutely LOVED the beach. As soon as she woke up in the morning, she would go to the large glass doors and point to the beach and say, GO! It was torture for her to wait long enough to eat breakfast, and GASP! THE HORROR! For us to put a swimsuit and sunscreen on her. But once we got her out there... man she was just in heaven. Loved the water, loved the sand, loved going out in the waves with us. I was a little worried she'd eat a lot of sand, and drink a lot of sea water, but she did really good. Hooray!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

About the house...

Before I forget -

Anna, we have wall paper in only one room in the house, the living room. It's a brown-ish color with a diamond pattern and a border at the top. The blue dining room is just a faux paint job, and actually it's not blue anymore, it's now Desert Camel, as is the family room and entry way. The kitchen is still white. Our bedroom is a FUNKY purple faux paint job with a border at the top. Once the border comes down, we will be painting it Gentle Rain, which is a very pale, soft gray color. Emma's room was just plain white, but we've painted in Pale Daffodil, which is the exact same color she had in her old room. We figured the more we could make it feel like her old room, the easier she'd adjust to the new house. We have wall paper borders at the top of the kitchen, the spare bedroom, and the half bath on the first floor (the walls in the half bath are the same as the walls in the master bedroom). We plan on leaving the wallpaper in the living room for now because it's not SO bad, but will be getting rid of it eventually. We do plan on getting rid of the borders everywhere as soon as we have the time.

Faith - I know I already facebooked you, but just for everyone else' sake, I'll say it again. You were so right. I am sooo sooo sooo in love with my new washer and dryer. The washer took longer than I expected, but then BAM! The dryer took 27 minutes to dry an extra large load. I almost peed my pants with excitement!

But, just so you don't think I'm bragging, Anna, I'll go ahead and tell you all that my dishwasher sucks Butt. Big time. In fact, my plates don't even fit in them. Anywhere. It is so bizarre. And it's like mom and dad's OLD dishwasher, where you have to actually use a sponge and soap to pre-wash the dishes before you put them in the washer. Sort of pointless. So. Bah.

I'll take more pics once we get things in their place, get furniture situated (OMG - Mike and I are actually getting bedroom furniture this weekend! Can you believe it?) and things put away so you can see the improvement with the paint jobs and whatnot.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Let's all let out a heavy sigh...

It was late when I took this pic. Sorry. I was tired.
Master Bath. Tub is to the right, behind the door.

Master bedroom. Yes, those walls are purple. Very purple.


Spare Room

Emma's Room


1st floor laundry room


Dining Room

Living Room

Family Room



Ok, the Universe just wanted us to sweat a little. You know how I said about fearing The Jinx? Yeah. Well, I was fairly certain that I would never again in my life share good news with anyone ever. Why? Because the day after I announced our good news about the house to the world... we got a call.

Call #1: The house that we were supposed to buy went into foreclosure. Apparently the seller decided to stop paying the mortgage, because he had moved out and his soon to be ex-wife was staying in the house. So he just didn't pay the mortgage for 8 months or so. And nobody knew it. Now, yes this is bad, BUT the timing of foreclosure didn't make any sense. Apparently a mortgage lender can't send a mortgage to foreclosure lawyers if it is under contract. We'd been under contract for a month, when they sent it to foreclosure on Wednesday. So, the likelyhood that we'd get our house was looking bad. If we DID get it, it would probably be a good two weeks after we THOUGHT we'd get it.

Well, we thought it wasn't so bad. We were selling our house, and if need be we could stay with either set of the rents for a couple weeks, or even a month of two if we needed to find a new house.

Call #2: This phone call came on Thursday at 7:00 pm. At this point, the ONLY item left in the house was one bucket of cleaning supplies, and I was sweeping out the garage, the very last part of the house left to be cleaned. We were literally about 10 minutes away from locking up and leaving. Call #2 was to let us know that the buyer for our house was likely not going to be approved for her mortgage.

BUT HOW CAN THAT BE? We got mortgage confirmation from her on March 18, and we got our final HUD-1 sheet earlier that morning??? Makes no sense?? Well... apparently our buyer gets paid in cash, and her mortgage confirmation was conditional on her continuing to provide bank statements. Well, this Monday her mortgage company decided that they wanted a letter in writing to prove that the cash deposits were indeed from her employer. So, she provided one. So, she thought that was done and done on Monday. But NOOOOOOO her mortgage company underwriters decided that they couldn't approve the loan without the approval of the Head Underwriter. So, by Thursday at 7:00pm our buyers agent had called our agent and told her that they were still waiting for final word from the H.U., but that it was looking like our buyer wouldn't get the mortgage.

So, that meant that we'd have to move back into the house that we had JUST EMPTIED, and then put the house back on the market IN MID-SPRING while the market is saturated... EXACTLY the conditions we wanted to avoid by putting it on the market in January. UGH.

So, we went to bed Thursday not knowing if we'd actually close on our house at 10am like planned, or if we'd close on our house at all. If we didn't sell our house, we couldn't buy the new one. And at that point, even if we DID sell our house, we still didn't know whether we were going to be able to buy the new house out of foreclosure.

So we slept realllllly great on Thursday night.

Long story short, we spent all morning agonizing and fearing the worst, until we got the call at 11:30 am that our buyer had been approved for a mortgage! HALLELUJAH!!




By some miracle of miracles, we were able to buy our new house out of foreclosure after it being in foreclosure for just TWO DAYS. This is unheard of!!

So, long story short, I will never be sharing good news on this blog ever, ever, ever again.