Saturday, December 15, 2012

Heavy Hearts

Today is a blurry numb day. As it is for most of the country. To say that the heartless shooting that occurred yesterday was a tragedy is putting it mildly. I don't think we have a word for it.

A parent's love for their child is something that you can only fully grasp when you become a parent. When you see your baby for the first time your life's meaning makes such a monumental shift. Your purpose is now to protect, love, and nurture this innocent life. I think every parent has a deep fear of the possible time where they may not be able to protect that innocent life.

It is a completely unnatural thing for a parent to outlive a child. Yet it happens every day. I can't imagine a more empty room than that of a child lost. No bigger hole left in your heart. There couldn't be a more terrible silence then the silent home that no longer has their child.

To know your child was afraid and alone. To know they wanted you, but you couldn't be there. It's gut wrenching. It just shouldn't be. It's hard to understand that this was the life plan for these beautiful children.

Every person in this country is grieving for the lives lost. My heart is just breaking for these families. It's  breaking for the survivors. I can't stop thinking about the gifts under the trees. The excitement that children wake up with every day. The little quarks and laughs that fill a home. All gone out of these parent's life. What step do you take after such a loss?

For the rest of us. Pray. These people need prayers, support, and love. What we can do is not the response of hold your children tight tonight. Hold them tight every night. Don't stress when it's the third time they've been up that night. Don't get angry when they have been crying all day. Don't let yourself be bothered when they need you over and over again. Enjoy the loud noises, messy floors, and daily grind of parenthood. Twenty families went to bed last night without the most precious thing in their lives. Twenty families are grieving for those loud noises and hassles. As much as life changes and becomes a harder thing when you have a child. The changes that come with no longer having them is beyond imaginable. I think millions of parent's have realized this yesterday.

Monday, December 10, 2012


I've been doing my best to keep us busy these past couple weeks. I'm not sure if I'm trying to speed things up for Natalie or if I'm trying to savor every moment where things are just a little bit easier. There are so many moments in the day where I think 'wow how do you do this with two?' How do I get to the car? How do I get out of the car? What shopping cart can house my wild toddler and tiny newborn? Will I ever go out to eat again? Will we ever bathe?

I have a few plans which could all be wishful thinking. Plan of attack 1) Do almost everything on the floor. Nurse Natalie, change Natalie, and let her play on the floor. My hopes are that being on the floor even though tied up in her care makes Molly feel like we are all together and some focus is on her. I can interact with her and she can help in the care. Plan of attack 2) Molly and I have finally settled into an awesome bath routine. Basically she showers with me. I get out and fill the tub. She plays while I do my hair and make up. So either Natalie will be in a bouncer in the bathroom or I'll be investing in a water sling. My vote is for water sling, but my husband would probably say different.

As for getting to the car. Who knows. I guess the mobile one goes first. Then I come back for Natalie? At this point I grocery shop on Sundays and Molly stays home with dad. I would have never thought my one hour of amazing me time would be my grocery trip. Some weekends this doesn't happen though. In those cases I am that mom with my kid in the cart stepping all over the food. Just today I bought a busted open banana. In this instance my guess is Molly gets the cart and Natalie will be in my amazingly coveted rainbow girasol wrap.(drool)

When I sit and think about all these scenarios and tell myself all these solutions it really helps with the worry. Then someone comes along and tells me how impossibly hard having two kids is and I start to think I'm an idiot. None of these will help and my life will be total chaos. However crazy it gets I can't imagine having double the love that I have for M. It's beyond comprehension, and I think just like the first you have to experience having the second to truly understand what it's like. The love, the chaos, and all the stuff in between.

So we've been going, crafting, playing, and having fun. Here are some priceless works of art by Molly.

Just because I love sleeping pictures.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012


I had one goal in mind when I found out I was pregnant with Natalie. Do not eat everything in sight. This is easier said than done.  I've never been one to follow a really healthy lifestyle. I hate to admit that, but it's true. Having a toddler means I have to make veggies. I have to serve fruit. I can't feed her happy meals every night. So in those regards I have been kept in check. However I can't say that I wouldn't hide behind something and stuff myself with Oreos.

When I was pregnant with Molly I ate everything. I overly indulged in any craving at any time. I also gained 40lbs. Which in the world of pregnancy isn't too bad, but it is when you're 5'2" and "overweight" to begin with. This time I wanted to do better. I wanted to hold myself accountable and eat healthy. I'm not the best at meeting goals. Really I'm pretty bad about seeing things through. I know this post is full of good thoughts. So I didn't set my hopes high that I would actually do this.

In the first four months I lost 7lbs. I was sick and didn't really desire much of anything. So by the time I started to gain I was 137lbs. It had been awhile since I'd seen that shiny number. Part of me was upset that I had finally gotten down to a goal weight ( thanks to morning sickness) and I would only be gaining it back again. Wah. I can say lucky for me the cravings this time have been different. I want milk, applesauce, and salad. Can this just stay forever?

As you can see I have a sugar problem.
So two weeks ago I went into the doctor and stripped my boots, belt, earrings. Kidding, but I do take off my shoes despite the nurse's odd looks. Every bit counts lady! To my surprise my doctor commended me on good weight gain. So far 18lbs. This lit a fire. I can do this?! Yes we can!

So with the help of the most useful app of all time, My Fitness Pal, I have been obsessively tracking my calories and sodium intake for the past two weeks. No, I'm not cutting calories. I'm just making sure I don't eat 5,000 a day. I want low sodium, because with Molly I swelled so much in the end. I was informed I ate too much sodium and carbs. Umm...what else is there?

Counting calories is seriously amazing. I know that sounds crazy. It holds me accountable. It's something visual I can look at. I eat so much better now that I realize what two oreos or a 5 layer burrito means to my daily intake.

As of this week I have lost 2lbs since my appointment a week ago. Not my intent, but it's not the end of the world. I'll make it up I'm sure. Now my total gain is 16lbs with about 6 weeks to go. I can do this! I just want to be healthy. I want a healthier start once she is here. Hopefully it won't be hard to get off with the help of this addictive app and breastfeeding. Maybe I'll even throw in a couple walks.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Keeping The Bubble

Like I mentioned in the last post, this pregnancy has come with a lot of emotions. A lot of over thinking things and crying in public. Lately I've been thinking a lot about childhood. Don't you miss the magic? How the littlest things brought so much happiness. Most of all don't you miss not even being aware that you should care what others think?

These thoughts started to hit me these past couple weeks. This past Sunday we took M to the mall to meet Santa and get some shopping done. Once we were finished we took her to the play area. I took her on the carousal and she was just so happy. She handed the woman our money and took her ticket. I put her on the horse and strapped her in. Her face lit up. The lights, the music, the insanely slow moving ride. It was magic to her. She ran around the play area going from one thing to the next. So in all my pregnant glory I start crying. Luckily just tears. Not full on red face cry. It's such an emotional thing seeing your child interact with others. Seeing them so happy. Or maybe I'm just pregnant.

The next day we took our usual grocery shopping trip. We happened to use the other entrance which means she gets to ride the dinosaur. This thing is your typical grocery store ride. Incredibly slow and rocks back and forth. To her it's the best ride ever. As soon as she sees it she is neighing. I guess the Flintstones dinosaur resembles a horse in her eyes. Close. So I'm standing there watching as she rocks back and forth. People walk by. Some stop for a moment to watch her. Then the water works start, and here is why.

When you're little the whole world is amazing. Everything can be something fun. There is magic and adventure everywhere. You can see it in her eyes. When they light up my heart literally bursts with happiness. She has no concept of being embarrassed. She doesn't care that people are watching her ride the dinosaur. She doesn't get nervous to have other kids around while she does her thing and is who she is. She's just happy.

You get to a point in life when you feel a little silly trick or treating. At some point you want to ride the dinosaur, but you know other people are watching. There comes a time when you can fall on your face and you don't just get back up and run smiling.

Watching her live and enjoy her bubble is all I ever need to be happy, but there is the other side. I can't stop thinking about the day when all of that will change. I can't stop crying about it at random points like the grocery store.

Some day someone is going to hurt her feelings, and I can't kick their ass because they'll probably be 7 years old. Some day she is going to trip and be embarrassed. Some day she won't want me to pay for the dinosaur ride. It kills me. Even thinking about the day when she feels pain kills me. It hasn't even happened yet! I've got a good six years! At least I hope. I can't protect her forever.

I guess my plan is to tell her how much I love her every single day. I will do my best to give her true confidence without making her self important and spoiled. I'll be as silly as I can be right along with her so she knows there is no shame. I'll instill all the love and acceptance I have so that she is there for the underdog and strong enough to be the underdog herself if need be.

Please excuse the ramblings of this emotional pregnant chick.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Dust Off The Cob Webs

Holy smokes has it been a long time. Just to put in to perspective how long, I'm eight months pregnant. So that pretty much sums up just how much time has passed and how many things have changed. I've been meaning to get back to this one because I love it and two because this is for Molly. Now it's also for another little sweetie, Natalie.

The past several weeks I've wanted to get these feelings out. Most likely I'm just a big hormonal ball of emotions, but I don't want to forget. I want these feelings written down for M and N some day. That way when they doubt I love them because I took their phone away I can reference my unwavering love for them here.

Unfortunately my husband can't stand the click clacking of my fingers while he is trying to sleep so those emotions will have to be written down on a very soon day.

Oooh cake!

Hey world another cutie is on the way!

Molly's 80s 1st birthday

It's a girl!

Natalie at 30 weeks

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

This Is Tough

I'm sitting here tears streaming looking back on Molly's hospital pictures. With her birthday just days away it's all so real now. It's hard for me to look back on my life and what led me to here. All the mistakes and bad choices.  How could so much pain lead me to this place of absolute joy? When you look at your baby it's so hard to comprehend how on earth you deserve this beautiful being.

Seeing Molly made all the pieces fit. Everything became clear in life. My purpose, my drive, my dreams. I can only believe that God has given this to me. The joy and love of being a parent is so pure that it could only be God.

There is nothing more beautiful than her smile. Nothing more warm than her hug and nothing more precious than her reaching for my finger to follow.

I remember it was our second day in the hospital and A and I were sitting in the chairs eating and M was sleeping on my chest. I looked down at her and she was so comfy and safe. She loved us just as much as we loved her. It hit me that every day will be this important. Every day with her has this much meaning. Every day is a step to her growing and I want to savor every second. So as this year comes to an end and I look back at all those days I hope they were as meaningful for her as they were for me. I hope I kept my patience and cherished her. I hope she knew every day we love her. I hope she went to bed every night knowing we were there.

Maybe that's what I love so much about attachment parenting. For me it allows me to show her every day that we are here and you are safe and loved.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

The Ugly Truth About America And Breastfeeding

Excuse me Ma'am, it offends me that my daughter can see your bottle.

Ma'am can you put a blanket over that? It's exposing me to things that I just CAN'T look away from.

Do these things sound ignorant, rude, and uncalled for? Why, yes. Do these things infringe on your rights? Why, yes. So is it too much of a stretch to say that it is rude, ignorant, uncalled for, and goes against my rights for you to ask me to do the same?

Since the TIME magazine cover and several other issues that people have brought up in the media lately I decided to add my two cents. There seems to be a lot of ignorant opinions when it comes to breastfeeding in this Country.

In our Country it's perfectly acceptable to see half naked women in the aisles of family stores, advertisments, and television. It is inappropriate and offensive to see a mother nurse without covers or a toilet stall, any child older than one or with teeth, and anyone who does so has thrown modesty out the window. Hmm...and some think ignorant is a harsh word to describe this.

In our country it is frowned upon to nurse in uniform, but several people commend this behavior in uniform.

In our country this is breaking news and called a "hot button issue"

So if that doesn't show how backwards some thinking is in this Country, I don't know what does. Luckily times have changed in this Country and there are laws to protect those who breastfeed. Unfortunately some still can't handle what breasts were made for versus what this Country has turned them into.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Feeding The Senses

Now that M is getting a little older I am so excited for the activities that we can do together! It's always been my intent that by staying home with her we would still do all the things that she would get to do if she were in child care. Coming from working in child care from infants to preschool makes it a little easier. I had the benefit of working with many great teachers and have amazing training. Through all of them my favorite has been the Creative Curriculum. The basis of this is that children learn through play. Coming from this background I put having educational toys and supplies as a need and not a want. Although my husband doesn't always 100% agree.

So after tromping through fields scouting new locations for sessions we headed to the store to get some supplies. On the list:

Cream of Tarter
Food Coloring
Fly Swatters
Corn Starch
Sidewalk Chalk
Painters Tarp (because I have no idea what it's really called)

Throughout the next couple weeks I hope if time allows that I can post what these extremely random items can do. First up on the list for today was painting with yogurt!

Of course Molly was a fan and about 80% of the yogurt was ingested. I cut enough tarp to give her plenty of creative space. In a small bowel I mixed yogurt and one drop food dye. I did this three separate times and cleaned the bowel in between. That's it! Yogurt painting is good to go.

Several weeks ago we did another favorite of mine called Goop. It's way too easy and way too cool. As messy as it looks it is extremely easy to clean. Just use equal parts water and corn starch. I usually use a half cup, because I like to join in. Add a couple drops of food dye and you're ready. At this point it was last minute so I put her on some wrapping paper. This is why painters tarp was on the more thought out list. Surprisingly she was a little hesitant at first. That ended quickly though!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Time Flies

It hits me every couple days how neglected my poor little blog has been. Between M being M and trying to get my business going there has not been much time left. Late nights have been reserved for Photoshop and that is basically my down time for next foreseeable years.

There has just been so much change in such little time. With such little time left in this first year and yet so much more to experience in life it is just mind blowing. In two days M will be nine months old. Where did it go?

At nine months she is still nursing like a champ. It's so funny to see her crawl over to the couch, pull up, and start nursing as she stands there. So not where we started. She is still cuddled up in bed with us. At about twelve at night I crawl in with them. Just looking over and seeing this little girl with her head resting on her daddy's pillow is all I need in life to know I'm doing what's right for this one.

With three months left I can't stop thinking about the beginning of this year and at the same time I can't stop thinking about what's ahead. This little girl will be toddling around saying words. She'll be caring for baby dolls and putting puzzles together. How is this possible? How am I about to have a toddler like I used to care for at work? I will always miss these days, but I am so excited for our future.

M now has been crawling since five and a half months. She's been pulling up since six. I don't even know when she started walking all around the furniture. Now for the past several weeks she's walking behind everything. I'll here a racket and she's pushing the trash can around the kitchen. She learned that at Grandma's. In the past couple days she has started standing up by herself or letting go of things. She says mama, Dada, and all the other combos. Mama was her first word where she knew what it meant. Dada soon followed. HA! Tonight she finally said kitty. We've been working on that for awhile. I think her obsession with Binks helped.

For me personally life before M just seems like I was getting through the grind. The song Working For The Weekend comes to mind. Now that she is here every second is cherished. Every moment has value. I haven't wished a day away since she's been here. Except this past Sunday which was the day after my first big night out. Jeez louise!

So, in honor of M's big nine months here is some cuteness overload.