Thursday, November 22, 2012

Grateful

All month long on Facebook some of my friends have been posting everyday about what they are grateful for. I doubt I could keep that up all month long, but since today is Thanksgiving I thought I'd list what I am grateful for.

My husband. BT is seriously a good guy and is a great husband and father. He is the kind of man I hope Bub grows up to be and the kind of man I hope Button marries (if she is so inclined). On any given day, he is doing schoolwork, watching our daughter, doing laundry, cooking dinner or doing homework with Bub. Not that he doesn't have his faults, but he is a true partner and I am thankful for that.

My children. They are the light in my life. I try not to think about what I'm missing when I am at work and away from them but sometimes I let it get to me and I miss them. I try to spend as much time paying attention to them as I can when I am with them though. They are the best thing I've ever done and there are really no words for how much I love them.

My parents. They do so much for us and I don't know if I can every repay them for their time and their generosity, helping us out when we were in a bad place last year. They are always willing to watch their grandchildren or let us hang out over there. My mother is the kind of mother I strive to be. I have never doubted her love for me or her willingness to be there for me. And my parents have never made me feel like an inconvenience or like now that I am grown I am unwanted. They, especially my mom, have always made me feel wanted.

My sister. We haven't always gotten along. In fact, it wasn't until recently that we have become really good friends. It was a rough time growing up but now I can honestly say she is one of my best friends. She moved back to Louisiana from Oklahoma last year and it looked like she moving back again recently and I found myself praying everyday that she would get another job in Louisiana and thou and behold she did and I am relieved and happy that she will be staying. She is an amazing aunt to my son and daughter and Bub loves her so much. She spends so much time with him and he looks for her when she is gone. Thick as thieves, those two are and it is wonderful to behold.

My cousin. My cousin and I are 15 months apart and we have been best friends since she was born. She is the person I share a brain with as our family likes to say and she is the person who always gets it. She lives in Oklahoma so growing up we saw each other like twice a year and that number has remained the same as we have gotten older. I don't get to visit her as much as I like but it is always fun when I do see her. Now she is pregnant with her first child and I cannot wait til she is a mother and we can share in that experience too.

The rest of our family and friends. We are surrounded by people who we love and who love us back which is a wonderful thing and something I try not to take for granted. I truly cannot wish for better people. We may not see everyone a lot but when we do it is great. BT's parents are always happy to see us, especially their grandchildren, and I love how much they love them.

My job and BT's job. It's not until you lose something that you really appreciate it. Last year BT lost his job and it is one of the hardest things. So I am grateful for my job and the money it gives us and the house it pays for and the bed I get to sleep in. I am grateful for his job and the money it gives us and the groceries it buys and the food we get to eat every night. I am grateful for the work friends I have who make it ok to get up and go to work and leave my children for the day. Am I in love with my job? No. There are problems as always but it provides me with a purpose beyond my family and it teaches me what I really want in a workplace and has made me a better manager and a more tactful person.

Mostly I am thankful for being loved and having people to love. I am grateful I have a house and a bed and pets. I am grateful I have nice clothes and have shoes and socks. I am grateful I have a car to drive and books to read and that I can read and write and type. I am grateful for dance parties with my children and Eskimo kisses and hugs and "I love you too Mom" and nursing my daughter and cuddles. I am grateful that I can buy nice things for my children and my niece and nephew. I am grateful that sometimes our parents will take us out to lunch and that my mom will take the kids to her house when I am sick so I can take a nap. I am grateful my sister likes to take her nephew places so I am not always the one amusing him. I am grateful that my parents come to all his soccer and/or tee ball games. I am grateful that BT's parents will drive over to see him play even if it is just once a season. I am grateful that they like to take him to Florida once a summer so he can go to the beach even if I can't and that one day they want to take him to Europe because I don't know if I will ever be able to provide that kind of experience and I want him, I want them, to see the world. I am grateful for all the million and one tiny moments in life that make life worth living.

I am grateful. I am thankful.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

First big trip

I'm taking Button to Oklahoma for Thanksgiving and some other family related parties that will be going on that weekend. It's about a 9 hour drive but we are stopping in Texas to spend the night. I'm a bit nervous to take her on such a long drive. You can't just plug in a DVD player for a baby like you can for a kid. I know she will sleep a lot and that either me or my mom will have to sit in the back with her sometimes because she hates being alone. I think she would cry more in the car except she usually has her brother with her and he will talk to her and pat her occasionally. But he is already gone so she will be alone back there.

I don't think I would be making this trip if she were any younger. Now that she is almost 8 months she can go longer without nursing and my milk is so established that engorgement is rarely a problem. But if she were less than 3 months I doubt we would be making this trip. It would be too hard on both of us. I'm hoping now that she is "older" she will fine. But the longest she's been a car is 2 1/2 hours so I guess we will see. Because the trip home will be made all in one day.  Now that is going to be the real adventure.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Sweet TV

I don't get to watch a lot of TV for myself. I mean I watch a lot of children's television and movies but there are not a lot of show I watch for myself. I'm about 15 episodes behind on Once Upon a Time though I am determined not to give up on that show. But what's funny is that even though I won't sit down and watch a TV drama, I will sit down and watch cooking competitions. Baking competitions specifically. 

My favorite show is Cupcake Wars. I don't know why. Maybe because in a world where I have money and time, I would open a cupcake food truck. I think I would love that. Anyway, I love watching them come up and make these delicious looking and sounding cupcakes. The cupcake, in my opinion, is the perfect dessert. And you always know when a baker messes up. I mean honestly no more strawberry and champagne or red velvet. And always brand your display final competitors. Have you never watch this show before!?

My new favorite is Sweet Genius. I just started watching that recently. But it is fun and I like the different rounds of the show and watching the chefs/cooks incorporate the weirdest things into their desserts. The candy level is really interesting, but all of them are really cool. Ron Ben-Israel is really a character and I like the faces he makes and his commentary on the desserts presented and when he is watching them cook.

And while I worry about watching regular TV with my son because you never know what is going to happen or be said on a drama or comedy, baking competitions are pretty safe. So one day I will get around to Once Upon a Time or finished Eureka or Warehouse 13 but for right now a little sweet TV is just the thing.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Nursing in public (part 2)

I wrote before about how nursing in public makes me uncomfortable. Not other people doing it but me. It has been something I have struggled with. I am not down with making my breastfeeding a political statement like some people are. I just really want to feed my kid. I'm proud to say that I am making advances. I have actually nursed Button in public (with a cover) twice at the zoo. I am very much not a look at me type of person so this is a big deal for me. The first time Bub was playing on the playground and Button was getting hungry/tired and she kept pawing at me and diving for my chest so I took her to one of the benches under the play structure and just fed her there. It was super busy  but nobody really even looked and if there were comments I didn't hear them. The second time was a similar situation but it was less busy and I'm pretty sure an older lady mentioned to her husband while they played with their grandchild. But we made eye contact and she didn't seem too bothered by it. So it was a victory for me.

I still am not up for just plopping myself down in the middle of a restaurant or park and certainly none of this will ever happen without a cover. But now that the weather is nice I don't mind nursing her in the car (sans cover actually) like I did on a visit to a local Pumpkin Patch to pick up Halloween pumpkins. And I don't mind finding a quiet corner somewhere in public. I feel like though I am getting more comfortable at feeding her without feeling embarrassed.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Stages

I read an article once in a parenting magazine that talk about the different stages of baby/toddlerhood  and how parents felt about them. It said that most parents have a favorite stage. Like most new moms, I was a little offended that a magazine would suggest that every stage of my precious boy's life wouldn't be my favorite. But it turns out that it is true. I am really not a fan of the newborn stage, a little more okay with the 3 months point and I love 6 months to about a year.

The newborn stage is my least favorite because it is so exhausting. Looking back it is hard to even contemplate how exhausted I was. After Bub I always said I wouldn't have another one til I forgot how tired I was. So yeah, it took 5 years. Newborns are just not like anything. They have no function but it eat, sleep and cry. They look funny all scrunched up and swollen and they are spastic because they have no motor control. Not to say that I didn't find my sweet babies adorable. It's just that, in hindsight, they definitely got cuter the older they got. The plus side is that you can leave on the bed and they will still be there when you get back. Also luckily for me they both slept through the night at 2 months. Of course, I let them sleep in the swing which might be a no-no but at that point I was willing to let them do whatever it took to get a little extra shuteye. And then they were both in their cribs by 4 months. There were/are still some difficulties with that but it works for the most part.

About 3 months is when they started to get awesome. There were genuine smiles and laughter and they were much more interactive. It's about when they start to feel less delicate and can start to hold their own head.  And they start to look more like babies and less like scrunching things. Of course this is when they start rolling over increasing the difficulty level. No more leaving them alone and expecting them to stay put.


But 6 months and on is my favorite. That is when they can sit on their own and will really play with you. Button is getting close to 8 months now and she is sitting and grabbing for things. She babbles a lot and can say a few words. She likes eating and it is fun to watch her with some cauliflower or Cheerios. Crawling will come soon and that in itself is another challenge because then Miss Nosy Parker will be into everything. But it is so fun to watch her learn and explore even if that means she is going to empty the cabinets of everything or try to use the mouse on the laptop. And I loved playing hide and go seek with Bub once he learned to crawl and I'm looking forward to it again. So many cute moments come once they hit this age and beyond. Until they get to the terrible toddler years but that is a different topic.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Small things

I worry sometimes that I will forget these small moments in favor of the big ones. Like on weekend mornings when we are all cuddled in bed together and he reaches over and holds her hand and gives her a kiss. Like how her face lights up when she sees him and she laughs. Like how he tries to make her laugh. I hope that I can remember these things as they get older and new moments come along. I've forgotten so much so far. I want to hold on to a few of these small things.

Friday, November 9, 2012

On having a girl

Ican honestly say I didn't care either way if Button was a boy or a girl. I really wanted a boy the first time around and I got that wish so it didn't matter if I was having another son or getting a daughter. That being said, I am pretty happy to have a girl. I don't consider myself really girly but I like things to be a certain way regarding clothes and shoes. Matching is important to me. So having a girl and getting to have girl clothes is fun for me with all the accessories and what not. BT use to complain that I dressed Bub up like a doll but that can go double for Button.

Beyond the clothes, I know that having a daughter will be both awesome and frightening as she grows up. She is definitely much more opinionated that her brother. Bub is pretty accepting and was willing to put up with the choices (and the mistakes) we made, which is good in an oldest child. Button also likes things a certain way, her way to be exact. So I foresee many clashes between the two of us as we each try to get our own way. Luckily as the Mom, all ways here are my ways.

But I hope that we have a close relationship like I have with my own mom. That I will always be a source of comfort for her and she will enjoy spending time with me as she gets older. I hope we have a strong bond and that she doesn't drift away from me or if she does that she will always come back.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Shabby Chic Giraffe Baby Shower

Someone asked me what the theme of my cousin's baby shower was going to be. "Shabby Chic Giraffes." They said they didn't know that could be a theme. I said well it is now.


I  made these invitations based on an image I found on google with a grey chevron background and a giraffe. I gave the giraffe blue spots since my cousin is having a boy.

The favors were hot chocolate spoons with minature marshmallows on top and I made little "thank you" labels and tied them with ribbon. The spoons are the made to look "real" ones from the Dollar Tree.



I did Wishes for Baby cards with the grey chevron background and a baby clothesline garland. Since it is a boy I made onesies with a giraffe, a tie, a truck (his room will be vintage trucks) and an S for his name.



 The cake ended up having blue giraffe spots on the sides and a giraffe on top. I made food cards for the table. We had a sandwich tray, a veggie tray, jambalaya, a creamy salsa dip, a banana split trifle, chocolate chip cookie dough dip (which was a huge hit), and giant chocolate covered marshmallows.


I made two diaper bouquets and added sock and washcloth buds along with the diaper "flowers."

For games we did gift bingo and the envelope pull. I got notepaper for prizes, something everyone uses. I think it turned out well. It was very simple and clean, not really babyish, but I figured the mom-to-be would get enough of that with her other showers.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Hiding Christmas

When I was a child I didn't go into my parent's room or in their closet very often. It wasn't that I was forbidden, it was just a place I didn't feel welcome. Like it was their space and I was intruding when I went in which now as an adult I understand. But BT and I have essentially done the opposite of that. Bub seems to feel like our space is his space. We watch a lot of movies together in bed, he comes and crawls in with us in the mornings. He showers in our bathroom (though he needs to move into his own bathroom soon) and he goes in our closet.

So now where do I hide these Christmas presents? Usually under the bed but Button is getting something large and it is not going to fit under there. And, like I said, Bub feels oh so comfortable hanging out in our room. The attic? On a shelf in someone's closet? I don't know. Where do people hide oversized presents? It was easy when it was just him. But now I have to balance out both their Christmases and she might not know what is going on but he definitely does.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Little peacock

Thanks again to Pinterest for the idea of Button's peacock costume. I first saw the idea when I was pregnant with her and I knew that is what I wanted to do. I looked at many tutorials but in the end I made a tutu using teal, blue and brown tulle and added some teal and peacock feathers to the back to make the "tail." I bought a dark blue onesie for her to wear underneath.


I decided to make her a simple headband using the stretchy kind and added a small peacock feather as well as a few leftovers from the peacock thing I had bought. I think it was meant to be used for bouquets but I took it apart and used the pieces. It worked because she is so small that I couldn't have anything really big on her back and head.


Something else I bought was some skin tone colored knee high socks. I shortened the toe to fit her but in the end it was warm enough that she didn't need them though after the sun went down I should have put them on her.

I'm pretty proud of the whole things. This will probably be the only time I make her costume for her but I think I did alright this year.