Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Life is good...no great actually (with a side of screams and belly fat).

This past weekend was the official kick off to summer. We returned from our beach vacation (more on that to come) to 80 degree weather, honeysuckle and fireflies. I couldn't be more excited, summer is my second favorite season after all (it's really hard to beat fall in East TN...the leaves changing on all the beautiful hills...gorgeous). I'm sure I'll be over the summer heat in approximately 30 days (or less...humidity blows) and ready for fall to bring on cooler weather, but for now I am totally digging the sun and spray tanning because God knows this girl doesn't get the time to lay out. Where did those days go? 

It's amazing how quickly we have been forced to dive right in with a calendar full of activities and traveling. Life is certainly busy. Ethan started summer school today at a new place and it didn't throw him a bit. He seems to be pretty open to new people, places and things which definitely surprises me since I am not and that kid is 98% all me. It does bring me comfort though since moving around will continue to be in our future for the time being.

Jackson is growing like a weed. In fact, we are going back in for a weight check on Thursday and I'm expecting great news. Goodbye 1st percentile! Fingers crossed that we get at least in the 5-10% range. He had lots of floor time on vacation and my mom informed me that he began "crawling"...more like creeping I believe. I immediately covered my eyes and screamed "No! This can't be happening." Stop it already. What happened to the days where he just curled up on my chest and slept like a kitty cat? Mobility is overrated. 

I still feel like I'm continuously drowning in my "To-Do" list, but trying to stay focused on all the good stuff that is happening around me. It's funny how one minute you can feel so blessed and lucky to live the life you have and then the next minute you are in a car with two screaming children daydreaming that you were 22, carefree and laying by the pool in a skimpy bikini with a drink in one hand and a good book in the other. Sometimes it is so hard to just enjoy the moment. I know in 5 years I'll miss some of the little moments that are happening all around me right now and I'm aiming to remember to soak those up and not let the things that I will hopefully one day block from my memory ruin those. 

My current focus (besides getting my ish-together (see also: I'm trying to stop the cursing...it's going to bad news bears if my 2.5 year old shows up to church busting out my less than great vocabulary)) is to lose the last 10 (ok, 15) pounds I have left on my ubber jiggly, definitely not summer ready body. I've been contemplating the easy option of maybe doing some kind of cleanse (Although is that safe for nursing?) or worse...running. I haven't ran (unless you count chasing a toddler in a parking lot) in 10 years. I actually asked my husband what exactly would be considered running. Like if you ran for say 3 minutes does that count? Is that considered running? I don't even know if I could make it 3 minutes with the beast of hills we have around these parts. I'm more leaning towards the easy option of a cleanse. Besides, I tend to like to jump on bandwagons and am starting to wonder if this Advocare deal will live up to all the hype I keep seeing on Facebook. Hello? Wasn't I on the whole foods bandwagon just last year? Pretty sure Advocare is not whole foods acceptable. For now I'm settling for walking up and down my driveway while the kiddos are asleep. I know that sounds totally lame (and it totally is) but you haven't seen my mountain of a driveway. At least it's something which is more than what I was doing.

Hopefully next time I'll be back with adorable baby pictures and fun beach beach memories. Although don't hold your breath apparently I can only show up here once a week these days. I promise...it will get better...or that's what "they" say anyways. ;)

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Soaking Up the Sibling Love

Prior to Jackson's arrival, I thought for sure that Ethan would be the jealous type. I just knew there would be tears, acting out and that a protective bubble would be needed for Jackson's safety. Ethan had been the center of attention for so long. How would he feel about sharing it? As per usual, I spent a lot of unnecessary time worrying about nothing. These two seriously melt my heart every single day.

Ethan loves baby toes as much as the rest of us.

At first, Ethan pretty much ignored Jackson. There wasn't any jealousy, but he wasn't really aware of his presence either. At some point during the past two months, their relationship has really taken off. Ethan proudly introduces him to everyone he sees, he asks for baby Jack to join us when we are playing, and sweetly holds his hand while sitting on the couch. When Ethan wakes up, one of the first questions he asks is "Baby Jack up?". He cannot wait for his little brother to wake up so he can go talk to him and smile at him. And Jackson? He will actually "talk" back and give the biggest of grins!

The days that Ethan is at school are Jackson's least favorite days. He becomes a whiny, needy little thing and I am 100% positive it is because he is bored. In fact, I know he hates the quiet. He much prefers to be around the sound and action of Ethan's daily crazies. His favorite past time is to sit in Ethan's vicinity and just watch him run around. 

Sharing his coveted "Ellie & Blank". This is only to be done on his terms of course.

I know it's early yet, but I hope these two have a special sibling relationship. Jackson's personality hasn't fully come out yet, but I can already tell that he and Ethan have two very different energies about them. My hope is that they will balance each other out and become the best of friends. 

I am proud of my oldest for taking Jack under his tiny wing. I'm so impressed by his maturity when I have to ask him to wait because I need to do something for the baby. 

I am soaking every minute up because Jackson is working very hard to be just like big brother. Give him another month and my bets are that he will be a toy stealing machine.

Pretty sure I know how that will go over, but who knows, I might just be pleasantly surprised again. 

Thursday, May 9, 2013

All I Want for Mother's Day is a Freaking Time Out

Let's be honest. At the moment, I'm in a rut. I know it's a phase and this too shall pass yada-yada, but for now I feel like being cynical so I'm going to unleash. 

Consider yourself warned.

I've been seeing all these Mother's Day commercials with beautiful well kept moms being surprised with gifts by their equally well kept, smiling children and all I can think is that it's all a complete load of BS.

No, Jared's I do not want your sparkly earrings. You know why? My earlobes will be ripped in two by my 4 month old that is all grabby, grabby lately.

No, Pro Flowers I do not want your beautiful bouquet of roses. The last time I got flowers my two year old picked the petals off one by one. I put what was salvageable on the mantle and forgot about them. It's been months and they are still sitting there all sad and dead looking.

And no Baskin Robbins, I absolutely do not want your ice cream cake. I'm having enough trouble as it is pretending I don't have an extra 10 pounds of baby fat to lose.

You know what I do want?

I want some peace and freaking quiet. I mean, I don't even want to hear a cricket. 

I'd like to avoid baby screams, dog barking and incessant toddler questions for a whole 24 hours. 

I don't want to wipe a butt, take someone to the potty or take a dog outside.

I don't want to be vomited on, have snot wiped on my shirt or have to clean up doggie accidents.

I want to be able to wake up and get out of bed when I freaking feel like it.

I want to drink my coffee while it's still hot.

I want to go to a restaurant and eat my food in absolute peace. In fact, I'd even settle for just being able to sit down to eat period.

I want to do something and actually be able to complete it without being interrupted 5 million times in-between.

I'd like to drive my car with the windows down listening to whatever station I want to listen to. I don't want to have to lean back to put in a paci or hear someone complain that it's too windy in the back. I don't want to point out every flag, truck or other toddler interest along the way. And I want to listen to my radio loud because I feel like singing, not because I'm trying to drown out the screaming in the backseat.

You know what I asked for?


You want to know the reason?

I need a pair of button down pajamas so I can easily whip my boob out in the middle of the night to feed the baby. I'm betting they will come in a size XS that I can't even wear anymore because that's the size of my last pair that the hubs probably used to figure out what to buy. As soon as I squeeze my fat behind in them they will probably be instantly vomited on and stained with breastmilk.

Now I know why the advertisements are the way they are. You just can't sell real life. It's too messy.

Happy freaking Mother's Day.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

It's Time to Stop Dog-Paddling and Start Swimming the Butterfly.

I've started three posts tonight and deleted each one. I get the first few paragraphs out and then...just go blank. I so want to give you something sarcastic and oh, let's have a laugh at our latest shenanigans (and believe me...we have them), but I just can't. I keep coming back to this. 

I feel empty.

Used up.

And maybe...as strange as it sounds...a tad robotic like.

This year was suppose to be our year of nothing. No major life events, a focus on the family and getting back to basics sort of year. And in a sense, that is exactly what it's been. And, maybe...that's the problem.

Or, maybe the problem is that I can't seem to get myself together.

Or, maybe the problem is that I'm realizing that this is just how it is and will be for the next, let's say, 5 years if I'm being optimistic. A constant roller coaster of unpredictable days, new battles, ever growing laundry piles and a floor that will never, ever be clean for more than 30 minutes. 

Parenting one child was an adjustment for me. Figuring out how to balance me time, baby time, relationship time and keeping things neat, tidy, organized and on schedule was a challenge. New me...with two...laughs at old me all the time these days. If only I knew how easy I had it! And I'm sure that when I have (if I have...now you know it's bad) kid number three, I'll be sitting back re-reading this post (Who am I kidding? I'll be lucky to have time to brush my teeth at this rate.) just cackling at how ridiculous parent of two me was. 

Life is like that you know. You think you have it hard and then it throws something else in your face to make you realize that you really didn't have it that bad after all. And who am I kidding, life...my life...is a cake walk. My life is so incredibly blessed that I should be happy that drowning in a sea of laundry and toys is all that I have to complain about. And that "something else" that was thrown in my face was an answer to a prayer, a beautiful, giggly, smiley baby boy. Life is beautiful...in a messy, spit up laden, snotty face sort of way. 

I want to stop being joyful simply in hindsight. Well, I want to be joyful in hindsight, but I want to live joyfully in moment as well. 

Jackson is quickly approaching the 5 month mark and for some reason I feel like now is the time that I should have things "all figured out". I've been racking my brain the past month trying to come up with a plan of attack on how I can get my crap together. I want more than anything to run a smooth household and have personal, semi guilt free time to focus on the things that I enjoy doing for myself. I see other moms of two, three or more all the time that seem to have it all together and here I am shoving 5 month old Christmas candy in my mouth by the bucketful all woe is me wondering why I don't fit into my size 4 jeans among other things.

And just as clear as the answer to my size 4 pants problem is, I know the answer to my time management problem as well. I need to switch tactics. I need to rev up for change. I need to look at things in a new light. I need to stop whining and be proactive.

I'm tired of dog-paddling my way through life. I want to win gold medals or at least make it to the podium. 

Thursday, May 2, 2013

What are Little Boys Made of?

I knew when I had boys that things were bound to get messy. I envisioned making mud pies together when they were little and when they got older I'd be yelling "No, throwing balls in the house!" and giving a smile as the rambunctious boys headed out the backdoor. For some reason I didn't envision mess happening all the time. I thought it would all be done on assigned days. Like "Hey, I'm a cool mom...let's have mud puddle jumping day!". I'd put him in old clothes and make sure we had adequate time for a bath before nap time. It would all be so controlled. Oh, what little did I know?

My brand new living room lamp was broken because Ethan was fishing from the stairway.

Sand has scraped up my hardwood floors and no I don't live near a beach. Trucks bring it in from the sandbox on a regular basis. So much so that I am beyond glad that I do not live at the beach. 

Yesterday, while I was cleaning up said sand, concrete mix was dumped all over the garage floor because God forbid the child not have anything to load and dump with his trucks. 

I scooped poop out of the bathroom sink. 


So the other day, when a nice lady walked up to me at the park bench to inform me my child was standing in the middle of a mud puddle I was dumbfounded that this was news. She was worried that his Toms were getting dirty. Little did she know they've already been run through the wash multiple times in their month long existence. 

I began to wonder if this affinity for being messy was normal. Am I a fun parent or just too lazy to discipline?

I'd like to think I'm adventurous.

Sure, cleaning up these messes is not my favorite thing to do. I've certainly had to pause and take deep breaths when we are on our 3rd bath for the day. Heck, sometimes I don't even bother with that! I've literally laughed at contractors that have walked into house apologizing for leaving footprints. They must have been blind because there is always some kind of dusty, sticky, or wet footprint all over my nice, dark hardwood. 

I'm not normally a laid back person, but my son(s) are teaching me to let go. Childhood should be adventures, exploratory, freeing and fun. I am too aware that these days won't be around for long so I'm letting them live it up. There will be plenty of time for responsibility and cleanliness later. I may lose my sanity, but for now I'm embracing muddy shoes, sandy floors and spending loads of money on spot removers. And truth be told, somedays...I'm jealous that I'm not carefree enough to just join in and get all muddied up myself.

*And just for clarification, I do draw the line at poop...let's just say THAT will certainly not be happening again!*

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