Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Dog

Our dog is a 65-pound labradoodle that thinks she is about 10 pounds.  This is an issue because she does not realize her own strength, whether that be when she is greeting us, the kids, or perfect strangers.  Twice now I have threatened to murder her when her excited butt took out the toddler coming up the three stairs in our foyer.  But, she can be good, and my husband and the kids are really attached, so she will be staying, and we are working on her excitement issues.  She used to pee the floor when anyone she knew - including us, who LIVE here - came over.  Now, she only does it a little bit and for people she is really excited to see.  A step up - yay!

The toddler hates when the dog gets in her way, I think because the dog is so unmovable to the toddler, who is just as tall and half as heavy.  This morning, the dog stepped on the toddler's foot.  Her first response was to whine about it, but then she looked at the dog and said "Gracie, you stepped on my foot.  Kiss it" and then proceeded to try and hang on to the dog while shoving her foot in the dog's face and pointing out the spot "right here, kiss it right here".  She never did get the kiss, but her foot is fine.  Moments like these are when I wish we were on reality TV and had every second videotaped because that was so freaking cute I wish it were captured forever.  At least it is captured on the internet...

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Potty Mouth take 2

I swear I am not that bad a parent!  But, I will go ahead and write the second potty mouth post in a week...

My in-laws gave the toddler an awesome Thomas the Train car that flies across the room when you push down on the conductor.  It is really cool.  She was playing with it upstairs on Christmas, shooting it across the room, when it crashed into something.  Her response "oh crap, it crashed"!  I was not there to hear it, but heard the story retold a number of times.  Everyone laughed, but most were appalled she would say "crap".  I just thought it was funny.

This prompted my husband and I to have a discussion about language.  I really do not think "crap" is so bad, but he says it is just one step above "sh!t".  I would rather she say "crap" than call someone "stupid" or say "suck".  He does not think those are as bad.  So, I am curious, oh Internet...what are your definite "no" words and what can you live with?  And I'm not talking about the standard 4 letter words, lets hope we all want to avoid those.

p.s. - lest you think my husband is perfect, it was not I who taught my daughter how to "point" at bad drivers... 

p.p.s - here is the toy on Amazon

Monday, December 28, 2009

Yay Christmas!

Our Christmas turned out to be wonderful.  After being in this fog of pregnancy exhaustion, stress, worry, and hormones for almost two months, I did not think I would ever find my Christmas spirit.  But, I did!  Our cards went out late - two days before Christmas - but I am going to pretend it was the incredible snow storm and not care because everyone loved the FOUR pictures (yes, apparently I am narcissistic about my children) in the cards!  We put the tree up two days before Christmas, and the husband and I stayed up late on Wednesday so I could wrap all the gifts while he sat by and watched.  Oh, and wrote the tags - I was "doing such a great job" wrapping, he did not want to get in my way!  Once the presents were under the tree and the house was all picked up, it looked so great I was sad it took me so long to find my Christmas spirit.  But, there is always next year!

For Christmas - technically Christmas Eve - my body gifted me with no more bleeding!  After bleeding consistently from December 1st, I was pretty relieved that my body stopped that action, and since the bleeding has continued to stay away, I can cancel the appointment for the D&C I never wanted!  We did Christmas Eve with my family and Christmas Day with the in-laws.  I had a great time at both places, and for the first time since we got married 3 1/2 years ago, I did not miss my family and wish I were with them instead.  I missed them and wished I could have spent Christmas with my family and our traditions, but I was thoroughly engrossed in the celebration with my husband's family and did not want to be anywhere else.  That is awesome! 

We had a great Christmas!  I have so many things to be thankful for this year.  The last two months have been hard, but now that I am out of my fog, I can see how great the year was overall and be thankful for what I have. 

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Potty Mouth!

I do not know how the toddler managed to come up with all these inappropriate words she says, but it is hysterical! 

We were getting ready to go out in the snow on Sunday, so I got out the snow suits.  She proceeded to repeatedly refer to hers as her "snow sloot".  When I tried to correct her, she said "no, not suit, sloot".  ohhhkay...

Yesterday she gets up from nap, starts playing with a Winnie the Pooh toy, and then tells me that she likes "E-whore" the best.  Again, she would take no corrections.  "E-whore! E-whore! E-whore!"

Haha :)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

I'm easy

I have the easiest labors ever.  Seriously, both girls were practically identical labors - I went in for the scheduled induction around 7am, labored lightly until the pressure was a bit rough, got an epidural, rested, laid* on each side for an hour or so, and then pushed the baby out in 5 minutes or less!  They were both born after just shy of 8 hour of labor.

I learned last night that miscarriage is a lot like labor without the fun reward.  My contractions (cramping?  oh hell, no, that is a BAD description and somebody needs to tell the OBs to stop using it) started around 4ish on the way home.  I managed to get the girls inside, my laptop set up, and Wall-E on the tv before things got too rough.  And then I sat on the couch, uploading pictures all night long (I SUCK at this so I am usually months behind!) trying to take my mind off this awfulness.  It was painful, even with the 800mg of Motrin.  I bled a boatload, passed a bunch of clots, and by midnight, I was done.  I passed a very large clot around 11:30 and my contractions went away and my bleeding slowed considerably.  I made it all night without ruining the towel I slept on just in case.  The couch I sat on through the whole process was not so lucky.  But, my amazing, wonderful, awesome husband spent 45 minutes (NO exaggeration) cleaning that sucker off and there are no traces of stain!  Today I am back at work and feel fine. 

It is very odd to me how similar my miscarriage process was to my labor.  I have heard there are days of bleeding and pain.  While I have been spotting/bleeding for weeks, I really only had heavy bleeding yesterday afternoon.  I guess I feel lucky.  I'm lucky to have such a cooperative uterus.  And I am blessed to have two beautiful, perfect, healthy girls I carried perfectly fine to cheer me up when I get down.

*I spelled this "layed" at first, then spellchecker told me that was wrong.  but "laid" makes me think of "get laid", which is not even on my mind these days, but apparently my subconscious is also dirty!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


I went to the OB yesterday.  My first appointment was two weeks ago, and oddly enough as I was leaving my urine sample, I noticed blood.  It was the first time, and I had a terrible (lost my voice) cold.  The doctor predicted my coughing riled up my implantation bleed and it decided to show, which happens to a lot of people, but had never happened to me before.  But, she sent me for an ultrasound to be sure!  I saw the baby - just a head and glob of body - and the heartbeat.  There were no special instructions, just to call back if things changed/got worse.

My bleeding continued.  Sunday, it was heavier that ever, and yesterday it was still going strong, so I called for an appointment.  The nurse practitioner was very nice and unassuming.  She checked for the heartbeat using the doppler, but could not find one.  She did an internal and saw the bleeding, but called it moderate.  Then she went to get a different doppler because they do not always cooperate.  Still no heartbeat.  I asked about my urine sample, but it was too full of blood to tell them anything.  They sent us for another ultrasound.

The tech seemingly did not even try for a picture of the baby, which was odd because the last tech got a couple pictures for us and a heartbeat.  Then, she had my empty my bladder so the radiologist could do the internal ultrasound, which was also weird considering I was 11 weeks.  But, then we saw the baby.  Or not the baby, but what was once a baby.  She just held the probe in place for what felt like forever until finally saying "at this point, I should have seen the heartbeat".  She ran a scan, but got nothing.  She measured the baby and got 8 weeks 4 days.  The last ultrasound measured the baby at 8 weeks 1 day. 

If my appointment was just a few days later, I never would have seen the heartbeat.  Is that better?  Or worse?  I would not have told people outside of family and close friends, would not have mentioned it on facebook, something I did because I had seen the heartbeat.  I went to sleep last night wondering what happened to the head - I saw it so clearly two weeks ago, and this time there was just a glob of tissue.  My husband said they probably got a bad angle, but I doubt that.  And it doesn't matter because the baby is gone and there is just tissue left in place.  But, I can't stop thinking about the baby with the heartbeat I saw two weeks ago.  And feeling sad.  For what was, what could have been...

Friday, December 4, 2009

Black Friday

This year I did not participate in Black Friday.  I usually do not, but last year I decided I was not going to miss out on the deals, so I braved the crowds.  And I freaking loved the experience.  I compiled my Christmas lists, scoured the leaked ads for weeks, and the released ads the day before.  I knew where I was going, what I was buying, and I planned a route.  I went by myself to avoid having to wait on someone else.  It was bliss.  I got up at the crack of dawn, leaving my sleeping family behind, and I waddled (b/c at 7 months pregnant I was already HUGE) around the stores, collecting things.  By 10am, I breezed back into the house, high on my Starbucks, car loaded down with gifts.  And in 4 hours, I had completed 90% of my Christmas shopping.  A-MA-ZING! 

This year, much to my disappointment, I had no idea what I wanted to get people, did not have enough lists, and did not see anything in the ads that spoke to me.  I cannot imagine braving all the traffic and noise without a plan, so I skipped out on the sales.  And now it is December and the weight of the gifts I have to buy, the family picture that we need to get done, and the Christmas cards I have to find admist all the crap I bought during after Christmas sales last year buy and write is pressing down on my shoulders and making it hard to breathe.  Or maybe that's just the chest cold I'm battling. 

The point is, I am really struggling with gifts this year.  I just do not know when I am going to go out and get stuff and I do not know what I want to buy the kids.  That is the worst part for me.  Last year I knew just what to get the toddler and was SO EXCITED.  Plus, we do not have much to spend, so I want to stretch the dollar as far as possible for a great gift.  Meh, I'll get there. 

On a more positive (HA!) note, our washer broke last Wednesday night.  So, we did get to partake in the awesome appliance sales on Black Friday!

Monday, November 23, 2009

The new teacher

One of the toddler's teachers left in September.  This is very sad; we really liked her.  The daycare has been looking for a new teacher for a while and finally found one two weeks ago.  This teacher is a man.  On his first day, my husband happened to walk the kids in at the same time as her other teacher, who told my husband about Mr. Teacher.  Not in a "hey, guess what?" way either.  She was really concerned about this teacher being a man and told my husband the school would be sending home letters about this and went on and on like it was a big deal.  When my husband called to tell me, I was shocked.  Who cares if he is a man?  It is not like he is all alone with a bunch of girls or something - there are two teachers in her room, the two 2-year old rooms share a bathroom and do most of their activities in a group together, which means there are usually four teachers around the kids.  I let my husband, my dad, my father-in- law, and my brother-in-law take my daughter to the bathroom; this guy is a teacher, I expect he will be professional about things.  We've met him, he is a nice guy, late 20s/early 30s, perfectly normal.  He has been here for weeks and apparently there are still some issues with parents not liking this idea.  I watch lots of crime dramas on tv and tend to jump to scary thoughts, but in this case, I guess I believe in the goodness of people and trust that Mr. Teacher has no alternative plan and likes kids the same way Mrs. Teacher likes kids.

Is it just me?  Am I abnormal for thinking this is perfectly fine?  I just really do not get it, I think this is great.  He provides a different kind of authority figure and a way for kids to see that men and women can do all different types of jobs.  But in this school, my opinion is apparently in the minority!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Just Breathe

Yesterday as I was putting the toddler in the car in the daycare parking lot, I looked over and there was a dad, standing by his car door.  I heard a squeal/screech coming from his car and he looked up to the sky, took a deep breath, and then got in his car.  I love that I got to see that moment.  I think with all the sterotypes and daycare guilt, whether you have it or feel like you should have it, working moms and dads feel like they should just bounce right in to the car happy for the next few hours they get to spend with their awesome, amazing offspring. 

But, that is not always the case.  Sometimes I wish I could go home and sit on the couch all night with no responsibilities.  Sometimes I want nothing more than to go home and play with my kids.  It all depends on my mood.   I make no excuses and feel no need to justify why I work, but I know many moms do.  Whether or not you feel guilty, it is okay to take a step back and take a deep breath.  You always love your kids, but that does not mean you need to want to spend every second of every day loving every single thing they do.  Sometimes, I go to daycare high on life, wanting nothing more than to go home and play with the kids.  But, then the toddler does not want to hold my hand in the parking lot, and by the time we get to the car she is upset and calling for daddy, and the second the baby realizes I am buckling her in to her carseat, she starts with the tears, and my mood deflates.  Those are the days I take extra long walking from the toddler's side of the car to the driver's seat.  Yesterday, watching that man, I felt united with him as a working parent.   That is what this is all about - being a community.  Whether we talk, or just observe each other, all parents share some connection to this world and this life of parenting and all its joys, sorrows, happiness, and stress.   

Thursday, November 19, 2009


Well, blog-world, I've got news...I'm pregnant!

My oldest will turn three about four weeks before our due date, so I will miss the coveted (heh) 3 under 3 title.  The toddler and the baby are 19 months apart.  The baby and the pumpkin (awesome nickname given based on the fact that we found out on Halloween) will be 17 months apart.  I actually really liked the spacing between the toddler and the baby, and I am hopeful that the pumpkin is as awesome as my other kids so I can enjoy this just as much. 

Another baby!  Wow :)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Daddy's Girl

The toddler is a daddy's girl.  100,000%  She has been since she was born.  If I had not breastfed, I probably would not have held her for the first year.  It was nice when he was always the one who could calm her down, because I got more time hands free.  But, now, she talks, and whines, and cries.  "daaaddddyyyyyyy..."  I think our neighbors probably think I beat her.  Every day when we get home from daycare she tells me "daddy wants to get me out" and I tell her "daddy is still working" and she tells me "I wait for daddy to get me out" and I tell her "daddy will be working for a long time, we have to get out of the car".  When I forcefully have to pry her out of the car, she proceeds to scream and cry and carry on as if it is torture.  And then we enter the house, and she calls out for him, having forgotten the conversation we just had!  This is followed by more tears when I explain - once again - the work situation.  It is sad.  Doesn't this picture make you want to give her a big hug?  I took it to send my husband.  Nothing like guilt to shorten the work day!

Another one of my favorite phrases, which I hear almost daily is when I say "I love you" and she says "No.  I love daddy".  Knife.  Through. The. Heart.  The only remedy for this is when she says "No.  Daddy wants to take me to poop".  Yes.  Yes, he does.  Her poo stinks!  Seriously, I do not know what they feed those kids at daycare, but yuck!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Kids & TV

When I was pregnant I was on the mommy boards and there were SO many posts about "I will NEVER let my kid watch TV" and "I will let my kid watch TV and they will be fine, so suck it". I briefly flirted with the idea of the former - being such a good mommy and so involved that my kid would never watch TV. But, then I looked at my life and realized a) I did not care that much and really do not think it has that much of an effect, and b) I want that free time to myself!

When the toddler was born, I would watch TV while hanging out with her. When she started doing "daycare" - my friend brought her daughter over to our house and took care of them both - the kids watched Sesame Street every day, maybe twice some (hard) days. When I got home in the evening we would play for a bit, but she always wanted to watch more Sesame Street. She could have watched that show all day long, every day! I didn't let her, obviously, but she watched a lot and I worried sometimes that we were bad parents. Now, I think it was fine. She enjoyed Sesame Street and she learned some things. But, we are busier. Now she goes to a daycare, and I have a longer commute, and by the time we get home in the afternoon/evening (5ish), I never think to turn on the TV. Weekends are so full, we do not watch it then either. Honestly, these days, it's crazy if my husband and I sit down to watch one hour-long show two days in a row! So, our kids pretty much never watch TV. If the toddler is having a bad day or is extremely tired, she will ask for a show/movie and we oblige, but we never turn it on for our peace of mind. And, the baby! She has enough entertainment trying to keep up with the toddler.

I have not changed my stance on watching TV. I do not care if my kids - or any kids - do or do not watch TV. I just think it is interesting something that was once a huge part of our lives (Sesame Street) is now a fading memory, and one that the baby won't have, or at least not for a while. It is neat to see that my toddler can think of so many things to do and play that she does not want to watch TV unless she needs to decompress. She is growing and changing so much, it is incredible to watch.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Weekend Wrap-Up

My weekend was great.  The weather was beautiful Sunday, but I really did not enjoy it much as we were at the in-laws and stayed inside.  The visit was nice and we had a great family dinner with the husband's extended family. 

Saturday, though, was amazing.  I have been SLACKING on housework, laundry, everything.  There is a good reason, but still, I felt like I was drowing!  My husband was going to help some friends with a house project, so he called ahead to see if our friend (the wife) would mind watching the toddler.  She agreed, leaving just me and the perfect, wonderful, amazing baby.  Seriously, the baby is so good she kills me.  I closed her in the family room using the North States Superyard XT Gate.  If you do not have one, you are seriously missing out on some awesomeness.  Anyway, I closed the baby in that for a while, let her jump in the johnny jump up for a while, let her play in the exersaucer for a while, and she was fine the whole time.  She didn't need me to hold her or do any more than feed her, change her diaper, and hold her while she ate her bottle and fell asleep.  This allowed me to get stuff done.  My goal was to do the basics - dusting, vacuuming.  But, she was so good, I not only dusted and vacuumed the main floor and upstairs, I also polished furniture, windexed windows and mirrors, cleaned the half bath, mopped, did laundry, did the stairs, and in a random burst of energy toward the end, took care of my appliances.  My microwave, which is generally gross because someone in my house (*cough* husband *cough*) does not believe in covering up dishes of food, is now spotless. 

Not only am I not drowning in housework, I'm all caught up and ahead of the game.  If I can keep up this momentum and maintain a fairly easy cleaning schedule, I will be fine until the next meltdown!  Oh, and in case you were worried about me, I still had plenty of time to take breaks and catch up on my shows sitting on our brand new couches!  My husband rocks!  My friends rock!  And this week is going to rock!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Grandparents Rock...why do I feel so guilty?

My parents called last night to check dates with me so they can take the toddler to see Elmo Live! That is very exciting as she loves Elmo and will surely enjoy the performance (especially since I cautioned them against tickets that would put her too close to the scary people in costumes). My parents are always doing stuff like this - I swear, they scour the newspaper and community newsletters, listen to commercials, and crawl the internet looking for awesome things to do with the kids. They rock like that!

Why, then, do I feel so guilty? I am proud of myself if I take them to the mall play place. We've gone to the zoo once with the toddler, when the baby was still in my womb. We went to the beach a couple times, but really, we do so little of these fun, awesome, kid activities it is embarrassing! We live next to DC, there is TONS to do around here, and yet we are always too busy or too tired or too something. I need to step up my game. Otherwise, in 20 years, my kids will look back through pictures and ask why all the pictures of really cool activities only have my parents in them. I'll just tell them it is because we were taking the pictures. duh!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Fairness and Equality

When we were kids, every Christmas we each got the same number of gifts in our stacks that added up to the same dollar amount (obviously something we learned later in life). Once we hit middle school, my mom relaxed her requirements and got us the same dollar amount, but didn't care how many gifts we got. This allowed my parents to get us some "cooler" (aka, more expensive) stuff. I like this idea and plan to do the same with my kids. I don't know that I'll pick out a set amount every year to spend on their birthdays and whatnot, but I will try to keep track to keep it equal. That's fine. The problem is, I take it too far! My profile picture for first I had one of the whole family, it was far away and you couldn't see my face, but since I don't have one of just my face or me with both girls, I put up a picture of the whole family. I eventually changed it, but at first I struggled.  PIN numbers at work - I want to use a birthday, but can't decide whose! Why does that get to me? It's not like the toddler is going to know if I use the baby's name for a password but not hers. But, it bothers me. Literally, eats at me every time I type in the PIN number favoring one instead of the other. It's crazy! I know!

I'm worried that if this little crap eats at me now, I'm going to be some sort of freak when they get older and can do more/go more places!

Friday, November 6, 2009


My daughter calls me "mama".  Not "mom" or "mommy", but "mama".  I like that a lot!  I think at school they mostly say "mommies" and my in-laws frequently forget and say "mommy", but for the most part my daughter never wavers.  I think it is cute, and sweet, and apparently it is what I called my mom for ages, which makes it sentimental too.

What is bothering me is that I think of it as "mama" not "momma".  My sister once pointed that difference out to me - when she saw me sign a card or something.  Since then, I've noticed almost everyone spells it "momma".  I hate misspellings.  I also hate bad punctuation, but really really hate when people misspell things, especially when mixing up words, such as their, there, and they're, or bare and bear, here and hear, etc.  I prefer "mama", so I will stick with that spelling, but it really bothers me and I felt the need to acknowledge that I know I am being different! 

Now, why am I so bothered by this?  My need for acceptance?  Add this to the list of things I will talk to a therapist about when I finally get around to fixing my oddities!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

the garage

My garage is crippling.  I do not understand how people live without a garage.  I really don't.  I have two friends without garages and it blows my mind that they can live without this space.  Yet, I hate our garage and sometimes wish we did not have one, because then maybe we would not keep so much crap.  It fills up faster than our kitchen trash can! 

A year or so ago, a friend offered to come build some shelves in our garage.  We have hanging shelves and three store bought shelf/rack things, but it was not enough.  He and my husband built a workbench and four HUGE - deep and tall - shelves.  This was awesome!  The shelves are incredibly useful.  But, when they were done building, they took all the boxes and crap and piled them up on the shelves.  So, it was not long before we cluttered the floor of the garage once again. 

In May, I switched jobs.  On my last day, I had an early morning exit interview.  Instead of going to daycare to pick my kids up early, I used the nice weather as motivation to clean out the garage.  And I did amazing.  I went through every box, organized all the shelves, the workbench, etc.  I even swept the floor!  The only things left were a couple boxes of my husband's stuff for him to sort through and all his crap that I piled on his workbench.  He was never a big fan of this project and never bothered to go through his stuff.  Now, those few things are buried under a work table, all the tools required to put in the hardwood floors (project:  complete) and do the baseboards (project:  not even started/can't afford), a couch, and who knows what else!  We will probably find quite a few trash bags hidden in random spaces when we get around to cleaning out the garage again. 

I understand why we have all the crap we have, and am not complaining (my sister will get the couch soon, and the tools will go back after we have time to do the baseboards).  But, it has not even been six months and the garage is as bad, if not worse, than it was before!  This is crazy!!!  I need a day off to clean and organize...luckily Veteran's day is next week.  I think I'll use that daycare we pay so much for and focus on organizing my house!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

how hard is it to do your damn job

Where I work, conference rooms are scarce and we have to use other organizations for audio bridges.  It is ridiculous.  Everything about the process frustrates me beyond belief.  If you schedule a room in advance, you are likely to be bumped because a more senior person needs a meeting or someone has a VTC requirement and you only have an audio bridge requirement.  That is fine - being moved to a different room is annoying, but manageable.  Although, I have a WEEKLY recurring meeting that has been moved the last 4 weeks in a row and it is really freaking irritating to have to e-mail everyone who attends from my office every week with a different room, or no room at all because sometimes rooms just plain are not available!  How productive is that?!

Today we have a call with people all over the WORLD in many different time zones, some who call on their way in to work, some on their way home, and others first thing in the morning.  The people who schedule this crap - because, you know, we aren't allowed to book our own - have changed the room and the number.  The call starts in 30 minutes.  How are we going to tell everyone the number changed?  My guess, we aren't.  It's going to be a big clusterfuck and we are going to look like morons. 

Unfortunately, this happens all too often (though not usually with calls that involve every time zone).  Just yesterday I tried to change the name of a meeting that was already set up, get a new audio bridge, and make it recurring.  Instead of cancelling the old meeting, they tried changing everything about the new meeting and I got no less than (and I am not exaggerating) 10 calendar requests.  I am not even sure it is correct.  And, because the usual audio people were not answering their phone, we had to get a bridge from a different organization, and they don't do recurring meetings, so I have to call weekly to get a number.  WTF?!

This is not rocket science.  But, because these people don't attend meetings or don't get how confusing it can be, or just don't care (not sure which because they are all very nice), nothing ever changes.  I almost never set up meetings because it is such a hassle.  This is NOT efficient.  And I am PISSED. 

rant over.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Potty Trained?

The toddler is potty trained.  She was pretty much completely potty trained by her second birthday, which is just awesome.  But, she still has accidents, mostly when she is too lazy to tell us she has to go.  And because we are so used to her telling us, we forget to ask. 

Last night she had an accident, her second (or third?) in a few days and  I was really irritated.  So, I marched her upstairs to take off her wet clothes and put her on the toilet.  Then I left to go change out of my work clothes.  I came back in, got her off the potty and was helping her get redressed...

Toddler:  Your shirt is wet
Me:  No, it's not. 
T:  It is. 
Me:  (feeling shirt) No, it's not
T:  It is wet, mama, because I put my hand in the toilet. 

Pure Awesomeness!  At least it pulled me out of my funk!

Monday, November 2, 2009


Thanks to Cleaning up the Clutter, I've realized that - once again - my house is becoming very cluttered.  I think clutter is the real problem behind my house being so messy, dirty, not as spotless as I would like!  Because if I have to pick up before I can clean up, the cleaning is never going to happen, and that kind of failure looming ahead makes the picking up nearly impossible.  So, tonight, despite the disgusting bathrooms and dusty furniture, I think I'll focus on a few decluttering projects. 

I plan to clean out the toy box - switching toys from the toy box to the storage bin, and hopefully getting the toy box to stop overflowing.
I also am going to reorganize the - not one, but - two junk drawers in the kitchen. 
Lastly, I will take all the mail to be filed downstairs, and file all the papers that have accumulated in the handy box sitting on top of the file cabinet. 

I kind of also want to go to the gym.  We'll see what wins...

Friday, October 30, 2009

FML. Really? Really? Is that necessary

I see this everywhere now, and I freaking hate that acronym.  Mostly I see it in facebook statuses, "I'm sitting in traffic, going to be late.  FML"  Are you meeting with the president? Saving troops?  Curing cancer?  Because really, unless your job is that freaking important, sitting in traffic is just plain frustrating.  I swear people use this for the most mundane crap.  Why is that?  I say a lot of phrases that probably annoy people, but don't people realize what they are saying?  "F My Life".  It would take a LOT of bad things happening all at the same time to make me feel that way.  Yet people throw it around so carelessly. 

Ugh!  Drives me crazy!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

kids do the damndest your body...

I had to get glasses! I've had perfect vision my whole life, but noticed my eyes seemed tired and were twitching a lot, so i went to see the eye doctor, who I hadn't seen since I graduated college five years ago! It turns out I have a lazy eye, likely inherited from my father, but luckily not as bad (he is almost blind in the lazy eye and it is significantly smaller than his non-lazy eye). I only have to wear them if I'll be on the computer for more than an hour or driving when my eyes are tired (considering i'm always tired, it's hard to tell when it's my eyes vs. the rest of me, but whatever!). My prescription is pretty mild, but I figured if I was going to wear glasses, I'd spring for some "real" ones instead of cheapos from CVS.

It turns out, I love them! If they didn't irritate me when reading or looking at people, I would wear them all the time. They are so freaking cute! Sometimes I "forget" to take them off if I'm going to talk to someone or even just going to the bathroom so I can check out their awesomeness :)

honestly it was probably the last 5 years of sitting at a computer and not my kids that killed my eyesight, but i'll blame the kids anywya.

what crazy things have kids done to your body?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Late Night Thoughts

I wrote the best post in my head last night.  It was witty, fun, and interesting.  Unfortunately, I have NO IDEA what it said!  I cannot even remember the topic!  Too bad, you would have enjoyed it a lot – or at least I think so. 
At night, when my head hits the pillow, I am out instantly.  My husband frequently tells me, after I turn out the light and say goodnight, he will lean over to kiss me, and I am already asleep.  Before I get to that Zen place, where I promptly pass out, it seems all the thoughts that were buzzing around my head all day realize I am going to be out, stop swarming, and slam full force in to the front of my brain.  It is almost as if my head has to express every thought it had during the day, and once they are out there, I can go to sleep.  It would be cool if this were productive and I woke up the next morning with all the relevant and important thoughts at the forefront of my mind, but they are always lost maybe to be remembered later, maybe to be forgotten forever.  Too bad about that post, though.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Are we late? Always!!!

The other day as I was driving the girls home from daycare, my daughter says "Are we late, mama?  Are we late?"  We were not late.  But, that is a rare occurance.  Apparently, so rare in fact that my daughter knows we are usually late!  I hate lateness, it ought to be the eighth deadly sin.  Yet, I can't get out of the house on time for anything anymore.  I try so hard - if I know we are going somewhere, I'll map out a plan in my head from the second we wake up, I enlist my husband's help, I pre-pack what I can, but nothing seems to work!  In order to be on time for anything I have to plan to leave an hour or more ahead of when we really need to leave, and those are the times that we end up at our destination an hour early!  Which, you know, is also never good because then your kids have time to wake up from their car-ride cat-nap and be energetic for the quiet events, or get cranky and uninterested for the fun events.  I can't win for trying!  I know this problem is directly related to the kids because when I was single I was always on time, when I got married, we were almost always on time, and then I had the toddler and started showing up a bit late.  Now we have the baby, and it is like we are exponentially more late every time!  I cannot count the number of times lately I say to my husband "We should not even go, this is embarrassing." 

Hopefully this is a phase and by the baby's one-year birthday I will be back in control, but this is driving me crazy.  And to have the toddler point it out to me?  Yikes!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Financial Update

We got a letter from Citibank the other day saying they were raising our interest rate. That really upset my husband and I. The interesting thing was our reactions – he was pissed that they would raise our rates when we are good, paying customers; I was depressed that we suck so bad at our finances that they felt the need to raise the rates. Slight digression…is this a woman/man issue with how we see the world or just an inherent difference in our personalities?

At his suggestion, I decided to run my credit the next day just to make sure no one stole my identity and to see where I stand with the credit bureaus. Well, it turns out, I am “Excellent”! My credit score rocks! I may have a substantial amount of debt listed, but I have never made a payment more than 30 days late and the credit bureaus consider me in the “Excellent” category. I took my excellent self right over to Discover and applied for their 0% interest on balance transfers card, and they apparently agreed with my excellent-ness because Discover approved me for a transfer! I highly recommend running your credit score just to see what is going on, and to dispute anything you do not like because you can get black marks knocked off your credit report if the company does not respond or cannot prove you were in the wrong. It is definitely worth doing, especially if you end up saving 29.99% APR on a considerable balance!

Friday, October 23, 2009

A Blissful Benefit

This coffee post is in honor of

This post is in honor of Blissfully Caffeinated and is being hosted by Jenni!  Thanks for letting me join the fun :)

Mmm…coffee…I have a cup of coffee most mornings, but that is more out of habit than enjoyment.  Coffee any other time of the day is different and special, and can always make me smile.  If I am tired, or down, at work, I will slip down to the cafeteria for a cup of coffee, and it always makes the afternoon seem better (unless the coffee is burnt, I really hate that!).  If we are going somewhere and we will be in the car for a while, I try to convince my husband to stop at Starbucks because nothing makes a long drive better!  I like all coffee – boring coffee with cream and sugar, flavored coffee, flavored creamer, and fancy lattes and such from Starbucks (or Caribou, but I prefer Starbucks). 

My favorite time to have coffee is with my girlfriends.  Whether it is at a local coffee shop, or sitting around the kitchen table with a pot, coffee makes the girl time so much better.  There is no problem that a good cup of coffee and a chat with my girls can’t solve!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Bathtime Issues

I am pretty good at keeping up with lots of parenting stuff, but the one I am the worst with is bathing.  I know, that is ridiculous.  My kids are not unclean, they just do not get baths every night (or every other night), like they should.  Part of the problem is working it into the routine – most stuff I can do after they are asleep (laundry, dishes, etc), but bath time has to be done during that short window of time between after school and bedtime, and we have to get dinner cooked and eaten in there too. 
Anyway, my big issue with bath time is that I cannot figure out how to do the rinse portion without all out immobilizing fear for the toddler.  We have little cups where water drips out the bottom and I use that, or pour the water over her head.  I have tried just sticking her head under the faucet to make it quick (even though she is petrified of the faucet).  I prefer using the manual showerhead because it is easy and less pressure, but she is petrified of that too.  She loves baths – the idea, the process, playing, washing – but she hates the rinse part.  Every time we do baths, it ends so badly that we are all scarred and put it off for a few days.  Any suggestions?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

What I wouldn't do to have this money back!

I wish I had been more financially responsible back when I got out of college.  I was living at home, rent-free, had few bills, and made decent money.  but, I spent way more than I needed to, and when I cleaned out my savings to pay closing costs on our house, instead of building it back up, I put the money I had been saving toward the mortgage, and continued to spend, spend, spend.  Then we got married and we were really spending - eating out, decorating the house, going out with friends.  The credit card balances went up, but we did not care - we made great money and could pay it off, right?  Wrong!  We got pregnant, then we got pregnant again, and then we were stuck with a huge tax bill - my husband's business accountant screwed up our taxes.  We had to wipe out our stock account to cover the tax bill and we have been living paycheck to paycheck ever since.  Now, we are great with money.  I got a new job to the tune of a significant raise, my husband's business continues to grow, and we are slowly paying off debt.  But, boy is it slow! 

I love my kids, but frequently find myself thinking "if we didn't have daycare this month, we could pay off that card.", "if we didn't have to pay daycare, we'd have our car paid off next year", and so on.  We will get our debt paid down, and our cars and house paid off one day, just really far in the future.  The thing that worries me is that my parents are great with money.  We did not have a lot when I was young, and even when we did have a good amount, we never ate out and spent frivolously.  My parents always told us to pay off credit cards, never have more than three, and taught us the importance of money.  They even paid off their house long before my dad retired!  With all that great advice, it is amazing I screwed up so bad.  I hope that we can teach our kids to do better!

Friday, October 2, 2009


I was talking to a co-worker this morning about personalities and the Myers-Briggs (wiki) personality test. I took it years ago, and was an ISTJ. So, I looked it up on Wikipedia and reread the ISTJ type description. It is CRAZY how much this fits me to a T!

I – Introversion preferred to Extraversion: ISTJs tend to be quiet and reserved. They generally prefer interacting with a few close friends rather than a wide circle of acquaintances, and they expend energy in social situations (whereas extraverts gain energy).

S – Sensing preferred to iNtuition: ISTJs tend to be more concrete than abstract. They focus their attention on the details rather than the big picture, and on immediate realities rather than future possibilities.

T – Thinking preferred to Feeling: ISTJs tend to value objective criteria above personal preference. When making decisions, they generally give more weight to logic than to social considerations.

J – Judgment preferred to Perception: ISTJs tend to plan their activities and make decisions early. They derive a sense of control through predictability.

If you haven't taken the test, I highly recommend doing so. It takes some time, but if you get your answers and then look up that personality type you may be surprised to see the quirks you have and things you do that other people with a similar personality also have and do!

Thursday, October 1, 2009


This thing is AWESOME! Right after I had the toddler, this thing exploded onto the blog, chat room scene. We, naturally, went right out and purchased one, and fell in love! We used it on the baby when she was very small and just learning to hold her head up on her own. The back of the chair goes up a bit to provide some support, or a pillow if the babe falls asleep! We brought the Bumbo everywhere with us because it was a great place to put the baby, where she could still feel a part of things. We had it on the table while we ate and on the coffee table or the floor while we played. My dad (who calls it the bumpo because he is terrible with names, and apparently, not just people’s names) would specifically request it because there is nothing better than eating dinner and looking right over at the baby. We took it away when she started pushing up with her legs because I got too worried that she would push out of it and I would not be close enough to save her from the fall. You are not supposed to use them on the table or counter, but I think that is what they are for, and as long as you do not leave the baby unattended, it is fine. I definitely recommend this for a baby shower or new mom gift. Especially for a new mom, whose youngest child is three or older, because it probably was not around, or at least, was not popular when they had their last baby!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Apples to Oranges

I know you aren't supposed to compare your kids, but that seems to be an impossible task. I thought second babies - especially when born close together - developed faster, and I keep waiting for it to happen, but it's not. I try not to worry that at 8 months the baby hasn't started walking around furniture, even though at 6 months the toddler was practically running circles around the coffee table (while holding on). But it feels like months that we've been saying "she's going to crawl any day" and now it looks like she'll crawl at 9 months, just like the toddler did. And, that's fine, because honestly, I don't really need two mobile kids, I'm good with one. I just don't always remember that when I'm thinking "why doesn't she have any teeth?" and other random comparisons. The baby is perfectly healthy, except for being low on the weight and height chart, but I'm not going to worry about those things until the doctor says "we need to run tests". Currently, we're watching her weight and her height to see if her weight increases and she grows onto the height chart, which could be nothing. Her numbers are right in line with me as a baby, and other than being a little short (5'3"), I'm doing just fine.

Do you compare your kids? If so, in what ways? How did they stack up against each other developmentally - do younger babies generally develop faster at all things?

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

And Repeat...

The format of all conversations with my toddler:

where's daddy?
he's working
where's daddy?
he's working
where's daddy?
where did i tell you he is?
that's right
oh, ok.
where's daddy?

What is with the repitition??? And, how do I make it stop? Seriously, I'm looking for suggestions; this is driving me crazy!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Weekend Wrap-Up

We decided to head down to Virginia Beach for the weekend. A neighbor of my husband’s family has a house down there and invited his parents, and the rest of the family, to come down anytime. His parents were going this weekend, and our original weekend plans were rescheduled, so we figured, what the heck? It's only a 3-4 hour drive, right? (Right??? WTH were we thinking?!)

Since we decided this early in the week, I stacked my hours and knocked off mid afternoon Friday to go home and do some housework. I got a good amount done and then went to get the girls, thinking I could do the rest when we got home, and then when my husband arrived he could load the car and we would be on our way! Well, turns out after a week of skipping naps, the toddler was a total wreck when we got home, and we ended up sitting next to each other (not snuggling because God-forbid I should TOUCH her when she is upset), watching WALL-E. My husband is so amazing (sometimes), he actually cleaned the disastrous kitchen while we did this, and then we eventually managed to get loaded and on our way – around 8pm! Thankfully, both kids slept almost the entire way, and we only had to stop for about 30 minutes to walk the baby and feed her a bottle. Even with the kids sleeping, it took 4 hours, and we did not arrive until almost midnight.

Saturday was great. We walked around the boardwalk, played on the beach, saw the Neptune Festival Sand Sculptures, and hung out with my in-laws. They actually have a boat-themed playground set on the beach (around 10th street I think), which the toddler loved! Despite the chill and the wind, as soon as her feet hit the sand, the sweatshirt was off and she was digging! It was great for the baby too – her first time on the beach!!!  She was just hanging out, feeling the sand, kicking her legs, and checking out her bucket. The toddler was pretty good about sharing buckets (there were two, but she wanted both, one for sand and one for water). We did go down and get our feet wet, which was awesome. I love the beach and was sad that we did not go this year, but we are definitely planning a trip for next year!

Sunday we went to church, met my cousin for lunch, and headed back around 3. The drive back – being in the middle of the day, when the kids were not tired – was not as smooth sailing as we had hoped, but was entertaining! 30 minutes into the trip I was already tuning out the repetitive (WTH is up with the repetition?!) conversation with the toddler and didn’t catch on to “I’m taking a bath! I’m taking a real bath!” until my husband turned around and saw her pouring her water bottle out on her head!!! Hours later, incident forgotten, I gave her the water bottle back and again did not catch on the “it’s raining” until my husband turned around and caught her in the act again!  Luckily, there was considerably less water the second time around. We hit a fair amount of traffic and had to make a number of stops, but we managed to make it home by 8ish.

Overall, it was a great weekend, but not one I will be quick to repeat. Weekend getaways are great when you are single, and I think they can be great with two young kids, but next time I willl choose a destination no more than 1-2 hours away.

Friday, September 25, 2009

A Little Friday Work Humor

One project I'm working involves gathering requirements from different divisions.  There is one division with a number of requirements, which are slightly complicated, and division chief gave us the most incompetent person ever to work with.  At first he was just annoying, but yesterday he was straight up CRAZYtown!

I talk to him a couple times during the day, and during our second conversation (after he's already gotten on my nerves), he asks me a question, and this is how the conversation goes:
Me:  "The best person to answer that is so-and-so."
Him:  "I can't talk to her.  I am dead to her.  She banished me from ever going over there again."
Me:  "Umm...okay...I'll talk to her then..."

Since when is it appropriate to "banish" someone from your office?  And can I do that? 

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Terrible Twos

The toddler had a rough day at school yesterday.  Apparently, she kept acting out.  It was mostly in response to other kids acting out - she would see someone do something, get in trouble for it, and then go do it, clearly wanting the attention they got.  It's frustrating because up until now she was (and I am not exaggerating) almost every teacher's favorite, even teacher's she didn't have, that saw on the playground or during group activities.  I got nothing but good reports every day, which was so awesome.  And lately, it's been one thing after another - jumping on the mat during circle time, jumping on her cot, climbing the stack of cots, not listening, waking the other kids up when she doesn't want to nap, etc.  Boo :(

I do have to say, I love our daycare.  They have the normal behavioral problems, but not to the extent I've seen and heard about at others.  When I asked what they did and if she sat in the naughty chair, the teacher said that she took Julie out of the classroom, into the hall, to talk about making better choices.  She said that they try different things for different kids based on the action and what the child responds to best.  It is so nice to see that they do not just send kids to a naughty chair or put them in a corner, they really look at the child and try to work with the child's specific needs.  Yay! 

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

the oven is ON FIRE

These are the words i frantically screamed into the phone when my husband answered (on the third try).  We had a small oven fire last night. That really sucked.  The fire was contained to the oven and burned out within 10 minutes of turning the oven off. So, no big deal. I was just going to make stouffers lasagna, so I tossed that in the fridge and we ordered in dinner. And I didn’t cry or freak out or throw things. I let the toddler eat frozen chicken nuggets and potato chips for dinner, for the second day in a row (cringe), even though I bought steamer bags of broccoli for the sole purpose of giving her the only vegetable she’ll eat and there was nothing wrong with the microwave. But, other than that, I managed to keep my cool and spent the rest of the night watching tv with the baby and my husband.

I don’t know why, but I always feel like I am three whines away from a complete meltdown, and I cannot seem to snap out of it. My kids are generally well behaved, happy, and in good moods, and my life is great, but still I’m always on this emotional precipice, and I hate that. I want to be happy and carefree, but I can’t be. And it’s not ruining my life, so I don’t need therapy, I just need to relax and let myself live in the now instead of worrying about everything.

Sometimes I something wrong with me or are my feelings normal?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


We had these tapes growing up.  I can still remember how much we enjoyed singing along with our wee sing tapes, in the house and in the car on long trips.  I want to collect these for the toddler, who has really gotten in to singing lately (our daycare rocks!).  She goes to a Christian daycare and they sing lots of children’s songs, including a bunch of bible songs.  My sister got the baby “Wee Sing Bible Songs” as a Baptism gift, and we wear this CD out!  The baby, of course, doesn’t care what we listen to, but the toddler gets in the car and immediately requests “Bible Songs”.  She can’t get enough!  And, honestly, neither can I!  It’s such a throwback, and I LOVE it!  If you listened to these songs growing up, I highly recommend picking up a CD.  You can get them from a bookstore or order online.  And if you aren’t into the Bible Songs, get the other ones.  We like these so much more than all of the other kid songs CDs we’ve gotten.

“Who Built the Ark? Noah! Noah!...”

Monday, September 21, 2009

why does daddy dress me like a homeless person?

We are so blessed to have such awesome family and friends, and because of their generosity we did not have to buy my daughter any clothes until she was 18 months old!  We got tons of new stuff, and TONS of used stuff - it was awesome!  As with most used stuff, some is good, some is bad, and some is so-so.  I have so-so t-shirts in my closet.  I wear these to lounge around the house.  I kept the so-so stuff for the girls for days when we weren't doing anything/going anywhere, or the laundry was so overfull that they had nothing else to wear.  I specifically line the bottom of the drawer with these items.  Yet, my husband always finds them, and not only does he find the slightly yellowed white shirt, or the ugly pants, but he then pairs them together in a horrendous outfit.  Why???  It's so awkward and difficult to work "daddy dressed you" into every conversation! 

Someone gave us this one-piece outfit that we affectionately titled the hammer-pants outfit (b/c it looked like hammer pants and was striped pink and yellow, with a solid pink top half).  I can't tell you how many times my daughter wore this outfit.  If I wasn't so scared the giver would ask to see the outfit grateful for everything we'd been given, I would have thrown it out to avoid the issue.  Just recently, we had the first school recital.  I, of course, had to work late - for the second time in the four months I've been at this job - so I met them at school.  I specifically laid out cute clothes because the toddler was singing with her class on stage and we'd have the baby with us, and I planned on taking lots of pictures.  My husband couldn't figure out if the overalls I laid out were for the baby or the toddler (they were sized 6 months...), so he dressed the baby in a random onesie instead of a cute coordinated outfit from the outfit drawer (I'm not sure he realizes I even have these clothes organized).  Then the toddler had an accident and peed on her outfit, so he changed her.  Instead of getting a cute dress out of the closet, he pulled out a denim jumper from her drawer, and paired it with a shirt that didn't match.  Not a big deal, except that the jumper doesn't have bloomers, so instead of borrowing some from a dress, he just put khaki shorts on under the dress.  It looked like she dressed herself in a variety of clothes from her drawer!  And it's all on camera, of course!

Friday, September 18, 2009

I've come to realize...

I did this note on facebook and I liked it so much, I'm reposting in my blog.  It was very interesting to think about how I have changed over the years.

1. I've come to realize that my something I appreciate.

2. I've come to realize that my something that drives me and makes me feel empowered as a woman.

3. I've come to realize that when I'm driving... I zone out. not good...

4. I've come to realize that I need...a bigger house and to win the lottery.

5. I've come to realize that I have (had) interest in doing stuff every friday and saturday night.

6. I've come to realize that I hate it when...I let the house get too messy.

7. I've come to realize that if I'm drunk...I don't know my limits and will probably end up puking (because I drink so rarely!).

8. I've come to realize that something I may never manage well and that bothers me a lot.
9. I've come to realize that certain people...are a waste of space.

10. I've come to realize that I'll always....let my expectations run wild and ruin a good moment.

11. I've come to realize that my sibling(s)...are my best friends.

12. I've come to realize that my a big part of my life.

13. I've come to realize that my cell phone...really is a crack-berry and I am as bad as my husband with his iPhone.

14. I've come to realize that when I woke up this morning...I woke up late, hit the snooze, and didn't have to worry about making up the time because I've worked too many late hours this pay period.

15. I've come to realize that last night before I went to sleep...I should have picked up our bedroom.

16. I've come to realize that right now I am thinking...about how I want to leave and I wish the boss would leave because that's the only reason I'm still here.

17. I've come to realize that my my hero.

18. I've come to realize that when I get on Facebook...I haven't logged on and caught up on everyone's status in a long time.
19. I've come to realize that today...was awesome and I rock at my job.

20. I've come to realize that tonight...I will follow through on my cleaning motivation since our plans were cancelled.

21. I've come to realize that going to be productive and fun.

22. I've come to realize that I really want to...get in shape, but lack the motivation.

23. I've come to realize that the person who is most likely to repost not something I care about.

24. I've come to realize that an awesome gift and I am blessed every day.

25. I've come to realize that this weekend...will be the start of the redskins season!!!

26. I've come to realize that the most important thing in my life.

27. I've come to realize that my friends...are AWESOME!

28. I've come to realize that this flying by and my January baby is growing up too fast.

29. I've come to realize that my ex-friends...are ex-friends?

30. I've come to realize that maybe...I should slow down and enjoy things more.

31. I've come to realize that I life.

32. I've come to realize that I don't understand...why I can't figure out how to be a good wife, mother, housewife, and employee at the same time.

33. I've come to realize my lost to me because my memory sucks and I don't have enough pictures to remind me what happened.

34. I've come to realize that parties...can be fun, but I prefer hanging out low-key.

35. I've come to realize that I'm totally terrified...of all bugs, not just spiders.

36. I've come to realize that my awesome.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

To work or to stay-at-home?

I love working! I love the thrill of "fire drills" and being stretched too thin, realizing that not a thing got done on my to-do list because I was too busy dealing with new higher priority tasks. I thoroughly enjoy what I do, but more than that, I love having a job, a place to come to every day, co-workers, and all that stuff. Sure, there are days I complain, and I usually hit snooze 3 or 4 times, depending on what time I absolutely need to arrive at work. But by the time I'm in the shower, I'm going through the plan for the day, reviewing my tasks, and prepping for meetings. At the end of the day, I can't wait to tell my husband all about what I did at work and funny co-worker stories and I appreciate his opinion on how to deal with sticky subjects. I like taxing my brain, and as much as I resist, I enjoy coming out of my comfort shell to do new things. I am amazed at how much I have grown in the last 5 years since graduating college, and I can't wait to see what my career path looks like in 10, 20, and 30 years.

I know if I stayed at home, I would deal with the same things - nothing on my to-do list would get done because of "fire drills" (hopefully not the kind that involve 911...), I would plan the day in the shower, and have lots to talk about when my husband got home. I think about staying home in the future, and I think I may consider it if we have another child and we've got lots going on and my day is broken into little chunks of time and full of scheduled activities. But, this time in my life, when my kids are young enough that it would be me and the girls all day, every day, is something I can't handle. Even on maternity leave, most of the days stretched too far and I was overdone at the end of the day. By the time my husband returned home, I was all too ready to thrust the kids at him and hide out for a bit. Don't get me wrong, I love my kids!!! I'm just not that great at parenting. I'm not creative, I'm too impatient, and I'm too anal about stuff. I don't know what the future will bring. I would love my kids to have the security of having a parent at home all day, but I would also love to instill a great work ethic in them, and show my girls that being a girl doesn't mean you can't go far in your career.

If you stay home, what made you decide to stop working? Did you love your job? If you work, would you consider being a SAHM?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Just Say Maybe

We royally screwed up this weekend. My mother-in-law was having a BBQ party at her house, which we knew about for weeks and planned to attend, and I even offered to make corn casserole. But, the husband decided to attend the 9-12 Project Rally in DC, which meant he was gone from 7:30-4:15, and I was home with the kids trying to clean the entire messy, disorganized, and dirty house, grocery shopping, and making said casserole. We spent all of Labor Day weekend out and about with friends, in-laws, and my family, so the housework was forgotten, and I spent all week recovering from the weekend, again ignoring the housework. By Friday night I was done, overwhelmed by the amount of stuff I had to do. Being alone with the kids makes everything move slower (why is that, btw?!) and then the casserole cooked over and made a mess of the stove. By the time the husband returned I was not going, all I wanted was for him to take the kids and leave me alone to actually move through the house vacuum cleaner and dust rags in hand. He decided he was also too tired to go and so we skipped the party. And forgot to give my brother-in-law the casserole, so we left them short a dish. I feel terrible. I know I screwed up by not going. But I also know that if I hadn't, my house would still be a wreck instead of the halfway decent mess it is.

I need to change my tune. I'm all about "we can do it" all the time, and I fall for the guilt trips (even the ones that I only perceive in my head), and so I say yes, and I overbook our calendar and overextend, and it continues until we hit a breaking point. And that's just ugly. But I also don't want to start with the "no" all the time or else we'll be those people that no one calls because "what's the point?". So, from now on, it's "Maybe. It's a game time decision. We'll bring a dish if we come, but don't count on us." And maybe that's sucky and I'll hate it after a while, but at least it gives us the flexibility to back out at the last minute.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Deep Sleepers

If you like crime dramas, you need to check out Criminal Minds!  I love this show! 

There is an episode where a guy sneaks in families houses in the middle of the night and kills the husband, then waits until the wife wakes up and realizes what's happened to take her and the rest of the family hostage.  After watching this happen, my husband and I looked at each other and said "that's so me/you!"  I can sleep through anything!  My husband wakes up if a leaf taps the window, I don't even hear the baby screaming until my husband is waking me up.  It's really unfortunate for him because he generally finds that it is just easier to deal with the baby than to wake me up and wait for me to figure things out before I can process and get the baby.  Plus, we watch so many crime dramas that I won't go downstairs in the dark and must turn on every.single.light!

And, it appears the toddler has inherited this trait!  We took the front part off the crib, making her crib in to a "big girl bed" and she has fallen out three times.  She sleeps through it every time!  I almost wish I could fall out of bed just to see if I would sleep through it or if that is some sort of subconcious toddler trait!

Speaking of sleep, I was in bed by 8:30 feeding the baby a bottle, and asleep by 9!  Had a great 7.5 hours of sleep and I feel awesome today!!!

Monday, September 14, 2009

My Laundry System

It feels a bit ridiculous writing this because right now, my system is not working. But, when things are going well, and we are on schedule, this works great. I bought two 3-section laundry sorters, one for our room and one for the girls' room. Ours is obvious - darks, whites, delicates. For the girls room I separate it by the toddler, the baby, and blankets/burp cloths/etc. One of my biggest laundry issues is sorting and folding all the laundry, and when I had all the girls stuff in one load it took forever to sort and fold because there were too many items. What is up with baby laundry?! It's the worst - the socks, onesies, long-sleeve onesies, pants, outfits, blankets, burp cloths, sleep sacks, and I could go on and on, it's crazy! While the loads are generally smaller, unless I combine, they are also easier to fold and put away because I'm either going to one dresser, the other dresser, or the closet/bathroom (washcloths, towels).

As for getting the laundry done, I try to do one load per day, more on weekends if we are around. I get up and go to work early, so I'll throw a load in the washer before work. My husband goes in later since he does the morning routine and takes the girls to daycare, so before he goes to work he'll move the laundry to the dryer. When I get home from work the clothes are usually dry, and if they aren't, I'll restart the dryer to run while I make dinner, play with the girls, or what not. Then, when we settle in to watch tv, or while my husband takes the dog out before bed, I quickly fold and put away the laundry. I've found that this system of one load per day works great. It's also nice to come home to a dried load of laundry so it doesn’t feel like you've been up and down the stairs a million times.

Unfortunately, like I said, this system only seems to work when things are good and we are on schedule. If we go away for a weekend, get lazy for a few days, or have company, it's all downhill and can take me weeks to recover! Just this weekend I folded 3 loads of laundry, put them away, and then realized that those were the loads I did LAST week and had all FULL laundry baskets staring me in the face!!! Ugh...

Friday, September 11, 2009

My Work Story

I majored in Electrical Engineering. However, I was not a great student, and I definitely did not know what I wanted to do with my super smart, cool degree, so I interviewed with anyone who would see me! Luckily, I ended up getting a job at a FANTASTIC company doing network engineering! And I stayed for 5 years. In that industry, five years is a lifetime; 3 years is average! I was almost like a mini-celebrity there - other than the lifers (engineers that had been there forever and would probably never leave), and some operations people, I was one of the few junior, or even mid-level, engineers that had been there for so long. This place was like an extension of my family. I knew how to do things, who did what, how to get what I needed, what supplies were provided, what the Christmas party was going to be like (AMAZING!!!). They saw me through marriage and two kids. The thought of leaving was nerve-wracking and scary and everything else. I could not tell these people I was leaving. I wanted to stay. But, I also wanted to get out. In some ways, my job had become suffocating. I had been there too long and needed to branch out, spread my wings.
I went to work for another government contractor doing the same type of work - like someone once said "same street corner, different pimp". I thought that was how it would be; I would seamlessly transfer in here, meet new people, and grow my experience. What I was not prepared for was how different these government agencies would be, how I would not know anyone, and how I was not a known quantity. I was so used to everyone knowing that I rocked at my job that I could totally suck and no one would be the wiser. That was one of the reasons I left the company - I felt like I had maxed out my potential. Plus I hated the project. So I had to start from scratch, make myself known, prove my worth, and learn, learn, learn! It was so hard. I am an introvert, and not prepared to throw myself out there in everyone's face, I wanted to be quiet and sit in my cube and do work. I thought the job was a bad fit for me and worried that I had made a bad decision. Until my sister inadvertently caused me to realize it was my problem and I could do something about it! So, I went to work the next Monday armed with questions for various people, and you know, you don't have to say much to get someone started on their own soapbox. It wasn't long before everyone knew who I was, started copying me on e-mails and meeting invites, and now, four months into this new job, I love it! I could not have made a better decision. I will still go through (frequent) periods of questioning this fit and worrying that I'm not good enough. But today, the stars are aligning, and I feel good!!!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

where have you looked?

This is a question I ask my husband almost daily!  His ability to not see things RIGHT IN FRONT OF HIS FACE drives me up a wall!  What scares me, though, is that my kids will also inherit this trait.  In case you didn't know, it's an actual personality trait.  My mother suffers from the same affliction.  When we were in college, my dad has us take the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator test.  I am an ISTJ.  My mom is something totally different, like ENFP (because that's how much we see eye-to-eye)!  We read this fascinating book that explained these traits and things that people with x, y, or z personality will do.  One of the ones we all laughed about was that my mom will "look with her mouth, not with her eyes" because it is so dead on!  Then I went and married my husband...guess who's not laughing now?!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

I'm not really cracking. I'm not really under pressure.

Though some days I feel that way.  Sometimes I'm cracking under pressure and some days I'm just plain cracking up.  Kids are funny that toddler can drive me to the brink of craziness and then bring me to tears of laughter with one look or phrase.  There are days when the toddler is tired and crazy, the baby is screaming, and my husband and I appear to be speaking a different language that I wonder how we got here and how I'll ever survive.  And then, I think, what is wrong with me?!  My kids are amazing. 

You hear the phrase, God doesn't give you more than you can handle.  Well, I'd say that's true for me.  I have no patience.  I've got lots of great qualities, but patience is a virtue I got too little of!  The toddler was such an easy baby, random strangers would comment on her amazing-ness.  And then, when I got pregnant, everyone from my family and friends, to strangers would tell me that I was in for it and the baby would be terribly difficult.  But, she isn't.  In fact, just recently, I turned to my husband and said, I always thought the toddler was the easiest baby ever, but the baby is even easier!  Naturally, they still drive me crazy and can make my head spin.  But, they are so freaking happy and content, it amazes me.  Okay, I'm done bragging. For today at least.

The toddler has mastered the art of manipulation.  At least of her father; I'm a tougher nut to crack!  The other day he looked at me and said, "you know, at daycare, they make her pull up her pants after she goes potty?", to which I replied, "so do I."  Then he said, "you know, at daycare, they make her try everything on her plate before they give her more food", to which I again replied, "so do I."  This went on for a few more things, and then he said "I guess I'm just a big softie".  Oh yeah.  BIG softie.  He has no willpower, all she has to do is lean over, smile cute, and say "I love you, daddy" and he is gone.  It melts my heart too, but she knows it won't get her out of eating her veggies!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009


I read lots of "mommy blogs". It all started innocently enough with the discovery of the baby bunching blog. Then I started checking out the links in the "bests" posts, and then I started logging these in to my google reader. And then, I got a blackberry and downloaded a blog reader (Viigo - I love it!), and now i'm addicted! I frequently think, "I should do this, I could write. Maybe I am witty and fun and people would be interested in what I have to say." So, I'm giving it a shot. It's time to stop thinking "that would be an interesting blog post" and actually write them. So, welcome to my blog.