Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day Weekend.

What an amazing weekend we had!  It started out a little rough with LBZ's ear infection, but he slept 7.5 hours on Friday night, which was the most he had slept in at least 2 weeks.  Check out these teeth!

Those little suckers caused all kinds of trouble starting about 3 weeks ago.  They brought the fussies and the night waking and runny nose, etc.  After 2 weeks of that and at my whit's end, I took him to the chiropractor.  The next day there was no difference and I could tell something was really wrong.  I had to know for sure, so I took him to his pediatrician and sure enough, he has an ear infection.

I took him back to the chiropractor the next day and let him know.  The nurse suggested I bring him regularly, about every month or so.  I need to think about what to do next.  I have been avoiding it and just enjoying his more-than-2-or-3-hours of sleep.  I know I need to figure it out, but I am procrastinating.

Look at this little man standing up!  I realize he has an ear infection, which probably was the cause of his night waking, but in addition to that, in the last 3 weeks he has cut 2 new teeth, learned to sit up from his belly, learned to clap, learned to pull up on things, and has said 2 words!!  Just one of those things woke BBZ up during the night at this age, so it is no surprise that LBZ's sleep has been so terrible lately.

He is so close to being a toddler!  He has now said Ma-ma and baw (ball).  Ball he just learned last night.

Friday night we spent the night at N's parents house so we could sell some things in their garage sale Saturday morning.  That's where LBZ slept 7.5 hours!  I told them we might be moving in.  I also checked that he was breathing at midnight and at 3am, which are 2 of the times he had been waking.  So I didn't sleep 7.5 hours straight, but he did.  So that's all that matters.

Sunday morning we woke up early and played in our new play pool outside.  It was 82 at about 10am, so cooling off felt awesome.  I was worried about LBZ getting into the bigger pool, but he did fine when I was finally brave enough to let him get in.

The water was cold!  But it finally warmed up in the sun enough for me to get in with him.

Sunday evening we had a fish fry at our friend's house and N, in his always creative way, chose a delightful fried Kool-aid dessert.  They turned out surprisingly good!

We went to the pool at the boys' school today, which was awesome.  I didn't bring my camera, but I can't believe how much LBZ loved the water.  I know how much he loves baths, so I shouldn't have been surprised, but he really does seem so natural in the water.  So was BBZ, so those swim lessons are definitely paying off.  BBZ starts his new classroom tomorrow and will start summer camp next week.  He'll swim every day in that pool over the summer.  I hope to take the boys there on some Mondays, even though the thought of having both by myself in the pool is a little intimidating.

LBZ's sleep isn't all better since he woke up 3 times again last night, but considering all that is going on with him developmentally, it really does make sense to me.  Plus, I am so thrilled that he has words already.  BBZ spoke so much so early, I wondered how his brother would compare.

I just love watching him do new things.  He was playing with a ball today while we were having some quiet reading time in BBZ's bed and he dropped it onto the floor.  He leaned over, saw it and said with such a sweet and innocent wonder..."bawl, bawl".  It was so sweet.

Then this morning he crawled over to this toy, pulled up and started moving his feet like he wanted to walk!  This is all happening so fast.  One thing after another, and before we know it he will be 3, just like BBZ.

How on earth did I get here?  How did I become the mama to these 2 amazing little boys?  Aren't I just some young kid who doesn't have a clue?  How did my life become this?

I mean those questions in the most wonderful way. I have said before that I sometimes feel like my life is happening to someone else.  As though there is no way this is my life, that these are our boys, and that we are this happy.  But it is, and I'm loving (almost) every minute of it :)

Saturday, May 26, 2012


I've tried to write this post a few times and the drafts are saved.  I don't think I have ever written a post and not published it, and now I have done it more than once with the same topic.  I just haven't been able to get the words right.

I just want to move on from the Gratitude Practice road I started down.  The truth is, I'm not concerned about not appreciating the wonderful things in my life.  I am surrounded by them.  From the way BBZ's eye lashes seem to go on forever to the quiet way my husband smiles as he sees his youngest boy crawl intentely across the room, the things I love about my life are beaming.  LBZ's eye lashes are going to give BBZ's a challenge.  I can often feel them against my skin when he nurses.  Just another thing I love about nursing him.

I did find what I needed from Gratitude Practice.  I'm afraid I'm not enough to my family, and I'm afraid I'm not enough to my employer.  Both roles help define who I am.  Both roles are incredibly important to my life.  And chances are, I'll never feel like I'm enough at either one.

I love my family and I also love my job.  Feeling like I'm not enough to either role causes me a lot of stress and anxiety.  Realizing this fear has been quite refreshing for me.

Unless you never look at the TV, Facebook or the Internet, you saw the cover of TIME magazine with the woman nursing her 3-year-old.  I'm not that interested in the nursing part, I have seen many moms nursing children that age, so it is not a surprising sight for me.  What interests me is the title.

"Are you mom enough?"

While this title was meant to sell magazines, what it also did was normalize my own feelings of not being enough.  The person who wrote that article, which I haven't yet read, knows that all moms have doubt about being "enough" in their lives.  It caught the attention it sought, I suppose, by saying something that could both fuel a war among moms (which is another post for another day), and link us all together by one common thread...we all want to have it all and be it all to ourselves and our families.

So while I may be worried about being enough, I don't feel it consuming me as it was before I started posting about my gratitudes.  I realize that this is my issue.  My employer thinks I am enough.  My family thinks I'm enough.  And now, I am working on feeling like I'm enough.

My life is overflowing with the things I love.  I have a job that I love, which for a moment seemed like a distraction from my life rather than an part of it.  The love I have for my family cannot be put into words.  I never saw my life like this.  I never imagined myself raising two boys, but here I am, watching them rapidly grow up right in front of me.  Teething, lack of sleep, ear infections, whining, back-talk, endless rocking to sleep and an unbelievable amount of money pouring into avoiding what sometimes seems like a simple tube surgery are certainly challenges we have been facing lately.  But all things considered, my family is happy.

So while I still intend to post about things I am grateful for, I no longer feel like I am searching for something or trying to figure something out.  I'm just trying to have it all and be it all...just like everyone else.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

I haven't given up on Gratitude Practice

Really, I haven't.

If nothing else, I have been overflowing with gratitude for the things I have in my life.

I have also come to some honest conclusions about why I started looking for the things I am grateful for to begin with.  I have a whole blog post in my head about it and will hopefully post it soon.

Finding time to post what I am grateful for takes time away from my boys, which is the only place I really want to be...especially on the weekends. 

I will do my best to post something soon...

Friday, May 11, 2012

Gratitude Practice Day #9

A great presentation at work
Very light traffic to and from work
A boy who throws a tantrum (I really am grateful for this. He is a handful, but I really believe that his independent streak, his ability to assert himself, and his determination are positive attributes. Although I do wish he could find a better way to express himself)

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Little Brother Z is 8 Months Old!

Dear Little Brother Z,

Today, you are 8 months old.  Oh, how I love watching you grow!

You sit up all by yourself these days.  Every now and then you topple over, but for the most part you catch yourself before hitting the ground.  Unless you are really tired.

You are army crawling all over the place!  You wander and explore every inch of our home.  I remember your brother staying fairly close to me most of the time, but not you.  You are an explorer.  You wonder what's around every corner and don't hesitate to check it out.

You absolutely love bath time!  Seriously.  I have never seen a child love the water this much.  You love when it flows over your face!  You splash constantly and flip from sitting to your belly, back to sitting and splish splashing me and the whole tub.  And boy do you get mad when it's time to get out!

You still have the sweetest demeanor.  People always comment on how chill you are.  You rarely cry, but when you do, you do it with full force!

You still only have the 2 teeth on the bottom, but the top 2 are beginning to push through.  I thought they were out but they seemed to have moved back up again.  The way teeth do that seems like cruel and unusual punishment to me.

You are quite accustomed to me taking your photograph.  I love how much you smile at me.  You were crawling in the hallway and ran into this big road block we like to call "Delilah".  Your brother stopped by too, but didn't stay long.  Even with it all blurry, I love this picture of all of my kids :)

Oh, those big blue eyes are simply to die for.  I love them so much!  They are big and shaped much like your brothers, but are the prettiest blue color just like your daddy's.

You do love when I wear you in any type of carrier.  It is the best way for me to go places with you and your brother since he still likes to use the stroller.  I love when you fall asleep too.  Sleepy-head.

You are already thinking about pulling up on things.  You straighten your legs out and put your bum in the air but don't quite crawl on your knees yet.  You are a mover and are developing these skills so stinkin' fast!  I don't mind though...I'm ready to not sit down for a while again :)

I bought you some more of these zippered jammies for the middle of the night and early morning diaper changes.  You do not like to sit still!  These make it much easier.

You are often an early riser.  I took this photo one morning at around 5:45am.  You still sleep pretty well, and when you wake up you are so happy and delightful that it is basically impossible to be unhappy about spending that time with you.

You eat fairly regularly, but it seems like you could take it or leave it.  You love feeding yourself, so this is usually the way you look after a meal at home.  Silly me forgot a bib this day.  Major fail!

You have only had a few things...pears, applesauce, peas, sweet potatoes, avocados, and I guess that might be it. You still love to nurse and do regularly throughout the day when we're together.  You love these rice crackers I found and puffs. Watching you develop your pincer grasp is super fun too. 

Not that I am wishing anything away, but I already see the toddler in you developing. You are still my sweet baby, but before I know it, you will be toddling all over this house.

I love you so much, sweet baby Lu.


P.S.  I am overflowing with gratitude today as I reminise about the last 8 months with my complete family of four, so I hope my GP post for today goes without saying :)

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Gratitude Practice Day #7, where I get all political.

My right to vote.
My right to work.
My right to marry the person I love.
My right to express my opinions and views on this blog.
The people who fought for my basic civil and human rights that I enjoy today.

And the fight continues...

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Gratitude Practice Day #6

Today was a little rough. Tuesday's are so hard, especially after such a wonderful weekend. I know I should be thrilled to have an extra day off, but I still miss my boys so much, and there is always so much to do.

LBZ was up a lot last night, something that hasn't happened in a long while. I think he is working on some major milestones, which is causing the night-waking. Hopefully he will rest well tonight.

Having a job where I can work a reduced schedule.
Sweet snuggles in the middle of the night.
A visit from the ice cream man.
A freshly bathed and shaved doggie.
The way my hands smell like clean boys all evening on bath night.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Gratitude Practice Days #4 and #5

So I skipped a day.  To be honest, I was so busy having fun with three of the people in my life I am so grateful for, I fell asleep with one of them at 9pm last night!

We had an incredible weekend.  I hate to see it coming to an end.  Here are some photos from our first camping trip as a family of four!  The first 6 photos were taken by my friend, Nikki.  She is awesome!

Those blue eyes simply melt my heart :)

Here are my boys with Q, a little girl who is just 6 days older than LBZ!

I absolutely love this photo.  I am so glad that Nikki caught a photo of me nursing LBZ.  You can't even tell, can you?  It looks like he is sleeping.  He loves to have his face covered when he is nursing, but only when he is tired.  He grabs the blanket, or in this case a burp cloth, and gently rubs the blanket in a circular motion right next to his mouth, on his cheek.  It is one of the most beautiful things in the entire world to watch.  It makes me so incredibly happy that I nurse him and can watch this amazing self-soothing that he does.

I love this one too.  N is such an amazing man.  BBZ woke up around 2:30am in the tent.  LBZ was stirring too, and suddenly BBZ started throwing up in the tent.  I helped him focus it on his pillow and in his own sleeping bag, but it was gross.  I tent to freak out in moments such as this and thought we should just drive the boys home.

N talked me down and we decided to stick it out.  We stripped BBZ down to his pull up and he slept in the sleeping bag with me as N curled up in the most uncomfortable position imaginable at the bottom of the bag.  We stuck that out until LBZ woke up happy as could be around 5:30am. 

Happy as can be includes squealing as loud as possible in celebration of life as he knows it.  That woke BBZ up so N and I decided to pack it up and head home.  This was a test run camping so we were only about 10 miles from home.  We were home by 7:30am!

BBZ swam and swam all day Saturday.  He even swam in the lake that he's not supposed to swim in, so that could have been the cause of his tummy ache.

It is almost impossible to get a photo with both of my boys in it these days.  If you look closely, you can see BBZ in the pool in the background.

Unless, of course, there is food around.  Then I can usually catch one of both boys.

BBZ decided that he was the Banshee for a while at the campsite.  Apparently, the banshee runs around and screams really loudly.  BBZ did this for a ridiculously long time.  Every time I asked him to stop he would say, "but mom, I'm the banshee!"  It was so cute I didn't have the heart to make him stop.

Love, love, love this one.

So our weekend was pretty incredible.  Catching up on sleep yesterday was pretty great too.  Hopefully I'll be back on track of posting my gratitudes regularly.  Unless, of course, I am too busy showing them how grateful I am for each of them :)

Washing machines (to wash off puke-covered camping gear)
Two boys napping at the same time (and for over 2 hours since we were up at 5:30am)
Daddy kisses
Being off work on Mondays
Time to myself to write this blog.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Gratitude Practice Day #3

Great friends. Cold beer. A baby who just rolls with it. Sunshine. A husband who is an amazing daddy.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Gratitude Practice Day #2

Lactation amenorrhea (no period since LBZ was born). Mini cinnamon rolls. Vacation time. Walking on The Loop. Oatmeal raisin cookies.

Clearly I had a bit of a sweet tooth today :)

Gratitude Practice

A good friend of mine, Nikki, recommended this blog recently, which talks about being grateful for what we have and posting about it. Check it out.
I have been feeling a little unsatisfied lately. I can't really explain it, but I have had this feeling that what I have isn't exactly enough.

That's not like me.

Alicia describes this as a Gratitude Practice.  Posting daily about 5 things we are grateful for while trying not to repeat things we have listed before.  I need to do this. I need to focus in the things in my life that are great. The little things that make my life great are fading into the background of my busy life, and that is not the way I want to live.
I only posted 3 blogs in April, and I really miss the freedom I have of not only expressing what I am feeling, but taking the time to stop and notice what I am thinking about and writing about it.  On one hand I am afraid to slow down because I don't think I can do it all if I take even a minute off, but I am missing out on the details because I am going too fast.

This is not what I want.  I want to slow down, smell the flowers, appreciate the small moments with my husband, kiss my boys, pet my dog, hear my cat purr, feel accomplished when I leave the office, smile when I wake up, drink tea on my porch, and above all, never feel like the things I have in my life aren't enough.

So here I go.

I plan to post every single day in the rest of May at least 5 things I am grateful for.  One reason I haven't blogged much lately is that after I spend all day in front of a computer at work, I have no desire to sit in front of a computer at home.  I can blog from my phone, but it's a bit challenging using that keyboard.

So some of these posts this month will be short and sweet, and others might contain some explanation, but either way I plan to take note and record the things in my world that I am grateful for.

A warm shower in the morning.  Plenty of pumped breastmilk.  Ice cold filtered water.  A vehicle that starts when I need it.  Talking to an expected mom about childbirth.

What are you grateful for today?