Thursday, November 27, 2008

I am Thankful

  • For silly, adorable, chubbalicious children
  • For a loving, well-meaning, but sometime bone-headed husband
  • For wonderful, supportive families and friends
  • For our health and jobs
  • For Wine (and beer)!
It's been a fairly low-key day. We attempted to watch the Macy's Thanksgiving parade and made lunch for the three (the kidlet doesn't count yet) of us and two friends. Now, the hub is watching football with his work friend, the kiddo is running around alternating between choo choo and firetruck noises and the kidlet is chilling in the swing. She's supposed to be sleeping, but I believe that her brother's noise is preventing that.

I'm not really a Black Friday shopper, so I don't even know what the specials are. Heck, I don't even really know what we're going to get the kids for Christmas this year. Though, after looking at some of the ads online, I may attempt to go out tomorrow morning. I'll probably be up before 5 anyway, thanks to the kidlet.

Otherwise, the next three days will be spent preparing for Sunday, which is the kidlet's baptism and upon which we will be inundated with family.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

I'm so not ready!

Next week is my last week of maternity leave. I'm so not ready to go back to work yet!

How can I leave my sweet little chubby cheeked kidlet?
She's just begging "stay home with me mommy! Sit on the couch and eat cookies and snuggle with me!"

But I have to go back to work. I know my sister has been able to be a SAHM, but it's not in the cards for us. Even with daycare as expensive as it is (and trust me, it ain't cheap!) we're still better off financially with me going back to work. I'll enjoy the adult interaction, too.

But getting our household up and ready to have two adults and two kids out the door by approximately 7:45 each morning is going to be quite a struggle.

Neither the hub nor I are morning people, he even less so than me (yes mom, it is possible). And lately, he's been staying up even later than usual "winding down" by playing xBox. How one can "wind down" while killing evil terrorists or aliens is beyond me, but that's what he does.

I'm still sleeping on the couch because it's easier to nurse the kidlet there. Which means I haven't slept a full night in my own bed in more than three months. I don't think transitioning the kidlet to either the travel swing in our room or her crib is going to be an easy task. However, we will most likely be switching completely to formula once I go back to work (my supply completely tanked last time and I'm expecting the same again) so I won't be the sole feeder around here.

We have some good trial runs this week, though. Monday I'm meeting with the infant room teacher at the daycare the kiddo goes to (and the kidlet will go to as well starting the beginning of December) just to introduce the kidlet to her and get a feel for their schedule. That's at 9 am (thanks to the hub for setting that one up). Then Tuesday I have plans to to go DM and possibly meet my sister to do some shopping. Because my ass as expanded exponentially from sitting on the couch, I don't really have anything respectable to wear for the kidlet's baptism next weekend or Christmas. Plus, all the good malls are in DM (hello Sephora!) In order for me to drive the two hours there, shop and drive the two hours home to be back in time for my last breastfeeding support group, I need to leave the house shortly after 8.

What I'm really going to miss, though, is the ability to sit around in my pajama pants all day and not shower if I so choose. Somehow, I don't think they'd appreciate that too much at my work.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Big girls don't cry

Yesterday afternoon I got sucked into watching Bring it On: All or Nothing while nursing the kidlet. It's an extremely cheesy, straight-to-dvd movie about cheerleading. You know, one of those you're ashamed to admit you watched, but it's so bad that you can't turn it away.

I have always been jealous of those tiny, athletic girls. I have never been tiny and I am only moderately athletic if by athletic you mean I can walk a mile in under 15 minutes. I *was* a cheerleader in high school, but that doesn't count because anyone could be a cheerleader in high school. Heck, even our oldest sister, who is the least athletic out of the three of us, was a cheerleader.

See:
Nothing like having a 5'10", senior on the JV football cheerleading squad (which was somewhat of a scandal because one of the two freshman that made it on the Varsity squad also happened to be the daughter of the new cheerleading coach and until then, seniors were automatically on the Varsity squad. But I was moved up to Varsity after a few weeks because some girls quit. I didn't care, I liked Wrestling cheerleading better anyway.)

Anywho....

I fear my poor daughter will never be known as a petite flower. Already, at just past 7 weeks, girlfriend is well over 12 pounds and quickly growing out of her 0-3m clothing. I know it's just not in her genetics to be a tiny thing; how can you with a dad who's 6'4" and a mom who's 5'10" and are both very, oh shall we say, sturdily built.

I just hope she's not "the big girl."

I was "the big girl" and it's not fun. From about 4th grade until freshman year of high school, I was teased for being fat. I was never huge, but I definitely liked my food - desserts especially. And because I was emtionally sensitive (read: I cried really easily), that made it even more fun to tease me. I don't want her to go through that. Though, maybe she'll be the scary big girl and just beat up the kids who tease her. Hmm... that might be even worse.

I wish I could say I'm completely happy with my body, but I don't think that will ever happen. I wish I could be back to where I was before I got pg with the kidlet. I look at women on TV or out and about and think "I wish I could look like that." I know being 7 weeks postpartum is not the best time to be judging my body (especially after all I've done the past 7 weeks is sit on the couch and nurse and eat). I also know I can lose the weight, I did it after the kiddo. And I know I physically and mentally feel better when I'm eating right and exercising. But half the time, even when I'm "skinny", I still feel like the big girl I was in middle school.

I want to teach our kids about being healthy and active and eating right, but how can I teach my own daughter to be happy with her body when I'm not happy with mine?

Monday, November 17, 2008

Randomosity

For some odd reason, our bookmarked link to google goes to the Spanish version instead. Thankfully, I can remember enough of my high school Spanish to figure out the link to log in (and how to ask what time it is and where the library is) but it's certainly strange. I haven't bothered to take the time to figure out how to make it go back to regular google.com
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The kiddo is at that fun age where you never know what's going to come out of his mouth next. Some recent gems:
"Daddy, the excavator went home to his mommy and daddy excavator. He missed them." (upon seeing that the construction equipment that had been working on a street on the way to daycare was gone. And yes, knows the names of the different construction equipment. The best is hearing him say aerial ladder truck.)

"We've got a mission!" (upon the hub asking the kiddo how they were going to fit his winter coat into the already full locker at daycare. Methinks the kiddo has been watching too much Little Einsteins.)

"We're not going to see the turkeys. They take a nap."
(declaration on the way to church yesterday. We go by a wooded area where we often see wild turkeys.)

We really need to get a secret video camera or something because at least two or three times a day the kiddo will bust out with something that has me and the hub in stitches. The most difficult is when the kiddo *knows* he's doing something he's not supposed to, but also knows he's so dang cute we can't help but smile.
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Our movie of choice today was Love Actually.

Again, set in London and as an extra bonus, set during my favorite time of year - Christmas. I'd forgotten how much I enjoy that movie. I may have to watch it again soon!
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I'm mourning the fact that my maternity leave is almost done - I only have two weeks left. My butt will thank me for going back to work, though, as it won't be planted on the couch 20 hours of the day. I also won't be eating candy and cookies galore - even my postpartum fat pants are beginning to get a bit tight and I don't think my work would appreciate me wearing my grungy stretchy yoga pants every day. But I will miss the snuggle time with the kidlet.

Speaking of the kidlet, she's no longer entertained by the swing. I suppose I should get her out before her mild complaining turns into full-scale caterwauling.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Halloween

Only two weeks late.

The kiddo finally decided on Bob the Builder for Halloween. Sweet, it was a fairly easy costume. We went to Theisens and found a pair of overalls and the Bob the Builder hard hat and tool belt toy kit. I bought a plaid shirt at Old Navy that he can wear again and he wore his own scruffy tennis shoes. Voila! Bob the Builder:
Note the mark underneath his eye? He had a run-in with our dining room table and the table won. He also got a haircut a few days later, so he no longer looks like hippie.

The kidlet didn't dress up. She had a cute poodle costume she wore for about 20 minutes during a Mommy and Me-type group, but instead opted for the hand-me-down Halloween shirt from her cousin, LC.

It looked pretty cute even though she looks less-than-thrilled:
The kiddo didn't even get to trick or treat as we left shortly after work to head up to my parents so the hub could play farmer and help my dad out in the fields. He got more than he bargained for when he had to help contain a field fire one day.

video

And people say living in the country is boring.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Hairstory

One of my LJ friends coined a term combining the words hair and history: hairstory. A pictoral evolution of ones personal hairstyles.

My hairstory is fraught with bad 80s and 90s hair (though not as bad as my sisters, thank goodness).

I had the usual little girl "bowl cut with bangs look"
(that's my lovely sister sporting the similar blonde 'do on the right)

I had the poodle perm through most of late elementary and some middle school (no pictures easily accessible, though, thank goodness. Let me tell you, I was one rockin' chick with my poodle perm and huge glasses.)

I kind of started caring about what my hair looked like in high school, but was always too lazy to really style it. Junior year I got it cut in "the Rachel" but rarely took the time to do anything with it.

And so began the neverending cycle of "Grow it Long/Cut it Off."

Junior year of college, it was really short:
I kind of liked it, but was a PITA to keep up because you had to get it trimmed every 6 weeks or so. And when you have it short like that, you do have to style it, or it just looks icky. So I grew it out.

It was the longest I think it's ever been right before my wedding - about to the middle of my back. That's something for my poor, lifeless, thin hair.

It was similar to this:
I'm pregnant with the kiddo here, so it was about 3 years ago.

I've gone a little shorter since then, but nothing shorter than chin-length. For a while, I had a Pob, the reverse bob as made popular by Posh Spice, but decided to grow that out to my current style: boring bob.

I'm bored with my hair again. I realized this as I was drying and styling it this morning. I hate drying my hair. Hate it. But I have to if I want it to look even somewhat remotely decent and non-bagladyish. And I never know how to style it. It never seems to look like I want it to in my mind's eye.

I'm in the middle of the Grow it Long portion of my cycle and I have to decide if I want to keep growing it out or get it cut off. I'm due for another haircut in a few weeks. Blah. I never know what to do with my hair. I'm in dire need of a date with Lady Clairol, too, to color my hair and try and get rid of the redness/brassiness that always comes with at-home color.

As an aside, I'm trying out some new shampoo and conditioner as I'd finished my Burt's Bees stuff I talked about in this post. I saw these at Target and decided to try them out:

Say Yes to Carrots Shampoo and Conditioner


I like them so far. The smell is nice, though it took a little getting used to after the Burt's Bees stuff - the Yes to Carrots is more clean and not as floral/herby as the Burt's Bees. I like how it makes my hair feel and I don't have to use a ton to feel like I'm getting my hair clean.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

London calling

In my attempt to avoid overexposure to bad daytime TV while on maternity leave, I watched one of my favorite movies last week:
I love it because it's set in London and has Gwyneth Paltrow in it.

I've been fascinated with All Things British since I was young. I don't know if it was from reading Paddington or The Secret Garden, but I've become a bit of an Anglophile. That's why I was super excited when I learned of a work-study program through my university to work abroad in London for a summer.

I participated the summer between my sophomore and junior years of college. It was the first time I'd been abroad; the first time I'd even been on a plane. We spent the first three weeks with the entire group from our school (there were about 25 of us) and after that we were on our own -- to find housing, a job and learn our way around the city.

For the most part, it was a fantastic experience. I lived in a flat in North London with 5 other people from our group. We were a quick walk to the main road, close to some pubs (but, really, you're close to a pub anywhere in London) and only 15 minutes from the tube station.

I found work as a waitress in a newly opened whisky and cigar bar in a high end part of London. It was a cool place to work, even if the hours weren't the best. I usually had the supper shift, which meant leaving my flat by 3:30 to make it there before 5 and eventually taking the night bus (which thankfully stopped about 20 yards from our house) and getting home around 3-4 am. I made enough to cover rent and food, with some fun sightseeing excursions courtesy of the Bank of Mom and Dad.

But it was still my first extended time away from home, and by the time August rolled around, I was ready to come back to the states.

I knew I always wanted to go back, though, and play a proper tourist. The hub and I got that chance a few years ago.

We had found a great deal through one of the travel websites for a week stay in London, hotel and flight included, for December 27, 2005 through January 3, 2006. We would get to ring in New Year's in Trafalgar Square, how cool!

Only we hadn't exactly anticipated getting pregnant three months after booking the trip. So I was 30 weeks pregnant, sloshing around a chilly and rainy London and couldn't even partake in any of the fun (and by fun, I mean drinking in a pub) that we had planned.

It was a mixed trip. We had fun, but were disappointed that our plans didn't go exactly as we wanted. Plus, I was huge and hormonal and probably not the best traveling partner.

Someday we'd like to go back, again, only not be pregnant, and maybe have it be a touch warmer. Until then, a few photos from our last trip there.

Clock tower at the Houses of Parliament. Big Ben is actually the name of the largest bell inside the tower.

Tower Bridge at sunset

Street scene

Fireworks over the Thames on NYE.

*sigh* I love London. In an alternate reality where I'm a billionaire, I'd have a flat there to go stay whenever I want.