Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Queen Clarion

You know you watch a lot of children's TV when you start calling your baby the name of the queen fairy on Tinkerbell. Yes I call Claire Queen Clarion, and she seems to like it. 

Claire is the EASIEST baby. I thought Brynlee was pretty easy, but now I've got a baby that is so low maintenance it's a joke. We scored big time. Claire only fusses when she is hungry usually. There was a few weeks when she would be a little fussy in the evening, but if I held her she was fine. Yesterday during the poop fiasco she didn't even make a peep. She likes to be held ( what baby doesn't?) but I put her down all the time and seems to be OK with that. As long as she can see someone she is fine.

She has been a great sleeper. She sleeps in her crib every night. No rocking, or singing or anything. She does need to be swaddled though. That is her one thing. In order to sleep really well she has to be wrapped up. She wakes up to eat in the night and goes right back to sleep when she is done. My lack of sleep these days is not really her fault. She wakes me up to eat and then I have insomnia for the next 2 hours. It's so irritating!!! She is usually done feeding in 15 min from start to finish. The rest of the time it's all my problem.

She has had one thing that was never a problem with Brynlee. I noticed she seemed to favor one side of her head. And her head looked a little misshapen. But she just got squeezed out of a birth canal, whose head wouldn't be misshapen after that? However Jimmy pointed out that her head was getting REALLY misshapen. I did some research and started to panic. Am I not moving her around enough? Is she going to have to wear one of those ( really expensive) helmet things? Did I ruin her head for life? It didn't seem to be torticollis because her neck will move to the opposite side. Her head just snaps right back to her favored flat side. We started making a conscious effort to get her to look to her less favored side. I've rolled up wash clothes and stick them under her favored side when she is awake to force her head in the other direction. After about a week it seems to be looking better, and her head will go to the less favored side more easily now. She has her 2 month appointment coming up so I'll ask the Dr then. Life is hard enough without a lumpy head!

She started smiling recently. Not a ton, but a smile here and there. When I went to get her out of bed this morning I peeked into her crib and there she was smiling away. Not a bad way to wake up!

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

On my Own

And then there was one. One adult with two kids that is. Yep, Jimmy went back to work, Donna left and now it's just me.

Yesterday was day 1. Not too bad! I woke up in a great mood, despite it being 7am and just having fallen back to sleep after the 5am feeding. The day went pretty well. It was a bit chaotic trying to feed and get everyone ready to go to dance class, but otherwise all was good. I did go to bed at 8:45 though. Yep, I didn't even make it to 9pm.

Today didn't go quite as well. We started out with Claire having a blowout of epic proportions as I was trying to get Brynlee ready for school. I was literally cleaning poop out of her belly button. It was front to back practically arm pit to arm pit. But we got Brynlee off to school on time. I went on a cleaning frenzy while Brynlee was at school and Claire was pretty cooperative. I find if I clean while Brynlee is home my clean house stays clean for about 2 min until a certain 3 year old messes it up again. This way it stayed clean for almost 3 hours until a certain 3 year old got home from school. I had to go to the store and figured only taking 1 kid was better than taking both so Claire and I ran some errands. In the car, out of the car. In the car, out of the car. I forgot how heavy those car seats are! Jeesh. We got home just in time for Brynlee to get out of school Oops, there went my nap time. And exercise time. And finding my inner peace time. Then it was feeding time for both girls and homework. Unfortunately that was accompanied by a splitting headache on my part, which refuses to go away. 1600 mg of ibuprofen and it's still hanging around.

I found myself losing patience today that I had plenty of yesterday. * sigh*. It's an adjustment period for everyone right? We'll get it figured out. I never did get dressed. I'm still sitting here in my pajama top however I did manage to throw on some yoga pants ( for the exercise I never did). Tomorrow will be better. On the positive side, at least I'm practically already dressed for bed. Which I'm ready to get into as soon as Jimmy gets home!

Friday, April 25, 2014

Thankful Thursday on Friday... Again

Oops I missed Thursday, again. Hmm. This might become a weekly occurrence.

This week I'm thankful for the human body and it's ability to bounce back...sort of.

I had Brynlee when I was 26. I gained about 35 pounds with her and it all came off with relative ease after child birth. I was wearing a pair of my larger jeans 1 week ( Yes, 1 week!!!) post postpartum. By my 6 week check up I was back in my pre baby pants, at least most of them and was right around my pre pregnancy weight. It did take pilates to really get back to my pre pregnancy shape but all things considered I got pretty lucky! At the time I did not realize how lucky.

Cut to now. I'm 30 and gained 35 pounds with Claire as well. However I was more active during my pregnancy with Claire courtesy of my super active 3 year old who won't sit still. So, while I knew getting back to my pre pregnancy weight would be tough I thought I would bounce back similarly to how I did before with Brynlee. It makes sense, right? No. Wrong! 2nd baby and older = pounds not melting off the way they used to. Here we are 7 weeks post postpartum and I still have 12 pounds to lose. And I can barely get my old pants up, otherwise buttoned. And if I can get them buttoned I've got a muffin top so big a bakery would be jealous.

I suddenly have a new found respect for all the moms out there who have had multiple kids and look great.

I'm sure you are wondering when I'll get to the thankful part?

As I get frustrated with my new soft and larger body, I think about what a miracle it is that women can get back to pre pregnancy bodies at all! I mean look at what my body just went through. I went from being able to use my pregnant belly as a table to it being flatish. Ok not really flatish but much smaller than it was just last month. It really is amazing. I've still got a lot of work to do. And I'm sure I'll complain plenty along the way as I stare longingly at my skinny jeans that haven't seen the light of day in 10 months. But I'll get there. And the fact that I can get back there ( or I think I can get back there) EVENTUALLY is something to thankful for.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Thankful Thursday...On Friday

I missed yesterday, oops. In all likely hood it won't be the last.

Today I'm thankful for two healthy normalish children ( at least so far). When you think about everything that could go wrong when you are pregnant it's a miracle that anyone comes out normal! When I was pregnant with Claire I kept having nightmares that she would be born missing and arm or something. Obviously I'd love her just the same if that were the case. But I kept worrying and worrying.

As she was being born and the 6 nurses were delivering her ( because literally there were like 6 nurses in there) they said to me "Oh she's cute!" The first thing I asked is " Is she normal? All 10 fingers and all 10 toes?". Yep, she's got it all. When they showed her to me my first thought was " No, she's not cute. She's scary looking!". Yep I said it. She WAS scary looking, poor little thing. Her face was all squished, probably from hanging out in the birth canal for 20 min waiting for the Dr who would never make it. She's pretty darn cute now though. So, in honor of my thankfulness for my kids here are some pictures.

                                             Brynlee at about 2 months I think? I'm not sure

 I'm thankful for this furry child of mine as well. No, having a baby did not diminish my love for my cat.

Baby Claire!

Brynlee ready for dance class

Claire sleeping on Jimmy at 1 month.

This is Brynlee's eyebrow. What 4 year old has perfectly arched eyebrows like this?! All she needs a little tweezing and she's good to go ( no, I'm not going to tweeze her eyebrows. I'm just saying that when she's older she's got it made!). I'm totally jealous

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

A Struggle and a Run

I started thinking the other day about struggles.

Everyone struggles, and everyone struggles with different things. Does that mean one person's struggles are worse than someone else's? I'm not sure. Really no one can be the judge of that. Because unless you've experienced the exact same thing as someone, you can't know what they are going through. And you can't really experience the exact same thing as someone because you aren't that person. You don't handle things the same way that person does. You don't have the same history as that person.

My point is I think we should stop one upping our woes. I mean what does trying to prove that your struggle is worse than someone else's accomplish anyway? Besides making you feel worse in the end. I think we should try to swing the other way. No matter how bad things are, they can always get worse. No matter how dark things are there is a positive aspect somewhere. Like my last fun fact said, if you make over $21,000 per year you are among the richest 4% on the planet. Ok, so we are rich! Woo hoo! It's all about perspective.

I have some startling news. I'm running. Me. Actually running. I'm training for a 5K. And yes I DO need to train for a 5k. That's how out of shape/suck at running I am. I know most people could probably roll out of bed and run 3.1 miles ( because that's how long a 5k is in case you didn't know) with the greatest of ease. Running has never been my thing so the fact that I'm running by choice is quite a feat. Since it's getting hot here quickly, all the 5ks are in May and then there aren't any again until Sept/Oct. I won't be ready by May. I did just have a baby after all. And am recovering from not really exercising for the past 10 months. So Sept/Oct will be the goal. Hopefully by then I'll be one of those people who can run 3.1 miles with the greatest of ease. Or at least someone who can stagger across the finish line

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Paranoia, Paranoia

I wouldn't consider myself a huge worry wart. Do I worry about things? Yes, I definitely do. But who doesn't right? I'm not the most easy going of people on the planet, but I'm not strung high as a kite either. I'm a middle of the road worrier. A medium sized worry wart if you will.

But I find myself being paranoid recently. After the Brynlee almost dying at 2 moths incident I've decided to be a little more cautious with Claire. As I've previously posted I don't take her out very often at all, and if we do she is in her car seat covered up and shielded from the world. But now that she is a 1 month old I've considered letting her out of quarantine.

However after watching the news the other night and seeing that a case of measles has been identified in Maricopa county ( which is the county I live in) I started thinking otherwise. This case was identified a good 30 min away from me, so not really a big deal right? Then I started reading about how you can catch's like a scene out of the movie contagion!

-it's airborne
-it's so contagious that the virus can literally live in the air for hours after the person who is carrying it is no longer present
-someone can be carrying it for up to 4 days before exhibiting any symptoms
- babies ( great!) and young children ( great!) are most susceptible to long term effects and even death from contracting measles

Then I read where this person who was confirmed to have measles in my county has been before they exhibited any symptoms. Oh just the phoenix airport! Probably the worst place ever for someone with a highly contagious disease to have been. This person also attended church services at a LDS building and ate in a restaurant.

Well you can just call Claire Anne Frank because I'm not taking her out EVER! 

OK that's a little dramatic, Claire will leave the house again eventually. But as far as going to places with droves of people not anytime soon if I can avoid it all. Looks like she will be in quarantine for a little while longer!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Thankful Thursday and a Happy Place

I'm going to copy an idea from another blog I read and talk about something I'm thankful for on Thursdays. If I can remember to blog on Thursdays that is.

Today I'm thankful for air conditioning! As it starts to heat up here, I think about how lucky we are to have modern technology. I'm not great in the heat. I can admit it. I get moody, snappy and unpleasant. So it only makes sense that I live in the desert right? LOL How amazing it is that I have this magic box thing that cools my whole house down for me so I don't want to kill someone.

I'm not super thankful for air conditioning bills...but at least I have control over my bill. Houses here are designed with heat in mind, and we don't have a ton of natural light in my house. I thought it was strange at first, but it helps keep it cooler and I'm a fan of that. Thank you air conditioning, I love you!

As I was up the other night at 4:30 ish I started thinking about happy places. I actually have one. I have a place I picture myself at when I'm trying to relax. I've been to this place before so when I need to calm down I try to physcially put myself in this place.

Here is mine:

But not just any beach. This beach. It's called nauset beach and it's on Cape Cod. When my family would go visit the cape each year we'd always go to this beach for a day. Cousins and aunts and uncles would come and it was always one of my favorite days of our vacation. This beach is not like the beaches I've been to in California where people are packed in and practically sitting on top of each other. You have to actually drive on the sand to get to this beach. And you park right on the beach and have a ton of space to sprawl out.

I can't tell you how many times I feel myself at this beach. I can feel the sun warm me after swimming in the freezing cold water. I can feel myself slowly drift off to sleep listening to the sound of the waves and kids playing and people chatting. Beach naps are the best! I can taste my Italian sub from D'angelos, because that is the only thing acceptable in my mind to eat on this beach trip. I can smell the sunblock and it smells wonderful. Ahhh. Maybe I'll vacate to this happy place right now. I'm grateful to have memories of a place like this that I can go to when life gets tough and things get hard. I hope everyone out there has their own "nauset beach" that they can get away to.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Parenting Moments

I was thinking the other day about moments. Specifically moments as a parent. I think back to my parenting resume over the past 4 years. It's not too bad, but there are some times that were not my proudest. I can name my worst parenting moment easily. It is not something I'm proud of and when I think about it I physically wince and want to cry.

It was a Monday and Brynlee was about 6 weeks old. The night before had been a nightmare...Jimmy and I got into a fight and I stayed up way too late. Brynlee was still waking up several times a night to eat so to say I got a little amount of sleep is an understatement. That Monday morning Brynlee was up bright and early. She was extremely fussy. I tried feeding, rocking, swaddling. I tried everything and she just kept screaming and crying. After several hours of this I was at my whit's end. I could not take it anymore. My lack of sleep and general grumpiness was not helping and I was DONE with the whole situation. I stuck a crying Brynlee in her crib and went outside for a little while. Eventually the crying stopped, and I composed myself. I went in to check on Brynlee and she had thrown up everywhere. Not just spit up, but thrown up. It was all over her, all over her crib. I'm not sure how long she lay in there covered by her own vomit before I decided to go check on her.

Later that day she ended up in the hospital with spinal meningitis fighting for her life. She would survive (obviously) but I kept thinking back to that moment. Instead of toughing it out with my baby, instead of sticking with her and sticking by her I put her down and walked away from her because I couldn't handle it. Of course she was fussy. Her brain was swelling and she was life threateningly sick. But I was tired and didn't want to deal with her anymore so I gave up.

I'm not saying Moms shouldn't take a break. That Moms don't need to take a break. But still to this day I can't help but thinking that I abandoned my baby when she needed me because I was tired and hormonal. I hate that I wasn't patient enough and loving enough to be there when she got sick and to stick with her while she didn't feel well.

Now that I'm all depressed again I'll change the tone and list my proudest parenting moment. As Brynlee has gotten older she wants things. Lots of things. We go to the store and she wants everything she sees. Even if I tell her we aren't getting anything for her today, she still asks to get EVERYTHING we see. As I say "no" over and over and over again she usually gets angry and pouty. Little does she know that her bad attitude makes me want to buy her things even less, LOL.

So, my proud parenting moment was at a birthday party. Before we went to the party I explained to her that the other little girl would be getting lots of presents. And she would be opening lots of pretty packages and blowing out candles on a cake ( all of which are things Brynlee wants to do). I tried to explain to her that is was the birthday girl's special day and that Brynlee needed to stand back and let her open her things and enjoy her birthday without "helping" her. Unfortunately Brynlee listens to me about as well as my husband does while a sporting event is on TV ( or really anything is on TV)...meaning not well at all. So I wasn't sure what we would get at the party. I was hoping I wasn't going to be the parent with the kid who was having a meltdown because she didn't get any presents but I wasn't sure. Imagine my delight ( and surprise) when Brynlee actually listened to me and was perfectly behaved. I left that birthday party beaming, and with my step a little lighter. I know this probably seems really dumb to those with kids that behave like angels on a regular basis. But I don't have one of those kids so for us this was a BIG deal.

Fun Fact:
People earning over $21,000 a year are the richest 4% on the planet