Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Do you ever feel like the world is spinning so fast, you can't keep up?  Like everything is swirling and churning and you can't make sense of any of it?  Welcome to my life, as of late.

I constantly feel "behind".  Like I'm trying to catch up with everyone else.  At school, I'm settling in with a class of 27 second graders.  Translation = I'm running my ass off all day to keep them controlled and learning at all times.  I pump while I scarf down a sandwich and leave the remainders of my lunch in my lunch box.  I'll save the rest for tomorrow's lunch, I always think.  Then, it's Friday and the granola bar that I packed on Monday has been hanging out in my lunchbox all week.  At the end of each day, I quickly prioritize what must be done so I can get out of there and get Natalie.  I leave the remainders of my to-do list on my desk....I'll save those for tomorrow.  The granola bar and my to-do list have the same fate, apparently.

Evenings are a wild whirlwind of feed the baby, play with baby, bathe the baby, put baby to bed, make lunch, lay out clothes, pack the diaper bag, pack the school bag, squeeze in a couple of chores (my house is falling apart all around me!), try to summon up an intelligible conversation with my hubby, then collapse into the bed.  Set the alarm for 5:25am so we can start it all over again.  I am literally more exhausted than I have ever been.  More exhausted than life with a newborn, people.  We're talkin' T.I.R.E.D.  The good news is that Natalie is tired, too, after her adventures at daycare all day.  We both sleep like rocks all night long.

I am already longing for the next day off school. Or, for this "adjustment period" to be over.  Because that's all this is, right?  RIGHT?!?

Our night looked like this:  I rushed home to feed Natalie and feed myself before heading back to work for Back-to-School Night.  Mark's phone was exploding because of an emergency on a job he's running.  He finds out he needs to take a shop-vac to the job site.  When he goes to the basement to get the shop-vac, he sees that our floor drain the basement is backed up and flooding the carpet in the finished part.  Which means I have to leave him with a fussy, tired baby and a soggy basement because I can't miss Back-to-School Night.  Roto-Rooter still isn't here (at 9:30pm).  We can't run any water until the drain in the basement is snaked out -- which means the sink is full of dishes, Natalie's bathtub is still full of her bath water, and the load of laundry that I had planned to wash is definitely on hold.  Can't even flush the toilet.  Not to mention, I don't even know how we are going to pay for the plumbing services.  Everytime we catch up a little and I think, okay, we can do this....we're gonna make it....we'll be fine...we are slammed with another big unexpected expense.  Mark is back at work, dealing with the mess there.  I am blogging - it's either that, or crawl in my bed and never come out! 

When will this all end??!?!  This year has been the hardest of my life.  I feel like I am living with a black cloud over my head....just waiting for the next storm to come raining down.

Yes, very negative post.  Sometimes a girl's gotta vent.  Sorry!
Obligatory cute baby pictures.  Yes, that makes everything better. :)

This too, shall pass.
(my mantra these days!)

'Night, friends.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Half a Year

Today is my baby girl's half birthday.  Half a year old....and our whole world.

Since today is such a big milestone, we decided to head to the park to take some pictures of our baby girl.  I will probably take some pictures of her in her chair tomorrow, for comparison sakes.

Big girl!  She smiles and laughs all day long.  We can't get enough of her!  We listen to her coo and sing and babble....and we just look at each other and beam.  We are proud of every move she makes....

At six months, our girl is rolling and scooting.  She pushes herself up on her arms and looks so proud when she can push herself backwards.  She really enjoys toys now, and looks at them and flings them around.  She likes to bang things on the floor and the highchair tray.  Everything goes in her mouth, and she grabs anything within reach.  Busy baby!  We are still waiting on teeth!

She still sleeps great at night (after a brief two week span of HORRIBLE nights.....we finally figured out that she was hot - put a fan in her room and she has been great ever since).  She goes to bed around 8, and gets up at 6 or 6:30 each morning.  Daycare is still an adjustment (for Mommy and baby), but she loves her daycare provider.  She isn't getting enough sleep there, and ends up taking a long nap when she gets home.  I hope we can get this worked out soon...

Natalie is eating some solids now.  She has dinner every evening after she nurses.  We've started with rice cereal and sweet potatoes and she tolerates both.  She has gotten much better with the spoon.  I just bought green beans, bananas, peaches, and butternut squash at the store today so I can make up some more food and let her start to try some new flavors.  (Click here to see the site I used to research how to make/store the baby food). 

Since my return to work, I can only pump once a day.  There just isn't another convenient time.  I am not ready to give up nursing, so instead I've started giving Natalie just one formula bottle a day.  We actually give it to her at night before bed.  She seems to sleep a little longer that way.  I pump before I go to bed, so she is still have breastmilk bottles both times at daycare.  It's working for now!!

Not sure her height and weight stats right now.  Her appointment is not until next week.  I am guessing around 17 pounds?  She definitely looks bigger to me lately.  I can just imagine her starting to crawl and move any day now!  We have started talking about baby proofing.  I can't believe we are here already!

Natalie's personality is laid back and happy.  She is calm and content most of the time.  Mark's grandma says this is exactly how he was as a baby.  It makes her so enjoyable!!  Sometimes I want to cry when I look at her.  And watching her with her daddy?  Indescribable.  This love for our girl is consuming and earth-changing and......defining.    

Our little girl is the most precious, most beautiful, most darling little angel in the whole wide world.  We couldn't be any luckier.  We love you, baby bug!

Sunday, August 14, 2011


LOTS of changes this week...

Natalie spent her first week at daycare.  She seems to love her provider and smiles so big when she sees her in the morning.  However, there isn't much of a schedule happening there....Natalie gets held through her naps and isn't getting enough sleep.  She's been fussy and overtired at night, leaving Mommy & Daddy exhausted, too.  I'm hoping to talk with her daycare provider and see if we can make some changes.  If not, I guess we'll start looking for someone else.  Sigh. I hate to be the "schedule nazi" but it is honestly very important for us that Natalie gets plenty of sleep and stays in a somewhat regular routine We love how much attention and love Natalie is getting....but that may not be enough.  Time will tell. Trying to stay positive and remember that there will be a period of adjustment anywhere that Natalie goes.

I also returned to work this week.  It was good to get back in a routine...but the first few days of the week were rough.  I cried a lot as I tried to get my bearings about me.  I felt out of balance, like part of me was missing.  You know when you feel like you've forgotten something at home, but don't know what it is?  That uneasiness consumed me most of the week.  I've never been so happy to see 3:30 on the clock each day.  Seeing my girl at the end of each day -- she kicks and smiles and laughs when she sees me! -- is the sweetest thing, and the only thing that gets me through the day.  Luckily, my days are extremely busy and go by really fast.  This will be an adjustment as well....getting used to the fast pace of work, when I was loving the slow pace of maternity leave. 

I've decided to keep nursing for now.  I was having trouble pumping last week, and thought I was going to have to supplement with formula while Natalie was at daycare and I was at work.  Thankfully, I found out that it was the pump and not me.  (Which was weird, because the pump seemed to be working correctly...)  Anyway, I rented a pump for now and am having no trouble keeping up with what Natalie is eating when she takes bottles during the day.  It will be much harder to keep up with a pumping schedule once the kids are back and I am more limited on when I can do it.  Luckily, I can pump a bottle's worth of milk in about 5 minutes.  So, for now, I'm going to try to keep up with it and see how it goes.  I just couldn't stand the thought of something else changing right now...

We used the weekend to recharge and reconnect.  I loved getting up on Saturday morning with my sweet girl, nursing her and then putting her in the bed between us.  We lounged in jammies the whole first part of the day, and it seemed to be just what we needed.  Sure, I should be catching up on housework and laundry....but that can wait a week as far as I'm concerned.  Right now, I just need my girl!

We also got to celebrate my sweet nephew's third birthday this weekend with a pool party.  More of what we needed....blessed with cool weather, we enjoyed the family time and relaxation. 

 Birthday boy!
 So cute.
 These kids love, love, LOVE baby Natalie.

  I think RJ's mommy might be wondering how the past three years went by so fast...such a big boy all of a sudden.

Natalie enjoyed the party, too.  Especially the swimming part. :)

Daddy's girl.
 RJ bounced back quickly after a slip-and-fall incident shortly after arriving at the pool.
 Grace jumped off the high dive for the first time!
And this guy can't go anywhere without his dinos. Love this little face.

Watching all of this....taking in all the family and smiles and cupcakes and splashing and conversation and was just enough to get this momma recharged for the week ahead.

Friday, August 5, 2011

A Break

Maybe it's the heat.  Maybe it's the fact that I have to go back to work next week and leave my little one.  Whatever it is, it has me in a little funk.

I started blogging a little over a year ago.  I found a couple of blogs that really inspired me, intrigued me, and I wanted to give it a go.  I instantly got sucked into the world of blogland, and haven't looked back.  I have enjoyed documenting my life, our life.  On more than one occasion I've looked back at previous posts to check my facts, remember a precious milestone (this new mommy brain still doesn't quite function like it used to...), or prove my husband wrong - a game we play often. :)

Lately, I've been a little bummed.  Don't know how to explain it really - but the best I can say is that I feel that life is moving faster than me.  My job....going back, the beginning of the school year is the most stressful.  My baby girl....growing way too fast, starting daycare next week.  Finances....we can't seem to catch up.   Chores/housework....can't get ahead of these either.

I don't seem to deal with this as well as some.  Instead of thriving on this busy-ness, I tend to self-destruct a bit.  No, I'm not laying in bed all day eating Oreos (I wish), but I seem to let the unimportant things eat up the little bit of free time that I have.  I spend more time watching TV.  More time reading blogs - one leads to another, and another.  It's almost an addiction....pretty soon an hour has gone by and I've read 25 blogs, 20 of those belonging to strangers.  And as I'm watching mindless television and reading up on the lives of people I don't know - I'm eating.  Which is why I'm carrying around 20 pounds of extra weight and a lot of unhappiness about my body and my self.

I started thinking this morning....I haven't read a book in over a year.  While I was pregnant, I read some pregnancy books.  But reading a great novel from cover to cover?  Nope.  I started a book shortly after I had Natalie.  I'd read a little before bed, but would fall asleep only a page or two in.  I'm not sure what I was thinking - I was obviously too exhausted to be reading when I was only sleeping a couple of hours at a time.  But, now?  What's my excuse now?

I complain often of not having time to do the things I enjoy.  I've recently realized that it is no one's fault but my own.  I've blamed it on a variety of things - I'm a new mommy, the baby takes up my time.  I'm tired - I just want to get lost in a TV show and relax.  I'm overwhelmed - finances and budget restrict my hobbies.

It is not about not having time.  It's about not making the time to do what I want.
In the hour (okay, two hours) that I spend reading blogs and writing my own each day, I could:
- read a book
- take a bubble bath
- work on my scrapbook
- exercise
- look at new recipes
- play with the baby
- talk to my husband
- sew
- catch up on chores
- listen to music
- take pictures

These are all things that I love to do (well, minus the 4th one on the list up there)....but instead of actually doing them, I complain about time never being on my side.  The truth is, I am just wasting time.  Wasting really precious time that I can't have back or do over. 

It's time for a change, friends.  Because all I can think right now is what the hell am I doing?

I will still blog.  I love documenting our life with Natalie and sharing it with family and friends.  I'm just going to spend WAAAYYYYY less time doing it.  Also making a goal to spend less time on Facebook, watching TV, and reading blogs that don't really inspire me.  I love reading about friends and family - but do I really need to keep up on the life of a girl in Oklahoma whose blog I started reading because we both have babies named Natalie who were born within a week of eachother??  Good grief...

There are more important things in life....

(This little one is learning to give "kisses")

God, Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Picture Perfect??

So, it's been hot around here.  As in really hot.  For the past couple of weeks, I've had good intentions to get outside and take some photos of my girl.  I love this old brown quilt that I have with pink roses on it, and I had been dreaming of plopping my creamy white baby right on top of it and gettin' my click on.

But, its just been too hot to go outside.  Everytime I've even driven anywhere in the past week, I arrive wilted and sweaty.  (I think part of that is toting around a baby in a car seat, the diaper bag, purse, etc. etc.)

Last night, I thought I'd try for the "quilt pictures" inside.  We had a pretty good start...
 (Okay - these arm rolls are out of control cute.)

 After a couple of clicks, I thought it would be really cute to see her little naked buns in the picture, so I quickly pulled off her diaper. 
 Oh yes, much better. :)
As I'm clicking away, husband casually looks up from his spot on the couch and says, "You better be quick, she's gonna pee on that blanket."
Me:  "No she won't, her diaper was wet when I took it we're good for a few minutes."
Him:  "She's gonna pee on that blanket."
Me:  "No she's not." (insert rolling eyes and exasperated sigh from irritated wife....geez, doesn't he know that I know my baby and I know exactly when she will or will not pee??)

 About 2.5 seconds later, she peed on the blanket.
 Then she got mad.
Then my camera battery died. 
Photoshoot didn't go quite as planned....but I still got a few cute pictures. :)

Blogging may be sparse the next few days -- I'm enjoying my last week with baby girl before I go back to work.  The only thing I have time for is kissing baby cheeks, snuggling, inhaling that sweet baby smell, and soaking up every smile, giggle, and coo. 

I will be back soon with pics of my classroom...for any of my teacher friends who are interested.
Have a great Wednesday!