Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The Mom Blob

I'm fairly sure that I've posted on this topic before, but i recently had a discussion with my sister (who is a new mom) about this idea and I thought we'd revisit it.

If you have seen any ads for nursing products, baby shampoo, or any other product a new parent might buy, you probably saw a vision of a mother snuggling with her soft, warm child. They hold each other in a tender embrace as the baby softly sleeps. This does happen on a rare period, but as new moms know and understand, this plays out in stark reality to a mom covered in drool, vomit, or some other bodily fluid, holding her child in tears, begging him or her to sleep for just 30 minutes so she can take a shower or nap for the first time in 2 or 3 days.

If you've browsed the magazines while waiting in line at the grocery store, you might have seen a new celebrity mom showing off their baby. The postpartumly svelte mom has every hair in place, and is all smiles while posing for the camera. The baby is well dressed, and usually sleeping, or smiling. This is also a break from the norm, which is a greasy hair, blurry eyed woman who has lost the belly bump but retains the stretched skin, stretch marks, and extra jiggle bestowed on her by the child, (your baby might possibly be well dressed but neither of you are probably sleeping or smiling).

This all culminates into what i like to call... the mom blob. Just after having a baby (for maybe 4 to six months) most women feel as though they are a walking, talking, shell whose only purpose on earth is to provide sustanence and comfort for someone else. You lose your body, you lose your mind, you lose your sense of self. Added to these physical changes, are all the little stressers that come along. Questions like "why isn't he/she eating every two hours like the book said" or more likely "why is he/she wanting to eat every 10 minutes". "why hasn't he/she pooped since Tuesday?"

Tips to cope with the Mom Blob

Get out and exercise (after your DR. clears it)
You may not lose all the weight right away, but I promise you will feel better about who you are.

Sleep when the baby sleeps

Avoid going into your closet for your pre pregnancy clothes
You are avoiding a meltdown of epic perportions here.

Do not expect the baby to do any of the things in any of the books you read
Babies are unpredictable and dangerous.

Treat Your Hubby like a king
Huh? After what I just went through, shouldn't he be kissing my unshaven ankles?
No. You are going to have wild moodswings (hey, it's not for sure, but trust me). If you treat him really well, he'll be better at handling them. And you should probably let him know that they are a'comin.

Side Note: He's going to want to fix everything when the baby cries and you feel bad and he'll be extremely frustrated when he can't. He will take it hard. Be nice to him.

Now, I'm not dissing motherhood. I love being a mom. Motherhood is an awesome wonder. I'm just providing reality. It's not all teddy bears, and baby bottoms. It's a tough, hard, ugly business some days. But, If you can lower your expectations, and find the little joys mixed in with all the drool, poo, and snot, it really is quite wonderful. If you are a new mom, or are about to be a new mom, here's a phrase to remember: Just hang in there. :)

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Spring Break Diaries

The week is just flying by, let me tell you. I don't remember having this much fun since I saw a documentary about how to make wooden shoes.

I'm just kidding. The girls have been miraculously well behaved (thank you, WII), and we have enjoyed spending time together.

Of course Tuesday evening, we went to Gamma and Papa's for Taylor's family birthday party. She really got crazy for her Zhu Zhu Pets. (those things annoy me, and make me want to pull all Baxter's chin hairs out). She loved her rainbow birthday cake, and her unicorn birthday card as well. If you don't know her, you would not be surprised that this fits in so perfectly with her personality. She wants to redecorate her room with a "candyland decor". This girl is all girl, all the time. When I do her laundry, I don't have to separate anything. It's all some version of pepto pink.. I digress.

Wednesday, we spent most of the day just hanging out and playing. I took a nap (thank you WII), and we had a dance party. We had church in the evening, and we were all really glad to get out of the house. It was a pretty uneventful day (that's a good thing in my world, folks).

Today, we went to the park, took some pictures, had lunch with one of my good friends at Chick Fil A. Yum. It again, was a pretty uneventful day. Tonight, I prepare for our trip to the motherland (AR) to visit our family. The weekend is going to be jam packed. Another birthday party for Taylor, a college gymnastics meet, roller skating, etc. I'm tired just thinking about it, and I haven't even started packing yet.

I know this hasn't exactly been seat gripping entertainment, but i just wanted to think on what my life has transformed into. I drive a minivan (you can not be cool and do this) and hang out at chick fil a. Going out dancing, is opening the windows and turning up the Kidz Bop cd. I love it, and I wouldn't change it one bit (okay, I could stand to actually go out and do something adults do every once and awhile, but that's it, I swear).

I have to admit though, there's one big similarity about this week now and then, at the end of the week, you always wind up looking for where the time went, where the money went, and looking forward to next year.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The Spring Break Diaries

My, oh my, how my spring break celebration changed in the last 12 years or so. I, of course, was never a "party til you puke" on the beach kind of girl, but I did enjoy the R&R that comes with no classes, warm weather, and good friends. We would spend it visiting family, just hanging out, or fitting in as much goofing off as humanly possible. After becoming a mom, spring break seems like less of a break, and more of an experience. The girls get up when they want, I stock the pantry with junk food (no, that's not a usual around here), we play, we have dance parties, and we goof off as much as humanly possible.

These are the spring break Diaries..

Because it started yesterday, I'll go ahead and post the first day right here.

I caught a huge break and everyone slept in 'til 9:00 a.m. I haven't kept my eyes closed that long since I watched 28 Days later...(seriously, you haven't lived until you've seen someones face being eaten off) Then we had a peaceful breakfast of fruity pebbles, (the girls actually had fruity pebbles, I had a granola bar.) and they stayed in their pajamas for most of the early afternoon. There were intermittent WII tournaments, small amounts of cleaning, and the high point of my afternoon came when i blocked Taylor from trying to send Ella down the stairs in a cardboard box. Much to her dismay, and Ella's, i wasn't about to let that happen.

The evening was rounded out nicely with the girls, again having fruity pebbles for dinner, and me able to escape for a while with a great friend who was in town for a short time.

Day 2

Today is Taylor's birthday. As of 12:45, we've already been to the gym, and had another Wii tournament. I've already been chastised for not letting Taylor have everything she wants to eat and do today because after all "mommy, it's my day". (I don't know where she gets it). Lunch is next, and a family party for her later! To Be Continued..

Monday, March 8, 2010

Preparing for Rain

I'm both sad and excited about the developments of the last month. Three weeks ago, we discovered that Ella's preschool will be closing (very sad, all three of my kiddos have gone there and have LOVED IT). The church that we left to pursue ministry had this awesome, wonderful, special, mothers day out program. The church is trying to sell the building, and as they don't know the future, they have decided to halt the program next year. There's the backstory. Well, Ella and the two children that I currently watch need somewhere to go next year. Next year will be Ella's last year home with me, before she enters kidergarten (this brings a whole other range of emotions to be discussed later) so I wanted it to be special. I had already decided and discussed that I would be taking fewer days providing childcare for my friend to focus on my photography business. I would only be doing in the 2 days a week that they had preschool (before and after). We found a similar program, and i enrolled Ella (it turns out I knew the director!). Something seemed to be holding my friend from enrolling, and well, long story short, she has decided to go a different way. No hard feelings here, I want whats best for her kiddos! So that leaves me where? Here's how i see it..

(1) Ella and I will have quality time during her last year at home with me.

(2)I will have even more time to focus on my business. I can't tell you how many times I've questioned myself for starting a business of my own. My friends and family closest to me keep urging me on, persisting and insisting that if I have this much passion for something i have to keep going with it. I don't have a very good track record for finishing things out (example: there is still a white spot behind our armoire where I didn't paint.). So, I've decided that I'm going all in, earning my way to either failure or success. Just keep swimming, as the fish say...

(3) More time to devote to ministry of family and teens.

(4) More time to work out (i don't know if i can handle that, but I'm going to enjoy it)

So, metaphorically speaking, i'm preparing for rain. I'm planting my harvest, and seizing the day.

How about you?

Monday, March 1, 2010

Bucket List

99 Things I Ought to Have Done

Hey, I have about a million things I could post on, and will. Life is going great, yet busy. Here's a fun little diddy to keep yourselves entertained, while i wade through the chaos.

Copy the list, bold the ones you've done (with explanations if needed), share with friends.
1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band (yes, marching does count!)
4. Visited Hawaii (Send me, I'll go)
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity (I want to change this to, step out of my comfort box and give!)
7. Been to Disneyland
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris (nope, but i hear it's smelly)
13. Watched a thunder and lightning storm (we're in tornado alley, almost impossible to avoid)
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch (photography is now my passion)
15. Adopted a child (trying to decide what God wants in this area)
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight(almost every night growing up, thanks Kris!)
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill(guilty!)
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise (and i tentatively have two more planned for next year!)
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors (I don't even know who they are, i need to get on that, i guess)
35. Seen an Amish community (right outside Springfield, MO)
36. Taught yourself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied ( I am there now, I think!)
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke (I'm sure I have, but not in public)
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight (one of my happy places)
46. Been transported in an ambulance (with Ella bean, and all her RSV crud)
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling (on our cruise we went snorkeling, during a storm. when it calmed down it was awesome but awkward.)
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud (mmm. mud pies)
54. Gone to a drive-in theater ( i need to find one here)
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business (this one)
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason (I have the best hubby ever)
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check (dumb and in college)
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy (she ain't pretty folks, but she is my "Linda")
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job (temp job, again dumb and in college)
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been a passenger on a motorcycle (my dad had one)
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book (this one is a definite must do)
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car (high school graduation present, 1998 dodge Neon, and our PAID OFF MINIVAN in 2004)
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper (many times in high school for being a band geek)
85. Kissed a stranger at midnight on New Year’s Eve
86. Visited the White House (i'd like to, maybe in 2013)
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club (for a short time, and I'd like to find one again)
93. Got a tattoo
94. Had a baby (times 3)
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee

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