Friday, August 15, 2014

miscellany

Thank y'all for all the kind comments on my latest DITL {gratitude only 13 days in the making - seems legit!}.  I tried to respond to any questions in the comments section, so give those a looksie if you had a query... And definitely check out Navigating the Mothership's round up -- I find these so. damn. fascinating.  I'm such a creepy voyeur.


E, B and I traveled to ATL last weekend to celebrate one of my very favorite people {and her very favorite guy}.  It was an exceptionally beautiful wedding with an even more gorgeous bride. B wasn't too enthused with his 3rd flight {after flying with kids unscathed many, many times, I guess our number was up; cue 40 straight minutes of screaming}, but totally rocked hanging out with E / J  / the babysitter without me {re: without my boobs} for nearly 48 hours.  No loyalty to the food source with that one, I tell ya.  I was so honored to be a part of L&D's big day, and we could not have had more fun "getting our BurtOn!"  And shacking with the M Family was icing on the wedding cake!


I planned on using our last few weeks of summer to dip our toes into the potty training pool.  Life and L had other plans, and we're now decidedly hanging out in the PT deep end.  I don't think I'll say much more about the process on social media {because, just, NO}, but we're having a decent amount of initial success with this Elmo Potty Seat, a sticker chart for "tryng," M&Ms for actual victories, and a "potty pal" {a stuffed puppy she picked out herself that she only gets to hold / play with if she's sitting on the potty}.  Basically, we're throwing everything and the kitchen sink into the bathroom in regards to motivation.  No shame in my bribery game. If you have an anxious and/or stubborn toddler, I can't recommend the extra motivation just for "trying" enough.


I continue to be very sad about Robin Williams.  Celebrity deaths rarely phase me much, and it actually feels wrong to be affected by the passing of someone I didn't know personally, but... I'm just sad.

The ongoing happenings in Ferguson are also weigh heavily on my mind {and I hate to list them behind potty training and Robin Williams... assume this cobbled-together post isn't ordered by significance}. There are so many unanswered questions surrounding Michael Brown's death, and, if we're talking about "sides," I think there has been bad behavior all-around.  But I hope the resulting dialog regarding race relations, the media's treatment of victims based on skin color, peaceful vs violent protests and law enforcement's reactions to each proves productive. I very much enjoyed Kelly's thoughts as a parent of a toddler on the subject. 

On a lighter note, where has The Good Wife been all my life? Three Cheers for Amazon Prime streaming video and early morning nursing sessions. I want to be Alicia {sans philandering spouse}. If only law firm life were actually so exciting.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Day in the Life: July 31, 2014

I thought long and hard about publishing this one.  7/31/14 was not our best day...by a long shot.  L behaved badly, I behaved badly -- it's not necessarily a day I want to remember.  But it's real life, and I really wanted to participate in Navigating the Mothership's DITL Round Up, and I already put in the effort to take the photos and the notes, sooooo... I'm hitting Publish for posterity.  Maybe I'll look back on this day in 15 years when both my nuggets are crazy teenagers and roll my eyes at 2014 Kate and how easy she had it with the cranky toddler.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Kate is 31
Evan is 32
L is almost 2.5
B is a day shy of 4 months {SOB}

6:30 am -- Brady is up to eat after being asleep since about 9:30.  Way to go, little buddy! We may be tiptoeing into the "4 Month Sleep Regression" as he's been waking up around 4am for the last few nights, but I still can't complain one lick about his night sleep.  I'm trying to mentally prepare myself for a possible uptick in MOTN wakeups in the next few months, but I'm still 800% more rested now than I was when L was this age. For that I remain eternally grateful! We nurse in the rocker in the office, I check email, read my Skimm for the day as well as some of the linked articles for more newsy details, and read a bit of my new book. I put a snoozing B back in bed at 7:00.  E gets up with L around this time, while I read in bed until 7:30.  Not at bad start to the day {har-har}!

7:30 am -- I make coffee and breakfast {overnight chia oats -- I've now perfected the recipe with unsweetened vanilla coconut milk, raw walnuts, and fresh grind honey roasted peanut butter + fresh fruit. I'm obsessed and look forward to breakfast every day now!} and take my slew of pills {still rocking out with that freeze-dried ute meat!}.  E says L woke up pretty whiney... Ruh roh. E reads L a Bernstein Bears book about "the gimmes." We both hate this book as, in the end, Mama & Papa Bear buy the cubs one treat EVERY time they go to the store {instead of multiple treats}... WTF kind of message is that, Bernstein Bears?  Suffice to say, we change the ending each time we read it, but I think L is getting wise to the fact that the words never sound exactly the same way twice.  We'll have to burn this book before she can read. 

I pump and play Play-Do with L and she makes cookies for a picnic with E.  Then, the top to the Play-Do morphs into a water table and three Tigeys play in it -- I love this child's imagination!  There is some frustration with a runaway trolley, and L gets to a "2," but gets control of herself before "3" {which = Time Out. We are doing 1-2-3 Magic and love it 90% of the time.  The other 10%, I feel like maybe I'm not talking enough with her about her emotions... Discipline is hard.}.  E and L play trolley. 


8:10 am -- I'm finished pumping {20 minutes = 4 oz.  Not terrible, not great... I'm hoping to have a stash of at least 50 oz before we leave for ATL for a wedding next week.  B is coming with us, but I'll be out of pocket for most of 2 days} -- I pack up the milk for the freezer and wash pump parts.  L eats yogurt on the kitchen island, as is her custom. The Boom barks and wakes B up -- Terrier for Sale. E gets him up and changes his diaper, while I make the bed and recycle all the junk mail that accumulates in the art nook. Then it's time to clean up the kitchen and start the dishwasher. 


L plays with stickers {"on the paper or on yourself, not on the walls, please"} and B chills on the playmat. I thumb through the Mini Boden catalog and mentally spend all our monies of tiny fall wardrobes.  L wants to practice her somersaults while E showers so I play Bela Karolyi on our bed.  B screeches so L and I go check on him.  L assures me "I not going to step on him! I read him this books!" before whacking him in the head with said book.  MORE COFFEE. 


9:00 am -- On his way out the door, E tells me we all need to go to the dermatologist, because he heard something on NPR about moles {I have a few} and now thinks I'm sure to perish and leave him to raise our children by himself like George Clooney in The Descendants.  Except for I'm not cheating on him or into high octane water sports and he isn't entrenched in a Rule Against Perpetuity battle royale {Law-Nerds-Alert: We love that detail in that movie}.  Oooooo-kay.  Kisses for E and off he goes to work.  I pull some grated zucchini out to defrost for a new recipe I want to try for dinner... I've never frozen zucchini before, and I'm giving this a 50/50 chance of success.  I get dressed while B does tummy time and L makes "lattes" {she's been doing this a lot lately and also asking "mama, want a latte?" every time we pass a Starbucks... maybe I need to rethink my latte intake.}. 


9:08 am -- I am halfway dressed when I hear "MY LATTE IS WEEEEET."  Upon investigation, I realize L tried to fill her little cup up at the refrigerator water tap.  The damage could be way worse. I clean up the dribbles, then nurse the now-screaming baby while L brings us books.  L demands to go up to the playroom, and I tell her "not right now" = chin-butt to B's head = automatic time out.  She is not pleased. 


9:20 am -- After I finish nursing B and L cools down, we head up to the play room.  B bounces and L dismantles the entire {very clean} space. 


9:40 am -- We head back downstairs to finish getting ready for our morning activity.  B goes in the swing, while I locate an actual shirt that one might wear in public.  I decide to forgo makeup in favor of hitting up White Rock Coffee {"mama, want a latte?"}.  Diaper changes for both kiddos and new clothes for L. B isn't super happy; if we were staying home, it would be naptime for him -- hopefully he can catch some Zzzs in the car and in the carrier while we're out. I definitely have a bit of second-child-guilt in regards to this schedule {or lack thereof}, but his sister would go stir-crazy and send us all to the loony-bin if we didn't get out of the house most mornings. I suppose his taste of "only-child-dom" will come in the Fall when she's in preschool -- we'll lounge then, buddy! 


Halfway out the door, we stop to take a quick selfie, because L wants to do a "happy face"...

Nailed it. 

I grab Sophie for B to gnaw on, and L decides Sophie is her Most Favorite Toy Ever.  Obviously.  We actually own 2 Sophies, so everybody wins.  Everyone is in the car by 10 am -- It's a Christmas-in-July Miracle.  To celebrate, we take the long way so L can look at the construction vehicles working on the new grocery store and Y.  We stop at WRC {"mama, want a latte?" WHY YES, YES I DO}.  I'm a sucker and buy L a kid's smoothie in hopes I can enjoy my iced latte and B can snooze in peace.  Sadly, the smoothie is super icy and the straw is super long so I spend the majority of our car ride implementing my Go-Go-Gadget-Arms at every stop light in order to help her swoosh the smoothie around.  L regales me with a new made up tune "taco meat! taco meat!" sung to the tune of "Applebee" from her Kitty Cat Piano.  {?? I have no clue. Toddlers are awesome.} "Happy" and "I'm So Fancy" also come on the radio so it's a good soundtrack day for L. 


10:35 am -- We pull into the Walnut Hill Rec Center parking lot and unload.  B goes into the Becco, and L holds my hand and points out her friend Daniel's car.  The line is ridiculously long because the Parks Department decided to up the entry fee to $7 and refuses to make change {and the credit card machine takes forever}.  Leslie Knope would not stand for this. We finally make our way inside, take off our shoes, and have at the equipment. I find my friend C, hoping for some uninterrupted adult chatter... such naivete!  L almost immediately starts whining and really wants me to follow her everywhere and tell her how to play.  We've been attending this Toddler Open Gym almost weekly for over a year, and L juuuuuust recently started being really comfortable with the bigger activities {trampolines, bouncy houses, etc}.  She's actually an awesome independent player at home, but she tends to be timid when we're out and about, even when we're someplace super familiar. Since she's not in the greatest of moods, the clingyness is especially bad today.  B is hungry, so we nurse while I suggest fun play options for L.  After breaking for a snack, she finally warms up and jumps, scoots, bounces, etc. 


B conks out 10 minutes before playtime is over.  Naturally. 


11:50 am -- We gather our gear, fill our water bottles, and head back out to the car.  I make a successful Sleeping Baby Transfer into the car seat -- this has happened approximately NEVER in my entire parenting career. 3 cheers!  We make our way to Hwy 75 and L becomes randomly fixated on a white van riding next to us.  The van disappears and this displeases her.  B starts fussing and L loses it immediately -- "BRADY CALM DOWN BRADY BE QUIET."  B actually does quiet down, but L's cool is pretty much gone.  She throws Sophie and her shoes right as we pull into our driveway.  I try the 1-2-3 Magic, but I get to 3, so it's Time Out Time. 


12:15 pm -- I change B's diaper while L does her TO.  The fits she throws during Time Out seriously frighten me.  It takes all my willpower to ignore it.  When the timer goes off, I pick L up and take her upstairs for her nap, while B sits {um, screams} in the swing.  Phew.  I nurse B while checking IG and penning an email to a potential babysitter for B {I'm looking for someone to keep B one of L's preschool days so I can work child-free on some contract legal projects -- I'm pretty excited about Adult Brain Time!}.  

12:30 pm -- B is asleep!  I enjoy the cuddles for about 15 minutes, then transfer him to the PNP {this is the first time I'm attempting it for a nap instead of the RNP, swing, or my arms}.  12:50 pm -- I close the doors to our room, let the Boom out to pee, and pop last night's leftovers in the microwave.  

12:56 pm -- I guess our door wasn't latched completely, because our A/C switches on and causes the door to make a huge slamming noise. B promptly wakes up. I pop the paci back in his mouth and hope for the best.  Head back into the kitchen and note the defrosting zucchini is looking super mushy.  I make the executive decision to trash the zucchini and fix frozen tamales for dinner.  I hate wasting food, but I guess I gave it the old college try.  B is now shrieking.  I reswaddle and put him into the RNP because obviously PNP is not going to cut it. RNP doesn't work either... at least he seems smiley: 



I bring B into the kitchen with me so I can eat my {now twice reheated} lunch.  E calls to discuss making an appointment with the flooring people to pick out carpet for our living room {yep, 11 months post-Flood-2.0, our living room is still ripped up}.  L wakes up screaming right as he calls.  I get snippy on the phone.  By the time I'm off mere minutes later, L is back asleep {poop?}.  I eat half my lunch before B starts fussing again.  He goes back in the RNP, but just will not settle down.  


1:43 pm -- I move us both to the couch where I switch on Teen Mom 2 {can't stop, won't stop}. I try to nurse B back to sleep; no dice.  I call E back and apologize for being an ass on the phone.  I seriously consider busting open the potty training M&Ms as B fusses. In lieu of candy-coated chocolate, I indulge in my favorite guilty pleasure... scoping Austin real estate.  Saltillo tile and a stone fire place in my preferred school district?  Yes, please! {Dream on, Blue Moon...}


2:15 pm -- B is D-O-N-E.  I finally nurse him to sleep.  2:40 pm -- L is crying for me upstairs.  2:48 pm -- Successful RNP transfer.  I retrieve L... POOP.  Diaper change and Popsicle Time. She seems crankier than she did this morning, which is a bummer. 



2:55 pm -- B is crying {DRATZ}. I try to soothe him back to sleep, but it's a no-go.  Naps are seriously becoming my nemesis.  I change his diaper and pop him in the swing while I unload the dishwasher. 


3:08 pm -- B is asleep in the swing!  Hallelujah! I convince L to go upstairs to play.  We build with some Legos, go to "Whole Foods for cookies" in the Cozy Coupe, and have "birthday parties with cupcakes."  We have some really cute moments and some really, really bossy moments.  She gets quite antsy and wants to go downstairs, but I refuse to disturb the slumbering baby, so I tell her we can play in B's room.  Any opportunity to get her paws on Brother's stuff is golden!  We also FaceTime with J -- L wants to see all her toys at J's house as well as "J's speakers where the music comes out."  J is a saint and acquiesces to her demands. 

4:50 pm -- B is awake; 1 hour and 40 minutes of snoozing?  I'll take it!  We go downstairs, let the Boom out, and play with B on his blanket.  I put away the clean dishes I unloaded earlier and take the tamales out to boil.  L watches some Daniel Tiger. I nurse B. 

5:45 pm -- I fix L's dinner while she wanders around touching things and whining. She sits down at her table to eat tamales, cheese, and raspberries. B is happy as a clam on his blanket, nomming on his feet and moose.  I slice some yellow squash to go with our tamales. L asks for more raspberries; we are out of raspberries -- I offer peaches instead.  Peaches it is!  When I deliver said peaches, she goes apeshit because the peaches she was excited about 30 seconds ago are not raspberries. After counting to 3, she gets a Time Out.  She throws her books on the way to sit on the bottom step and gets an extra minute added to the normal two.  The fit thrown is too sad to document. I am pretty sure this is the most TOs she's had in one day ever. Yay for being 2 and tired :( 


6:10 pm -- L can't quite seem to recover from the last Time Out and seems to be purposefully asking for things she knows she can't have {snack food after she says she's finished with dinner, more TV time, etc}.  My patience is waning, and I end up yelling at the dog for something stupid to avoid snapping at my poor, exhausted child.  B startles at my raised voice and cries.  I feel like a majorly Shit Mom. 

6:18 pm -- After L calms down a little, the three of us read on our bed.  L picks a Peter Rabbit "touch and feel" book that E and I affectionately refer to as "The Ticklish Pedophile Book." If you read it in a creepy voice, it's quite disturbing. "Tickle, tickle, purr, purr; Slowly, gently stroke my fur!"


6:25 pm -- Bathtime. L runs around in her diaper screaming "I A NAKEY  BABY!" She actually seems to be enjoying her bath once I manage to get her in {many days she is over the bath before it even begins} and plays a cooking game with her water cups {"I making spaghetti water and raspberry soap!"}.  

6:45 pm -- E comes home and gets L out of the bath.  She is not pleased to have her game interrupted.  Even getting the mail with Daddy doesn't appease her.  At this point, I stop taking photos of her because she's gone so far down the meltdown trail it's not really fair to document.  We do a very abbreviated bedtime routine {2 short books instead of 3 long ones, no looking at trucks or flying with Daddy, quick teeth brushing, and quick songs}.  At some point, she gets another TO for hitting E.  It's a banner day for Time Outs, and I'm feeling a little hopeless on the discipline front today.  Some days I feel like having two kiddos under 3 isn't so hard, but days like today leave me constantly second-guessing myself -- is each child getting the attention they deserve from me? Is my toddler's behavior reflecting my inabilities? Have I ruined L's life by bringing B {who she's generally not crazy about} into our family? What if I'm stunting B somehow by never being able to give him uninterrupted one-on-one time? Would we all be better off if I went back to work? Am I overthinking everything again? {UNDOUBTEDLY SO}


7:20 pm -- L is asleep.  I tried to nurse B while E and L were reading books, but he wasn't too interested -- I think he's about had it with today, too.  I quickly make the rest of dinner after we all come downstairs {saute yellow squash, nuke Seeds of Change Spanish Rice packet, and throw the tamales on top -- not bad at all for a zero effort meal}.  Brian and the news on DVR keep me company in the kitchen while E keeps B occupied -- diaper and PJ change; E picks an old sleeper of L's and it makes me nostalgic -- love those yellow and gray turtles. 


7:32 pm -- Switch the news over to the living room DVR and serve dinner on the couch. B is at the end of his rope; I nurse him and he immediately conks out. I swaddle him and get him settled in our room in the RNP; this is a super early bedtime for him, so we'll see what this means for his MOTN wake-ups.  I'm just glad he's getting some rest {and I'm getting a moment without another tiny human being touching me for the first time in 13 hours - wahoo!}. Finish my dinner; finish the news. E isn't enthused by much on our DVR {not a Teen Mom 2 fan, apparently} and Fixer Upper is a rerun {that show might seriously convince me to move to Waco and stalk Joanna Gaines for her friendship and hair tips}, so we go with Seinfeld reruns. 


8:26 pm -- We hear baby protestations coming from the bedroom; SIGH.  Poor kidlet!  He's not having any RNP soothing, so I bring him back out with us.  Nurse him again and he passes out.  More Seinfeld and baby snuggles. I upload photos to Blogger for this post.  


9:25 pm -- I think B is truly out for the evening.  Same song, 67th verse...swaddle, RNP.  I clean up the kitchen.  Pump Round 2.  9:50 pm -- Done with the pump {2 more oz.}.  Pop pump parts into the fridge to keep fresh for tomorrow.  Kiss E goodnight {he'll be working on the couch until much later, as is his weekday ritual}.  I get ready for bed and read a bit more before falling asleep {probably within about 7 minutes}. 


4:02 am -- Brady Back Ribs is up and kickin'!