Wednesday, October 31, 2007

I'm going home, ya'll!

I'm packing and cleaning and getting the girls ready for a trip to my hometown, Piedmont, Alabama. Jeff is away on business to southern Cal for two weeks. He actually served a mission for our church in Anaheim, California. He is hoping to see some of his old friends while he is out there. Life is tough without him here, that is for sure. I'm excited about going to see my mom and brother. This is his first time to meet Reili and of course, Maya is his pride and joy and he can't wait to see her. I'm also trying to meet up with my dear friends there, too. I never thought I'd say this, but I miss Alabama. I miss good BBQ, southern hospitality, and knowing where everything is. I'll see ya'll next week!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Maya

The "Arthur" Theme Song

Maya loves the show, "Arthur," which airs on PBS. This is her version of the theme song. Here are the actual words (as sung by Ziggy Marley):

Every day when you're
Walking down the street,
Everybody that you meet
Has an original point of view.
And I say - Hey! (Hey!)
What a wonderful kind of day
If we could learn to work and play
And get along with each other.

Maya's Version:
And I say - Hey! (Hey!)
What a wonderful bind a hay
If we could learn to work and play
And get a piece a bear.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

"There will be sleeping enough in the grave." ~Benjamin Franklin

I don't sleep much. Sleep is overrated. I'm up early(ish) when Maya wakes up and I go to bed somewhere between midnight and 2am so that I can have some "me" time before the noisy day begins again. I used to nap when she (Maya, child #1, napped). That's what all the books say. Nap when they nap, yeah right. I napped with her often, even to the end of my pregnancy with Reili (child #2). Then, without warning, Maya STOPPED taking naps! Any pregnant woman could tell you that naps are ESSENTIAL. My nights consisted of waking up every 1-2 hours to either pee, blow my nose, or eat/drink something. I was usually so extremely exhausted during the day but could no longer get a nap with Maya. So, I thought I had beat the system by placing Maya in her front of a good DVD (I know, I know, I'm a bad mom) and sneaking off in order to get a little nap during the day. I was SO pregnant, SO large and uncomfortable, that the only place I could get some good sleep was in my bed with my body pillow.

The first time I did this trick, Maya would come and get me whenever she needed something. I thought, "What a responsible two year old" and thus I tried it again a few days later. I would say, "Come and get me if you need anything." I fell asleep and was even a little bit relaxed knowing that my sweet, responsible little girl would awaken me if anything terrible should happen. Well, the sneaky evil spirit-demon that possesses my child on occasion decided to pay a visit that day. Maya found a black permanent marker, decided to paint her toenails and a little bit on her legs, face, arms, and some clothes. She also decided that she wanted to shave like Daddy did. She got the razor (from the bathroom in the room where I was sleeping, and cut her lip while trying to shave her "mustache." I never took a nap again.

So, fast forward a few months. Maya is now 2 1/2. Reili is 9 weeks old. I get about 4-6 hours of extremely interrupted sleep at night and no naps....ever. Today I was exhausted as usual. Jeff had just left for a business trip for a couple of weeks. I was so tired I could barely keep my eyes open. Maya was being pleasant and playing quietly. I took Reili in my bed to feed her and while Maya sat on the bed and played. I started dozing off and Maya kept playing. She likes to talk to me when I'm sleeping. I would incoherently respond to her and then drift off again. She got a picture by the bed and took it out of the frame. I glanced over and saw her holding some glass. I took it from her and tucked it under my pillow. "Dangerous," I thought. "Glad I caught that one in time." I dozed off again. Next thing I know, Maya is shaking something out all over the bed. I don't think much about it and fall asleep again. I wake up a couple of minutes later when I realize what is going on. Maya had gotten a bag of BBs from Jeff's nightstand. (He got a BB gun when he went with our church's scouts to their high adventure camp this summer and for who knows why had a bag of BBs, opened of course, in his nightstand.) Maya said, "Mommy, I swallowed one."

I let my little girl play with small plastic objects which she managed to strew across the bed AND swallow one of. What was I thinking? Was I really thinking I could get a nap even after the permanent marker/razor incident??? Hmm... I like to think of myself as a good mom at times, but this was not one of them. I let my guard down. NEVER let your guard down. Sleep is overrated. There will be sleeping enough in the grave.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Guess Who?

Children in the same family often look alike. I find it interesting how much these two actually do.

Is it Maya or Reili? You decide. (answers coming soon)

A.

B.

C.

D.

You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

I was taking Maya to the babysitters today so I could get some training done for work. She obviously was having some anxiety about going. The conversation went a little like this:

Maya: Mommy, my tummy hurts.
Me: It does? What's wrong?
Maya: Mommy, I have a fever.
Me: (starting to fall for it) You have a fever? Your tummy hurts?
(in realization) Wait, Maya, what is a fever?
Maya: (trying to use some mind trickery) Mommy, I have a fever in my tummy.
Me: Maya, I don't think you are really sick.
Maya: *Chuckles*

Friday, October 26, 2007

The Body of a Mom

When is it that we are finally what we strive to be? I wannabe healthy, fit, patient, wise, wealthy, righteous, and so on. I constantly read self help books in order to help myself, but I actually feel kind of lazy reading and not doing. Do you know what I mean?

Right now, I want to lose weight and get in shape. I start out each morning eating really healthy... maybe too healthy. Around lunch time, I get REALLY hungry. I mean breast feeding mommy hungry. I eat what I make and then whatever Maya doesn't eat. So, there goes the diet for the day. The answer to losing weight is a combination of eating healthy and exercising. We all know this but few of us actually do it well. I feel that I am eating healthy but when 4 servings turn into one, it doesn't really count now does it?

I really did exercise for a few weeks there... ugh, this is so tough. "I'll start Monday, " I often think to myself. I kind of wish I had been extremely obese so that I would have a rack full of stretchy pants to fit into right now. I do fit in my old clothes now, but it's not a pretty sight. I fit in my pants only after doing squats for half an hour and fit in my shirts after stretching out the booby part.

Ah, motherhood. It's worth the stretch marks, nursing boobs, tormented self image... it is all worth it, I promise.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Blogoholic

Somewhere around the time I got married, I quit trying to keep up with what was cool. Around the time I had Maya, I was very uncool and in addition to my uncoolness, I also had no idea what was going on in the world. I didn't know what bands were "in" or "out", I wasn't quite sure how to use MySpace, and I still don't use text messaging on my phone. Now, years after its inception, I have finally learned how to blog.

One would think blogging was very simple. You write about your life and blah blah blah...it is basically an online journal. Well, it is nice to write about your life, but it isn't nice that only two of your friends actually reads what you write. In my case, one of the two is my own husband and the other one is me.

Ah, but, much like Ego Surfing (a.k.a. "Googling" one's own name), the blog does give a little boost to the old self image. You find out that some of your friends have blogs and they put a link to you on their blog. That brings my total up to five. You get comments on occasion and then you begin to feel like maybe you are writing to an actual audience. You write more often, check your counter a couple of times a day (or a dozen) and tweak your blog incessantly.

Now, I'm reading other blogs...getting ideas...learning what not to do... finding blog 'groups'...learning things about others before I actually meet them in person (a.k.a. stalking)... and I find myself wasting hours at a time on blogs...that link to other blogs...that link to... What? It's already 3 am? I don't have a problem. I promise, it's totally under control. I can quit blogging at any time...cold turkey.

To Work or Not to Work...

I've been working part-time lately. I haven't worked regularly since February. I didn't mind not working because I was pregnant and sick and tired and all that lovely jazz that comes with it. I never viewed myself as one who would stay at home with her kids full-time. I totally respect all the parents who can do that, but I often wonder if I have the personality/endurance to do so. I also never viewed myself as someone who had her children in full-time day care. The solution, I think, is to work part-time. If I work part-time, I have a little extra money and a lot more sanity. I have read a few books about money and how to save it, etc. One of my favorite books is The Tightwad Gazette by Amy Dacyczyn.

In her life transforming book, she discusses the matter of working outside the home. She look at how much a mother actually "makes" when she works at a job. There is the cost of gas, car maintenance, convenience foods, childcare, clothing, etc. When you look at it that way, which most Americans don't, it is not very profitable to work out side the home.... well, financially at least.

My need to feel smart is overwhelming at the moment. My IQ has been dropping (see 'Fart Express' blog entry) as each day passes. Talking, interacting, and working with other adults helps me stay sane. As you could probably tell from my previous posts, I am not very sane of late. I may only make about 15 cents an hour working, but it does seem like an extremely well paid 15 cents.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

All Aboard the Fart Express! (patent pending)






All moms have struggled with their baby having gas, colic, indigestion... you name it. Now, we have put an end to the old techniques: the old pump and putter, the manual cheese squeeze, and various colic remedies.



Introducing the Fart Express tm.

1) Just place your baby into the seat with feet elevated.
2) Turn on swing.
3) Listen to the thunder clap!

The baby's position along with the centrifugal force expels the gas at light speed!

Your baby will soon stop crying, feel relief, and fall fast asleep!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Something Wicked This Way Comes



Is this girl gorgeous or what? Sometimes, when she is asleep, I look at her and admire her utter radiance. How did I help create such a wondrous being? I think those thoughts are fleeting when she is awake.

I have lately felt that she is a bit of an energy vampire, sucking me dry of what little caffeine-infused life I have left. I love her dearly and often reminisce of the days when I viewed her as an angel sent from Heaven. I thought she could do no wrong and everyone else's child couldn't even compare (no offense to my dear friends). But those days of self righteousness are long gone. I have been truly humbled. Maybe it is a lesson that the Lord wanted me to learn. Apparently He feels I haven't learned it well enough yet.

Today, as Jeff had to physically remove her from our church meeting so that others could hear the speaker and not Maya's screaming, I realized that she is only two and this too shall pass. I then looked down at my angelic two month old and said a little prayer to Heavenly Father. I mentioned to him that I think I got it...you know...the life lesson he is trying to teach me...I just pray I don't have to learn it twice.

Missing in Action

You may be wondering if I've gone MIA. I haven't posted in a while and as you could probably tell from the last few posts, I've had my hands full with a baby, a terrible 2 yr old, and an injured hubby. Today, like many other days, I felt like I lost my mind. My mind has been disintegrating ever since I became pregnant with Maya. I began to forget things, misplace things, and call people by the wrong name. When Maya was born, my IQ was lowered by reading baby books instead of intriguing non-fiction, watching Baby Einstein (though informative for children, it may actually make adults less intelligent), and singing the ABCs instead of Baroque chamber music. Now that Reili is here, I have found myself feeding her in the middle of the night while at the same time being summoned by Maya to her room because she had a nightmare. Nighttime is supposed to be a time to rest, recuperate, and maybe even sleep. Nighttime for me is just like the day, but darker.

Today, Jeff went to watch the Alabama football game at a friend's house. He took Maya and I took Reili. Reili and I went to the library and had plans to do the grocery shopping, too. On the way to the library, she began to cry. I'm driving Jeff's stick shift, so comforting Reili was quite a feat. I think I stuck a bottle in front of her face and stuffed a blanket under it in hopes that she would be able to eat and stop crying. We got the library and she didn't stop. I returned everything at the front desk, rushed to get some DVDs and books for Maya, and came right back to checkout. Yes, all the DVDs started with the letter D and the books were all by the same author, but I did get some things for her. The librarian looked at my checkout stack and said, "Wow, that was quick!" I realized I had to throw my pickiness out the window when I have a baby in tow.

We got out to the car and Reili continued to cry. We were stuck on the highway as one lane was closed because they were repaving the road. Instead of making it to the grocery store or joining Jeff to watch the game, I headed home in stressed out and in tears. I fed Reili (not from seemingly well positioned bottle), she seemed content, and we both took a nice nap. When Jeff got home, I vented, cried some more and then listened to Jeff make a phone call. He called my friend, Glittersmama, and asked her to help his struggling wife. She and I made plans to go out later and eat something with chocolate in it.

She was busy with something until later on in the evening and so I was able to venture to the evil Wal-Mart and do my grocery shopping in peace. In my mind, Wal-Mart has always seemed like a dark cloud . It kills small businesses, it attracts WTs (as my friend Petra so politely acronymed them), and it is ALWAYS crowded. Now, whenever I need to go to get groceries, Jeff watches the girls and I spend about two hours there. It is freedom. I walk around the store oblivious to the evils around me. I find myself alone...independent...doing my shopping... no one calling me...no one needing me. I now sadly equate Wal-Mart with peace. Wal-Mart is my happy place. I know if there were a Super Target here, I would be even happier....but it is all kinda sad any way you look at it.

I came home happy and relieved and all I needed now was some girl time with Glittersmama and some chocolate to go with. She is super cool. She is a mom, too, and understood me and listened to me. She even ate chocolate with me. All in all, it was a good day.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Mom Jeans


Laura asked what "Mom Jeans" are...

...and Here is the infamous SNL clip:
Mom Jeans

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Potty Advice

Maya seems to be getting past this "evil" phase and now I feel the need to focus on potty training. No pre-school around here will take the kid until she is potty trained. What is that about? Doesn't it matter that she knows how to count to 10 and say her ABCs? Just because she's potty-tarded doesn't mean she shouldn't make the cut.

So, does anyone have any nifty tricks, ideas, methods for potty training???

Friday, October 5, 2007

Maya's Joke #2

Maya: Knock. Knock.
Me: Who's there?
Maya: Banana.
Me: Banana who?
Maya: Banana hunk.


Eh, she needs a little work on her comedy routine.

Two Grown Men

I often hear Jeff tell me that I need to take some time for myself. I decided to finally go and get a haircut after delaying it for many months. Jeff's father was visiting for a few days and I thought it would be a good time to set up my hair appointment. Jeff's dad went to pick up Jeff from work (Jeff is still recovering from his knee surgery). He took Maya with him so I could have a little bit of free time. It was about lunchtime and Maya wasn't hungry because she had a late breakfast. I sent Maya and her diaper bag with Grandpa to go get Jeff. When the three of them came home, I told them that Maya needed to eat lunch. Jeff's dad asked how he could help. I asked if he could make a sandwich for Maya and he said yes. I left Maya and Reili with them while I went to get my haircut. My appointment wasn't very long but I had to run a couple of errands before returning home. I finally got home about 5pm. When I walked in the door, Maya said, "Mommy, I peed in my diaper. I peed in my pants." I said, "Okay, let's change your diaper." I walked over and got a diaper and asked Maya to lay down. She said, "Mommy, I peed in my pants." I looked at her pants and they were wet. I thought that was a little strange until I pulled down her pants and saw the largest diaper I had ever seen. I think it weighed 3 pounds! I looked at Jeff and his dad and asked if they had changed her diaper. They looked a bit dumbfounded, pointed fingers at each other and finally admitted that her diaper hadn't been changed... since I had changed it around 11am. Six hours and no one had bothered to change her diaper. It had leaked out onto her pants. In addition to the wet pants, she had sticky brown stuff on her face and hands. Apparently, she had a few pieces of candy and no one bothered to clean that up, either.

Jeff's dad wanted to take us out to eat that night. We got to the restaurant and I got the salad bar and so did Grandpa. We were sharing our food with Maya. Maya was eating anything we would put in front of her. I couldn't believe how hungry she was. I then thought about the state in which I found her earlier that day and asked, "Did anyone feed Maya lunch?" Once again, the dumbfounded looks appeared and I heard a "No." "So, she hasn't eaten anything since breakfast?" Jeff readily blamed his dad for not making the sandwich. Jeff's dad said he didn't remember anything about a sandwich.... I could feel my eyes rolling (on the inside) while they discussed how they didn't feed her all day.

The next morning, Jeff and Grandpa told me to sleep in, that they would take care of everything. I was so tired (Reili was crying until 1 am) that I slept in until 9:30am. When I got up, Maya was in her high chair, eating a mini candy bar. (The Halloween candy had been raided already) I readily assumed that she was sitting there eating candy for breakfast and I said, "Has anyone even fed her breakfast?!?" Jeff looked at me, once again dumbfounded, and said "No." ...then I heard a laugh... he was pulling my leg...that time!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Funny Mom Videos

I never really thought of myself as "Mom" but I'm slowly evolving no matter how hard I try to be cool. Next, I will have to buy some mom jeans. These videos are for all those moms out there:

Mom Overture
Mom My Ride

What is a Dollar?

Jeff and I have decided to seriously focus on saving money and paying off debt (school loans that equal a mortgage). Dave Ramsey is a Christian financial 'guru' that we are currently following. He is really good at telling it like it is and helping you to realize where your money is really going. Since Jeff and I are finally out of school (kind of), we can focus on paying off debt instead of accruing it. Ramsey says that student loans are basically used for helping the student look good while going to school. I think that is a bit far, but it does have some truth to it.

I don't advocate going to Wal-Mart on principle. I don't agree with a lot of things about the corporation. I wish I could stop shopping there all together, but when you are trying to save money, it is almost unavoidable. So, I was at Wal-Mart yesterday (yes, I am a hypocrite) and I was very hungry. I was at a dental appointment/cleaning/new patient thingy that went from 11:30am to 1pm...prime lunch hours. I thought about waiting until I got home to eat, which is what Dave recommends. He always says "beans and rice, rice and beans" and "you shouldn't see the inside of a restaurant until all your debt is paid off"...but Wal-Mart deli is technically not a restaurant. I got a sandwich and a drink for a little over $4. I thought that was pretty good. The thing is, the drink was over a dollar. For some reason, when you are really thirsty, those drinks at the cash register look very appealing. I guess I could've waited and gotten a "Sam's Choice" soda for a quarter or even a 2 liter for 58 cents, but I didn't...partially because they disgust me and partially because I was in a hurry and it wasn't as convenient as the expensive drinks lined up next to the sandwiches. (Smart marketing move on their part). So, I'm walking over to another aisle to pick up the one thing I came for. Who really gets ONE thing at Wal-Mart? I passed a bin of DVDs marked for a dollar. (These items near the register are dubbed "impulse items" for a reason) I looked over them, most of them really lame, and decided that I shouldn't spend an extra dollar on a DVD. What a waste, I thought.

Isn't it interesting how the mind works? A DVD that Maya could watch over and over seems frivolous while the drink, which will be gone in 5 minutes, is a good buy.