Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Keeping it real: Summer Edition

I've always tried very hard to tell it like it is on this blog, but I've been worrying that maybe I've had too much positive lately. Long time readers will know that I do not consider myself domestic in any sense of the word. And like many women, I feel grossly inadequate with a nice helping of guilt, just about all of the time.

So what's not perfect in my life today?

1) I let Dylan watch TV...and not just 15 minutes on weekends. I think the average is probably 45 minutes a day. And it's mostly for me. Sometimes he really watches, but most times I just want to sit on the couch for a minute. And I'm mostly not worried about it. I think some of the shows are kinda cool nowadays. And I think we do plenty of other types of stimulating activities in a day.

2) I look at my phone too much. I try to hide it in front of Dylan, but sometimes I don't. It's not constantly in my hand and I try to keep it away from me as much as possible, but I still check it A LOT. And it's rarely important and so I do feel bad about it.

3) Dylan's laundry is all over my kitchen table. And it's only clean because my mom watched Dylan on Monday and did it. But I still didn't put it away! And my laundry hasn't been touched in a very long time. I own A LOT of underwear for this exact reason.

4) I don't cook. Still. I actually read an article recently that made me feel much better about microwaving most of what I feed Dylan. I mean the meals are still healthy. I give him frozen or fresh veggies and fresh fruit with the frozen meatballs, but it's almost always microwaved. I did cook once last week; stirfry, but it wasn't very good.

5) I don't talk to Dylan enough. I mean I'm an English teacher and I know the importance of talking and reading and early exposure to language, but I like quiet time too. I do feel guilty about this one, but I don't actually think it's that bad because I talk to him a lot, just not constantly, we read a lot, and maybe he likes some quiet time too...he seems to!

6) Oh and the running I was planning on doing 3 days a week? Twice. All summer. DH is on a health kick diet and I'm drinking wine and eating ice cream and stressing about wearing a bikini at pool parties. But eff it. I'll do it eventually.

7) And actually my house is pretty clean right now. But that is only because I hosted a wedding in my backyard last weekend band I HAD to clean it and my mom helped, A LOT. But normally my house is not clean. And I didn't clean up the puke stain from my bedroom carpet where my dog puked up a bunch of leather from the 5 pairs of shoes she ate when we went out of town for the night. And let's not even start on my car...

And that's reality.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

All-American Baby

This weekend was a whirlwind! 

2 Birthday Parties
2 BBQs
3 swim days
1 adult dinner out

And I'm pooped!

Oh and the keeping Dylan up for the fireworks experiment was truly an experience. He stayed up fine, but got CRAZY between 8 and 9, watched 2 minutes of the fireworks peacefully, then needed to be up and about (looking at trees and bicycles, etc.). He was in bed by 10, but it definitely created a weird nap day on the 5th (which was basically all crying and no nap), but I think we're back to normal finally today.

And just for the record, going to a party with a toddler is some kind of weird social sweaty torture where you have mini snippets of conversations with people and you end up with weird sticky spots all over yourself. It's like you're near people being social, but you can't actual be social yourself. And it's tough having an opinionated kid who doesn't walk yet, but wants to be everywhere and in everything.

I'll leave you with my all-American model baby. (New favorite pic alert!) He was actually dressed up for the USA soccer game this day, but it's timely.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Cutest thing!

We are in the middle of Hand, Foot and Mouth (post to come) so things are not totally awesome here, but the cutest thing happened when D was going to bed tonight and I just have to share.

We went in sat in the rocker like normal, but he was pointing at the closet. I had no idea what he wanted and told him to go get whatever it was. So he crawls over (he actually has taken a few actual steps this week!) and puts his hand on the dresser drawer that holds his blankets. 

He already had one blanket, but he wanted one more! I thought it was the cutest thing ever. His A&A blankets have been his lovey for months, but it's just now turning to obsession level. He will take them with him around the house (holding blankets is a huge motivator for walking) and randomly lay down on them. He has to have all of the blankets that are currently out. This weekend it seems to often be three. So I guess one is just not enough for him any more. And holding blankets is the best motivator for walking!

I'll take a blanket obsession any day! I have about 12 A&A blankets and he loves them all equally. Easy peasy and so comfy! He takes after his mama :)

(During the fever stage of HFMD...)

Monday, June 23, 2014


It's a given. Being a parent = worrying. About food. About milestones. About danger. About the future.

But somehow I think we all think we are the only ones who struggle! I guess struggles feel the most isolating. (And we all know about the evil social media perfection syndrome. The hard stuff doesn't get as many FB posts. Probably because it's not usually possible to take a picture of your kid while they are melting down before bedtime. And allergies and illnesses and delays are hard to quantify.)

I do think there is a lot of honesty out in the internet though. I think I've been very honest, although I still worry sometimes when I post too many "perfectiony" posts that I'm leaving out the day to day reality.

So let's be real today. 

My biggest parenting struggles:

Meals - Constant pressure to keep it high calories but not constipating, to get the iron absorbed without calcium intake, to try to serve healthy foods, organic foods etc.

Bedtime - I've still got a great sleeper, but bedtime is getting longer and longer with more and more tears. Every time I succumb I feel like I have ruined bedtime for the rest of eternity. Ugh.

(I'm not going to put milestones on my list because although I think about it often and it's uncomfortable being on the low end of the spectrum, I just know that it'll allbr okay and that D is developing well.)

And I'm not even focusing on my constant struggle to try to cook, to try to keep the house somewhat clean, to get te laundry done, to get the laundry out away. I'm the opposite of a born home-maker and the struggle is REAL!

So what are your biggest parenting stressors. What makes you feel like you are the only one who understands?

Let's do some therapy!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

A Summer SAHM Schedule

I had a great school year this year, but I am so excited that it's finally summer time! I truly love that I get to be both WOHM and SAHM. But while I love both, being a SAHM is hard! And I'm also really hard on myself. So I'm going into this summer with a plan.

The hardest thing for me is deciding what to do each day and with a toddler, if I haven't decided by 8:30 am, we won't be out off the house until naptime! I knew I wanted to have a schedule (and I'm not a Type A scheduly type of person) so the night before my official first day of SAHM-dom, I spent some time planning our weeks.

First, I broke down a typical day:
8:00 - Breakfast
9:30 - Snack
11:00 - Lunch
12:00 - Nap

So I figured I could have 1 or 2 activities in the morning, always out of the house and one in the afternoon that didn't require driving.

Then, I started with things that are scheduled. I'm joining a play group that meets Mondays at 10:30 and library story time is on Fridays at 10:30. Perfect. I also really want to get into an exercise routine and that would need to be a morning activity, so I plugged that in on M, W, and F.

Next, I listed all of the short and longer activity options: Sea World, Zoo, Children's Museum, Park, Beach, etc.

4:00 is the toughest time of day since my energy and motivation are lagging and traffic is bad, so I decided that would be craft/new activity at home time or a trip to the neighborhood park with the dog.

Here's my finished plan:

I don't expect to stick to this religiously or anything, but now when I'm wondering what to do, I have built in options already planned.

I'm on naptime of day 2 and we've already run at the bay, shopped at Trader Joe's, taken the dog to the park, and gone to the zoo! Not bad. (And I even got a blog post in. Score.)

The next goal is being productive during naps, but I'm trying to go easy on myself which is hard since I feel like I really have to make these two months count.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Stats @ 16.5 months adjusted (20 months actual)

Dylan is currently 19 pounds and 31 3/4 inches. Technically he hasn't gained anything since our last appointment a couple of months ago, but he's fitting in new clothes because of his height so I'm pretty happy with his progress.

It's challenging to dress Dylan. He can wear 12 or 18 months sleepers. He can wear 6-18 month shirts (18's a little big, but not terrible). But he is just barely growing out of 3 month shorts and some 6 month shorts are just too big! But pants are the hardest. His largest pair of jeans is Children's Place 6-9 months and they kind of stay up. Most days he wears 3-6 month jeans. So basically, he rocks capri pants. (But if this is the worst of our problems, I'll take it!)

Feeding is going great. We're off Prevacid and Dylan loves to eat all kinds of foods. Current favorites: cottage cheese, peas, black bean patties. And he FINALLY learned how to suck from a straw so the world of smoothies is now wide open.


I've been slightly concerned about Dylan's speech, mostly because of trying to compare Dylan with other babies and stories on the internet, so I want to share what my Ped said to hopefully make some of you feel better. Basically, Dylan occasionally says some single words, but not frequently and most of what he says is "eh." But every word spoken counts even if they never say it again. So even though he's not speaking in complete sentences (slight exaggeration) like some of his peers (mostly female), he's doing just fine.

Dylan really has had a language explosion recently. About a month ago, he answered his first question, "What does a cow say?" and I almost cried. But now, he knows when I'm asking a question which is cool, but every. single. answer. is "Eh." Even to the original, "What does a cow say?" But I guess this is normal. Recently he's been saying something like "dah" for "yes" which is a differentiated answer to a question, so that's good.

I'd say he has about 10-15 words, but let me spell them out so I have them for the future:


(notice that mommy, mama, and mom are not on the list...maybe he think I'm daddy too? : /)

He basically does not mimic, although it has happened a couple of times.

And his receptive language is fantastic. He responds nearly 100% to "Can you give hugs?" He is responding to his name much more frequently than before, probably 75% of the time...as long as nothing else super interesting is going on. He will wave bye bye on command occasionally. We can say "Go get your blanket" and he will crawl to it and go to his room if he's sleepy. If you ask about a light, he'll look up at it. So all in all, he seems to understand a lot.

And it is AMAZING how nice it is to be able to communicate with him more (and get responses and communication from him). It changes everything.

Gross Motor

Dylan is still not walking, but I'm not really concerned. He has actually let us start practicing with him a little bit over the last week or so. What has worked best is walking on grass toward a ball that he then "kicks." But he still refuses to do push toys and refuses to practice walking most of the time. So whatever...he'll do it when he wants to. He's extremely coordinated and has great balance, so it'll come.


Dylan does tantrum a bit, but so far we haven't had any fall to the ground type and usually then don't last more than a minute or two. He responds really well to warnings i.e. "In a minute we are going to go inside." "Ok, it's time to go inside." I know he has no clue what a minute is, but the repetition of inside helps him understand that he has to get out of the drivers seat of the car soon. (Standing in the driver's seat and pushing all of the buttons is his absolute favorite thing to do in the world. We made him his own set of fake keys today because he has to have keys in his hand and he definitely understand where the key is supposed to go in the car. Thanks, Dad.)

But in general, he's just a super fun, happy kid. We get tons of smiles and laughter. He loves to read books and definitely has opinions on which ones he wants to read. Current faves: My Truck is Stuck, Baby Quiet Baby Loud, Llama Llama Nighty Night, and Fuzzy Duckling.

I'm hoping I can get back to a more regular posting schedule since it's ALMOST SUMMER! I'm changing roles at work next year and I've been kind of doing two jobs at once and it's been really crazy.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

This guy.

Can I do a wordless Friday instead? Never mind, I can't do wordless ever...

My new favorite picture:

He gets the funniest look on his face when I put the glasses on - and then takes them immediately off.

Well and since it's Mother's Day this weekend, let me share a precious moment we had tonight. We sit in the rocker in his room before bedtime and tonight, after books, I decided to make a funny sucking sound and go after his ear. He thought it was then funniest thing I have ever done and kept leaning his ear toward me so I'd do it again and again. I will never get over the joy I feel when I hear his unrestrained giggles! 

I love being this boy's mama :)