Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Decade!

These days I have 20 minutes (if I am lucky) of free time a day so I don't have the time to write the post I want to write about the last decade. Instead, here is what I will tell you about my blog.

I want to redesign it this year. If anyone knows anyone who can do this on the cheap for me, let me know. Because with 20 minutes of free time, I don't know if this will happen without help.

I want to express thanks to those women bloggers out there who keep me connected to reality.

I want to check my spelling more often. God, it has been embarrassingly bad this year.

I want to find a way to have more time to write.

Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

She's Taking It To A Whole New Level

Bug has decided that she now wants to nap on me. It seems the swing has lost its magic. I didn't think her sleep could get worse. Oh, but it did. IT DID. This is VERY distrurbing. I may have lost my mind.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The Great Interview Experiment: All About Moi

Lynn at the Human, Being blog interviewed me for Neil's Great Interview Experiment. You can read the interview here. Or just read Lynn's Blog which is thoughtful, reflective, and inspirational.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

The Best of 2009 Blog Challenge

I am participating in Gwen Bell's The Best of 2009 Blog Challenge because it is fun. I am beginning here.

December 1 Trip. What was your best trip in 2009?

Our trip to Colorado, was by far, the best trip we took this year. And I am not just saying that because it was our ONLY trip this year. Well, maybe I am. But, the fact remains that we had a fabulous time in Denver. We met Uncle Ben's dog, Pike. Pike is a St. Bernard. He is the biggest dog in the whole world. We stayed at our friend's house. These are friends that we hadn't seen in years. We caught up like it was old times and that alone is a gift and a treasure and if nothing else fun had happened that would have made the trip. And we took Bug to the Denver Zoo. Her first trip to the ZOO! I couldn't remember the last time that I had been to the zoo because I am not a zoo person so I wasn't really too excited about the outing but, as it turns out, zoos are pretty great when you experience them with your child. When you see it through your child's eyes.

December 2 Restaurant moment. Share the best restaurant experience you had this year. Who was there? What made it amazing? What taste stands out in your mind?

This has not been a good year for me and restaurants. In order to keep nursing Bug, I pretty much had to give up my former foodie lifestyle and eat bland for most of the year. I have since reintroduced fish, shellfish, dairy, some soy, and eggs but I am still not eating wheat (though I am eating spelt) or nuts. One thing that kept me going all year was knowing that I would go out for my birthday and have Grimaldi's pizza. And I did. My mom watched Bug for four hours which is the longest that I have gotten away since she was born and Big D and I went to Scottsdale to hang out for the afternoon. We found a great tea shop and had a latte at a funky coffee shop. This was foreplay. Foreplay for pizza. And it was ORGASMIC. Real pizza. Thin crust, sweet tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella and basil. We ordered a large. We ate the whole thing. Ah, it almost brought tears to my eyes. It was heaven and I chased that heaven with a cannoli. Can you hear the angels sing?

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Great Interview Experiment

I participated in the Great Interview Experiment from Neil at

I interviewed Sincerely, Jenni

Here is a shining example of my mad interview skills....

Is there anything in your past that you regret or would go back and change if you could?
I wish more than anything that I would have stayed in college years ago. I only went for two semesters, and ended up dropping out because of some extenuating circumstances goin on in my life. Now that I am an adult, with 4 children, a husband, dogs, a cat, a house, a job, and the list goes on... I find going back to college much harder and much more time consuming! I racked up another years' worth of credits under my belt over the last couple years, but now have again taken a break from it. Maybe by the time I retire, I'll have my degree?

What would be your ideal last supper?
Since I love to eat, it would have to be a buffet! Steak, Kung Pao Shrimp, Shrimp Scampi, and Steak Fajitas would be a requirement. And Pepsi. Now look what you've done! I'm STARVING now!

Tell me someone you admire and why?
This will sound lame, but there are three people I admire most in my life. The first two are my parents, who are the most perfect examples of how it is to spend the rest of your life married to your best friend. They have known each other since high school, and have been married now for almost 38 years. They treat each other so well, and are completely devoted to each other. I try to emulate them in my own marriage, and often think of "What would Mom & Dad do?" in troubling situations.

The third person I admire most is my daughter, Caitlyn. She is 14 years old, and has the biggest heart of anyone I know. She is so very wise, and is a good friend to everyone. She has been a straight A student her whole life and is very intelligent. In addition to that, she excels at pretty much every sport and activity she gets involved in. I admire her strength, her knowledge, her dedication, and most of all, her heart.

What is at the top of your bucket list?
I want a honeymoon. When my husband and I got married, it was a second marriage for him. We had planned a big wedding since it would be my first, but I found out a few weeks into the planning process that I was pregnant. The ceremony and reception (and honeymoon) was cancelled, and we married a few weeks later at the county courthouse. It was a beautiful, quiet, romantic ceremony, but I never got my honeymoon.

Would you ever consider moving somewhere else? Where?
As much as I complain about Iowa winters and the hot humid summers, I can't say there is any place I would rather be. I have lived here my whole life, and I love the changing of the seasons. I enjoy having activities to do year-round, regardless of the weather. If we were forced to move, I maybe would opt to live somewhere warm-- Arizona, perhaps? I wouldn't mind giving up the winter snowstorms!

What is your proudest mothering moment? What is your least?
To be honest, every day is often filled with a little of both. My absolute proudest mothering moments come every time we have to go to school for parent/teacher conferences. My kids are doing excellent in school, have a lot of friends, and are involved in activities. They are well-rounded, clean-cut kids that just enjoy life. That makes me a very proud mom!

My least proudest moment... hmmm.. I suppose it would be the times my youngest daughter has to be home by herself. Not very often, and never for very long at a time, but being the drama queen that she is... she always makes the comment "Why can't you be a stay-home mom thats here when I get home from school every day?" *sigh* Way to make me feel like a bad mom, kiddo.

Are you satisfied with your life at present? What would you work on/change if you could?
I am very satisfied with my life. We have jobs, we have our bills paid, we have zero debt, and we are all healthy. I can't ask for anything more than that-- except that I'd like to be more organized. I let things get too cluttered up around the house and deal with it every few weeks in a massive cleaning out day, rather than avoid causing the clutter in the first place.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Yup, Another Sleep (Or Lack Thereof) Post

I am posting my comment to Clueless but Hopeful Mama's Post about the sleep differences between her kids and about what a difficult aspect something as seemingly simple as sleep is in the world that is motherhood because as you know if you read my blog, it is a subject that is nearer and dearer to my heart than even poop, pee, spit-up, or snot. And also because my comment was so damn long (sorry CBHM) that I figure I might as well just use it as a post cause I am lazy like that...

I think you should do whatever works for your family. What bugs me is that people think because my baby doesn't sleep well by herself, that I am doing something wrong rather than considering that every kid is different. I have tried EVERYTHING and CIO, especially the kind where you check in, makes my daughter so upset that she stops breathing and is in a state of panic and when I finally get her to sleep she cries ALL NIGHT in her sleep. It is horrible. I wish I could put her down and she would cry for a while and go to sleep but she just does not do that. I know it shouldn't bother me what other people think, but it does.

I've also tried the No Cry Sleep Solution which does the exact opposite for us than it is supposed to do. I think time will be our tincture in this case. And that sucks but it is just how it is.

I really do think that all kids are different when it comes to sleep. Which makes sense because all adults I know are different too. I had a boss who could sit under her desk and take a nap and another who needed ambien every night to sleep. My husband needs to listen to talk radio to fall asleep but then sleeps like a dead horse but I can fall asleep on a dime yet wake up easliy throughout the night. Why should babies be any different?

Monday, December 14, 2009

Woman in the Mucus

So humor me for a moment while I bore you with some Japanese New Wave Cinema references. See, I told you I went to film school once long, long ago. You didn't believe me, did you? Well, that's OK. It is sometimes hard for me to believe too now that I spend all day keeping a toddler from eating the dog food or choking on water bottle caps. But I did. And I happened to like the really boring esoteric stuff. I even made boring esoteric films. Yeah, I was one of those kind of art school nerds. But this is really getting off the subject.

I wanted to talk about what I've been thinking about a lot lately. The book/movie Woman in the Dunes. Have you read/seen it? Well, to Twittersynopsis it, it is about a woman who lives in these remote dunes and has to sweep the sand back every day all day to keep from being drowned in it. There is more to the story--an entomologist dude wondering the dunes finds her and hangs out there (or maybe she finds him? can't remember) and they fight and have sex. But that part isn't really what I am thinking about. I am thinking about the woman in the dunes sweeping up all day just to do it over again the next to keep from drowning in it. Lately, with Bug's seemingly constant colds, I consider myself The Woman in the Mucus. I carry a snot rag to wipe the slime away lest we drown in it. I keep a humidifier going. I boil water on the stove. I Little Noses her nostrils. I syringe out the goobers. Every day.

Motherhood is like that. Isn't it? You get to do the same things every single day. Some days are better than others. Some days you want to hide under the covers. Some days you zen out and do it. Some days you just love the routine and the surprises within the routine. Some days are tantrums and breakdowns. Other days are joy and breakthroughs. Or a little bit of everything. There is a basic routine each day and yet each day is so different from the next. It's the mothering paradox.

To use a more Western image, I suppose it would be to imagine Sisyphus happy. To imagine Sisyphus content as he rolls his boulder up the hill each and every day. In my current situation, it would be a large booger that I roll up the hill every day. Or maybe it is a giant ball of laundry? Or an enormous pile of dishes? What is yours? And can you imagine yourself happy? Or do you want to drop everything and run for the hills?

Saturday, December 12, 2009

The Stuff On My Mind

1.  I need to live in the same state as my husband but California is too fucking expensive and the rental properties in areas where you don't get shot at are shitty in our price range.

2. Bug is 15 months and still naps in her swing.  But her recent growth spurt is making it obvious that this is not going to work much longer and this makes me want to curl up in a fetal position and sob.

3.  I just can't seem to get these Christmas cards addressed and in the mail and it is really haunting me.

4. I want sleep really badly and want to cry every time I think about it. 

5.  Breastfeeding is getting old.

6.  Bug has ANOTHER COLD. 

7.  I want a beer.

8. I want to lose this last ten pounds but probably won't until after bfing ends.  Like in ten years or so.

9.  I turned 36 last week.  How the hell did that happen? 

10.  I need sleep.  Did I already say that? Yeah, I know, it is getting boring but it's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Potty Time

For the last few weeks Bug has been doing this squat move after taking her evening bath.  Sometimes, she'll squat and pee on the floor.  So today I bought her a potty.  I set it up in the bathroom and told her that it was for pee-pee.  She seemed VERY excited about it and kept climbing on and off of it exclaiming, "PEE PEE".  After her bath she ran over to it, sat down, and peed.  Clearly proud of herself we clapped together, "YAY, PEE PEE".  It was so cute.  I don't think we are exactly at potty training yet because she is only two days shy of 15 months old but I guess she is moving in that direction and by the looks of it will be potty trained long before she is weaned.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Out of the Mouths of Babes.

Ok, this one is for Existential Waitress, because she loves this story. 

The year is 1973.  The month, December.  I have just been born (Yes, that is right. I am that old).  My Dad takes my brother to see Santa because my mom is at home with me attached to her boob (seems Bug gets her boobaholicism from me).  The Santa event is at the local shopping center.  The one where all the uptight suburban moms take their kids.  The kids of these moms dociliy wait in single file line while their moms fidget with their "do's" and chit-chat about wallpaper.  Ah, the 70's.  Good Times. 

My dad does not fit in to this line.  Not at all.  My dad looks like a thug.  My dad is NOT a thug but he looks like one because he is an undercover federal agent and it is the 70's so his hair is a long curly wigged out mass of black hot mess and he has a looong beard accompanied by a moustache.  He wears dark shades, a pimped out leather jacket and badass boots.  So, the stick-up-their-butt moms are already obviously uncomfortable with this dude in their pristine line.  But my brother is excited.  He is about two and a half.  He loves trucks.  LOVES trucks.  And he is so excited to ask Santa for a fire engine.  He wants it, wants it bad.  So the line moves along and it is finally my brother's turn and he sits on Santa's lap and the conversation goes something like this:

Santa:  What do you want for Christmas?
Brother: A red fire engine.
Santa: Well, if you are a good boy, you might get one.
Brother: But I want it now!
Santa: Oh no, you have to wait until Christmas.
Brother:  FUCK OFF, Santa!!!

My father high-tailed it out of there, feeling the glares as he left like icey daggers in his back.  I don't think my dad ever did Santa duty again.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Some Things Are Better Left for Teddy Bears, Bunnies, and Dinosaurs

A while ago I wrote about trying to find a Plush Buddha for Bug.  This is the only one I have found.

Doesn't he look like a pedaphile or at the very least a pervy swinger?  Needless to say, we are sticking with our Buddha made of wood. 

I am, however, getting Bug a Barney doll for Christmas.  Say what you will about Barney. I have heard it all.  But frankly, I don't care.  Bug LOVES him and that is all that matters.  I am not buying it for me.  I am buying it for her. 

Friday, December 4, 2009

If It Weren't For the Dogs I'd Never Get a Vacation

I am admittedly a little annoyed that the only reason we are getting a vacation this winter is so that the dogs of the family can meet and play together.  I've given up on my pleas of needing my daughter and myself at the top of the list (above the canines) and I've decided that at least I will get to buy the Buggie lots and lots of winter clothes.  For those of you in cold climates, the idea of having to wrestle your child into a snowsuit probably makes you want to poke your eyes out or at the very least hide under the bed until the first signs of spring.  But having lived for years where it NEVER SNOWS, snow vacations are right up there on the fun list.  And the anticipation of getting to see Bug in these clothes is like waiting for Santa.  I am SOOOOO excited.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Pass Me a Hankie

There are decisions to be made, changes to come.  But I am putting them off.  I am taking out Christmas decorations and I am filling this space with joy.  I am packing away the question marks in the boxes and leaving them out in the garage for a while.  Christmas is coming.

The older I get, the mushier I get.  In fact, I am a full on CHEESEBALL.  I love this Christmas carol and I love me some Mary J. and this rendition brings tears to my eyes. 

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Hokey Pokey

These photos were taken this morning. How did my kid get so big? In the last photo, she is doing the Hokey Pokey, part of our morning routine lately.