Sunday, January 11, 2015

What's New With the Two

Kids that is.
Lots.
When we aren't sick (which has been often these last few months), we are having fun.

Evan is fully mobile. Walking, running, climbing on everything, jumping on everything, and occasionally falling off everything. That's cool. And scary. He loves to dance and eat bananas. If you say "where's Evan?" he covers his eyes. If you call him a monkey, he puts his hands in his armpits and makes an "ooh ooh" noise. He also does an elephant impression and pants like a dog when he sees one. He can dunk like a boss, claps for himself, and laughs hysterically when you put him over your head and tickle his tummy with the top of your head. He walks up to me 47 times a day with a book in his hand and will crawl into my lap to read whenever I give him the chance. He loves to look at family photos. He has a bunch of teeth and would have a mullet except that I've been trimming the back whenever he'll hold still long enough for me to get a little trim in.He likes to take baths, eat dog food, and is so very smart. He got a Christmas ornament in his stocking from Grandpa and Oma and immediately walked over to the tree and set it on a branch. He still sleeps in the pack-n-play in the den on account of the not regularly sleeping through the night thing and is now officially attached to a blue bull (I think it's a bull) lovey. Unfortunately for all of us, it appears that said bull has been discontinued by Little Giraffe, so I'm looking for another acceptable match for back up... He's so frustrating when he's sick, but so cute all of the time.

Audrey is really fully potty trained as in, wakes up in the middle of the night and takes herself to the bathroom potty trained. That's cool. And also scary. She loves to wear dresses, including but not limited to the Elsa dress she received for Christmas that is already falling apart from over-use. She asked Santa for princesses and princesses only. She can write the letter "A" and knows how to spell her name (though she usually forgets the "e"). She likes to be the first one to see Evan in the morning when he wakes up and maybe that's why she's been waking up at 5:30am? Her favorite food is "rogret" AKA yogurt and breakfast food in general seems to be her weakness. Thank goodness the smoothie phase has passed, I was getting really tired of cleaning the blender 2x a day. She likes to tell stories, play pretend "I'm the mom", talk to herself, play a new game we have called "Zingo" and watch Dora the Explorer. She spontaneously tells us that she loves us and it just makes my day.

I have to sometimes remind myself, when the days are hard and snotty, that I'm blessed and privileged to get to take care of these two special people. Being their mom (or "the grandma" as Audrey calls me when she's "the mom"...) is awesome.

Hope you are all having a wonderful 2015. I'm sure ours will be another eventful 365 days. Kate

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Throwback Thursday/Flashback Friday

I visited the dentist.
I ate lunch with my mother in law.
I was 9 months pregnant.
 
 
I was having contractions.
I was so excited to meet our baby boy.
And now, a whole year later,
 
I CANNOT BEEN IT IS A WHOLE YEAR LATER
 
 
That's it.
I cannot believe it.
In some ways I am very happy.
It was a rough year.
It was a tiring year.
We all yelled, screamed, and cried.
Sometimes at each other.
Sometimes at no one.
Some of us did not sleep much.
I did not sleep much.
So I am happy that we made it through.
That sleepless nights are on their way out.
That having to schedule around naps and feedings is over.
 
But in other ways I am very sad.
Our baby boy is not a little baby anymore.
He rarely snuggles.
He stopped nursing months ago and my milk dried up.
He is ready to walk, to run.
And I'm afraid I don't know him.
I know Audrey so well.
When she turned one, I knew her so well.
We had spent so much time together.
Nursing together.
Cuddling together.
Sleeping side by side.
But Evan is just out there on  his own sometimes.
Not with his mama.
He sleeps in the pack-n-play in the den.
Like he's an afterthought.
Or like we didn't make space for him.
Audrey talks and we listen.
Evan talks and we have no idea what he's saying.
We put him to bed early.
We rush him off to school.
We put him in the car seat, the stroller.
He's a happy guy, but maybe not because of us.
Not because of me.
And this makes me sad.
Makes me wish I stayed home with him more.
Wish I didn't work.
Wish I only had one child.
Or 3 more.
Or 3 more hands.
 
 
One this is certain, though, I do love this little guy.
 
 
He makes me smile.
And I can't believe that a year ago tomorrow, he'll be one.
 
 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

My Fun(ny) Little Girl

A month or so ago, Blake, Audrey and I were eating dinner. It was a typical event... We make dinner after Evan is asleep and while Audrey plays with one of us or entertains herself. She sometimes helps set the table, which is sweet. We call her to dinner and she throws a fit or dawdles, or both. She claims to "I don't like [insert whatever we are serving]!". We threaten that she cannot watch any tv before bed if she doesn't sit down and try to eat. She sits. Then she has to go potty (if not now, then at sometime during the dinner. She will need help. I will go help. The rest of my dinner will be cold.) We hold hands and pray, usually for Mimi and Evan. Sometimes for ourselves. Always for patience. She actually looks at what we are serving and exclaims "Peas! I loooove peas!". She proceeds to eat. I tell her something like "it is good to eat good food like vegetables because it helps us to get strong and stay health... it will help make you big." On this night in question, my sweet three year old responds, deadpan, "it will also help me make poop." We laugh, uncontrollably. She fails to see what is funny. "Mom, I need to go potty."

*****

Audrey learned to swim this summer. She is not ready to swim a 400 IM by any means, but she can kick and paddle and put her face in the water, propelling herself from point A to a not-so-distant point B pretty quickly. This makes me so proud. I love seeing her learn new things, especially things that are fun and hard for even some adults. After she started doing this the first time, I tried to get back in the pool with her as often as possible so that she could do it again and again. And so that I could feel that parental pride and have her little arms wrap around my neck, her laughter in my ear. So of course, I could not wait for our family trip to Lake Canandaigua in NY. I have such fond memories of swimming there with my cousins, jumping off the dock. And, with Audrey's new-found-love of swimming, I just imagined her having the same fun experience.


We get to NY. It is sub 80 all week, mostly cloudy. The water temperature is about 65. Freezing. On the first day, I manage to get us all to the beach with our swimsuits on and Audrey is brave enough to think about swimming. She puts her lifejacket suit on and wants to climb down the ladder. That doesn't go well, as the ladder is slimy. So, I tell her that she doesn't have to swim but that I, for old times sake, am going to jump off the dock. I do. It is cold. But not really that bad. She then immediately wants to jump in. She does. It is a flying leap. She splashes in. I am treading water and kind of catch her. She bobs up screaming - "GET ME OUT OF HERE RIGHT NOW!!!" Everyone on the dock and the beach clapped for her and I told her how proud I was of her. I was. It was a brave leap for a little girl. She didn't put so much as a big toe in the lake the rest of the week. And now, she won't even venture into the pool here.


Lesson learned. My parental pride cannot be more important than my child's confidence and perception of safety and comfort.

*****

Blake and I have been brainstorming how to make Audrey's pacifier disappear for months. I thought the problem was solved when Toby chewed her original favorite to pieces last spring. But, she quickly transferred loyalty to another one of similar style. Granted, she only uses it at nap and bed times and only at home, but it's just time. She wakes up at least once a week in the middle of the night crying for it when it gets lost in her sheets and I can't take it anymore.

So, yesterday, the paci-fairy came while she was at school. The fairy left her a Frozen CD, a magic-clip Cinderella, a stuffed sock monkey, a tooth fairy alligator, and dum-dums. We told her that since she was a big girl, she didn't need her paci anymore and that the fairy would give her old paci to a little baby like Evan to use - we share with people who need something. She was in love with the dum-dums and actually did pretty well at bedtime. She threw a minor tantrum (5 seconds) and then was quiet for the night. I was SO proud this morning when at 7:30, she was still sleeping, and apparently without the paci. But then, I hear her in her room. I go in. She is still laying in bed with one arm up in the air. Triumphant. Holding one of Evan's little baby pacifiers. My pride negated. "Audrey, did you sleep with that pacifier all night." "Yes, I did." "But the pacifier fairy said it was time for no more pacis - you are a big girl. And, that is Evan's." "I know, but we share, mom."

Pride returns, she is an honest, resourceful, generous little girl.

Round 2 tonight. Winner TBD.



Monday, June 30, 2014

Why all of my posts (if I had time to post) are about how time flies.

Because, just look at these pictures, it just flies. Absolutely flies.
We cruised through winter (well, no, we sloshed, slipped on the ice, skated, sledded, and other things, while wishing we were on a cruise) to Easter.
Then, before we knew it, we were wearing our summer jammies to walk to Starbucks on the weekends for much-needed coffee and "special milk" for the big 3 year old. 
 And then Evan could sit up with no problems and is a content water baby.
Audrey became extremely confused (perhaps we've watched "Frozen" one too many times) and decided that snow Angels in June (complete with the coat, gloves and hat) were fun.
And then, Evan, at 8+ months, completely lost his mind and started pulling up much sooner than mommy was ready for.
 
It flies.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Just Like That

Just like that.

The pregnancy that began in the first weeks of the old year is over.
The maternity leave that gloriously covered the best of the holidays is over.
Evan's fourth trimester. Over.
I'm exhausted.
And I'm sad.

I feel underwhelmed by my life at the office and overwhelmed by my life everywhere else.
I am tired. So very tired. So tired I can't sleep anymore.
When one child goes to bed for the night with a lovely snugly hug, sweet "I love you" and doesn't wake up until morning, the other is just beginning a 12 hour stretch of peek-a-sleep.

When I go out in the morning to warm up the car and move it closer to the house before loading my most precious passengers, I wonder if there will ever be a day when I "accidentally" back all the way down the driveway and find myself at Starbucks with a latte.
Alone.
Audrey still watching a video on my phone and Evan snoozing in his car seat in the den.

I mean, I love these babies to the moon and back.
So much it hurts a little bit sometimes.
But it sure is exhausting.
But it's a nice kind of exhausting. A peaceful kind of tired.
This is how it's supposed to be.

And it goes so fast.
It's going so fast.
Audrey is wearing big-girl underwear and taking herself to the bathroom.
She doesn't want to sit in her highchair and she can reach the table without it.
She's memorizing books and burping her baby-doll ever so gently.
She doesn't want us to sing our goodnight song to her anymore.
And when I close the door after she says "night night" from the twin bed (the one I slept in until college) that surrounds her tiny body, I pause for a minute and fight off tears.
In my mind I hum the song and hold her little body, wrapped in her pink blanket.
So many times I wished she would just get a little bit bigger so that... and now she is.

Just like that.

And then I turn my attention, my body, my sleepless nights, my worry, over to my new baby.
And I savor every single minute, every cry, every sigh.
Every bit of baby-ness that I can eek out of him, I do.
Because in just a few days, weeks, months, years it's going to be over.
And I know now that I'm going to miss it when it is.

Just like that.