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Aiden:  21 months today

Jane: Getting towards 5 1/2

Me:  Way too close to 34

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7:15:  Wake up to Aiden whining from his crib, as usual, but am relieved to see it’s so “late” – sometimes he wakes up closer to 6 a.m. and is really not ready to be up.  I sit in the rocker and nurse him (he mostly still nurses only when waking up, but likes to do it for a long time then)…  realize I still feel so tired even though I went to bed at 11:00 and slept mostly ok – woke up after a couple anxious dreams and once to pee.  Life has just been wearing me down in general lately.  For no particular reason decide I should document this day…

7:45:  Jane is still asleep despite Aiden’s attempts to wake her up.  The first thing he usually says after nursing is “Jane?”.  She’s been sleeping on the couch lately (which is actually an IKEA pullout sleeper, so…  makes me feel less bad).  It’s a long story but basically involves me switching bedrooms around and being very slow to clean out the bedroom the kids will now share and get her a loft bed.  (And also because she doesn’t mind sleeping on the couch at all and…  who wants to mess with the sleeping arrangement when it’s working for everyone?)

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Aiden’s next favorite thing besides his sister is balls and throwing them in hoops, so we move onto that…

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8:00:  Jane is up and the whining begins.  “Aiden took my fan, he’s going to ruiiiiin it!”  Aiden whining “miiiine, miiiine!”.  Finally get myself a glass of water, wash my face, and makes the kids oatmeal.  Oh yes, and stop to lotion Jane’s back because she always complains about it being scratchy.

8:15:  Just as we’re sitting down to eat, notice we have a bunch of ants in one corner.  I am not happy, I’m in a mental state where I just don’t need one more thing to deal with.  And in addition to the normal ants (which at least I’m confident will go away with Borax/sugar solution), there are a few weird larger ants with wings I’ve never seen before which are really making my skin crawl.

8:20:  Sign onto the computer to find the Borax/sugar ant killer recipe and get a message about making a dish for a memorial luncheon on Friday.

(I have literally spent the last 5 minutes sitting here in bed, hugging myself, wondering how to describe this situation.  It still feels too awful for words.)

Two weeks ago, one of my good friends lost both of her kids in a house fire.

I have never had anything so tragic happen to someone close to me before.  I can’t go more than a few minutes without thinking about it, it’s always there, and my heart is just breaking for my friend.

On top of that (although my problems seem ridiculously petty in comparison…), Nathan and I have printed out our DIY divorce paperwork and started discussing specifics this week, my great aunt died a few weeks ago, and even though Nathan is assigned to work in our neighborhood, he regularly gets sent to the really dangerous part of the city and I just feel sick if I think about something happening to him.

And, I still have no idea what I’ll do for money when the divorce is final.  I think about it all the time, but the choices paralyze me.  Nathan having to work a completely random night shift schedule for the long term future doesn’t help either.

So…  those are the things weighing heavily on my mind as I go about my otherwise mundane stay at home mom day:

9:15: Drinking coffee, cleaning, fb chatting with a friend about child care…  feel like I am constantly scheduling.  And I am…  since Nathan’s schedule is completely random, we just take it week by week.  Usually he takes the kids overnight 2x/week (from about 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 a.m. because he has to sleep during the day), then we don’t see him 2 days, and the other 3 days he comes over from 5:00 – 7:30 before his night shift begins, so I have enough time to run errands or go to a yoga class.

10:00:  Finally get going to the gym.  I cannot emphasize how important this gym membership has been for my mental and physical health over the past few months.  I do about 45 min. of cardio and 30 min. of core and back exercises.  Thankfully all the back problems I was having over the winter are almost 100% gone.

11:45:  Pick them up from child care – one of my favorite parts of the day, because Aiden is SOOO happy to see me and they run down the hall like the cutest children ever and have fun riding the elevator and then Aiden yells “DIEEEE” and waves to all the people at the front desk on the way out.  Even though he has been able to say “B” words forever, for some reason bye is “DIE”.

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We get in the car and are talking about the picnic potluck we’re going to for dinner and Jane asks what I’m making and I say pasta salad and she says can I have the cucumbers on the side and I say no they’ll all be mixed in and she starts WHINING SO DRAMATICALLY “Nooooooo!” And I snap that she should be grateful I’m making a nice dinner and we get to eat the park with our friends.

Then two minutes later she starts talking about what all the clouds looks like, but not to herself, following every statement with “Riiiiight, Mommyyyy?” as is the norm lately and I am very annoyed and say shhhh I can’t look at the clouds I’m driving let’s have some quiet time.

12:00:  We stop at the park right near our house to pick up free lunches given out by the school district.  They give them out to all kids at so many parks in our city, it’s a great program.  I actually don’t care about the “free” part so much as the “I don’t have to prepare anything, wash any dishes, or have another mess in my house” part.

Very happily surprised to run into some of our regular park friends even though this isn’t our “regular” park, so we have good company for lunch.

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(side note, usually we hang out at the park in the morning and stay for lunch, but today was a rare day with no extra kids, and I had the kids alone all day, and a potluck planned for dinner, so we did the gym in the morning)

1:00:  Home.

1:20:  Aiden naps, Jane watches a show, I lay in bed for 20 minutes to rest.

1:45:  Jane comes to find me in the kitchen and tells me very emphatically that I must write down that there will be a new Nature Cats show starting on July 11th.

2:10:  I finish taking a shower.

2:20:  Make a salad (spinach, chickpeas, nooch, sauerkraut, and avocado) and sit down to eat.

2:30:  Jane is responsible enough to stop watching tv on her own after 1 hour and joins me in the kitchen.

2:40:  Aiden wakes up after a predictable 1 hr. 15 min. nap.  I’m not complaining, because lots of days we’ve battled the 45 min. nap and then much of the rest of the day is NOT FUN.  But occasionally he sleeps 2 hours and actually wakes up happy and those days are a real treat!

3:45:  Spent the past hour snacking, making dish for potluck, generally getting ready to go…

4:00:  Super antsy to get out of the house, but have almost an hour until we need to go, so we go outside to do some yard work.  Another thing stressing me out is I have no clue how to do yard work and mine is starting to look like shit.  Nathan has been extremely nice to keep helping me out with it, but I feel like I need to make a plan to stay on top of it…

5:00:  Off to the park.  I forgot to take any pictures after lunch today.  It’s a potluck for my sit swap group so the next couple hours fly by talking and chasing toddlers.  The standout event is that I sit directly on a splinter on the wood bench and am convinced it’s lodged in my butt cheek and one of the awesome moms I have only met a handful of times offers to check it out for me.  “Just pull your pants down, I don’t care”.  Hahahaaaa.

7:30:  Home, bedtime routines start.  Aiden doesn’t really have a routine.  I try to get him to read books but he never sits still for them.  I finally just put him in bed with his bottle and he whines for a few minutes and is sleeping.  Jane’s takes a little longer but she’s in bed by 8:30…

8:30:  But it’s taking her forever to sleep tonight.  Her feet are hot (it was not hot out today… lower 70’s)  and she is tired of fanning them, she wants an ice pack.  She wants to sleep on the wood floor, her bed is too hot.  She keeps talking to me from the other room.  Finally falls asleep sometime after 9 p.m.

9:00 – 10:30:  I clean up, have a snack, have some tea, write this post.  Still have to put in all the pictures, but will do that and read a little and go to sleep about 11:00….

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Winter

And now that it’s Spring, time to recap our last few months.  Nothing much has changed, weekday schedule is usually as follows:  Jane goes to school in the morning, Aiden takes a nap (he just turned 18 mos. and has only consistently dropped the morning nap within the past couple weeks) we pick up Cole on the 3 days we watch him, have lunch, go see friends, come home.  Nathan has been working the night shift, which starts at 8 p.m. so lots of nights he comes over about 5:00 to hang out with the kids while I go to yoga or run errands.

On the weekends we hang out with family a lot, almost every weekend Jane has a sleepover at my mom’s or grandma’s house.

Notable events:

-My sister had her baby!!!  I’m now an auntie.  It’s been interesting seeing the transition to motherhood close up but from an outside perspective – I don’t envy her.  Baby J is healthy but fussy, a lot like Jane was.  I sent her a link to this post I wrote when Jane was 3 weeks old, I’m so happy I kept the blog, otherwise I’d never remember.

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-Jane turned 5!  (Wow I have had this blog for a long time.)  Besides the family parties, we celebrated her birthday at a hotel.  Her first time staying in one!  We just had a few friends come for swimming and pizza, then the two of us stayed overnight, it was awesome.

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-Went to the chiropractor quite a bit.  I’m still wary of them, but this issue was so obviously related to misalignment.  Around x-mas my whole right side, from toes up to neck, started getting sore and it coincided exactly with Aiden getting heavier and me carrying him on my left hip.  This malfunction of my body, even though it wasn’t severe, along with Aiden becoming a toddler…made me think I am really really done with having kids.

-Went to a girls’ weekend (well, I only went for 24 hours due to Nathan’s work schedule), but it is worth mentioning because these ladies are a huge part of my every day life and I don’t know what I’d do without them.

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-This is more of a “lack of” notable event – somehow all 3 of us managed to avoid getting sick this winter.  Sure, runny noses and mild coughs and occasional day long fever, but nothing like the flu, norovirus, strep, plague-like things that the rest of the neighborhood seemed to have all the time.  I AM SO THANKFUL!!!  (KNOCK ON WOOD).

What the kids are like right now:

Aiden:  OMG having a toddler is hard.  It crept up on me slowly (he was such an easy baby!)  until I realized he was driving me insane every day.  There is lots and lots of whining, grunting, climbing on things he shouldn’t be, pulling on my leg, pulling on my shirt (still nursing), generally destroying the entire house.

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Typical.

 

Of course he also has his cute moments.  Basically when he’s not doing any of the above, which is about 5% of the time.  When he sees or hears a dog he says “ooo ahhh ooo ahh ooo” and sounds just like monkey.  He likes to take the sponge and “help clean” and also to throw his empty bottle in the sink.  He likes to yell “no” when doing things like trying to flush the toilet or hitting his sister.  He likes to hit and push Jane whenever she is touching me  =(.  He loves anything stick or sword-like and will hand you one so you’ll “fight” with him.  (No idea where he got this.  He doesn’t watch tv and Jane doesn’t do it.)  He LOVES balls and will play catch as eagerly as a dog.  He has a great arm and will consistently throw directly to you, with force.  He doesn’t have a ton of words yet and doesn’t seem to be adding new ones quickly.  In comparison, Jane had just started speaking in complete sentences at 18 mos.!

Jane:  Is as sweet and helpful as always.  Sometimes I feel like she’s the adult.  She can see immediately when I’m getting frustrated with Aiden and will come over and rub my back.  Lots of times when we’re getting ready to go somewhere I’ll talk out loud what we need to do “Aiden, you need socks”  and the next thing I know Jane will appear with socks for me.

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She loves to play with her friends and has gotten really good at reading beginner sorts of books.  She’s always asking me how to spell things and drawing pictures for everyone we know.  I’m so proud of her and really have nothing negative to say.  She has been a little more emotional lately, but only if she’s tired or you try to correct her about something, she’ll cry easily.  Mostly, she’s the perfect kid  =).  It’s still hard for me to be around her all day though, because she constantly wants to talk about well…  5 year old things… which is hard to engage with for a long period of time.  Good thing we get together with friends a lot!

That’s about all, I have to say the winter went a better than I thought it would.  We are already planning ahead for summer…

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Early March, already hanging at the park – I hope my toddler sleeps in the middle of it all like the two in this pic!

Fall

I thought a couple days before x-mas seemed an appropriate time as ever to document our Fall…  which has basically stretched until now, we’ve had such mild weather, going to the park in t-shirts into November and no accumulating snowfall.  I’m grateful for it, makes everything a little easier and less depressing with all the cold and darkness and changes in our lives.

They say the first holidays post-divorce (or separation, in my case) are the hardest, but I think Halloween was the hardest for me because it was always sort of “our” holiday.

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But that is long past and I got through it, as I will the next two weeks and the bleak months of Jan. and Feb., I suppose.

Jane started a pre-k program through the Minneapolis Public Schools where she goes every day from 9-12.  She loves it, I love it.  Our neighbor who has two kids going to the same school and also works mornings there, walks over to pick her up, then she takes the bus home, so I never have to bundle up Aiden to leave the house.  (Thankfully, because it’s a physical struggle these days to get my almost 15 mo. old dressed.)

We are watching a 4 yr. old boy 3 days/wk., so I pick him up from his preschool right before Jane gets off the bus.  Then we have lunch and really our only “inside” activity so far this cold season has been meeting friends at the library for like 1.5 hours before Aiden has to take his second nap around 2:30.

The librarians hate us.  I think they expect a parent to come in with their single child and play with them the whole time.  Instead 3 or 4 of us show up with our herd of children and let them play (in the separate kids area!) amongst themselves while we try to talk.  Yeah once in awhile one of them shrieks loudly or escapes to the lobby, but…  they’re kids!  We have been scolded so many times like schoolchildren ourselves, it’s hard not to laugh.

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The mom of the boy I watch just happens to work at my favorite yoga studio so has given me an unlimited pass as partial payment.  I could not be happier with this, because it’s very expensive, and it’s saving my sanity so much right now.  I am still really struggling with the separation and Aiden is going through a tough phase where he’s into everything and absolutely SHRIEKS, like the worst ear piercing sound, if he’s even the tiniest bit frustrated.  So if I know I get to go to yoga at the end of the day it helps so much.  It’s like my therapy, I probably cry at some point during half the sessions, good thing it is dark and everyone is so sweaty you can’t tell.

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Nathan got his own apartment in Sept. so our finances are worse than ever, considering we were barely able to pay the bills before.  He’s in the middle of a 5 month post-graduation training period where he rides along with another officer and the schedule is completely random.  He just started working nights but luckily the station is close and shift starts at 8:00 p.m. so he can come over before his shift to hang out with the kids so I get a break at the end of my day.

That is life right now.  I used to be such a planner, for the long term future, but I am trying to accept that it’s no longer in my control.  We’ll see what kind of permanent shift Nathan gets in the spring.  We have enough savings to get by until then, but realistically I need to think about getting a job once Jane starts kindergarten and putting Aiden in daycare.  It breaks my heart and I barely have enough energy to make dinner and get the laundry done much less think about a career change, but…  trying not to worry about it too much now.  We’ll see what happens in a few months.

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One Year

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My sweet, sweet baby.  I was so emotional about him turning one.  He was such an easy baby and I enjoyed it so much this second time around, and it very well might be my last.  This year has gone so fast and been so tumultuous, but I was so lucky to be able to keep staying at home with both my babies.

It’s hard to write this post without a lot of comparison to Jane at this age.  She started doing everything early and he seems to have stayed a baby longer, no complaints on my part!

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He started scooting around a few months ago, got pretty fast, and never learned how to crawl.  I wasn’t concerned about that, but then he would hardly ever bear weight on his legs and at almost a year still wasn’t pulling up to stand.  At his year appointment the doc moved his legs all over and said “yup, looks like he’s double jointed in his knees and hips.  great if he wants to be a gymnast, but not so easy to learn to stand.”

He learned immediately after that and now it’s all he wants to do  =).  Usually at the park (park meaning our three hour sessions where adults sit on picnic blankets and kids ideally go play) he sits right by me, sometimes playing in the grass, sometimes crawling all over me, until I finally get him to nap somehow and get a break.  But today, for the first time ever, he scooted himself all the way across the playground to where the big kids were, pulling himself up on the toys and bottom of the slides, and was happy like that for the better part of an hour.  I couldn’t stop staring, couldn’t believe it, my baby suddenly off on his own!

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Words:  His favorite word is Da Deeeee, which he says whenever he is excited about anything, but especially when he sees Nathan.  He lunges out of my arms to get to him, it is so sweet.  Next favorite word is “down!”.  He’ll throw something down and say it, and if you act astonished and say “oh!  you threw it down!”  and give it back he’ll laugh so hard and do it over and over again.  We sit on the bed in the morning and I’ll say “Aiden down?” and he’ll get the cutest mischievous look on his face and fall over, so proud of himself for the joke.

He also babbles “Mamama” and we have heard him say “light” and “balloon” and “hi” but that’s all I can think of now.

Sleep is ok, he goes to bed about 6:30 or 7:00, now always falling asleep with a bottle.  He wakes up about 3:30 a.m. and it’s been awhile (couple months?) since I’ve been able to nurse him back to sleep.  He’ll nurse, but scream when I put him back in the crib, so I’ve been making a bottle then out of desperation even though I know he doesn’t need it and it’s a bad habit to get into.  Sometimes he also wakes very early a.m., pre 6:00 when I know he isn’t rested so I do the same thing then.  Now that I’m writing it out this seems excessive and is very disruptive to my sleep so I should try to remedy that…

Other than nighttime he takes a consistent 1 hr. 15 min. nap two hours after waking up, and usually an afternoon nap but it’s also usually on the go so gets cut short – he’ll fall asleep in the car but not for longer than 30-45 minutes.

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He still doesn’t have any teeth!  But I’ve started giving him all the real people food just in softer form.  He’s not picky but seems to have lost interest in bland things like cheerios, meanwhile will happily eat tangy garlic hummus or curried tofu.

Of course he loves his sister so much, but who wouldn’t?  She is so sweet and funny and mature – she really does help take care of him and is always watching out for him.  I hear my voice in hers, she’ll reprimand him, “Aiden, no, that is not a toy!” and always make sure to put the roll of toilet paper or whatever out of reach.  Today he dumped a bag of magnetic letters all over the floor, most of which were safe to play with but there were a few random smaller magnets in the bottom I hadn’t noticed.  When I went into Jane’s room I saw that she had separated every one of the dozen or so smaller magnets out of the mess and put them up where he couldn’t reach.  She makes me such a proud and happy mama!!

(How were they ever this small?!)

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One last thing I want to note about Aiden that I hope he never stops doing – laying his head on my chest whenever he is tired or feeling shy.  This is probably such a common baby thing to do, but I don’t remember Jane doing it, and my heart my fills with love every time it happens, I can hardly help saying out loud “ohhhh, my baby”.

It was my favorite when he was a newborn too, seems like so long ago:

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Summer

It flew by, of course. I wanted to get down at least one day in the life to capture it. I recorded this more than a month ago:

Thursday, August 13th

Me:  Almost 33.  Jane:  Almost 4.5  Aiden:  10.5 months

6:00 a.m.:  Aiden’s up.  Our current sleeping arrangement is his crib right next to my bed, so this means I’m up too.  Way too early for me, I’ve been hoping to somehow get his wakeup time closer to 7:00 but for now…  I’ve had a lot more 9:30 p.m. bedtimes than I ever thought I would.  He also still wakes once during the night but goes back to sleep right away if I nurse him.

6:45:  Move into the kitchen after nursing in bed awhile then playing in the living room.  (Well, me snoozing on the couch while hoping Aiden entertains himself for as long as possible.)

He doesn't crawl, just butt scoots.

He doesn’t crawl, just butt scoots.

6:55:  Jane gets up and still wearing this watch some grandma gave her the day before, talking immediately about how it says a different time than the kitchen clock.  She’s really into telling time and is pretty good at it!

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7:00:  Trying to wash my face, but everyone is in the bathroom with me and Aiden is currently obsessed with putting his hands on the toilet.  At least he hasn’t started to pull up on things yet.

7:15:  Feed AD breakfast – oatmeal with pureed fruit.  Still no teeth!

7:30:  Jane gets her morning show (something 25 minutes off pbs kids) with starter breakfast of cheerios and milk, I clean the kitchen and cut up a cantaloupe for the park later.  AD starts getting fussy and I put him in the jumper.

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8:00:  Jane and Aiden play together (she is still such an amazing big sister, always helpful and makes the baby laugh like no one else), I make a pot of quinoa for later, and browse this Simply Natural Baby Food book because Aiden is SO into solids lately and I’ve forgotten what I used to feed Jane at this age.

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8:20:  Tell Jane we need to make a card and pick a birthday present for one of our best friend’s parties tomorrow.  I love this group of friends so much, it’s standard practice for us to tell the kids to pick one of their own toys to give away for someone’s birthday present.  It’s frugal, a nice lesson for the kids, and saves us a trip to the store!

8:30:  Jane gets her real breakfast of oatmeal, pb, flax, molasses, and fruit.

8:40:  Aiden is very ready for his morning nap.  My supply seems to have gone down with starting solids, but he’s still so hungry we’re supplementing with formula, just like with Jane.  I make his bottle and Jane says “Mama, I can carry that bottle, since you’re carrying a baby.”  Soooo sweet!  She always needs to give him a kiss goodnight before his nap too.

9:00:  Get in the shower.  Jane comes in to say “Mom know what?” for like the 50th time this morning.  I’m really ready for school to start.

9:20:  Out of shower, drink coffee, chat with a friend about swapping child care on FB.

9:35:  Talk on the phone to another friend.

9:45:  Jane gets picked up for a 4 day summer school session, which she’s going to with the 5 yr. old we’re watching about 4 days/wk. this summer.  The other girl’s parents bring them to the class and then I pick them up and watch their daughter for the rest of the day.

10:00:  Aiden wakes up.

Selfie in my at home lounge clothes. I wear these shorts pretty much every day.

Selfie in my at home lounge clothes. I wear these shorts pretty much every day.

11:30:  A friend through my child care swap group drops off her daughter, same age as Jane, then we leave shortly after to pick up the other two girls and go to the park.  (My life is so full of kids!)

The Park is the same one we always go to, our home away from home for the past three summers.  We probably spend at least 2-3 hours here about three times per week.  It’s the kind of place where you don’t really have to make plans to meet people, but you know at least a couple of your friends will be there.  I can’t describe how much I love our neighborhood and the community of parents here.

Kids running to line up for the food truck.

Kids running to line up for the food truck.

 

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^Don’t let babies push babies in strollers 😉

2:30:  Home from the park.

Notes get spotty here.  I probably let the girls watch a show to have a rest.  Their parents come to pick them up about 4:00 and 4:30.

5:00:  Nathan comes over after work.  I suppose this is where I mention he no longer lives with us.  It’s not something I feel comfortable going into detail about on the blog, but basically he announced suddenly at the beginning of Feb. that he didn’t want to be married anymore.  Nothing I did could change his mind.  He moved out at the beginning of the summer.  It’s been rough, of course, but we’ve settled into a routine where he comes over to help with bedtime a few nights a week and lately things have been mostly amicable.

5:30:  Nathan takes the kids to his gym.

5:45:  I leave on my bike to go to yoga.

6:30:  Yoga.

7:30:  Yoga done and bike to the co-op for some groceries.  It’s Thursday and our regular girls’ night at the neighborhood bar, but I’m resisting their texts because I have a bunch of plans over the next 3 days for my birthday weekend and don’t want to be tired.

8:40:  Home, put groceries away, shower, eat (quinoa/kale/hummus/nooch/sauerkraut bowl), play on the internet, go to bed.

 

Friday, April 17th, 2015

Me:  32.5, Nathan:  Two days shy of 41, Jane:  4 plus 2 months, Aiden:  6.5 months

I woke up this morning and heard Aiden babbling and realized it’s been months since I’ve documented anything about either kid so decided today was the day, an impromptu Day In The Life:

7:15 a.m.:  Wake up tired and mildly hung over.  Last night I took my bike out for the first time (YAY spring!) to run some errands, one of which was delivering beer to a friend for a huge favor they did me earlier in the week.  So I ended up staying out late and drinking, plus Aiden still wakes up several times per night.

7:30:  In the bathroom, washing my face, and Jane is next to me, talking as usual, asking what we are doing today.  I used to think people were crazy for deliberately waking up earlier than their kids, but now I understand.  The talking is more than I can handle at this point in the day.  She is so sweet and smart though.  She loves to write down what we do each day on her calendar, which I got from the $1 store for x-mas.  In the past few weeks she’s started sounding out words to write on her own and I am soooo impressed!

Right now I’m just trying to have a minute alone to wake up though, so I ask her to go read a book to Aide who’s still in his swing and she’s such a good helper/big sister she agrees.

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7:45:  Milo, the almost 2 year old we watch today, arrives.  Jane starts singing a song like “I get to sit in the front todaaaaayayayyayayyyyy” complete with vibrato and a bunch of rhyming words, which she’s really into right now.  (She gets to sit in front in a booster since Milo will be in her car seat in the back.)

7:50:  “Mom, this baby smells like he has a poop!”  And she was right.  And it was very nearly a blowout poo!  But Aiden in his typical happy way had sat in it for who knows how long without complaining a bit.  I change him and nurse him.

So much to say about Aiden right now!  He continues to be an amazing sweet (pretty) easy baby.  His hair dries naturally into a mohawk.  Big flaky pieces still come off his scalp (cradle cap?).  He sat up unassisted for the first time this week.  We hardly ever call him Aiden, mostly A. Dee or A. Dees, which I’m unsure how to spell as a name. I’ll just write AD for the remainder of this post.  He likes to babble “deedee deedee”.  I love him so much and am always squeezing his suddenly really fat thighs and kissing him and telling him he cannot grow up any more because he is my baby.

My little naked fatties, both about 6 months:

 

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Mohawk:

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8:00: Get breakfast ready for the older two kids. Except Jane gets a lot of her own breakfast ready, she eats oatmeal almost every morning, with peanut butter, flax, fruit, and molasses. She gets out all the ingredients plus bowl and spoon and presses the buttons on the microwave by herself.

I make a grocery list for Costco (we are almost out of molasses) and start dry-frying some tofu for lunch.

Perfect fried tofu:

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Jane says “Mom, you know what?” like 30 times. Sometimes she doesn’t even know what to say after, just wants my attention. But sometimes she says things like “I have four dollars in my purse, it’s like, so crazy!” in a voice I’d expect from a teenager.

Teenager:

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8:30: Put AD down for a nap. I still just swaddle him and lay him on my bed:

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Jane and Milo play a game that involves throwing a piece of paper back and forth. I love that she can have fun even with a 2 yr. old who doesn’t talk yet.

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8:45: Finish the tofu, AD is still fussing so I go in to nurse him again. Jane shows me a “magic trick” with her Corduroy book where she basically tells me to look the other way while she hides it. I try my best to look interested.

9:00: AD finally is sleeping, I set up playdoh for the kids and get in the shower.

9:30: Go in the bedroom to get my clothes and AD wakes up. GAH why did I have to walk in RIGHT at the 45 minute mark? He’s started waking up (tired and cranky) at 45 minutes, just like Jane did at this age. Luckily, unlike her, he’s quick to get in a better mood and usually easy to get to sleep again if he needs another nap soon.

10:15 – 12:45: Go to a friend’s to play and have lunch. It’s gorgeous outside and she has a blow up bouncy house in her backyard, awesome:

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1:00: Home, start naptimes. The two year old goes down no problem. I struggle with AD for like an hour and he finally sleeps at 2:30. Jane is super crabby by this time and wants me to lay on the living room floor with her, put her legs on me, nothing is right. She falls asleep and I try to sneak out and she loses it and I lay down again so frustrated, the vision of the title of the book Go The F*ck To Sleep burning in my brain.

3:00: Finally all the kids are sleeping. I make a salad, sit quietly, do some work on the computer.

4:00: Kids wake up one by one, we have snacks, change diapers, clean up, play, pack for Nonni’s because we’re leaving as soon as Milo gets picked up so Jane can sleep over. AD eats a TON of rice cereal, it’s only the third time I’ve offered it, first time he didn’t quite know what to do, but now he loves it. I clip and file my nails, they feel disgusting to me if I let them get too long.

Stop to take a selfie:

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We go outside to play for awhile, but soon after I get everyone out, Jane has to come in to poop. High on my wish list for things to have in a house is a fenced backyard that I can see from my kitchen window so I can be inside and the kids can be safely out. Unfortunately we only have a front yard on a busy street with no fence.

6:15: Finally off to Nonni’s, but Aiden screams the entire 25 minute ride. Hang out with my mom and sis for about an hour.

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8:00: Come home, exhausted at the end of this week, get Aiden to sleep, and start writing this post but only get through about 9 a.m. (finishing it nearly a week later!), and go to bed!

K

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s the time of year when many people in our climate start dreaming of moving somewhere else.  I gave up those crazy ideas years ago (winter has actually gotten easier for me to deal with post-kids!), but I do still definitely prefer summer.

Every year I’m like “oh I’m going to embrace winter this year, go snowshoeing or something, get some better outdoor gear”.  And then I just stay inside and pour more whiskey into my tea.  At least I have aspirations!  I am so in awe of people I see biking this time of year.  Someday…  maybe…!

We spent the holidays mostly sick.  Everyone we know was hit with something in those few weeks.  Nathan had the flu, the kids both had coughs forever, somehow I got away with only getting half sick – literally, I could not hear out of my right ear, and snot was coming only out of the right side of my nose.

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Now it’s just the countdown until spring.  January is halfway over, yay!  Feb. is short and is the month of celebrating love, and Jane’s birthday, which will be held at a place that serves alcohol this year (what took me so long?).  March I plan to do an unlimited month of yoga, and get in shape for going to visit one of my bestest friends in L.A. in April.  I’ve never been to Cali!  She has an 18 mo. old girl and we will just hang out with our babies on the beach  =).

Other random things:

-Aiden is still wonderful.  He’s the baby that makes me want more babies.  When I see him I say ridiculous things like “I wuv wuv wuvs you my bubby boobles”.

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-I finally calculated our net worth.  I feel ashamed admitting this, being so into personal finance.  But for so long I’ve been focused on our day to day budget and not spending more than we make in a month, because that has been such a challenge for years.  I sat down one Saturday night (I know, party animal) and put all our retirement accounts from previous jobs, other savings and debt into one spreadsheet.  And was pleasantly surprised we are not in the negative!

-I’ve started watching Wheel of Fortune a lot (I rarely watch tv but it’s on right when Nathan is getting home from work/Aiden is wanting to be held/I’m needing a break from the whole day) and dreaming about being a contestant.  Or maybe Nathan being a contestant because he’s better under pressure than I am and just as good.  Jane watches it with me and gets SO excited when I “win”.  I seriously love this show, it’s one of the only smart shows left on tv.

That’s about all, hope you are having a wonderful winter wherever you are.  One final pic of Jane dressing up Aiden in a Queen Elsa hat.  That is some kind of makeup on her face, which she is obsessed with, thanks Auntie Jen  =).

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