Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Overheard Today

A lactation/nursing video was playing on the big screen in the waiting room of my OB's office today. In the midst of it, a little 2 1/2 year old toddler goes, "Mommy, what's that baby DOING?!" Momma was beet red and so embarrassed she stayed silent and tried to shush the girl. The lady sitting across from little girl says in a thick British accent, "She's eating lunch." Little girl continues to watch in alarmed amazement, while the rest of us in the full waiting room begin to chuckle.

Although, I didn't chuckle too hard. JK is enough of a chatterbox for me to know that someday I'll be experiencing similar conversations.

The look on the momma's face reminded me of when I was about 14 or so and I had "snuck" a boyfriend over to my house when I was babysitting my twin brothers during summer vacation. Boyfriend and I were sitting on the back porch talking when one of my potty-training brothers called from inside the house, "Sister!!! I'm done poop-ing! Come wipe my bu-utt!"

I wanted to crawl into a hole. Boyfriend just laughed, while I turned 10 shades of teenaged embarrassment. I always thought that was God's way of punishing me for sneaking a boyfriend over when my parents were gone.

Do any of you parents have experiences where your little ones have said something that embarrassed you or caught you off guard?

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Too Cute!

Sometimes I am still in awe that my baby brothers are daddies. So weird. But they sure do make cute babies! (I stole these off their FB profiles.)

JK & C and baby DF...

JL and baby J...

Friday, June 26, 2009

I Can't Get Enough!

I hate to sound cliche, but this is one of my cravings right now. Cannot eat enough of these things! Vlasic Baby Kosher Dills...

And when they're paired with something really, really sweet like Rice Divine's Mudd Pie ice cream or Kinnikinnick K-Toos (think GF Oreos), they taste even better. I know, I know, I'll readily admit it sounds gross, but I can't explain it. My cravings have gotten worse and more bizarre the closer to the due date I get!

My only consolation is that at least I have an excuse. If I'm still doing this in a few months after M2 arrives, please somebody, start an intervention. I've got enough weirdness in me without stuff like this adding to it!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

A Couple Grease Monkeys

This week, N decided to put new brakes on the Eclipse. I just love how he's handy like that! (So does our bank account!)

And of course, our busy body toddler has to get involved in anything that Daddy's involved in...

What amazes me is N's patience in situations like this. He let Monkey pretend to loosen lug nuts and play with all of his tools. While if this were Momma, I'd be having a stroke over him getting hurt, too dirty, or losing an important piece of equipment.

But like everything else, N takes it all in stride and just let's Monkey learn and grow and in the meantime, have some wonderful male bonding time.

And get filthy dirty...

I honestly can't remember Monkey having such a good time with his Daddy...

So much so, that when Daddy was done, Monkey had a hard time coping...

The Meltdown...

...that carried on for 15 minutes and into the bathtub. Which took an entire bottle of baby soap to wash the grease off and left a ring around the tub that will take forever to wash off.

One thing I love about kids (and sexy husbands): they're washable. :-)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Every Day Father

I had planned this past week to have this wonderful, sweet, poignant little Father’s Day post. But Father’s Day weekend was a bit of a bust. Father’s Day gifts and plans did not quite pan out the way we had intended, due to the heat, the fact that I have the energy of a slug in hard hibernation, and somebody else giving N the exact gift I had intended to give.

Funny now, but not at the moment type of thing. I felt my thunder was stolen. I pouted for awhile, but now I'm over it. LOL!

So this weekend, while I cried at the drop of a hat due to physical pain, frustration with my physical limitations, hormones, and limited patience for a toddler that is exercising his independence, N, again, has taken everything in stride and dealt me many hands of grace. His patience with me and Monkey and energy to just do what needs to be done amazes me. I really cannot say enough about this sweet husband of mine. I have seen him grow over the years in so many ways, but it seems the past few months, he has really just stepped up and become so much more than I ever expected. I am humbled and grateful and I know I do not deserve such a man. But for whatever reason, God has given him to me and I'm so happy for it.

Last night was a tough night. Monkey was up a few times and I hadn’t been sleeping well anyways. So I brought him into the living room to snuggle and sleep on the recliner with me. He'd had another bad dream and I just felt it “right” to snuggle instead of being the tough momma and make him go back down in his own bed. He sat in the recliner and in his little vocabulary told me about his dream. (Which I will post about at another time.) After talking for a few moments, we both drifted off. I awoke to the sunlight streaming into the living room and immediately knew that we had overslept. But I didn’t care. He was sleeping soundly in my arms, tiny rosebud lips slightly parted, curly hair askew, and the sweetest of toddler snores coming out of him. So precious! I felt like God was giving me a little gift and I didn’t want to miss it. So I sat for a bit just enjoying the moment. After a few minutes he started stirring, I think because he was too warm against my oven of a stomach. So I gently rolled him over on his side and stuck a cool pillow under him, while I struggled like an overturned turtle to get out of a rocker recliner without waking him.

Both N and I took showers as quickly as possible, because getting ready without a toddler underfoot is truly a gift to start the day.

Or is this just us that thinks that?

After I dried off, I walked down the hall to the front of the house and saw this…

My man and our son…

And it dawned on me...

...Father’s Day is everyday.

A father is not a once a year celebration. At least not in this family. While it's always fun to have a special day of recognition once a year, if the man is not a father the rest of the time, what's the point of that one day? What are you celebrating? And it's in these moments, like this morning, that I celebrate my son's father. My partner, my best friend, my lover, and the AMAZING father of our children.

Happy Monday precious!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

WWF "Double You" Style

Just this week I had a memory resurface during a conversation with a male co-worker. We were talking about the differences between men/women and boys/girls. He’s one of the middle of four boys, so his childhood experiences were much different than mine. But upon talking with him, one of the things that I suddenly remembered was that when my twin brothers were little, they would wrestle ALL.THE.TIME! Seriously, it was like watching a couple tiger or bear cubs in those nature shows that wrestle to learn self-defense skills. They weren’t fighting (usually), but it was mostly good-natured wrestling. They were always touching, hitting, flicking, slapping, tugging, which almost always turned into an arm-flinging, leg sprawling, head-locking wrestling match. The only thing that makes this memory funnier is that more often than not, my father would be right in the middle of it. Watching the two of them as little boys pounce on my 6’ 1”, 200 lb father, like they actually had the upper hand, was always comical.

But I never got it.

As I relayed this memory to my coworker, he just sat in my cube, laughing, hiding his eyes and mouth behind his hand, like he completely related to the scenario. As one of four boys, he said wrestling was an everyday occurrence in his household. And now, even as full grown men, in their 30’s and 40’s, they still have wrestling matches when they get together.

Seriously? As adult men with wives and children?

Yep. And their mother still fusses at them that they’re going to get hurt or break her furniture, just like she did decades ago.

As a girl, this is something I just do not relate to. But then considering there is 11 years between me and my brothers, the typical sibling rivalry relationship is something I don’t relate to either, so whatever.

But now, as a mom to a boy, I see how he interacts with my sweet and gentle husband, and I just can’t believe this is anything other than how the male species is hardwired. One of the things that Monkey LOVES to do is wrestle with Daddy.

Again, I don’t get it.

When they wrestle, I literally have to leave the room. It makes my teeth and my jaw hurt because of the stress. I imagine stitches and concussions and bruises that make a stranger wonder if CPS needs to be called on us. That hasn’t happened yet (knock on wood) and mostly what I hear from down the hall is my son laughing hysterically, Daddy grunting dramatically, and a lot of tickling. It sounds exactly like my brothers wrestling with our Dad years ago. Last night, De-dah came over and for one memorable night, N handed the match over to the previous reigning champion.

With his love for hoops, Monkey somehow managed to mix wrestling with “bakket-bah”.

Monkey comes from behind...

But he's not quick enough on the draw...

Even when it was obvious De-Dah was winning...

Monkey always managed to get the upper-hand...

As this continued for awhile, I remembered my brothers. And I imagined Monkey and M2 doing the exact same thing, building the same silly wonderful memories with each other and with their Dad and De-dah. If his in-utero movements are any indication, Monkey might be given a run for his money!

I have no doubt I have some serious internal bruising from this guy. To the point where "M2" is often replaced with "Bruiser".

As for Momma, I am perfectly content to be a spectator on the sidelines. Or down the hall where I don't actually have to watch it.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Sleepy Monkey

During the week, Monkey has a pretty strict schedule because he's at school. Breakfast, snacktimes, lunches, and naptimes are almost always exact to help the teachers keep things under control with a room full of toddlers. Weekends at home with Momma and Daddy are a little more lax, but we attempt to keep things as close as possible to the weekday schedule to prevent too much transition on Mondays. This past weekend, naptime was a little skewed because we were out for the morning and lunch (thus naptime) was moved back. Little Man actually had to be woken up from his nap on Saturday, which NEVER happens!

Even after three hours of napping, he wouldn't wake up even to the camera flash in the room...

Daddy watching him try to wake up...

The stinkeye: you might have to click to see the detail on his face, but it made N and I laugh out loud...

I love the sweaty mess of curls on his head. His hair is starting to grow out again and all of my favorite curls are back...

99% of the time, he's in the sweetest mood when he first wakes up...

I just love this little guy!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Tossing My Cap

The last few months have been a bit of a whirlwind. What am I saying? The past few years have been a whirlwind. Ha! Seriously, the speed at which time flies astounds me. N and I are a few short months from having been married for 7 years. Holy schmoly, where has the time gone? It’s overwhelming when I realize that I initially met my husband in my mid-twenties and now I’m on the downhill slope towards my 40’s.

I’m wanting to crinkle my nose at that thought, but realized it’s just adding to my crow’s feet and wrinkled brow. If you can look at the mirror and not see either, just nod and pretend you understand what you’re reading. Because there is a point in almost every woman’s life that seriously wonders, “Is Botox really that bad?” If you haven’t thought that, your crow’s feet and wrinkled brow haven’t had enough development. Give yourself some time…the thought is coming.

As we near the end of this pregnancy, I have a condition that’s akin to “senioritis”. If you’re a teacher to high school seniors, you know what I mean. Or if you’ve ever BEEN a high school senior, you should know what I mean. That last year of school gives you an antsy-ness like nothing before in your life. You know that it’s your last year and you’ve worked hard for the perks that come with being the elite of your high school campus. You class schedule is light, you get a longer lunch period, you get the best parking spaces and unlike the underclassmen, YOU’RE ALMOST DONE!!! While the level of excitement amongst seniors is palpable, there is an undercurrent of melancholy because you also realize that your life is about to change in dramatic ways. These kids that you’ve spent much of your life growing up around are about to all go their separate ways. Sure, some of you are going to the same college or a few might even be roomies once you get to college, but you know you’re on the precipice of adulthood. You’re not a kid anymore and those last few months, days, weeks before graduation really need to be savored. While the opportunities you see in your future are exciting, you also know that once you cross that stage for that diploma, nothing will ever be the same.

You can never go back.

Both of my pregnancies have been difficult. I can’t say that I’ve enjoyed myself either time. Incredibly ironic after our infertility journey. And yet, it is with a bittersweet heart that I realize THIS IS IT. I’m almost done. While I’m so excited to meet this little boy, there is an element of sadness that this is the last time I’ll experience being pregnant.

If you don’t know, it is. We’re done. I’m really getting too old for this. If I have any eggs left, they’re like the wrinkled old maids at the bottom of the popcorn bowl.

So I let my heart marinate in the melancholy for a moment. This is the last time that I’ll feel those little jabs and rolls in my womb and rub cocoa butter on my over-stretched skin. This is the last time people will help carry things unasked or stand aside for me simply because of my fragile physical condition.

This is the last time that I’ll have a role in creating and nurturing a miracle hand-in-hand with my Heavenly Father.

Have you momma’s ever looked at it that way? What other chance do you get to do that? Strange, isn’t it?


And then...

And then, I realize – this is also an end to the heartburn! No more morning sickness! No more constipation! No more hourly trips to the potty! No more awkward pregnancy sex! No more gestational diabetes! Oh, the silver lining is bright and shining my friends! I don't even have to search for it. Suddenly the melancholy marinade has all but dried up and my mind reels from the excitement of what’s to come…

A Little Monkey, all wrinkled and pink, with a button nose, peapod toes and a fuzzy head. Tiny newborn clothes and midnight feedings and teaching Big Monkey terms like “gentle” and “nice”. Belly button stumps and tiny socks that never stay on. I get the pleasure and privilege of doing all of that all over again and honestly, I cannot wait! I’m not na├»ve. I understand that sleep deprivation, constant worry, and endless diapers come with that cute package. In the meantime, I’ll attempt to savor the last five weeks of this experience and not rush through it. But I’d be lying if I said I’m not looking forward to what change is on the horizon.

Monkey at 36 weeks gestation...

M2 at 34 weeks gestation...

I think I see a little resemblance, no? :-)

Unless M2 decides to join us earlier, July 13th is our scheduled date for a C-section. I’m really ready to toss this cap and meet this kiddo!

And no, Dad and Gramma, names have not been picked out. Well, they have, I just can't get N to commit to it.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

What I MEANT To Say...

When N and I count our blessings, our Small Group is always one of those things at the top of our list. This group of people have surrounded us with love, encouragement, and nurturing for several years. They mourned and grieved with us in our hormonal infertility journey and two miscarriages. They have literally laid hands on me and prayed for God to open my womb. They have joyously celebrated with us as the first folks to know about Monkey's conception...literally...even before our family. It is with this group of friends that God has pulled us closer to Him, sharpened our minds, and made us accountable in our walks. We seriously cannot thank Him enough for giving us these folks, who I call "Jesus in skin".

This past Sunday, these awesome friends hosted a diapers and wipes shower for us during our Sunday School class. They had a gorgeous breakfast spread, including some super yummy gluten-free raspberry muffins! (Thank you Kristen!) I'm just kicking myself for not remembering my camera that morning, because the breakfast table looked beautiful. And then there was the HUGE PILE of diapers and wipes standing next to it! The generosity from everyone in our Joshua Tree class was overwhelming to say the least.

When it came time for praise/prayer requests that morning, we just had to sing the praises of everyone in that room. I had it all planned out. I knew pretty much what needed to be said. Except when I opened my mouth the dam of emotions kinda took over and I lost all composure. :-( For those of you that were there, please forgive me for blubbering, so I feel the need to really state what my heart felt at the moment.

What I meant to say was, "Thank you all for being such an integral part of our journey the last few years. We seriously leaned on you during some very tough times. Most of you carried us and had hope for us because we were too broken to have hope for ourselves. We can't thank you enough for standing by us during those times and for your generosity today. The tough economy has taken it's toll on all of us and we completely understand that some of you have given sacrificially to give us gifts today. We are very touched with you even being here to help us celebrate our SECOND little monkey, let alone the generosity of that huge pile of diapers and wipes."

The only thing that I can add since then, is a big thank you to those of you that also gave sweet little gifts to Monkey as the new big brother! We are so grateful to those of you that remembered him...you guys are so awesome! We plan on keeping those gifts on stand-by until M2 arrives, so Monkey can feel loved and pampered when the stress of a sibling arrives.

We love you man! :-)