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All By Myself

April 19th, 2008

Really.   I’m sitting in a hotel room, all by myself.   I am drinking a latte, responding to two dozen MommyBlog emails that are way overdue, checking out other mom blogs, writing a book review and completely absorbed in blissful quiet.  

A dear friend of mine is getting married this weekend, and due to many reasons (the biggest of which was the airfare cost to this little southern town!), Casey, Kenny and Dudley have stayed home and I have ventured into the Great Beyond.   It is the first time I’ve traveled alone since I was pregnant with Kenny.   The first time Casey and Kenny have been “alone together” overnight.   The rehearsal dinner starts in an hour, and I find myself almost wishing that I could skip it and stay in my present state!   Gasp!   I won’t, of course, but I am already scheming about my four hours or so of time before the wedding tomorrow that I will have free.

Before Casey and I got married, I used to take little solo trips every year for a few days.   I usually went to the mountains, occasionally to the beach, but mostly just to a spot where I could not talk to anyone for 48 hours or so and just read and think and write.   I had honestly forgotten how incredibly refueling this is!   I said goodbye a mere 8 hours ago, and from the moment I pulled into the airport parking lot, suddenly felt my brain begin to whirl.    

I read for an entire un-interrupted two hours at the airline gate (I panicked about being alone and got there really early), and even almost missed boarding for my flight because I was so immersed in someone else’s story.   It wasn’t until I heard, “Final boarding call for flight 776 to Columbia” that I snapped out of my reverie and hopped onto the plane.   Being the last to board my puddle-jumper, they took my carry-on away because there was no more room in the overhead bins.   I managed to hold onto my novel, though, and finished it in good time.

Last night, as I lamented to the women in our home group about having to go to a wedding alone, one said, “Oh, what I wouldn’t give to go sleep in a hotel room by myself for one night.   You’re going to wish you could stay the week.”   I brushed it off, but now I’ve got to give her credit.   This ain’t so bad.   And the wedding events haven’t even started.

Now my main thoughts  is… how soon can I do this again?

That One Thing

April 18th, 2008

At our weekly home group tonight, all the women got around to talking about The One Thing that, if we could change it, would make our lives easier.   For one, it would be if she could move back to the South, where her family is from.   For another, if she and her husband could see eye to eye about  sending the kids to private school.   For me, it would be if we could magically transport our awesome waterfront house out of the boondocks and into the town where all of our friends live.

And we all laughed, because as each of our One Things were different, we knew that if we got That One Thing, there would inevitably be something else that we would discover we “needed” to change.

As the men and women merged together, more and more issues came up.   One said that when you’ve got two people in a marriage union, there is always going to be someone that compromises a little more than the other – whether it’s where you live, who works or stays home, who makes the call on the big decisions.   She said, “It’s never really a win-win… not that it’s a win-lose, but more like a win-kinda/almost-win.”

I have to honestly say that over all, Casey and I are pretty unscathed in this arena.   In our four years of marriage, there are definitely sacrifices and compromises that we’ve made for each other, but we have never yet hit a point of impasse.   And we’ve never come close to “solving” a conflict that results in bitterness or resentment for one of us.   I know that it’s a hard-won state to be in, and one that we will continue to have to work on.   As we remember to love and respect each other (even delight in each other!), I pray that that our road together will stay smooth.

Now if I could only figure out how to move my house…

I Don’t Like It

April 16th, 2008

Kenny has continued to stretch his boundaries in learning what he can and cannot control.   This week’s prime strategy has been, “I don’t like…”   As in, “I don’t like my bed,” “I don’t like to eat dinner,” “I don’t like naps,” “I don’t like the Zoo,” “I don’t like to pee pee in the potty,” “I don’t like to wear diapers,” and “I don’t like to play outside.”   It’s maddening, unpredictable and usually completely farcical.

He is strong willed, too, and not easily swayed, as he repeats himself, waiting to see if he will get out of whatever I’m trying to steer him to do, and how quickly I will change out plans.   Today, though, we actually stumbled on something that was an honest-to-goodness fear.

While I was grilling some dinner, Casey and Kenny tromped off to the garage to get the hammock to set it up in the yard.   It’s finally getting warm enough, and we figured is would be fun to snuggle in it after dinner.   Kenny was all smiles as they showed it to me, but as soon as Casey had it set up, his smiles turned to cries and he screamed, “Take it down!” for the next twenty minutes.  

We sat on the porch, dinner getting cold on the plates, trying to reason, distract, ignore and every thing else as he cried, twisted in his chair and howled in fear and frustration.   Finally I remembered that at the very end of fall last year, we’d still not put it away, and there was a huge afternoon thunderstorm.   Looking out the window, we saw the hammock get blown down the yard and into the water.   Because of the storm, I couldn’t take Kenny outside with me, so I left him inside with strict instructions to stay put and watch Mommy, and I ran out into the yard and down to the water to pull the hammock, still attached to it’s heavy metal frame, out of the water and take it apart.   At the time, he didn’t seem tremendously fazed – he asked a few times about the wind and the storm and when I would put the hammock back up.   I probably said something to the effect of, “We can’t put it back up because it might blow away.”

Fast forward six months, and there he is, wailing about taking down the hammock.   Once I remembered what had happened last year, I said, “Are you afraid it’s going to blow away?” and he cried, “Yes!”   But even after Casey moved it as far up the lawn as he could, Kenny still continued to scream and cry.   Finally, Casey had a light bulb and said, “Kenny, are you afraid that the hammock is going to blow away while Mommy is in it?   Or Daddy?   Or Kenny?”   And that seemed to finally produce a calmer response: “You take the hammock apart and you put it in the garage and close the door,” Kenny said.   So Casey did just that.

I know that we are going to pull it out again soon, but hopefully it will be something we can do together and with less fear and trembling.   Maybe on a really warm, windless day…

kennys-party-031.jpg   August 2006… happier times in the hammock…

Story Hour and Other New Habits

April 13th, 2008

Kenny has picked up a very bad little habit… one that involves creative story-telling; otherwise known as telling lies.   He makes up funny and strange things some of the time, and outright deceiving things other times.

For example, when my Dad watched him so that Casey and I could go to the doctor on Thursday, Kenny told him that “Mama lets me have ice cream after lunch.”   Hm.   Casey told him to stop climbing on the stair rail, and he shot back, “Mama told me to do it!”   Or I”ll try to change his diaper and he’ll say, “Daddy said I don’t have to!”

Casey and I have made a real effort to explain to him that these things are not true – that they are lies, and that we don’t tell lies.   I know that he understands that what he says is not true, bu I don’t think he understands the gravity of it.   Most of the time, it silly stuff, but once or twice now, it’s been more serious.

Another new issue that’s recently evolved is that he doesn’t want to share things.   I know that it’s a normal thing for this age, but it’s something that I want to nip at the bud.   It’s one thing to not want to let another kid play with a favorite toy, but quite another when he is just being stubbornly selfish.   Today Casey and Kenny and I were coloring before lunch, and Kenny suddenly grabbed up all the crayons and told us that he didnt’ want us to have them anymore.   We told him that he needed to share, and he replied, “I don’t want to share!   I want them all.   I don’t want you to have them.”   He does it to me a lot during the day, too.   He’ll ask me to play something, but then not want me to touch any of it.   Then say, “You help me, Mama!” only to have a fit when I start touching whatever he’s playing.   Yuck.

So – all you More Seasoned Moms out there – any advice on how to deal with the lying and the anti-sharing behaviour?

Infirmary

April 13th, 2008

I think I need to tell my OB to stick to gynecology… after my last post, I got sicker, and ended up at my regular doctor’s office where he confirmed a bronchial infection and prescribed antibiotics.   Casey actually went with me, with the same symptoms, and my rescue-man Dad came over to spend the afternoon with Kenny so that Casey and I could go to the doctor and grab some lunch.   Woo-hoo!   Date day!

Ah, but I was pretty sorry for a while there.   Kenny, bless his heart, spent two days in bed with me… we did puzzles, read books, told stories, sang songs and slept.   Fortunately (I guess), he was still a little under the weather, too, so staying in bed that long didn’t seem to bother him very much.  

We finally dug out on Friday when the sun came out and GLORIOUS 70 degree weather hit.   We spent most of the day outside, planting flowers, walking the yard and I even got some time to daydream in the adirondack chair looking out at the water while he played trucks at my feet.   The weekend perked us all up too.   In spite of the three of us having matching coughs and sniffles, we are all recovering.   Whew.

Phantom Calling…

April 8th, 2008

Well, it turns out that yesterday’s rant about my maybe/maybe not cancelled OB appointment was unnecessary.   I went ahead and showed up today, and when I asked about the call, they said, “Hm.. that’s happened a few times before to other patients… just a glitch in the system… ”   So.   There.

My appointment went well, and aside from a sore backside (RhoGam is a mean little pistol… though Kenny thought it was funny that Mommy got an owie in the hiney…) all is as it should be.   (at least I assume it is until I get the results from my glucose test)

I still have a killer cough, but my doc said that my throat was fine, and it was just a cold I’d have to wade through.   Kenny and I actually cough at the same cadence right now, which is pretty amusing.   We spent the afternoon in my bed, reading books, and coughing together.   It was a Hallmark moment.

In other pregnancy-related issues, I am really having a wicked time with acid reflux and heart burn as of late.   It’s ten times worse than it was when I was pregnant with Kenny… I feel like I should start buying Tums by the case.   I almost hesitate to eat anything, because I know that ten minutes later I’ll be in pain.   At least it’s keeping me from gaining too much weight.   Because goodness knows, if it didn’t hurt so much to eat, I’d be packing away a lot more donuts.

mmm… a warm chocolate donut sounds really good right now…

All in the Family

April 7th, 2008

I finally caught whatever Kenny has and Casey came home from work feeling like he’s about to succumb as well… hacking cough, congestion and general ickiness.   blech.

I have an OB appointment tomorrow (which includes my 28 week glucose test) at 8:45 AM – the first appointment of the day.   Unfortunately, I just got a call from their automated system that said, in full, “This is ** OB/GYN.   Due to unforeseen circumstances your appointment has been cancelled.   Please call the office tomorrow during normal business hours to reschedule.”   OK.   First problem: this robot did not say “tomorrow” or leave  a date for the appointment in question.   And I have all of my appointments for the remaining 11 weeks already scheduled.   Second, assuming Robot did mean tomorrow, I technically have two appointments scheduled for tomorrow; one at 8:45 with the OB and one at 9 for the blood work.   The blood-work involves me fasting for three hours (meaning that I have to get up at 6AM and actually eat something, then nothing for two hours, then drink that nasty orange syrup they give you, then get drawn one hour later), so do I assume that I should proceed as planned, or not show up at all?   I can’t call them, because Robot called me at 5:30 – exactly thirty minutes after they close for the day.   I can’t call tomorrow, because they open at 8:30, my appointment is at 8:45 and the office is thirty minutes away (45 if you count the time it takes to park at the hospital garage and walk to the right building with a two-year-old in tow).   And anyway, I have a little instruction sheet to follow that begins at 6, and if I wait to call, I won’t be able to have the test done.

I’m also a little peeved because I was planning on cajoling my OB to look in my throat and ears and tell me if I’m really sick, or just have a cold, or if I need to go see my regular doctor.   Now I’m sick, confused and mad as a hornet.

Casey told me to just pretend everything was planned as normal and show up at 8:45.   Surely the blood-work hasn’t been cancelled – unless the lab techs are on strike.   I can see that my physician was probably called in for surgery or something of that sort, so that I can understand.   But when they make you schedule nearly all of your nine months worth of appointments up front, then cancel after hours the night before, it makes my blood boil.

On a happier note, check out my little rock star in his new bathrobe…

kennys-new-robe-004.jpg

Flashbacks

April 6th, 2008

Kenny’s fever finally went away, bu last night he developed a  persistant cough and kept us all up most of the night.   Since I was a reader as church this morning, Casey graciously agreed to stay home with our little hacker so that Kenny could recoup.   Even more gracious, because Friday night, the night of our family home gropu Bible study, he also stayed home with Kenny so that I could go (and get out of the house!).   Talk about a champion Daddy!

So this rainy morning, as I trooped off to church, Casey and Kenny hunkered down.   They sat in the living room with all of Kenny’s stuffed animals (Kenny never plays with just one – he likes “All The Animals” to stay together; so if one moves, they all move!) and for three and a half hours watched home videos of Kenny’s life from birth to present.   It’s something I never would have thought of, but it kept Kenny resting and content, generated conversations between Daddy and son and provided encouraging, stimulating entertainment.   Now Kenny is napping, and his cough is subsiding.   Way to go, Casey!

When I got home, they were in the midst of Kenny’s first birthday party… it’s so funny how, as I watch Kenny grow daily, I rarely notice how much he’s changed.   I could hardly believe that cubby little curly-haired kid who cried when we tried to get him to eat cake is the same as my wiry rascal who thinks that there should be dessert after every meal.  

kenny-knight-cook-week-4-085.jpg     September 2005

kennys-party-050.jpg               September 2006

  March 2008             florida-febmarch-2008-056.jpg

It’s hard to believe that we’re about to start all the baby stuff again!   Only 11 more weeks to go…

 

My Son’s a Little Hottie

April 2nd, 2008

… ok, that’s misleading… Kenny IS adorable, and I have no doubt will one day be a “hottie,” but this current hotness is all about a little boy with a really high fever.

Last night Kenny spiked a fever of 104.5.   He has never had a fever higher than 101.5 before.   Even this time last year, when he was in the hospital with a Staph infection, he never spiked that high.   I could barely bear to touch him; he was on fire.   We called the pediatrician’s office, and Casey called his brother, who is a physician, and were told to stay home unless it hit 105.   We gave him the highest possible doses of Motrin, cool baths, and stripped him down to a t-shirt.   I slept in his bed for half the night, until his fever broker, and Casey set the alarm at regular intervals to go in and take his temperature.   It was a scary night!

Today he was much better; his temperature never got above 101.9, and he was pretty happy to spend the day at home playing quietly.   He did get a little frustrated with me when I suddenly decided to vacuum the house, but hey – the sun came out today for the firt time in four days and I could finally see the dirt!   He was a sweet little trooper, though.   He’s sleeping now, and cool as a cucumber, so I’m praying that all is well and tonight will pass without incident.

Isnt’ it strange how suddenly rearranged your priorities get when your little one is sick?   When he was drowsy with fever yesterday afternoon, I sat with him in his bed for two hours without realizing how much time had gone by… then last night his twin bed suddenly seemed like a perfectly roomy enough place to sleep, as long as I could be near him…

***

On another note, if you haven’t done so recently, check out the “Sites for the Web-Surfing Mommy” on the right sidebar… I have a new product review up from 2Chix Maternity!

Haute Mama

April 2nd, 2008

I don’t know about you other pregnant readers out there, but there is an absolute dirth of really well-made, well-fitting, affordable maternity clothes out there.   Unless you plan on existing solely in the cheaply-made polyester blends of most main stream maternity stores, you know that you have to shell out big bucks to look cool.

Enter 2Chix… Maternity Wear for the Haute Mama.   This hip company offers a stylish (and a little daring!) line of tees, tanks, hoodies and skirts for the Mama who wants to flaunt her new curves.   There is even a line for the Daddy-to-be!

I received two samples from 2Chix, and I was so pleased with the comfort and quality that I’ve been wearing them non-stop.   “What’s Kickin'” and “We’re Hungry” – the two tees I have been “test driving” – have been a hit.   I’ve gotten compliments at the grocery store, the park, even at a church Bible study.   Everyone wants to know where I bought them.   And not only from my fellow moms… quite a few men have been bold enough to ask when I’m due, or to offer congratulations!

The most remarkable thing about these tees is their soft, comfortable fit.   They are “one size fits all” – believe it or not – and the claim is actually true!   I normally wear a size 2, and whenever I put anything on that is bigger than an xs, I am dwarfed in billows of shapeless fabric.   Even pregnant.   And everyone knows that billows of fabric when you’re pregnant make you look even bigger then you really are.   These tees gently cling to the belly, flattering the bump and the rest of your growing curves, and are so soft that you will want to sleep in them at the end of the day.

A friend of mine, who is a size 10 pre-pregnancy, received one as a gift while pregnant, and she loved the fit as well – her tee fit her as well as mine did – and they were exactly the same size!   The shirts are actually specially weaved to achieve the terrific fit, and are of such high quality cotton that they last wash after wash.

Go check out their site at www.2chix.com.   This line of casual wear is the perfect addition to any Mommy-to-be’s wardrobe.   The only other advice I have is, buy more than one!

PS ~ As a special to MommyBlog.com readers, you will receive a 10% discount on any merchandise ordered between now and August 31, 2008!   Just enter  discount code “mommyblog10” when making your order.

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