Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Thoughts on daytime television

That guy from Cake Boss is always making a fancy cake to surprise his family members for milestones or special occasions.

You know what I think would really surprise them?

A pie.

Friday, September 23, 2011

You knew this was coming: barf talk.

I don't believe in most of those pregnancy related old wives' tales, and I'll tell you why. Time may have softened the pain of contractions in my memory. And maybe in retrospect the incredible, unbelievable, indescribable level of tired in those first few post-partum days has faded a bit, but I will never, ever forget the heartburn I suffered through while pregnant with the Floyd/Bug. The raging fire in my throat seared itself directly into my long-term memory. Nearly 2 years later I still can't drink orange juice because of one unfortunate empty-stomach sippage that occurred at work one day and resulted in actual tears. And do you know what I got out of all that firey nausea? Certainly not a baby sporting the full head of lush, thick locks those old ladies promised, that's for sure. 

Remember this bald beauty, anyone?
So that's why I haven't paid much attention to the differences I've noticed between my experiences with Sherman versus Floyd. The speed with which my tummy swelled right up and out of my normal wardobe is, I'm told, quite normal for Baby Numero Dos.

There are other differences, too. I've noticed that the round ligament pain--sharp, brief little zingers of pain that shoot across my lower abdomen just above the groin when I stand up quickly or sneeze--are far more noticeable this time. I attribute this at least in part to the fact that, at least to this observer, this baby seems to be sitting lower in my pelvis than Floyd did. I'm ridiculously short waisted, so maybe it's all in my imagination anyway.

In terms of the barfing (oh, the barfing)- I seem to be dealing with less this time around, both in terms of intensity and frequency. I know, I know, I should be counting my lucky stars. Let's be real, though- it's tough to be grateful about much of anything puke related when you are, in fact, puking. And trust me, I'm puking.  After somehow avoiding it successfully for an entire pregnancy and a half, I tossed my cookies at work the other night. It was not fun. I made it into the receptacle of choice, (because I'm basically a rockstar barfer) but... hmmm. How to say this? There was, ahem, nasal involvement which meant that even after the necessary clean up had been completed, I was still acutely aware that the deed had been done, if you know what I mean.

So there are differences. I'm not superstitious, though, so I'm not insisting that those differences mean Sherman is a man-child rather than a second little princess-face. I'm not insisting either way, actually. I guess we'll just see next month.

Differences aside, I've been quite lucky in both my pregnancies. I haven't experienced any back pain or significant difficulty sleeping, and I'm hopeful that I'm inching my way closer to the wonderous joys of life in the second half of the second trimester-- that magical world where baby is visible but not intrusive, where movement is noticeable but does not elicit yelps of surprise when a tiny heel rams itself into the unfortunately placed kidney. My work situation is a zillion times more conducive to pregnant/new baby life, so I'm quite hopeful that the insanity of my crazy 26 will be avoided this go 'round.

So we plug onward, bravely staring down week 18 in just a few days.

Biggest difference between these two pregnancies? Round two goes by SO FAST.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Fall Clean Up

I woke up this morning, and found myself watching my ceiling fan spin around and around.

Today is the day, I thought to myself, and officially declared the day Fall Clean Up.

Luckily, after a tasty breakfast of Cream of Wheat and peaches, Bug agreed with me. I might be the mommy and therefore think I'm the boss, but completing Fall Clean Up with an uncooperative almost 2-year-old is basically impossible. With the toddler on board, the two-and-a-half of us spent the morning stripping bed sheets, vacuuming floors, scrubbing toilets, and pulling all the tops that I won't be fitting in to for the next several months out of my drawers and folding them into tupperware bins.

And a measly 3 and a half hours later, I found myself flopping down on the couch, for once in my entire life looking forward to folding laundry because it meant I could sit down. At seventeen weeks pregnant, growing this Sherman baby takes some real energy.

Thank heavens for a good episode of What Not To Wear to keep me company while the Bug (lucky girl) gets a nap. Once she's awake, it's back to the grind, pulling out the clothes Bug has grown out of over the summer from her drawers and replacing them with the long sleeves I found for her--on sale PLUS a coupon!--yesterday at Carter's. Tired or not, it will be time to mop the kitchen floor and polish the countertops.

After all, the Fall Clean Up waits for no woman. Or fetus.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Because the first time was, well, pretty great.

Bug's been feeling under the weather this week. A few days after our very first trip to InstaCare on Sunday evening for what turned out to be not a UTI (but did result in a very traumatic experience involving a catheter), I noticed that Bug sounded just a tiny bit hoarse when I left for work. Halfway through my shift, I began getting updates from Schmoopsie.

"Bug's voice is totally gone," he sent in a text message. And then, "she's coughing a lot. She can't seem to catch her breath." Finally, near midnight, "she can't breathe when she's laying down. I'm snuggling with her downstairs."

I snuck out of work early and dashed home. I ran down the stairs, peeling off my blouse (because who knows what kind of germs float around in an ER) and pulling on a clean oversized t shirt before snatching up my miserable baby and planting a kiss on my exhausted husband's forehead.

Here is something I have learned over the past 22 and a half months. Motherhood suits me.

I mean, don't get me wrong. I fail quite often. There are many days where Bug eats too many fruit snacks and goldfish and not enough vegetables. Sometimes we stay in our jammies all day with nary a comb to touch her orphan hair, and occasionally we find ourselves watching too much children's television (which is brutal on the Mommy half of the equation, but hey. Laundry has got to get folded somehow. I'm looking at you, Handy Manny.)

Shortcomings not withstanding, I think motherhood suits me. I struggle to find words to describe the bond with my copper haired daughter that aren't cliche, that haven't been echoed by mothers for generations. You know the kind-- the sort of hokey "heart walking around outside your body" sentiments that are probably overused but nonetheless frighteningly accurate.

The best I can come up with is this: there is a part of me, a part which I suspect is located somewhere just below my throat, underneath my sternum and between my lungs, that was empty and lacking and somehow I didn't even know it. I can feel it there, lighting on fire when I see her soft, chubby cheeks smiling in the morning or her naked little bottom trotting away from me after the tubby. It's a part of me that swells until I think it may explode, and a place that is, coincidentally, directly linked to my tear ducts.

It's the part of me that hurts when I swoop up my feverish little girl and tuck her warm forehead into my neck underneath my chin. I feel her weight melt into me in the rocking chair, and run my fingers along her narrow little back. It's a place that is filled by her, but somehow has room for more.

One day and one croupy diagnosis later, Schmoops and I stood shoulder to shoulder, gazing into her crib and watching her chest rise and fall in time with the wet sort of wheezing sound she made. I saw the way her tall body fills up her crib these days, and the way her long hair splays out across the top of her shoulders while she sleeps.

She's just so BIG. We've been noticing the signs a lot recently. New words pop unexpectedly from her lips every day. She softly "counts" the items in her number book, two, five, two, five, which sounds in her little girl voice more like "tee-yew, fih, tee-yew, fih..." She climbs and runs and jabbers constantly. She is less a baby and more a child every day.

Like all mothers, I am proud and I grieve. I pridefully grieve. I prieve.

Turns out there's no stopping this incessant growing up. And so several months ago, the Schmoops and I decided there was only one thing to do.

Grow another one.

So we are.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Chocolate milk and Santo Jorge

A few weeks ago, I sent an absolutely unfathomable text out to my family members. Lunch time had arrived, and, being out of regular milk (minus one point for Mother of the Year) I filled Bug's sippy with chocolate milk instead.

And she lost her mind. Like in a bad way. Like in a throw-herself-on-the-floor-because-of-the-INJUSTICE-of-it-all kind of a way. I am the meanest mom in the world for making her try that chocolate milk.


This behavior shocked me. What child of mine doesn't like chocolate milk?

My dad said it best.

She's obviously not an ______ (insert his mother's maiden name here), he said. She'd be dipping her cheese in chocolate milk.

He's so right. We're food sort of people in my family. And that whole story is my way of explaining the huge quantity of treats I ingested during our family outting to St. George over Labor Day weekend.

We had an amazingly lazy, relaxing, hilarious time as a family swimming, sleeping, watching college football, and eating.

(As an aside, I am oh-so-proud of my Aggies for the strong showing against Auburn. Yes, I did sing the entire fight song a number of times. Let's all agree to pretend that the final four minutes, which I watched standing in my swim suit, dripping on the tile floor, was all a terrible dream. Go Aggies, go Aggies, hey hey HEY.)

It was the perfect getaway from the insane schedule we've been keeping around our house recently. We've been exhausted, in fact.

Months ago, after news of new demanding church responsibilities, several lonely months of working opposite schedules during the week, increasing time demands at P's work, and other new stress-increasing changes that naturally come with life, the Schmoopsie just rolled his eyes and sighed.

And just think: he got the shingles before all of that.

So anyway, we spent the weekend celebrating Uncle Big's mission call to Fiji by eating copious amounts of chocolate and cheese (not together) and enjoying each other's company.


Oh yeah. Also, Bug totally DUG the chocolate milk once she put on her big girl panties (not really, just an expression) and tried it. Maybe she's mine after all.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Stuff I don't get.

  • Young men who insist on wearing their pants so large they have to permanenty dedicate one hand to holding them up.
  • Women over a certain age wearing mini-skirts and/or tank tops in public.
  • Toddler beauty pagaents. (Spray tanning a 5 year old? I just... I can't... ugh.)
  • Comedies where a black actor dresses up as an older fat woman.
  • Handle bar mustaches.
  • (Let's be fair.) Any kind of mustache.
  • People with that foamy saliva built up in the corners of their mouth as they speak.
  • Unnecessary product upgrades, e.g., the scented handles on the package of disposable razors Kim bought not long ago.
  • People who are neither playing beach volley ball nor water skiing, but still insist on securing their sunglasses with those chum things.

What things stump you?