Thursday, April 28, 2011

Enjoying This Moment

I spent the last 24 hours in the hell that is (probably) food poisoning or a 24 hour flu. I haven't thrown up that much since I was a kid. Hell. Seriously. Thanks to my sweet Mr. Bear I have a clean house and today I am relaxing and totally enjoying this.....

In lieu of any real sort of post for the past week (making up for it after the fact?) I thought I'd send you all over to one of my regular reads to a post about parenting. Somewhat related to the "clean house" statement I just made. Normally I really like Cjane's ideas, for as different as we may see the world (she also happens to be related to one of my absolute most favorite college teachers so that gives her a leg up in my book), but this particular post I somewhat disagree with.

 Particularly the first and last quotes she mentioned.....for as much as I try to get things done around my home I value time spent with my daughter a lot more than I value time spent scrubbing kitchen counters or having an immaculate garden. A clean house is a happy house, YES, but I will clean my house every day, (practically) for the rest of my life, and I only have a few years where my baby will want me to color alongside her all morning long. Plus, even for someone like me who has a child that wants to be attended to almost constantly, there are plenty of hours where I am hands free. Morning play (when she doesn't seem to notice her solitude), naps, kitchen cleaning while she eats (sssssllllloooooowwwwwly!), and bed time. If I WANT to get it all I can, maybe not as perfectly as I would always like, but, clean enough. Usually I'm the one holding myself back (lazy much?). Anyway, maybe it's an excuse to get out of constant chores but I know very few women (none actually, but I'm sure they are out there), with all their children grown and gone, that don't wish they would have put the cleaning aside to really enjoy their babies more often. I don't want to have that regret.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


Avoiding. Lately that's all I've been doing.

Like now. I'm justifying sitting at the computer during nap time because :
♥ The kitchen is (mostly) clean
♥ I've already decided against washing my hair today (should I have kept that a secret? Probably not because if you see me out in public you'll be able to tell by looking at my rat's nest!)
♥ I made the bed once this week and that is enough
♥  I just don't feel all that pressed to do anything above and beyond today

The reality is :

♥ I need to clean up my morning coffee mess (french press, while delicious beyond measure, does not make itself nor does it tidy up on it's own when I am done)
♥ I am always happier with a made bed, plus I'm less likely to get BACK IN bed if it looks pretty ♥ Laundry is, as always, piled up waiting to be attended to
♥ and basically there a millions of things I've been avoiding this week that need to be done

The reason almost all my blogging references cleaning, or not cleaning, is because when that is NOT what I want to be doing I generally end up here. Hoping I'll convince myself to do what needs to be done.

I don't consider myself a lazy person but, oh boy, have I been lazy lately! It started with a cold that last way too long. Now I've been feeling really un-rested and sore every morning (I can't find a good sleep position!) which makes me drag all morning. Once afternoon hits Miss Mad wants nothing more than for me to hold her or sit quietly and watch her do what she does (make messes). I know I sound like a broken record, I'm sorry! I want sun and more energy, is that too much to ask???

Truthfully I think it all really does have to do with the cold (weather not sickness, but that too I guess). It gets me down when the end of April is just around the corner and I am stuck inside with grey skies staring at me through the windows. Mad begs to play outside every time she passes the back door. My gardens are overrun with weeds that I ignored last fall when it started to get out of control. My body aches with lack of exercise (walks to the park anyone?).

So, I've been doing you all a favor by not writing more often. If I did it would all read exactly like the last dozen posts. I'll be better! Don't leave ok? I promise to be more interesting. In fact, The Bear and I have a delightful trip planned to (somewhere) in California to drink wine and be merry. I won't blog, yet, about how much I know I'll miss my Baby Bear and how I'm a little scared that she'll be sad without me. Because, and this is me not blogging about missing her, she and I have been really attached lately. She's my little buddy. See?

Me and My Girl

Monday, April 11, 2011

From a House to a Home

The house is quiet. Like whoa. The Bear is watching a movie (likely one that I wouldn't watch with him aka something totally demented and awful) on his laptop, the dishwasher is going, the baby moniter is buzzing peacefully with no cries from the other end, and I am sitting in a comfy spot editing photos and drinking a glass off wine. Yes please! Did I mention my house is NOT littered with baby toys and garbage from dinner? Cause we cleaned. Impressive.

Today I took a trip with my Mad to Ikea. Lately that has been a good way to pass the time when I have some cash in pocket and ideas in my head. Truthfully I never leave with what I was searching for but I'm always happy with what I do end up with. Today it was pillows, kitchen randoms, bathroom randoms, & picture frames (hopefully some cute "after" images to come soon).

Speaking of shopping....I've actually been doing a lot of it lately. My favorite! We had a birthday party for my sister at our house and while The Bear and I were at Pier 1 shopping for some serving trays he offered to buy me the chair I've been coveting for several months now. It's more expensive than it was when I first saw it on sale but definitely still reasonable in my book. One off my biggest complaints in our home was the lack of color. Brown and beige was the name of the game. I've done my best to colorize tastefully but it can be overwhelming at times. The cost I mean. This chair looks so HAPPY in my "great" room. I call it a "great" room because it fits the bill of  a kitchen and living area in one but it is just a normal sized space, nothing really GREAT about it's size.
Cutie pillow from Bedbuggs on Etsy, similar to this one
 Additionally I found a dining chair that was a lone soldier and thus was discounted like crazy. I paid $40 for this pretty thing and it looks so sweet at my desk. Ok, so it wouldn't be comfortable if I sat there all day every day but because I only sit down intermittently throughout my day it's perfect. And cute too.
 My goal is to finish our library slash temporary play room (until I'm ok with Mad going up and down the stairs and playing while I can't watch her constantly) in the next couple of months and then I'll move on to our hallways and master bedroom. Of course there are a million other little ideas I have for the "great" room but for now it's definitely in a good place. I really love adding fun items to my home and in the spirit of decorating I've added several design blogs to my feed. Anyone have any blog suggestions for me? Send them my way!!!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

A Chance to Change?

Lately I've been wondering a lot about my thoughts and ideas on parenthood and how, if I get the opportunity to do it again from the very beginning, I would do it differently (I am so so so NOT pregnant, not for a while I hope, but that doesn't mean I don't think about it).

First of all I would find a fairy to grant me three wishes and every single one of them would be that The Bear and I would agree on all parenting issues. That would basically have solved ALL of our contention the past 2 years of our lives together. I hate knowing that if we disagree one person is going to feel that they "lost" and perhaps their parenting opinions don't matter as much. Mostly that would be The Bear. He knows it and I know it. I don't love that it is that way but I'm not foolish enough to deny it. Somewhere in my heart I believe that if we both had supported* each other a little more the difficult months would have been easier to move through. I wouldn't have felt like I was constantly searching for a way that we both agreed with and just stuck to the same thing from day 1. There is no going back but I hope if we do it again some day there will be less debate on how and what to do and more action. Consistent and calm action.

Secondly, and this is a big one, I would stop WONDERING, out loud mostly, how to make my child do what I wanted and expected. The wondering led to discussions, which led to disagreement, which led to attempts at other ways, which led to frustration, which led to more disagreement, and ultimately led us back to the same thing I was doing in the first place. If I just did what my heart told me was right, without the tears (my own) because things weren't perfect and complaints of exhaustion and frustration, we would have moved through with less contention and those long months wouldn't  have dragged on and on. I hate recalling all the conversations wherein I analyzed every little thing she did trying to figure out the best way to parent her (sleep, let's be honest, I've stressed about sleep this.entire.time). I would have been so much happier if I just stopped talking about it. In the end I am who I am and I can no sooner let her cry for hours on end when she just wants me close to her than The Bear can stop eating cake pops from Starbucks. It's part of who we all are...compulsive cake pop eating and all.
Sleeping with all of her things
Thirdly? Stop trying to control everything. I'm a control freak when it comes to my beloved daughter, I can't deny this even though I feel a little ashamed from time to time. Next time around I think it would ease a lot of that new baby pressure if I didn't freak out quite so much. Chances are The Bear is not going to snap her neck when he pulls her out of her bed for a diaper change but according to me it's a miracle Mad survived the first 6 months when he was in charge of her care. I won't stop missing my babies when I am away from them for even a moment, I won't stop sending huge lists of "how to's" when they go to Grammy (my mom) or Manna's (his mom) house, I won't stop describing every detail of how I get them to sleep, I won't stop loving them with every inch of my being....but I really hope that I can leave The Bear with our new baby without agonizing over the fact that he doesn't do things exactly the way that I do. Mad is proof that he did something right (a lot of things) because never has a little girl loved her father more than my Mad loves her daddy. He is the first person she looks for in the morning and business trips are getting so difficult now that she spends half her days asking "where he is?" until the moment he walks through the door. I love that because I love him so much too, so I totally get it. We both like shoes, shopping bags full of new stuff, and an AngryBear. Twinners!

But....if I didn't change a thing? Well, I have to think that despite all my (many) flaws I must have done something right. Because I made this (with a little help ;) and I think she is pretty.damn.amazing.
Playing in her hut. She loves this thing.
*The fact is, The Bear was so supportive of me and my choices, even when they didn't line up AT ALL with how he thought things should be done or what he was used to in his family. He might not always understand what I do, or why I do it, but he will always defend me. I really love that about him and it is just one more reason why I am so lucky to have him. I was the one who struggled to support any way of doing things that wasn't MY way. So, I fail, I'm working on it. I promise.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Sick & Tired of being Sick & Tired

2011....the year of The Sickness. That's what it feels like anyway. I had a cold a couple of weeks ago that was followed by a persistent cough that has now turned into a full blown flu. Misery. 

I'm trying to focus on the positive throughout this and here is what I came up with. So far I've lost 2 pounds from not being able to eat anything. That puts me 1 pound away from 20 pounds lost since November and 40 pounds lost since I had the baby. I know, 18 months to lose 40 pounds and I still have 20 (minimum) to go, not very impressive. Also, it snowed over 6 inches at my home here in Utah (in April!!!!!) on Saturday night but being so sick I can't get out of bed makes it a lot less frustrating to be stuck inside the house. Also, I cut my hair. Short. Not washing short, freshly cut, and styled by a professional, hair for 3 days is a lot less of a greasy mess than my old long doo. Along those same lines, washing and drying short, low maintenance hair is so much easier than long hair, especially when standing up makes you want to vomit.
Yes that is me in my bathrobe, in a bathroom, taking a mirror picture. Also, I'm not trying to be sexy or MySpace picturey, smiling just doesn't feel at all natural when you are A) Taking pictures of yourself in a mirror for no reason & B) feeling like death. Kudos to me for pulling my shit together for long enough this afternoon to shower, dry my hair, AND brush my teeth.

Poor poor Mad. She was so bored today. I promised her, tonight as we snuggled in my bed, that I would feel better in the morning. I really hope mama doesn't look like a liar and really does feel better!


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