15 February, 2010

Love(ly) Day

Happy belated Valentines day! I don't really understand the point of this holiday, but any day that I get to find a babysitter and go on a date with my husband sounds like a fabulous holiday to me! Brandon was off work so we got to spend a lot of time together. My parents took Analee on a little trip to Madison in the morning while Brian napped & at the same time Brandon went to pick up donuts and run a few errands. I spent that "alone" time watching a movie and drinking coffee. It was beautiful, even though short lived.

When everyone was home later in the day, we just played games and snuggled all afternoon. Brandon and I took the kids to my parents house at 4:30pm and headed out to do some shopping. We went to Old Navy and picked out some fun spring clothes for the kids & Brandon found the most perfect swim suit for Analee. She loves polka dots. LOVES them. I will have to devote a post solely to her love for polka dots. Anyway, he picked out a navy blue suit with white polka dots....so super cute. He also chose a terry zip up swim suit cover. Totally an accessory that I probably would have done without and used the $10 on another pair of jeans or cute boots for her but just knowing that he picked it out and seeing the excitement on his face as he gave it to her was priceless. "Oh THANK YOU PAPA, I love my swim 'soup' and swim 'soup' dress." She definately loved it as much as he'd hoped.

After some shopping we went to dinner at Damons. I ate way too much food but it was all just too yummy! Chicken wings, ribs, spicy sweet and sour thai chicken strips, onion straws....MMMMM!

11 February, 2010

Learning to relax.

I woke up this morning and thought about my intentions for the day. Of course I thought of all of the things that "needed" to be done; laundry, dishes, floors, bathroom, vacuuming, etc. I want my family to be more "unplugged" so the TV stayed off, music turned on, and we were off to a wonderful start. The kids and I listened to I've Got a Feeling by The Black Eyed Peas about 8 times in a row and just danced our butts off at 8:30am. And then we had a fun and loud breakfast: waffles with peanut butter & fruit. Brian chose blueberries and Analee had a banana. And I say "loud" because we ended the meal with a game of "Say THIS Brian!" Analee has Brian copying words left and right and he tends to SCREAM them rather then say them. :) Nothing makes me smile more than seeing my two babies playing together and understanding each other.

Analee has loved Brian very day one, but seeing them become friends has been remarkable. My daughter is very shy and startles easily. The other day we were visiting a friends house and Analee wanted to go to another room. I saw her go up to Brian, grab his hand, and say "Will you come with me, Brian?" I just melted. She trusts him...already. She needs him to protect her...already. Later that night when we were all cuddling in The Family Bed, Brandon and I had a chat with Brian about protecting his sister. I asked him if he would protect her and make her feel safe when she is scared and look out for her when they are older. He, loving being the center of attention, just laughed and shook his head yes, as he does when you ask him anything. I think Analee understood what we were saying though. She sat close by, just listening with a teeny smile on her face.

Often times I will find them sitting basically on top of one another looking at books or watching a show on TV. When Brian is upset, he will smack whoever/whatever is nearby and even if that happens to be Analee, she just grabs his hand and says, "NICE hands, Brian. We use gentle hands." At night, when I tell Brian that it's bedtime, the first person he smooches is his big sister.

Okay, back to today. (I tend to get side-tracked, just so you know!) We walked over to the neighbors house, who also just happens to be my BFF, and the kids played while Heather and I had coffee and chatted. When we went home it was time to think about lunch, get laundry started, cleaning, naps...normal day to day things. I knew that I would have a busy day tomorrow, Friday, so I really wanted to get a lot done around the house this morning. Well, Brian had other plans. He only napped for an hour or so and then when he was awake, he did not want to be put down. Thank you Jesus for my Ergo!!! If you are a mom or dad with a baby or toddler, or both, you must get an Ergo. When I realized Brian was going to have a clingy afternoon, I immediately thew him up on my back and then it was back to my "to-do's." The closeness and skin contact was just what he needed. Hmm, I think I will write a blog about my love for babywearing some day. :)

Later in the afternoon I started getting a little stir crazy and decided to ditch the rest of my housework. When Analee woke up we made fruit (and spinach, shhh!) smoothies. We sat at the kitchen table that was still messy from lunch. I threw the blender into a sink full of dishes. And then I finally, at 3pm, took my kids' pajamas off and tossed those into overflowing hampers.

Oh, I should have taken a picture of the yummy soup I had simmering all day. Chicken and potatoes and veggies. Pure deliciousness. No condensed soup and no "seasoning packets" just 100% whole, organic ingredients. I have come a long way!!! :-D It feels so good to make wholesome, nutritious foods for my family. I want to keep learning and getting better at it.

(see, off track again...haha)

We spent the rest of the day just playing & dancing. We visited Heather and Danny again and shared our soup with them. When we finally came home close to bedtime, the messiness of my house started to make me nervous. I really cannot relax in a messy house. As I frantically started filling the sink with water & straightening up the couch, both kids begged for my attention with books in hand and tired bodies just needing to be snuggled. So we did just that. I sunk into the couch and piled my babies on top of me. We read books, counted fingers, tickled, kissed, screamed, and just loved on each other.

I'm learning. I'm learning to relax and realize that these babies are all that matter. Their happiness and well being are why I am here with them. They are more valuable than a clean kitchen or an organized bedroom. I want them to remember me dropping everything just to lay on the floor with them and not making anything else a priority. THEY are my priority.

So I sit here in a disorganized living room and I don't even care. I laughed a lot today. I danced until I was out of breath and had great conversation with a friend. I heard both of my kids belly laugh and I got to pray over them as the slept like angels in my bed.

I liked today.

09 February, 2010

Winter ramble

Today was a long day. I feel like we were running from the moment the sun came up. Brian is the early riser of the family. At this point in the game, we consider it "sleeping in" if he's still snoozin' at 6:15am, so when I heard him through the baby monitor at 5:44am, I knew then and there it would be a long day. I went in to try, again, for what seemed like the 12th time, to get him back to sleep. He was all smiles and saying, "All done!" which sounded more like "Ah da! Ah da!" as he jumped up and down on the bed. I scooped him up and offered to nurse him. He gladly accepted and even let me lay him back down into bed a few minutes later. As I walked back to my bedroom, I quickly prayed that he would sleep for at LEAST 20 minutes, so we'd get past 6:15 and Brandon wouldn't grumble quit as much when it was finally time to get up.

Brandon has been getting up with Brian since Brian was about 5 months old. Those one and a half to two hours extra I get in the morning are amazing. It's like my body just knows that the baby is not going to interrupt these last couple hours of sleep, so it makes up for the horribly broken sleep the previous 6 hours brought.

Back to today. Brian did in fact sleep at least 20 minutes. He actually slept until 6:45 and then called out, "Papa, papa, papa, papa, papa!" I heard, though the monitor, Brandon go to get him and as soon as Brian could see his papa, I heard the crib bouncing from his excited reaction.

We had a playgroup at my sister inlaw, Jenny's, house at 9:30. So as soon as I got up, I began baking some pumpkin chocolate chip muffins, made famous by my sweet friend Katie. At this time I noticed the blanket of snow we had received the night before and the flakes that were still falling. Instant sadness. I decided that I was going to be brave and head out to our play group anyway.

I've always been a major wuss when it comes to driving in the snow. I *thought* was driving very slow and cautiously but was proved very wrong. As I approached a bridge, I hit a patch of slushy snow and completely lost control of the car. We did a 180* and slid backwards, towards a cement guard rail on THE BRIDGE OVER THE RIVER, and thankfully there was a good amount of snow next to the rail and that stopped my sliding, rather than the rail itself. Let me just tell you, that was hands down the scariest moment of my life. My hands and legs were shaking, my heart was in my toes. I should have just turned around and went home but decided since I was already halfway to my destination, that we would just keep going. We arrived, drank coffee, ate delicious food, the kids played. Normally we would have stayed for a few hours but the snow was getting heavier and my nerves were getting to me. We left after an hour or so and drove about 8 miles an hour the whole way home. haha I have since made a vow that we are hibernating until spring!

When we got home, we ate some lunch and attempted naps. Analee lay down without a fuss but Brian, oh Brian, did not want to sleep. I tried for 4 hours to get him to sleep today. That has NEVER happened! He is my good napper! But not today. He was up and down and crying and over-tiredly laughing and then crying again and nursing and nursing and nursing and nursing. He finally crashed at 4pm and must have sensed Brandon's early arrival home from work because within 5 minutes of Brandon walking in the door, Brian was up. Thankfully, Brandon took him downstairs to distract him for a while so I could make some dinner. Fast forward an hour and it was finally time for a bath then bed. I should have expected the challenge I was facing, since he was so extremely over tired, but I proceeded with excitement, as I thought relaxation time was near. Not so much. The whole process, from bath to finally sleeping, took 2 hours. But it is in fact over and for that I am grateful.

I just scarfed down dinner and a caramel sundae out of pure starvation after a long and restless day. I wish I had something profound to say or some enlightening words of encouragement. But I've got nothin' today. As exhausting and beat-you-down and wear-you-out being a stay at home mom is, I would never even dream of doing anything else.

I love my babies so much it hurts.
Literally. I've got a headache.