Sunday, October 20, 2013

My first baby.

Oh, Zoey.  You were my first.  The first one I fed.  The first one I cared for.  The first one I rushed to the doctor when ill.  You were the first that taught me to think of others before myself.  Now, you have been demoted to one of the last that I think of, and for that I feel terribly.  It seems that the littles have taken over our house, and somehow you have taken it all in stride.

The year was 2002.  I had just graduated college.  I had just gotten an apartment where I would be living alone.  I knew that it was time to get a pet.  I went to the shelter, and I met you.  You were clingy from the start.  I hugged and held you for a while, then decided I would go home and think about it.  As I put you back in the cage, you stood up on your hind feet (all 1 pounds of you), grabbed the bars with your little paws, and mewed very loudly.  You broke my heart and I immediately asked the shelter workers to hold you for me so I could go get kitty related things in order to bring you home.  I even picked up a copy of "Cats for Dummies".  I got back that afternoon to pick you up, and the rest is history.  You went everywhere with me, even to the drive thru.  I did not name you for a week, and finally my friend Kim suggested Zoey, the name of her fish that died.  It seemed just spunky enough for you.  You taught me a lot in that year...mostly how to care for another.  I had the emergency vet on speed dial as well as animal poison control.  You pumped soap in your mouth, you got locked in the fridge, you got your tail stuck in the were trouble.  From the moment I had you, you were a piggy.  You are still a cat that has to have your food measured and you have to eat twice a day.  You were a tiny fireball.  I have always loved that about you.  You are outgoing, definitely not a wallflower.  You aren't a lap cat, you prefer to lay on a chest.  You are a lover, and a bit of a fighter too; always have been. 

You have taken all the changes in your life in stride, and I am thankful for that.  We have moved, gotten another cat, gotten a dog, gained a husband, and had two kids.  Yet, you still are you, through all of this.  You somehow are very kind to the kids, and rarely nibble them.  The only time you do is when your whiskers or tail are pulled.  Caleb already knows your triggers; never petting you when you are lying on your back-since you will bite then.  You have dealt with all they dish out well.  You are tolerant, and I think you actually enjoy the attention they give you.  I do love you, and know that you will probably be around to see many more changes in our lives-since you are healthy as a horse and are most likely going to be around for 20 more years. 

Thursday, October 17, 2013

A day in the life...fall edition

Navigating the Mothership has motivated me to do another day in the life post, so here we are again.  A day in my crazy life.  These are very time consuming, yet so worth doing.

Here are links to past posts:
Summer 2013
A week in the life-Spring 2013
A week in the life-Spring 2013
A week in the life-Spring 2013
A week in the life-Spring 2013
A week in the life-Spring 2013
A week in the life-Spring 2013
Fall 2012
Summer 2012
Spring 2012
Winter 2012
Fall 2011

This is from yesterday, October 16, 2013.  This is a stay at home day, since I am off for MEA (though I don't think this is what it is called) and our daycare is closed.  I didn't have anything fun planned, and I certainly did not take enough photos...but here it is anyway:

2:00 am--Kinley wakes up.  This has been FRUSTRATING.  We have been regressing by the minute in the sleep department.  Is it teeth?  Is she sick?  Growth spurt?  Who knows.  I just know that this sleep thing is a constant battle these days and I would love to get 8 straight hours.  Maybe someday.  At least she is easy to get back down, a little nursing and she is out again within a few minutes.

5:16 am--She is up again.  I try to get her back down, but she is not interested.  She cries and does not calm down, so by 5:30 I just grab her and bring her to bed with us.  I check my e-mail and facebook.  I am waiting for bedding for her bedroom and I am antsy about it.  We also talk about what to have for dinner.  I also check our bank account, which is such a fun (insert sarcasm) thing.  Ugh.  Finances have been beyond stressful and it just feels like we can't get our heads above water.  Maternity leave sucked us dry.  Anywho...back to the fun stuff.

Zoey snuck in the room for snuggles.

The lump is the dog that snuck in as well.

5:50 am--I make coffee and look at bills.  I recognize that we need to get our budget figured out, so that goes to the top of the very long to do list.  I also do dishes.

6:20 am--I nurse Kinley.  Caleb is still sleeping.

6:55 am--Caleb wakes up and starts talking and never stops.  This is what happens now...never-ending chatter.  It is impossible to remember all the funny things he says!  We start breakfast.  I make cream of wheat for me, Eric feeds Kinley, and Caleb eats a banana and yogurt.  We are enjoying having more room in our dining area now that we got a new-to-us table that is smaller!  I am also happy that our old table is living happily in a friend's house.  I do miss it, but love the space!

Scored this table for the same price we sold our coffee table for!

trying to drink this gross stuff to increase my milk supply

new tablecloth for the new-to-us table

7:34--Breakfast is over and I read books with the kids.  Eric gets ready for work.  Caleb feeds the animals (quite the feat, since the cats eat different food and in different rooms) and is so proud of himself for doing it.  I am excited that maybe this can become his job soon.

8:10 am--Eric gets Kinley ready for her nap, meanwhile, Caleb watches an episode of Word World.  I hate relying on the television for times like these, however, at least it is educational.  These days, since watching this show, he has been VERY into sounding out words and how things are spelled.  He can spell many words now, and I have a feeling he will be a reader sooner than later.

8:30 am--I am done laying Kinley down and Eric heads out the door.  I start to take pictures of clothes that we are getting rid of, so that I can post them on Craigslist.

8:55 am--Kinley awake, so I bring her downstairs.  She plays, Caleb plays...this is lovely.

9:40 am--Kinley seems tired (of course), so I try to lay her down again, unsuccessfully.  I put diapers together, do more laundry (never-ending), and let Caleb watch another episode so that I can post those craigslist ads.

Just some of the boxes of clothes that need to go!

Caleb's tower

10:26 am--I got the kids dressed...though I am not dressed myself yet.  My stomach is grumbling and I can't wait for lunch!

He loves her.  A little too much at times.

Art wall.  I love walking past this everyday!

11:00 am--I get the kids upstairs for lunch.  I let Kinley play on the floor while I get Caleb's sandwich ready.  This kid could live off of PBJ's...and kind of does for lunch at least.  During lunch Caleb wants to play a game.  We start to talk about words that start with different letters.  These are the ones he came up with.

The angry birds snack is from ECFE the night before, he waited very patiently to eat it.

P-Pineapple, Penguin, Pen, Pear, Porn.  Yup.  Porn.  Now, it should be noted that amongst some of these "real" words were made up ones.  He will often make up words when he draws a picture and I ask him what it is.  So, I am convinced that he made this one up.  I swear we have not discussed porn in front of him!  I told him that is not a word, but he argued it was.

R-Relax, Rent

B-Belly, Bag, Blender, Bread, Bun, Beep, Bear

C-Cap, Candle, Cash, Candy

S-Sandwich, Sand, Sun

N-Necktie, Nest

F-Feather, Five, Finger, Flag

J-Juggle, Jenny, Jon

G-Grandma, Grain

This kid's vocabulary astounds me at times.  He is so verbal, and always has been.  Motor skills...well, we are still working on that.

11:30 am--We go downstairs to play and read books.  I am feeling distracted by this day in the life post, trying to document everything, yet, not being very present in the moment because of it.  Double edged sword kind of moment.  I vow to make up for it tomorrow.

12:05 pm--Kids are breaking down.  The combination of me being distracted, barely a nap for Kinley, and all the time inside with no change, has everyone at their breaking point.  25 minutes until naptime...countdown ensues silently for me.

12:39 pm--Both kids are asleep.  I have learned that it is best when I lay Caleb down first, then Kinley. While I am getting him in bed, she usually plays in the exersaucer.  My little baby (8th percentile) can now finally touch the floor in it.  I debate what I could do during nap, but decide to sit and do nothing instead.  I am glad that I did that because at 1:50, both kids are awake.  This is the LONGEST day ever.

I decide to shower, because I am supposed to meet work friends around 2:45 pm.  However, after showering and getting ready I am faced with two very unhappy children.  At about 2:40, I realize that we are not going to make it, so I text them to let them know.  My threenager is mad about everything in this moment...but the biggest issue is that he wants a prize for going pee.  He is potty trained, and has been for a few months now.  But apparently, he still thinks peeing gets prizes.  Nope.  So I am of course the meanest ever (it is usually in these moments when he says things like "I just need my dad!"). I decide to facetime with my parents to see if that cheers him up.  It works for a little bit.  He likes talking to them.  While we are facetiming (is that a word?), my mother in law tries to facetime as well.  So, when we are done with my parents, I try to call her.  We are able to talk for about a minute, before I realize that this is a disaster.  Both kids are screaming and nothing will make them stop.  I begin to wonder if Kinley's ear is bothering her.  She has been pulling at her right ear all day, and that combined with the no sleeping has me wondering.  I think I might take her in to the clinic to be sure.

5:04 pm--Eric is home, later than I hoped, so no clinic.  Also, we were out of cheese, so the enchiladas that I had planned for dinner are out.  Instead we decide to head to Pizza Ranch.  If you haven't heard of this before, it is the perfect place for kids.  Kids are cheap, and it is a buffet, so you can feed them immediately! I am aware that eating out is not a good choice after the morning and the stress of money...but I don't have it in me to cook at this point.  I get food ready for Kinley and grab a couple diapers, then we head out.  On the way we pass a field.  Caleb mentions that he likes that yard.  We also pass a church that has circle windows, and he is a big fan.  When we pass a corn maze, he says, "we should go there."  When we get into the restaurant, Caleb gets on the floor to point and name each of the letters in Pizza Ranch that is on a rug.  I have no pictures from dinner because I thought I left my phone in the car (it was in the diaper bag the whole time), but it was good.  Kinley was ready to go home to go to sleep, but Caleb did not want to leave until every last bit of his pizza was gone.  When we get to the car Caleb says, "It's all good in here, I like the lights on."  He also sees the moon and says, "We don't sleep during the day time, we just sleep during the night."

6:50 pm--We are home, and luckily Kinley did not sleep in the car, since her bedtime is 6:30.  Eric gets her ready for bed, while I change quickly and help Caleb in the bathroom.  He starts to pee while standing up then says, "I think I have to poop".  DISCLAIMER--THIS NEXT PART IS GROSS--I swear, it was like things were moving in slow motion at this in the movies where you start to see something happen but are frozen and can't move.  I see him turning, then I see poop coming out of him.  He tries to sit down, but it is too late...there is poop on the floor, on his shirt, on the toilet.  It is gross.  I want to hurl.  However, he tried so hard to make it, so I don't want him to feel bad.  I start the shower and begin to clean up the mess.  He is helpful to point out all the places that he sees the poop.  I decide at this moment that standing and peeing is not a good idea for a while, and that he should only sit for the time being.  Eric helps him wash in the shower, and I take Kinley to put her down.

7:23 pm--The dust has settled.  Kids are asleep...for a minute.  Kinley wakes up and cries, so I go feed her again (story of my day).  She is finally asleep.  Eric and I are both cranky and not really listening to each to avoid an argument, I go to bed.  I think I need it anyway.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

7 Months

Sweet Kinley,

This post is late again, but definitely worth writing!  You are such a joy in our lives and bring us smiles even when you are mad!  You are a peanut, weighing in at a whopping 14 pounds 2 ounces.  Currently, you wear 6 month clothes, but there is definitely room to move.  You would probably still be wearing 3 month clothes if it wasn't for your cloth diaper booty.  You are now officially a sitter, and can sit for at least 10 minutes.  You usually catch yourself if you start to fall, but sometimes still fall over.  You got a little bruise on your forehead from falling over at daycare.  I am guessing it would never had showed up if you did not have such fair skin.  You still don't like to stand up, though, I do put you in your exersaucer for a few minutes before bedtime because it distracts you well.  You will stand up in there for a little bit, but not long.  You can bear weight through your legs, you just choose not to.  You still love to eat your toes and love chewing on everything.  You always roll very quickly to your brother's toys, usually the small unsafe ones of course.  You have started to babble more, and love to say "dadada" of course.  We are working very hard on "mamma"!  You also are beginning to imitate a lot more and have been shaking your head "no".  You will do it when we say "no", and also often in response to a question.  I know you don't have a grasp on what that means yet, but we are totally amused by your new skill.

Well, let's talk about sleep.  I think we have hit a groove, but it has definitely changed from last month.  You seem to have settled on a bedtime of 6:30.  At about 6:15 you start crying, sometimes screaming, and spitting.  You have been going down very well while nursing, and we just started using your sleep sack.  I think this helps you sleep because you are warmer now that the nights are a little cooler.  You have been consistently waking up around 12:30 am, and then again at 5:45 am.  This hasn't been too bad.  I can handle one wake up.  I feel like you could make it all night...but, that is just not in the cards for us right now.  I will take this good stretch of sleep.  Your naps are going well, about the same.  At home you are definitely ready to sleep by 8:30 am, and again by 12:30 pm.  At daycare you nap around 10:00 am and again at 1:00 pm.  I am guessing all the kids are a good distraction for you, because at home the spitting and screaming happens and there is no way I could get you to wait until 10:00.  Either way, it works.  I still think the white noise is helping you, so we will continue that.  No big deal to me, your brother still uses lullaby music.

If I had to describe your personality, I think I can sum it up with one word...rollercoaster.  However, according to my spell check that is really supposed to be two words.  You are mostly even keeled and calm and happy, but at times you are on opposite sides of that.  When you are mad, you are not subtle about it.  When you are happy, you light up a whole room.  Your giggle melts my heart!  You are always happy when you wake up, and you often giggle and kick your feet when we come in to get you.  I love waking up to you in the are the BEST alarm clock.  You have also started to reach up for me when I am getting you out of your crib.

You have outgrown (not really the weight limit) much of your baby stuff, and we have put most of it away in lieu of bigger and better things.  No more swing, bumbo, boppy, and I should also probably put away your bouncer.  It is crazy to see you grow so quickly!  You are also more interested in books now, and will sit and look at them for a few minutes with me.  You also love your brother.  I think I love this the most.  I love watching your love for each other grow and I could watch you play with each other forever!  You often reach out toward him and touch him when he is near, and he often smooches you on the head for no reason other than that he loves you.  I always expected the worst...jealousy, frustration...however, so far (knock on wood) that really hasn't happened.

This past month you were sick for the first real time, other than a cold.  You had a very high fever and of course it was right before your aunt's wedding.  You, your brother, and I did not make it to the rehearsal dinner in hopes that you would be well enough for the wedding.  You were not 100 percent the next day, but we still made it.  It was quite the event (the wedding was beautiful, but we were all a mess).  We ended up leaving by 6:30 pm, because after losing keys, knocking over cakes, and being sick...we were just ready to go.  Your dad and I decided that it was more important to get you to sleep at a good time than to stay longer.  So goes the life of a parent.  I will never feel badly for choosing what you or your brother need over what I want.  You also had your six month appointment, shots and all.  You were a rockstar!  We went to the apple orchard and also had your six month photos/family photos.

As for food...well, we are doing one meal a day, usually dinner.  You have not liked most things we have tried so far.  You just started opening your mouth for sweet potatoes, so I guess that is progress.  I am not really pushing it though, so it is probably partially my fault you don't really care.

Baby girl, I love you so much and I thank you for teaching me new things every day.  I never knew how much I would love having a daughter...and how much I was missing before you came along!