Thursday, July 29, 2010

Who's Birthday Is It? & The Cheesecake Cookie

So y'all probably don't know that it was K's birthday yesterday.  He turned 36.  I wanted to plan something nice for him.  But you know, the best of intentions sometimes fail.

K and I are not wealthy in any sense of the word.  We are about as average as you can get.  We have made sacrifices so that I can be a SAHM.  That means we pretty much live paycheck to paycheck.  And that is OK with us.  It isn't like our family has to go without, we just go without the *extras* when it comes to certain things.  Since Little C has been on Nutramigen, things have gotten a bit more tight in the finances department.  She goes through 3 of those big cans of powder every 2 weeks.  At 33 bucks a can plus tax, it is a little over $100.00 every 2 weeks just for her formula.  K gets paid twice a month.  So things get to be a little tight right around payday.  So planning a dinner out, or movies or anything like that was out until Friday.

I take birthdays very seriously.  I mean come on, it is a celebration of the day you were born.  I know how excited I was when my babies were born.  Those were the best days of my life!  So I have to do something on the actual day.  It just so happens that K prefers pie over cake.  So I thought about making him one of his favorite pies.  Then I remembered I used up all but a smattering of the flour when I baked bread last week.  Darn.  I thought about running out and picking some up, but I had an emergency dental appointment looming that afternoon to fix a chipped tooth.  Darn again.

I looked around the kitchen.  Rummaged through the pantry and grabbed the graham cracker crumbs.  Hmm.  The only think K likes as much as pie is cheesecake.  Checked the fridge and there was still cream cheese left from the 6 pack I bought a few weeks ago when I made carrot cream cheese muffins & marble brownies.  Score!  I moved things around looking for it but it was just the one package.  Darn...a third time.  Well...I could half the recipe and everything would be OK.  It would be a small cheesecake, but a cheesecake nonetheless!

Happily, I made my crust and then I realized the smallest pan I had was an 8.5" springform.  You have to be kidding me.  I could have sworn I had a smaller one.  Well crap.  My dental appointment time was creeping up on me.  So I decided in the words of Tim Gunn on Project Runway to "Make it work."  I baked my crust, threw in my filling, popped it in the oven and ran to get ready for my appointment.  Twenty-five minutes later I pulled it out.  It looked beautiful!  I was so excited because it didn't even crack!  Tossing it in the fridge I raced out the door to the car and zoomed off to get this chipped tooth fixed.

After getting home from the dentist, I found K feeding Big C dinner.  I hugged & kissed him, wished him a happy birthday for the 3rd time and ran back to get Little C a bottle and feed her.  It is almost time to put the kids to bed so I head out to the kitchen to get K's cake, sing happy birthday and give cards/gifts.  Big C is sitting with my dad in the living room and I yell out to him, "Come on Dad, it's time to sing 'Happy Birthday'."  To which he answers, "Singing it to who?"  Uh, how long have K & I been married?  You'd think my dad would know his birthday by now.  J gets the fridge door for me and I whip out the cheesecake.  TA DA!!!  K smiles broadly.  After setting it in front of him I flip the spring on the pan and take off the sides and look in horror.

J looks at me and says, "What the heck happened to the cheesecake?"  I almost burst into tears.  Even though the cake was fine, because I didn't have a pan that was smaller in diameter than the 8.5" spring form, my cheese cake looked more like a cookie.  With my lip quivering slightly, I recounted my earlier adventure trying to get everything together to make something.  J laughed.  K laughed.  I felt bad for a few minutes.  Then I laughed too.  Seriously, it was hilarious.  It looked so funny.  However it tasted fabulous!

Not the sharpest picture, but you can see, clearly a Giant. Cheesecake. Cookie.


Later, when K & I climbed into bed, we fell asleep laughing.  Between my dad asking who we were singing to & the cookie that was really a cheesecake, he told me it would be a birthday he would never forget.  Mission accomplished!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Little C at 4 Months

So I was reading over at I Can Grow People, which I love by the way and saw that Lori is doing monthly updates with her adorable little one.  I thought this was so cool!  So I wanted to start doing them.  I'm not sure I'll be able to do them monthly, but at least I'll be able to do some of the milestone ones!  So, Little C just turned 4 months old!  Pediatrician appointment and vaccines are scheduled.  So here is Little C's 4 Month Update!

I do want to start off by saying that the gas & colic issues are much better since the introduction of Nutramigen formula and Prevacid.  Seriously she is like a new baby.  Still pretty sensitive & somewhat of a Mommy's girl.  She doesn't like when I walk away from her.  But she is beginning to not like anyone talking to her, then walking away.  I think she feels insulted.  She is eating like a horse right now.  Waking up for a 4am feeding, which I thought we had done away with, but she wanted it back, so up I get.  But it's OK...I enjoy our middle of the night girl talks!



What she is wearing:
- Most things at 0-3 months & she still has plenty of room in them for right now.
- She is wearing size 2 Luvs.
- Bibs.  We go through several a day not only from the reflux, but she is a serious drooler now.  I see a tooth in our immediate future.

What she is doing:
- Rolling over!  Both ways & to the left & the right!
- "Talking" to us.  A lot.  She is very vocal!  Lots of coos and babbles & she can get loud too! 
- Smiling.  Big broad smiles, with and without the tongue sticking out.
- Laughing.  Every now and again I can get her going with some deep belly laughs.
- Kicking.  Like a wild woman!  She is batting quite a bit too.
- Demanding attention.  I feel the Dog & Pony Show days approaching!
- Snuggling.  Moreso than before, she really likes to be held to your chest and snuggle.
- Gripping items/toys/blankets/burp cloths.
- Pulling her pacifier out of her mouth with her hand & looking at it.  This cracks me up.  She is so intent with the inspection of the paci.

What she is eating:
- Enfamil Nutramigen - 6 bottles - 5-6ozs. each.

What she is growing:
- She is getting very loooong!  And she's getting more hair...kinda sorta.  Its hard to explain...lol.

What she likes these days:
- Music -  Especially my singing, but enjoys the music channels on TV and likes the radio too.
- Books - She is very engaged with Eric Carle's The Very Hungry Caterpillar .
- TV - I rarely let her watch television, but she enjoys some of the  Baby Genius shows on our cable On Demand.  J was sitting with her the other night and she was quite engaged in watching Monsters Inside Me with him.  I'm not sure how I feel about that.
- Getting raspberries on her belly.
- Playing with her feet.
- Telling her she has a stinky hiney...hey, as long as she thinks its funny.
- Being carried upright since she has much better head control now.
- Still loves her swing, but starting to get bored some days.  She is ready for more action.
- Massages after bath.
- Being swaddled.  I pretty much have to swaddle her every night to get her to go to sleep in her bassinet. Way different from Big C.

What she is saying:
Babbling & cooing up a storm.  No words.

What we are working on:
- Tummy time to strengthen neck muscles.
- Rolling over strengthening back muscles.
- Sitting more upright to practice for when she tries to sit by herself.

8 Things Every New or Experienced Mom Shouldn't Be Without

So let me start by saying, I'm still a new mom.  Only been at this gig for a mere 18.5 months so I am by no means an expert in the subject.  But I have found some things that rock my world as a Mommy and that after having used them, I wonder how I lived without them!  By the way, any products are not paid endorsements.  I purchased all of it myself with my husband's hard earned money.  So no kick backs here.  Not that I frown upon that, but I don't want anyone thinking anything on the list is because I'm getting paid for it.  Now, let's get it on!


  • Triple Paste - Next in line to Calmoseptine.  It is amazing on diaper rash & for prevention too!



  • Graco's NasalClear Battery Operated Aspirator -   My baby shower gift of choice!  If you are knocked up & I know you, you are gettin' one of these?  Especially great with a toddler who hates having his face sucked out! 

  • Graco MyRide 65 Car Seat - Great for keeping a child rear-facing as long as possible.  Rear-facing up to 40 pounds!  Front facing to 65 pounds.  So many great colors!  I have it & love it!


Now, if you want expert Mom advice?...well...I'll work on getting Michelle Duggar to do a guest post for me!

    Sunday, July 25, 2010

    Minuscule Moments of Joy - Guest Post by Lauren @ My Postpartum Voice

    I am so excited to introduce everyone to Lauren.  She is wonderful, inspiring and she has been a world of support to me in my struggle with postpartum depression.The creator & host of #PPDChat on Twitter she has been able to reach out and help countless numbers of women & men suffering from a Postpartum Mood Disorder.  The blog author of My Postpartum Voice she has been the quiet reassuring hand on my shoulder telling me that I'm not alone and that I will win the battle.  You can find her at any of the following links listed below as well.



    So ladies & gentleman, without further ado.....

    Minuscule Moments of Joy

    Motherhood fits me very nicely these days.

    When I was a six year old girl, I played with my stuffed animals by shoving them up my shirt to pretend I was pregnant. I wanted nothing more than to be a mother.

    Then I grew up.

    I realized life is hard.

    And sometimes it sucks.

    Even when you get what you want.

    Oh, I got what I wanted. Three kids in under four years. Motherhood slid fast and furious into my life – for awhile there I felt trapped on the Autobahn with no brakes, screaming for dear life.

    Then a Postpartum Mood Disorder sideswiped me. Twice. Landed me in the hospital once, the fetal position with tears streaming down my face more times than I care to admit.

    Now my oldest is six. My youngest is two and a half.

    Yes, I have days when I want nothing more than to sit down with a stiff drink and empty my brain as I watch mindless crap (thank you TV Producers!). But then... there are other days when I am amazed by my children. When I am reminded by them of the magic of my own childhood.

    Today was one of the days on which I was grateful for bedtime.

    This morning though, my six year old giggled with glee as a Roly-Poly (or a pill-bug) crawled over her hands and up her arm. She bragged to her grandmother on the phone about her new little friend. Then we oohed and ahhed over a partially open flower in a huge flower pot on the front porch.

    This afternoon, my two and a half year old was still asleep when I went to wake him from nap. As he stretched and slowly opened his eyes, I sat down next to his crib, my face barely peeking through his stuffed animals sleeping buddies. He giggled as he realized I was waiting for him. As he stood up, he grinned and held his arms up straight, wanting me to lift him over the rail. I love these moments.

    Later this afternoon, my four year old stood at the kid's computer in the corner with the headphones on her head. Suddenly she did not look like a baby anymore. You mothers know that moment – that split second in which you suddenly realize your baby has grown up a little bit more. It took my breath away. My baby is growing up! When the hell did that happen???

    So moms – drink in the small moments. The minuscule moments of joy with your children. Cherish them. Because they are what really matter. These moments are from what the fabric of life is woven. Moments such as recapture the magic from your own childhood. Embrace them. Share them. LOVE them. Even when you feel as if you cannot. Because it is when you cannot that you must.

    Saturday, July 24, 2010

    Saving vs. Savior - Guest Blog by Shannon @ COARS

    When I was originally asked by Stacey to guest blog for her, I was at a loss what to write. There is so many things that I could say, or rather things that are important to say. Then I thought, bc she has different readers then I do, is there any post that I have already written that I would like to share?

    One post came to mind. I call it "Saving vs. Savior."

    I chose this post bc I believe it bares repeating. I chose it bc (among many things) I think we all needed to be reminded that good things do come from bad, even if we can't see it that way in the midst of the storm.

    It is one of my favorite that I written, since I started blogging in February of 2009. I have read it many times, for various reasons, each time taking away something different. It is my hope today that you will take something away from it too.

    So, without further ado:




    "Saving vs. Savior."
    {Originally Published: 11.11.2009}
     

    I used to have a Savior Complex. Yes, I said used to.

    Not anymore.

    I remember a time - not so long ago (probably less than a year, in fact) - when I tried to save people. I had been doing it all my life. It's all I knew & it's what I did.

    Saving friends, family, & love ones from their destructiveness. Trying to save myself in the process. Giving one more chance to those who truly did not deserve it. Giving the benefit of the doubt, time & again. Choosing to see the good in everyone - no matter what.

    So, What changed?

    Everything.

    People move on. Grow apart. Live life without you. Get sick. Cures aren't found. Friends are murdered. Love ones commit suicide. People die.

    No matter how good of a friend I am - no matter how much time I spend with them, on the phone, in the hospital or where ever. No matter how much I sacrifice. No matter how much I love them. I cannot change things. I cannot save them.

    Years ago, back in high school, I had several of my friends commit suicide in a VERY short period of time of one another. It started with a friend of mine, Quinn. I spent hours upon hours on the phone with him. In the end, he had the last word & with the sound of a gunshot, he was gone.

    Twelve very short days later, my friend Bryan died the same way, only I wasn't on the phone at the time. And it didn't end with Byran, but neither did the lessons or the blessings. You heard me right, I said blessings.

    Did you happen to notice my quote on this very blog? If not, here it is: "Some of the greatest gifts in life are birthed from tragedy." ~ Me. And it is so true.

    Sometime after Quinn died, I, who had been extremely suicidal myself for more than a decade, decided that I could not do that to my friends & family. I could not leave them with a legacy of such unbearable, intense pain that only a suicide death causes, uniquely different from any other death. It took me time years to realize this, but I'm so glad I did. And, I must say, things change when you finally choose to stay alive.

    When Bryan died, I started a new friendship with someone who is still one of my greatest friends, even though both of our lives are insanely busy & complex, causing us not to get together as often as we would prefer. A friend that I absolutely know - without a doubt - that I would not have had Byran lived. Who is she? His mom, Madeline.

    Madeline and Me 7.25.2008 @WM
    {Madeline & Me, 7.25.2008}

    I could go on & on about lessons & blessings, but won't. The important thing is that I started to learn then & I continue to learn now is this - it is not my job to save anyone. It never was. I'll say that again -

    It is not my job to save anyone. It never was.

    I know now what I never saw before. I did not realize that I am only human. I am not a savior & more importantly, I am not the Savior.

    So yes, I cannot save you. I cannot rescue you. It is not up to me. I can only be your wife, daughter, sister, aunt, niece, & friend. That is in my capabilities.

    As for saving, look around, He is always there.

    post signature

    Friday, July 23, 2010

    16 Years

    That is how long it has been since I graduated high school.  Holy freakin' crap I'm old!

    I attended Catholic school grades 1 through 8.  Stop it.  I know what you are thinking and you can just quit it now.  I already know most of the catholic school jokes.  Hell, I am usually the one telling them.  But this post is about high school.  That pinnacle of your youth where you make it, break it or get broken by your peers.  Kinda harsh when it's explained like that, but it holds a lot of truth.  It really shapes how you behave in social situations.

    I was never a popular kid.  I wasn't unpopular either.  I was just kinda there.  Going through the motions, making small talk with just about anyone.  I think I turned out alright.  I'm outgoing, sociable and from what others tell me, a heck of a lot of fun to be around.  High school can be brutal for some, the time of your life to others.  For me it was a bit of both.  I had very few people who were my *circle* in high school.  Dee Dee & Becky were my close friends.  We went to the movies, drove around in my car singing with the radio and sat together at lunch.  Well, when we had the same lunch period anyway.  But my best friend, that was Shannon. 

    I met Shannon when I was a Sophomore.  During my lunch period, I walked myself over to the school's library since none of my friends had the same lunch shift.  After walking through the door, I saw a girl sitting at one of the front tables, on the floor next to her was her book bag and a pair of canes.  I took a seat at a table close by and threw by bag on top the table with a loud "thrrrump."  I heard a gasp and the girl sitting at the table was looking at me with her head ducked down slightly.  I kinda just looked at her and mouthed the words, "Sorry" in her direction.  I minded my own business, and she minded hers.  A minute or two before the bell rang, I packed up my bag and stood at the library doors, waiting for the bell to ring, never giving that girl another thought.

    The next day was the same as the last, I went to the library, and there she was, sitting at the same table.  So I grabbed the table I had been at and this time I set my bag down more carefully.  She looked over at me as I did this and I gave her a half smile, which she returned with a much broader and exuberant one.  She whispered to me, "Hi. I'm Shannon.  Do you want to sit here?"  I whispered back, "Sure and I'm Stacey."  Then we awkwardly exchanged hellos again as I took my seat.

    We began a long-lasting friendship that day.  I can't tell you how many times we were nearly thrown out of the library for laughing hysterically at one another.  We've so many inside jokes it boggles the mind.  From kissing frogs, to saving whales, circus tents, the Hilton from Hell and cockroaches in an elevator.  You probably shouldn't ask.  We've sang karaoke at bars, and I hung over her bathtub for an hour afterward from a little too much liquid courage.  She met the love of my life and future husband, K only days after I first met him.  She came to visit me after the birth of both my children & has attended their Christenings and Big C 's 1st birthday.

     Shannon & I after Big C's Christening in April '09

    There was a time when we fell out of touch for a while.  We both got busy because, as they say, life happened.  But no matter how long we are apart, we are able to pick up right where we left off without missing a beat.  She is my oldest and dearest friend.  Her life has not been an easy one and she has had many challenges that she continues to face every day.  Her faith, strength and resilience are inspiring.  I am proud, elated and blessed to call her friend.

    I'd like you to meet Shannon too.  You can start by visiting her blog, Confessions of A Resilient Survivor.  She is a wonderful person, loving wife, and compassionate friend.  I think you will agree!

    Note:  Today is Shannon's Birthday.  
    Happy Birthday, Shannon!!! I ♥ You!

    Thursday, July 22, 2010

    If I Could Bring Back Time - A Guest Blog Post by Inquisitive Coach

    I want everyone to meet Stephanie.  She is the Inquisitive Coach!  She is a weight loss coach.  How cool is that?  How many of us Mommas are trying to lose a few pounds, especially after having baby?  Well, Stephanie is just the gal you need to talk to!  She can help you reach your goals and be the support you need when you feel like you might be slipping back into those old unhealthy habits.  So many celebrities have coaches...you can too!  Head over to Inquisitive Coach and see how Stephanie can help you!


    If I Could Bring Back Time...


    Every year as Christmas roars closer people say "Can you believe Christmas is right around the corner?  I can't believe it's been a year already."  And all the while it's true.  The older I get (in my wise 30's) time does seem to race by leaving a trace of yesterday as a faint memory.  I've just realized the depth of this.  My only child, an amazing, smart, funny, well-balanced son, is leaving for college – out of state.  While this is super EXCITING and I could not be more proud of the young man he’s become, it's very bittersweet.  You see, we are 18 years close in age, and we are very much like close siblings. 
    Moms of young children this is for you. 
    While you see the house get messy, the laundry pile up  - leave it.  If there is one thing I've learned it's you can't get time back.  Nothing is more important than the memories you can create everyday. I spent a lot of being a serious mom who meant business (think drill sergeant).  This was for many reasons: 1. I lived with my parents and if you’re a kid you sit up and don't goof off.   2. I felt I had to prove that I (the rebel, bad teenager with a foul mouth) could raise a respectable, smart child.  CHECK please! Sometimes I think my extended family is still in shock and waiting for the shoe to drop!!! As if there is no way I could have raised such a good kid.  The moment I held my son, my life took a 180 and I quickly turned into Polyana.  As best a rebel could.  I am the queen of always setting a good example.  And so I did.  Most of the time. 
    If I could take back time I would:  Loosen up a bit and not take things so serious.  Would let the laundry pile get bigger.  I would be more flexible.  I would get in the sandbox and get dirty.  Basically, I would not be so stressed over domestic stuff. 

    Moms of young kids - enjoy every single moment of your child's life.  See the beauty and humor in everything they do, even if it irritates the crap out of you.  They are just little tiny peeps navigating life and learning from their mentors (us parents). Always treat them with respect.  Teach it to them.  Always listen to them and acknowledge their feelings.  Teach them kindness and humor.  Allow them to be their own person.  Encourage their interests and be supportive.  Teach them early about consequences.  Independence.  Assign them chores and pay them an allowance.  Cook with them.  Most importantly have conversations with them.
    I’ll probably have tears streaming down my face soon, so if you want a good laugh, I’ll be at inquisitivecoach.com/blog.

    Wednesday, July 21, 2010

    I Wish Someone Would Have Told Me - A Guest Blog Post by Love Our Crazy Life

    Wow!  That was a long title!  Today I'm introducing Natalia from Love Our Crazy LifeI have thoroughly enjoyed reading her blog entries.  And not to mention she has the most adorable kids!  Living between 3 different countries...WOW!  Talk about one amazing Momma!  After you read her blog entry today, I'm sure you'll be hooked on her blog like I am.  So scoot on over, subscribe to it and wait with anticipation on her next entry!  I know I will.

    I wish someone would have told me...

    I wish someone would have told me what it was going to be like when you take two lives together from two different walks of life, two different cultures, two different races, and then throw a little someone in there, move to another country and say have at it! Work it out! This is what I call my life. Three years ago, almost exactly (July 28th) the husby and I got married. I look back now and think "what the heck was I thinking!" Not because I don't love my husband now, I do, so so much. But because I had NO idea what marriage entailed, how much effort it took, and what I was getting myself into! I know you read a lot of posts about the perfect marriage and the perfect husband and the perfect kids. I don't have any of those. I have a real husband who doesn't always tell me what I want to hear, but what I need to hear. I have a real marriage where sometimes we fight and sometimes I think "how the heck are we gonna make it?" I have a real little boy who sometimes needs to be 'reminded' that he needs to obey, and it isn't always all the other kids that are misbehaving, sometimes it's mine.



    Lavar and I have a unique story. One of these days I will write it all out for you all, but it is over a period of about 8 years and a lot of drama, so we'll save the full version for later. For now the reader's digest will do. We met in 2002 in college and were immediately attracted to each other. We were friends, dated a little, dated other people, dated officially, weren't aloud to see or talk to each other, dated officially again, weren't aloud to talk again, dated seriously for real and 5 years into this drama I got pregnant. We knew we loved each other and wanted to be married, this just gave us a reason why we didn't need to wait. So ready or not, we did it. I look back at about the time of our wedding, I was a new mom, Tae was 4 months old, and I was so excited to marry Lavar. We got married July 28, 2007 and in September we moved to Brest, France. I didn't speak any French at the time, was a newly wed, and had a 6 month old. As if marriage isn't challenging enough, I had a few extras. The first 8 months of marriage were hard. I think there was a point for each of us where we said "Okay, we don't believe in divorce, but what do we do now?" I remember getting ready to go home for Christmas and thinking through how I was going to fake my happiness while I was with my parents. I was mad at Lavar and felt like he was doing a bad job at this whole marriage thing. I don't know how or why, but things started to change for me. I realized that a lot of the fights we were having were because of me. Interesting... Somehow I started to see that I had so many expectations for him, for marriage, of how life was supposed to be and he was failing without even knowing there was something to fail at. I would get angry at something he didn't even know he did. I started to see that to make a marriage work, I needed to work. I can't change him, I can't control his actions, but I can control mine. I can control the way I respect him, the way I talk to him, and the way I treat him. I can control my expectations of him as a father and husband. Once I started to see this and work on myself, things got better. Things started looking up. He started to see things that he needed to change and we were able to talk about problems and work through them instead of getting angry with each other. Weird how that works, huh? Could I have been the biggest problem? Nah...



    Well three years and two kids later, I know I am no pro and don't claim to be. I know that we have a long way to go to say that we've made it, if you can ever say that. I don't think we are above anything, because I think that is when you are more susceptible to falling. I do know, however, that with work, anyone can make it. I know that divorce now-a-days is pretty common, and I know that every situation is different, I don't want people to feel like I am judging them if they are divorced or are getting divorced. All situations are different. But if you have two honestly good people in a relationship who are willing to work, it can work. None of this soul mate crap. (Sorry Jessica!) If you can see that you need to work on yourself to be better and your spouse can see that as well, you're golden. If you are working together toward the same goal, nothing can stop you. Don't compare your marriage to anyone's, because everyone is unique. People have to get out of their heads the idea of a perfect marriage because there isn't such a thing. And if someone says they have one, they're lying! Marriage is hard! It takes a lot of work. But the reward you get from trying is so worth it. I know that I have a rough road ahead of me. My marriage is probably especially tough because we are trying to blend two cultures together while living in a foreign one. But one of my favorite things I have heard about marriage pretty much sums it up. It came from Lavar's Bahamian pastor on our wedding day: "Two people, two cultures, two races, one God." Maintain the same goal with love for each other and love for God. That is what I am relying on to make it!

    Tuesday, July 20, 2010

    I Love Bed - A Guest Blog Post by MidAtlantic Mommy

    I am so excited to introduce y'all to MidAtlantic Mommy aka Mrs. MidAtlantic.  I've been following her blog ever since darling LuLu was but a wee fetus in her momma's ute!  I loved hearing her weekly updates of her pregnancy and being able to almost experience it with her!  A visit to her blog is a sneak peek at the life of a 1st time Mommy.  Who knew there was so much they didn't really tell you about pregnancy?  Funny, sweet & honest.  Head on over & check it out...Now!  Wait!  After you read this...then go check out her blog!


    I love Bed.
    by Mrs. MidAtlantic
    Did you ever see that movie, "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy"?  Hubby and I love that movie.  Like a lot.  Like we own it and watch it once a month or so.  And laugh at pretty much everything.


    One particular conversation from the movie really strikes a chord with me:


    Brick:  I love... carpet.

    [pause]

    Brick:  I love... desk.

    Ron:  Brick, are you just looking at things in the office and saying that you love them?

    Brick:  I love lamp.

    Ron:  Do you really love the lamp, or are you just saying it because you saw it?

    Brick:  I love lamp. I love lamp!


    Every morning I think to myself (and often exclaim out loud), "I love Bed.  I love Bed!"  And I really mean it.  Hubby is pretty sure that I love Bed more than I love him, Laura and the dog combined.  It's a close race, I can tell you that.  I love climbing in Bed at night.  I love caressing the soft sheets with my toes.  I love fluffing my special feather pillow just so under my head.  I love drawing the cozy comforter up to my chin.  I love how Bed smells.  I love how Bed feels.  I love Bed!


    Just thinking about Bed as I write this post, I'm salivating a little... Why did I get out of Bed this morning?  Oh yeah, work.


    My love of Bed is like Homer Simpson’s love of donuts.  Mmm… Bed…


    Recently, Bed has gotten even more attractive on weekend mornings.  Laura cries.  Hubby gets her bottle ready, and then plops her in Bed between us.  I doze lazily next to her as she delicately sips her bottle (she's a S-L-O-W eater), and eventually she falls asleep next to me, her warm little body curled up next to mine.  The only thing more perfect than Bed, is Bed filled with my family.


    I love Bed!


    For more about my fabulous life, please visit me at MidAtlantic Mommy, or @MrsMidAtlantic on Twitter!

    Monday, July 19, 2010

    On Motherhood - Guest Blog Post by Good Girl Gone Redneck!

     So let me start off by thanking Andrea from Good Girl Gone Redneck for agreeing to guest post for me this week!  If you haven't been to her blog for a visit...shame on you!  It is chock full of funny things, awesome pictures and yummo lazy (which I just love) recipes! She is smart, witty, funny and I'm so glad I found her!  So without further ado...
     


    ... On Motherhood!
    So, here I am! Guest posting for Musings of a Mommie today!

    It's always an interesting experience when I guest post (not that I've done it that often, but when I do, well, it's interesting!) for other bloggers.

    I kind of feel the need to share a bit of myself, and at the same time, respect her readers enough that I don't scare them away. So, to that purpose I'll avoid flinging any curse words around, banging my head against the wall, or pulling my hair out. [Can you tell yet that I am the mother of a three-year-old?]

    Anyway, my name is Andrea, and I'm regularly found over at Good Girl Gone Redneck. I am a SAHM to a wonderful three-year-old daughter, who often makes me happier than I've ever been, and crazier than I've ever felt. It's a rollercoaster, motherhood. The ups and downs are crazy, aren't they? I mean, who knows what to expect on a daily basis? I know I rarely do.

    My daughter is amazing, and adorable, and knows exactly how to push my buttons. She's 3 going on 13. Seriously. Know what I mean? No? Let me show you ...

    She's hilarious ... see here!

    She teaches me daily ... how to be patient, kind, calm and not-so-calm. She reminds me what being a mom means.

    She reminds me to take deep breaths to avoid my own meltdowns, and I have learned to put myself in a time-out when needed.

    Tonight I met two teeny tiny babies. I held one in my arms, and I watched him start to fall asleep, finding the cushions of my body as a place for him to rest. I watched the other one sleep in her mother's arm as her mom single-handedly ate her dinner, spent time tweeting on her phone and enjoyed her night out. I watched another friend checking her phone as her teenage daughter would be calling her soon to check on her, make sure she was on her way home. I watched another mom call her husband to let him know she'd be late ... and I watched us all enjoy a night out, sans kids (for the most part) and find our way to laughter and fun, without constantly referring to the little ones in our worlds. But for each second we did just that, we all knew, without a doubt, that we are mothers.

    Motherhood is an amazing experience. One you tend to carry with you, wherever you go and whatever you do. Even as we convinced a fellow mom that it was critical for her to find some alone time away from her husband and daughter, even as we spoke about leaving our kids for the first time and crying when we called them to say goodnight, we carried the spirit of motherhood with us. In our minds, our hearts, and in our bodies. The changes of our bodies after becoming mothers is a whole other post altogether, but we soften and strengthen, and find ourselves capable of more than we could imagine. All for the sake of that little individual who captures our hearts without saying a word.

    So come on by and see me sometime as I share the ups and downs of my experiences in motherhood. Hope to see you soon!



    --
    **Andrea
    http://goodgirlgoneredneck.blogspot.com

    Friday, July 16, 2010

    Hey! Look At This!!!

    Thought that might get your attention!  I want to let everyone know that next week I'm going to have a few guest bloggers posting entries here at MoAM.  So make sure you visit & be sure to give lots of bloggy love to these great gals for taking the time to write something special for my blog!  In case you are wondering who they are...follow me on Twitter as I'm tweeting them out as a sneak peek.

    Thursday, July 15, 2010

    Telemarketers - They Have To Eat Too

    Sure they do.  But why do they have to call ME?  Specifically, why must they call me during preparation of dinner, eating of said dinner, during the high point of a favorite movie or show and when I'm on my deathbed with the flu and just trying to get some rest?

    Before the illustrious Do Not Call List, these people were unavoidable.  So here is a little story about how I got rid of them, or at least one of them.

    It was several years ago and I was sick as a dog with the flu.  I mean it was going on 5 weeks and I just could not shake it.  The throwing up and all the lovely projectile functions that come along with it were long gone.  I was just tired and achy to the nth degree.  All day I had just wanted to lay down and get some rest.  After taking care of a litter of puppies I had, doing dishes laundry etc, I headed to my bedroom and collapsed on the bed.

    You know that point when you just begin to drift off to sleep?  Where you feel all warm and fuzzy and so.perfectly.comfortable?  I was there.  And it felt amazing.  I was going to really fall asleep this time. And then...
    Riiiiiiiing

    I answered with a very groggy, "Hello?"

    "Good afternoon ma'am, is Mr. JH there?"  A call for my brother.  Dammit.  He was farting around outside and I was too tired to move to go get him. "No, he is unavailable at the moment, can I take a message?"  Silence.  "No ma'am, I'm calling from N________ with a offer he might be interested in, I can call back later."  I was polite, told him alright and goodbye then hung up the phone and laid back down.  Now, where was I?  Oh yes...sleep.  Again I had made it to that soft fluffy pre-sleep place when...
    Riiiiiiiing

    You gotta be kidding me.  I grumbled as I made my way to the phone, this time I answered more sharply, "Hello?"

    "Good afternoon ma'am, is Mr. JH there?"  Another call for J.  Sonofa...."No he isn't.  Can I take a message?"  He was still outside because HELLO it had only been like 5 minutes since the last call!  "Oh that won't be necessary.  I'm calling from B_______ with an offer he might be interested in.  I can call back another time."  I sighed heavily into the phone, but remained polite.  Then proceeded to drag my flu-ridden carcass back to the bed.  I thought about leaving the phone off the hook, but what if someone called with an emergency?  No, can't do that.  Sleep, yes, that's what I'm after.  After about 10 minutes I finally slip into a much needed slumber when...

    Riiiiiiiing

    Alright, that's it.  Now I've flipping had it.  I was about to rip the phone out of the wall, but instead I answered it, literally yelling into the receiver I didn't care who it was at this point, dammit I didn't feel good & I wanted sleep!  
    "HELLO?!"


    This time the greeter answered a little differently.  "Good afternoon!  I'm calling from P_________ and I've a special offer for Mr. JH...is he available?"  I felt my blood beginning to boil.  This is effing ridiculous.  WTF?  Do I have to die in order to get some peace around here? Die.  Now there's an idea!

    "No he isn't available" I snapped.  "He died!"

    Silence.

    "Oh I am so sorry...I...oh...I umm..uh...I'm so sorry to bother you."  To which I hastily replied, "Thank you.  Now would you people please stop calling our home?  This is the 3rd time in the last 20 minutes that someone has called here.  I'm sick, I'm grieving and I just want to be left alone!"

    After stammering and apologizing profusely again, he hung up.  I dragged myself back to my bed and laid down....again.  This time I waited before closing my eyes.  And the ring did not come this time.  Phew.

    Six days later I was feeling much better and sitting at the kitchen table when J came in with the mail.  He set it down on the table and I flipped through it pulling my stuff out.  I didn't tell him about the phone incident.  Frankly, I had completely forgotten about it after I woke up from sleeping that day.  As I was glancing through the mail, J spoke up in disbelief.

    "What the hell?" I looked at him and asked, "What is it?"

    "It's a letter from P_________ saying the are very sorry to hear about the passing of Mr. JH and that his family has their deepest condolences.  They have canceled my account and...THEY CANCELED MY ACCOUNT?  WHAT THE...?"

    I said at the table wide-eyed.  OMG...I had completely forgotten.  And before I thought better of it I let out an "Oops."

    He looked at me....raging pissed.  Asking me what I meant by "Oops."  So I explained to him what happened, that I was sick and I wasn't thinking straight!  Yeah, J was really, really angry with me.  He called the company and they said the account had been closed because he was dead.  To which J promptly yelled, "How the hell can I be dead if I'm talking to you?"

    They refused to reopen that account.  He would have to open a new one.  Which didn't have the kind of credit limit the old one had.

    Oops!

    Wednesday, July 14, 2010

    Tuesday, July 13, 2010

    A Letter To God

    Dear Lord,

    It's me, Stacey.  I know we haven't talked in while and I'm really sorry about that.  I've had a lot on my mind lately.  Well, I guess you already know that, huh?  I have something important I want to talk to you about.  You know how most nights, but not every night, like I wish I did, I thank you for my family, my babies and every wonderful thing that you have blessed me with?  Then how I follow that up with asking you to help me be a good mom, and to keep my babies safe, healthy and alive, and the same for K, J & Dad?  And I will also pray for other folks who's blogs, or tweets or Face book entries I've read who are having a tough time and could really use a little extra attention from you.  Well, I want to do something in addition to that today.

    I want you to never let me forget how fortunate and blessed I am to have Big C & Little C in my life.  I waited a long time for them, true.  But you did give them to me.  In your time.  In dealing with my postpartum depression/anxiety I experience a tremendous amount of guilt after I "lose it" and have time to reflect on how I behaved.  God, I need your help with this.  I need strength to get through it.  I know you will hold my hand and walk me out of the woods of PPD.  But just in case I forgot to tell you, I need your help.  I keep thinking that this is something I should do on my own.  I know, silly.  The Bible tells us:
    "Cast your cares on the LORD 
    and he will sustain you;
    he will never let the righteous fall." --Psalm 55:22
     So, here they are Lord.  I'm giving you everything I've got.  I will continue to ask you to keep my children healthy, safe and alive.  And the same for K & my family.  I will continue to ask you to give comfort, hope, justice and grace to those I know personally & those I know by screen name only.  I will ask you to hold all of us close to your heart, even though I know you already do.

    Before I go, I want to thank you for something else.  The bad things that have happened.  Sure I would have rather they not, but I understand that it wasn't something you did.  It wasn't something you let happen.  It just did.  The important thing was that you were there to pick up the pieces afterward.  You gave me strength when I was weak.  You showed me that you have a plan for me and even though bad things might happen, you still love me and that your plan will take shape no matter what.  You have taught me that good things can come from tragedy.  You have taught me that if I put my faith & trust in you, all things are possible.  Especially when I myself had given up hope.

    Thank you, Lord.  For never forsaking me.  For never giving up on me, even though at one time, I gave up on you.  Thank you for loving me as only a Father (or Mother) can love their child.  Completely, unconditionally and infinitely.  Never let me forget Lord, what a blessing my children are and how thankful I am you have let me borrow them from you during my time here on Earth.  I love you.

    Faithfully,

    S

    Monday, July 12, 2010

    Balls In My Kitchen

    I'm not sure for the reason.  I can't claim that I could ever know what is going on in Big C's mind.  What I am puzzled at though is why he feels the need to throw every single ball he owns into the kitchen.  I've nearly killed myself a few times blindly stepping on one of them and almost going ass over tin cups.  He is insistent about it too.  If I throw them back over the gate into the living room, within seconds he has them back into the kitchen.

    Take Tuesday for example.  I was in the kitchen frying chicken.  All of the balls were laying on the kitchen floor and I had been navigating around them for a little while.  I got tired of that and dammit, this is my kitchen.  He has the entire living room and dining room that is his to have his stuff strewn all over.  I go around the kitchen picking up the Ironman beach ball, the mini blue soccer ball, two tennis balls and three balls from the busy ball popper toy.  I chuck them back over the gate into the living room.  Big C is working on one of his wooden puzzles and watching TV.  Yes, I put the TV on for him while I'm cooking in the kitchen or getting stuff done around the house.  He's watching educational stuff, so don't judge me.  Sometimes I let him sit in the high chair in the kitchen and watch me cook & talk to him.  But only when he feels like it.  Otherwise he'd just scream & want to go play with his toys in the other room.

    As I was standing at the stove, I heard a "thoonk!"  I turned around to see the Ironman beach ball rolling under the kitchen table.  I look back at my skillet and again I hear something smacking against the kitchen floor.  "Thunk!"  Here comes the mini blue soccer ball.  The way my kitchen is set up, and I hate it, the edge of the counter blocks the doorway to my living room.  So I can't see the gate or Big C.  But I look in that direction and I'm watching busy ball popper balls whizzing past the chairs.  I run over and grab them before they roll under the fridge and I throw them back over the gate.  Again, within seconds they come flying back at me.

    Cliff the bulldog stays in the kitchen when Big C is out playing.  Cliff is old, he can't see well and frankly, I've been around dogs my entire life, I breed, show and I've assisted my vet with c-sections on my girls.  I can raise puppies with the best of them and come puppy time, my room looks like a NICU, incubator, oxygen concentrators the whole deal.  So I am pretty well versed when it comes to the canine species.  I know enough to know that ANY animal can bite and it only takes an instant.  With Cliff not hearing and seeing as well as he used to, Big C could easily startle him and cause him to react by snapping.  I'm not willing to take that chance.  Big C could lose his face, a hand or his life.  Cliff is happy to hang out in the kitchen until nap time, bed time and meal times when Big C is in his high chair.

    Big C also has a set of Fisher Price bowling pins & ball.  How the purple ball has remained out of the rotation is anyone's guess.  But the pins make their way into the kitchen.  These pins are HEAVY too.  Like, if you dropped one on your bare foot you'd be letting out a long line of expletives. Because the heads of these pins are round, I am guessing that Big C views these as balls too.  And happily throws them into the kitchen as well.  Except they are a little too heavy to throw so he just kinda drops them.  Usually, poor Cliff is laying right in front of the gate and has gotten cracked on the noggin a few times.  Afraid the poor dog is going to get brain damage, I've since been yelling at him for throwing things into the kitchen.  I have been able to give him the hairy eyeball so to speak and tell him to "Put it back" and actually have him do it.  So far it has only worked with the bowling pins.  Which is a good thing, since they are responsible for poor Cliffy seeing birdies flying around his head.

    Sunday, July 11, 2010

    What Do You Want From Me?

    I'm disappointed.  I feel failed.  I know that medication is not a cure for postpartum depression/anxiety.  But I guess I did think it was going to make me "all better" and I would be fine as long as I was taking it.  Yeah, that is totally not what happens.  When I had my medication adjusted a few weeks ago, I had a few bad days.  I was irritable, snappy and I was just in a funk.  It really sucked.  After about 4 days, things were beginning to even out and I was actually enjoying some of the manic episodes.  I was super mom!  Cooking, cleaning, tending to the kids.  There was not a crying child all day because I had attended to every need and was a flipping June Cleaver on speed.  Everything was GREAT!  Until yesterday.

    The day started out fine enough.  But I was slightly agitated and I assumed it was because of Big C coming down with a 103* temperature the night before.  This child is 18 months old and has never had a fever higher than 99 and that was only when he got his vaccines.  I know I have 2 babies, but I am still a new Mommy.  Only been one for 18 months and I have a lot to learn and many things I've yet to experience.  I was ready to race him to the ER because I was afraid if it went higher his brain was going to fry.  I might have been somewhat melodramatic but he is my baby!  So don't judge me!

    I took Big C to the pediatrician yesterday morning.  After speaking to him the night before and determining it appeared as though it wasn't life-threatening, he asked me to bring him in the next morning.  Everything went well while we were there.  It was even fine after we got home.  But as the day wore on, I found myself getting frustrated and then the moodiness set in.  Let me give you some advice, when this happens, if you have someone else around to take care of your children, let them do it. 

    I should probably also tell you that Little C has had two incidences of diarrhea.  They have been isolated and no fever for her.  But she is 3 months old, Big C does have a fever with no other symptoms, so it makes me nervous.  Their issues are probably unrelated since the symptoms are different, but who knows?  I'm thinking this was a trigger for me.  I am naturally a little neurotic, especially when it comes to my kids.  The fact that I am agitated also doesn't help the kids.  They can easily pick up on things like that.  Add to that a cranky toddler with a fever and a fussy newborn with acid reflux, gas pains from diarrhea and an appetite like a bear after waking from a 4 hour nap and you have a very ugly situation about to explode.

    I don't even want to recount this because it hurts.  I'm still feeling horrible about it.  Little C was super fussy and literally screaming like a crazy child.  I could hear her swallowing huge gulps of air as she screamed.  I had already fed her about an hour prior.  Had just changed her diaper when she began to fuss.  But it went from mild fussing to full out hysterics in 2 seconds flat.  I didn't know what to do.  I had already fed her, she burped 4 times, I changed her diaper, I rocked her, shushed her, checked her temperature just to make sure she didn't have a fever, rocked her some more and she JUST. KEPT. SCREAMING.

    Then I felt it, hot tears welling up and I quickly laid her on the bed.  Was she still hungry?  She just drank 5 ounces and that is normally her limit.  I'll make her some more anyway.  I jumped off the bed and began mixing up a bottle.  I just couldn't make it fast enough.  She just starting screaming like someone was hurting her, killing her.  I then began screaming.  Yelling at her to "just wait a minute I'm going as fast as I can" but she continued to scream and scream and scream.  The bottle was made and I raced over to the bed, snatched her up and shoved the nipple in her mouth.  And....she screamed.  AND SCREAMED AND SCREAMED.  Finally, I just couldn't take it anymore.  I yelled out for K to come help me.  He came in and I gave her to him and told him to walk with her and try to get her under control.

    He walked her up and down the hallway and after a few moments she began to quiet.  I could hear her sniffling, sucking in sharp gulps of air as she settled down.  I just sat on the bed, put my head in my hands and I cried.  Silently, shamefully.  I yelled at my baby...again.  I thought the medicine was supposed to stop that?  I thought I wasn't going to flip out and fly off the handle anymore?  What happened?  What do I need to do to get this to stop?  Goddamn it PPD...WHAT DO YOU WANT FROM ME?  I hate this and I hate you!  You are stealing me away from my children.  I'm afraid of causing psychological damage to both of them when I flip out and yell.  I just want to be like everyone else, you know?  Not irritable, frustrated, moody, angry, paranoid, neurotic, over protective, obsessive compulsive, anxiety ridden, self-loathing, guilt-ridden and feeling like a failure.  I am not like this all the time.  But I don't want to be like this at all.

    K brought her back into the bedroom and handed her to me.  She looked up at me with red-rimmed eyes, wet and glassy from crying.  Her little nose running a bit and her face flushed from crying.  I offered her the bottle and she took it without protest.  I looked into those beautiful little brown eyes and I told her I was sorry.  That I am a horrible mother and that I wish I could take it back, wished I could be a better mother.  And then I cried sobbed.  Body rocking, deep sobbing.  So much and so hard that my head began to hurt.  None of this was her fault.  It is mine.  I need to get control of myself.  I can't do it alone.  I can't expect medication to do it alone either.  I know this is going to take time, but that is something I feel like I never have enough of these days.  I'll be talking to my doctor again and maybe it is time that I look into finding a postpartum group or therapist.  Right now, I'm willing to take all the help I can get if it means my recovery will be faster and complete.

    Wednesday, July 7, 2010

    Wordless Wednesday - Siblings

    Monday, July 5, 2010

    Hope Floats


    ~ Expect to have hope rekindled. Expect your prayers to be answered in wondrous ways. The dry seasons in life do not last. The spring rains will come again ~ Sarah  Ban Breathnach

    We say it a lot.  "I hope..." has been at the beginning of many sentences for me throughout the years.  But I'm not sure I really understood what "Hope" meant.  I can look it up in the dictionary and get the definition.  But that isn't what I'm talking about.  Hope can be many different things to many different people.  Some use the term loosely while others take much caution.

    When we are young, it normally takes the form of a wish.  A deep desire to "have" something.  For a child, it might be a special toy.  To the teenager, the affections of a secret crush.  As we get older though and we have experienced life, many of us come to realize that even though we have our own free will, that God has a plan for each and every one of us.  If it is His will, then it shall be done.  No matter how much we hope for a different outcome.  But being an adult, we also begin to rely more on our faith, than on our hope.  We have faith that God will provide and take care of us because we know he will, we don't have to wish for it.  

    But hope isn't just a wish and it isn't just faith.  It is a combination of both.  It is something that drives us to continue to have faith to continue the fight to make that wish a reality.  
    ~When the world says, "Give up," Hope whispers, "Try it one more time."~
    This lead me to examine what it is that gives me hope?  That list could be endless.  When my babies smile at me, it gives me hope that someday they will know how much I love them.  On days when I feel inadequate, like I could be so much better than I am, hope tells me that tomorrow will be better, if I fight hard enough for it.  Hope is the contented sigh of Little C, as she snuggles deeper into my neck at 4am after I've finished feeding her.  It tells me that she feels safe with me, she trusts me and that she loves me.  Sometimes, it is the wet, sloppy kisses from Big C, when I don't even ask for them.

    My hope is that I overcome postpartum depression.  My wish is that my children never feel its effects.  I have faith in God that it won't.

    What is it for you?

     

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