Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Amber is the color of your energy, but red?

Because I apparently like to be stressed and unsure of myself...

I joined this playgroup on Thursdays (starting in October) called "Little Sponges." It's 5 or 6 moms/kids and there are 3 activities each week. Each mom has to plan one activity (although the organizer seems to have managed to leave her name off the planning lists... Hmm...) - either music, art or reading.

OK, sure.

The organizer (who a few weeks ago mentioned fears that her child could be color blind, though she's not yet 2, so I think she just doesn't know her colors yet. I digress) just happened to pick an "easy" theme of colors for the semester. Each week is a different color.

The first week is red. And I've got music.

Now there are lots of songs on colors - but on a single color? I'm coming up with "You can't ride in my little red wagon..." I looked online and found SOME more songs (most are multiple colors).

But now I'm left wondering how to 'entertain' half a dozen kids ranging from under a year to probably 2 and half for 20 minutes with songs? (I should probably mention here that I'm just barely a step above tone deaf.) I mean, my daughter actually loves music, but I can't see entertaining her this way. Maybe itsy bitsy spider... But spiders aren't red! usually... Could I pull that off?

So far I've decided - I'm not signing alone for 20 minutes! I've found some lyrics (generally to well known tunes) and will print them for the other moms to join. Maybe I'll print some pictures of the objects... a red apple, a red wagon, a red fire truck... Um, yeah, I think I might be done now...

I should mention the woman organizing is a former teacher / administrator and has suggested that all this will be easy (did I mention she's not signed up for any lessons?). Having no teaching experience and generally finding myself to be a totally crap teacher, I'm not really finding that to be the case!

I welcome all suggestions!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

I keep asking either or questions...

And getting yes or no answers.

And not always from the same person. So I'm worried it's me.

Slowly going insane in Virginia...

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Snakes, snakes, snakes!!!!!

Had a freak out moment this morning when I went to the basement and saw a snake sitting on the bug/mouse sticky traps. Freaked, screamed, shut the door, ran up the stairs, shut the other door, shoved a towel under it so nothing could come up and wondered where I put the realtor’s number. Texted my husband who was in class today with a freak out message telling him we’d be moving and I was going to start packing upstairs, but he’d have to pack the basement. Or we could just abandon all that stuff.

But it wasn’t a snake stuck to the trap.

It was THREE SNAKES! THREE SNAKES!!!!! THREE!!! The number that is HIGHER than two. THREE! All stuck to traps. Likely a momma and two babies. My coworker came over to look and take care of them. So he checked the rest of the basement. There was a FOURTH over on another trap! FOUR! EVEN MORE THAN THREE!!!!! And some big snake skins stuck up in the rafters. He thinks they came in through the dryer vent which was filled with lint and stuck open, so he sort of wedged it closed and said that was probably it. He said she probably just came in to nest – a safe place to have her babies because it was cold last night. Um, have her babies? Yeah, why the EFF doesn’t that make me feel better!!!!?!?!?!?

But I just made the BIG EFFING MISTAKE of googling how many babies they have. HOLY oh God, Holy… I… sniffle, sniffle. One site said 12-40. One said 3-80. One noted a litter of 98 was recorded. NINETY EIGHT! Are you effing kidding me?!?!?!?! I am NEVER doing laundry down there again. It is totallymy husband's job now. Thank God I had the foresight to wash our clothes and sheets and towels this weekend because I’m not going back down there!!!! My coworker noted that momma wasn’t that big and for 98 it would have had to be a huge snake. Yeah, so I’m probably lucky and it’s only like 40. Oh Fuck.

At least I can give the realtor a range on what she should be looking for because GOD KNOWS I will not be SHOWING her the basement.

You'll remember that first we had big spiders and then mice. We got these plug ins to deal with the mice and I haven't seen any since. So, woo! Big sigh of relief. No more mice. Yeah, sigh...

UNTIL NOW! I mean snakes! I feel like Indiana Jones - why did it have to be snakes? Except like a really really wimpy Indiana as I don’t recall him screaming when stuck in a pit of oh yeah, poisonous, snakes. Sniffle, sniffle. Did Indy cry? I don’t recall him crying… I think he did. It was probably just off camera.

F*ck, f*ck, f*ck… And now I have Tourettes.

I'm really having a bad effing week.

whimper, whimper...

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Potty Training

We decided to give potty training a go last week. Yeah, it seemed a little crazy and many of my friends noted that it seemed a bit…early to them. But I’d gone to this thing on sign language for potty training at the library last month and THEY said your child could train by 18 months. And as the monkey is 19 months, CLEARLY I needed to get on board.


So I picked a weekend that both my husband and I were off and would be home for several days (THEY recommend 3 days “intense training”) and marked it on our calendars. As it happened, we were both home Thurs-Sun. Plenty of time. Then my husband signed up to teach Thursday nights and Sundays. Ok, Ok. But Sunday would be day FOUR and we really only needed THREE. And he’d be home most of Thursday, right?

Then he signed up to take a class on Thursday. (I swear he doesn’t even look at his calendar. Seriously when he sent me the details on that class, he sent me his schedule for the fall. I looked at it and said – you know we’re in FL for a wedding for 3-4 of the dates you have listed, right?) Ugh! So day 1 is all me! I told him he could make it for it by starting on his own on Wednesday. Ha. (Actually, he did legitimately have some work stuff to do that day – though it wasn’t on his calendar…!)

Thursday morning the monkey wakes up and after breakfast I decide – ok, let’s start. I take her diaper off (THEY all say to leave them naked from the waist down for this) and set up the potty in the bathroom. I ask her if she has to go potty. No, but she really likes it. She sits on it for awhile, enjoys checking it out, squats down next to it to look at all the parts and – when she stands up the floor is wet! Right directly NEXT TO the potty! I decide to take this as progress – hey, you got close! Next time IN the potty, baby. But so close. Yeah!

A few minutes later, she squatting again, but I figure she’s ‘empty’ this time so we’re fine. She stands up and she’s pooped on the floor. I just barely got it up before she fully stepped in it. Ugh! But hey – close, yeah! Being a total idiot, as she hadn’t pooped IN the potty, I forgot all about poop etiquette and consequences and didn’t think to wipe her till I noticed some brown on her foot. Oh, yuck…

She’s still interested so we stay in the bathroom. She’s up and down on the potty, checking it all out and – yup, she’s peed on the floor again. (yippee?) Sigh.

By this point, she was done “looking” at the potty (and christening the floor all around it), so we go out to the family room (sans diaper) and start to play. It takes a little bit, but I start to realize that her crankiness seems to be related to her lack of diaper – maybe? Aren’t babies supposed to like being without a diaper? I don’t know, but man she doesn’t seem happy.

After half an hour, the timer goes off, so we head towards the bathroom and I ask if she wants to use the potty. NO! She starts to head towards a tantrum, so I immediately drop it (that’s what THEY say to do). But I also decide we better put a diaper on her. If she’s not going to try on the “schedule,” it’s just going to be a damn messy day. She must not be ready and we’ll try another day.

My Mom was visiting so I asked if she’d watch the baby while I went up to shower. While I was gone, the monkey looked at her and said – Potty! They went into the bathroom, she sat down the potty itself was finally christened! My Mom put her back in her diaper.

Twenty minutes later, we’re back in there (and now I’ve got it fully set up with batteries and turned on so when she goes it plays a song). She goes in the potty again and the song plays. She loves the song! Why won’t the song play again? A small tantrum ensues. She sits on the potty again – up and down. I empty and clean it and she tries again (almost right away). She pees another thimbleful and gets another song! So that became the pattern for the day. Running into and out of the bathroom all day and peeing every time she could get enough in her bladder to make the music play. My Mom asked if I thought she did these small pees all day long normally. Could she really have that much control to work out to only go a little really frequently so the potty would sing to her?

Sadly we had a few things come up this weekend unexpected that prevented any further potty training (she used it on and off, but I think we totally lost momentum). We’re contemplating whether to do a bare bottom weekend (when my husband does NOT schedule classes!) soon, but we’ll see…

The short version

I don’t really want to talk about this. I know I need to. I need to get it out – put it somewhere for the world to deal with so maybe I can stop. But I feel like I’m having a hard time saying the words. Well… posting them anyway. Truthfully, I wrote about 10 pages of post yesterday, but I’m not ready to put those out there (you can save your cheers on that one).

But if I don’t tell you this, everything else I write feels like a bit of a lie. Because THIS is what I’m thinking about. Sometimes it feels like all I’m thinking about. Sometimes it feels too surreal to think about. But the truth is – I was pregnant and last week we found out I wasn’t anymore. We’d gone in for our 8 week sonogram the week before and things didn’t look good, but they wanted to confirm. There were lots of ifs and maybes. My hcg numbers were high. I should be hopeful. But really, I wasn’t. I was paying attention to my body that week and knew that it had been telling me this for a little while now – I just wasn’t listening.

I went for the D&C on Friday afternoon. The day was interminably long waiting for that. The check in process was horrible and I decided I hated the woman taking my information and the other woman who flitted about the office. I hated their cheeriness and perkiness (this was the gyn surgery unit. I can’t think of a reason one would be “happy” to be there), their lack of understanding (yeah, that might just have been me. Seems I was in a bad and whormonal* mood), the information they didn’t give me.

I was woefully unprepared for all this (I didn’t even know you were asleep for the procedure). In my super long (unpublished) post I wrote all the details of it. I needed to get it out and what if someone else was as unprepared as I was? I should be able to tell them. And maybe one day I’ll publish it or a version of it. But it turns out that again today I don’t want to talk about it.

And then, after forever, it was done. The surgery itself was easy and by Sunday I actually felt physically better than I had in weeks. I wasn’t SO exhausted anymore (which is too bad, as hiding in sleep would be sort of blissful). The whole day felt fuzzy and dreamlike with some moments of nightmarish clarity, but now it feels like it happened to someone else. On occasion reality pokes its ugly head in and brings anger with it, but mostly I’m just moving along. Two friends have told me about their new pregnancies already this week and I feel like a horrible person that I can’t quite seem to feel happy for them yet. I want to be a better person than that. But I admit it. I’m jealous and it pokes the wound a bit.

So for now, I’m going back to posts about potty training, new words and the silly things a 19 month old does. She’s learning animal sounds. Recently she picked up “gobble gobble” which she can’t say without laughing. My husband and his fellow VT alumni sister are very happy with this development (hokies, which are turkeys, are their mascot). As a BC grad, despite 4 years of college, I can’t say I have any idea what an eagle (our mascot) says (does it say “suck it, VT?” Just kidding. I promise it’s my second favorite!). I’ll have to work on that.

*As always, whormonal is still stolen from The Domestication of the Single Girl.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Is learning how to manipulate grandparents against parents by 19 months impressive or just scary?

My Mom is visiting this week to watch the monkey for us while my mother in law is on vacation (she usually watches her one, or possibly three(! depending on my husband's schedule) days a week).

Yesterday I came home and my Mom told me how good she'd been. No crying and hardly any whining all day. Happy and helpful and listened - all those things.

Within a few minutes of me arriving home - whining and crying had started. My Mom looked at her and said - what is this? I just finished saying how good you were!

The monkey has learned the importance of grandparents and begun to master toddler-dom. Ah, I am so "proud," young grasshopper. (But still tired, so could you PLEASE quit whining?!)

Well, truthfully, she hasn't totally mastered manipulation. I mean she TOTALLY showed her hand in front of Grandma at the end there. (Whatever. Maybe she also realizes she's an only grandchild and is going to be completely spoiled regardless.)

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Stress, random thoughts and the other junk I threw in here. Sorry...

Hello, blogging world!

I know I've been a little MIA recently. The truth is - I am stressed. Sometimes it's that background music stress - that stuff that's always there playing in the back of your head, but you're not really listening to. But then I stop to think and its ugly head is raging up again and it's the bull in the china shop of my psyche stress.

So, you know, typical.

Anyway, as I like to diversify my stress (to hedge lest one should actually resolve!), it's coming in two flavors these days. The first is a personal issue that I just don't really want to talk about yet.

I'm sorry - I know that's annoying and it's not meant to be a cliffhanger. We'll get there, but just not today.

The second is work. And though I'm perfectly "ready" to talk about this one, no one in their right mind would be ready to listen! Seriously - for those of us working isn't the 5 minutes (or was that hours?) we take to check out blogs done to escape?! You don't want to hear my whines about work! (Well, you probably will at some point anyway. But I'll try to spare you this one today too!)

So I've been a little quieter on the blogging front to keep from doing the mental upchuck of all my stress (which could lead to real physical upchuck of any poor readers!).

So instead I throw out some random stories to amuse:

How Daddy reads children's stories:

This one was Pooh's New Clothes or something (it's the Emporer's New Clothes, but with the pooh characters).

Pooh was walking through the forest to the bee tree to look for some honey when he saw all his friends standing together. He wondered what they were doing.

(and for the ad lib)
It turns out it was an intervention. See - it's obvious. There's the Pooh with the honey AND he's looking for more.

How Baby Decorates

I've mentioned the plethora of ugly wall paper in our house before. We're working on removing, but apparently not fast enough.

I took the monkey in the bathroom with me and she started out by pulling down all the magazines (as usual) and ripping some. When suddenly she noticed something that looked more fun to rip. Before I could stop her she'd grabbed a peeling edge of wallpaper and RIP!

Guess maybe we'll move up redecorating here...

Be careful what you say...

As the monkey bent in half starting to do a headstand / forward roll / God knows what..., my Mom looked at her and said - "You're amazing!"

It's now her favorite word ("mazing"). I'm not sure she knows what it means, but she knows it's a good thing and she knows it refers to her (I'm not sure if she's really putting two words together yet or not, but she does seem to be saying "I'm mazing."). It's getting a little narcissistic...

Thank goodness this isn't one of "Daddy's" words...

Faking it

I'm not sure if I've mentioned this one before... So here goes - Like all kids, my daughter has perfected the fake cry (the one that stops the second she gets attention / what she wants). But she's got a few others now too - the fake cough, the fake sneeze (achoo). But my personal favorite is the fake laugh.

If she hears other people laughing, she'll suddenly jump in with a really boisterous - HA HA HA!

I've also started asking her to find her laugh when we do body parts. (I'd started with smile - which leads to this really over the top, squinched eyes smile.) But then, as nothing is "funny," her laugh tends to be more like - sigh, ha, ha. I'm humoring you.