Autumn Time Changes

Well Autumn has arrived in my neck of the woods and I am loving it. It is by far my favorite season. With the Fall breeze, the changing leaves, and the hustle and bustle of life  sets in.

It’s been a great while since I have posted last, as I have allowed life to get in the way and my time management skills. I have lacked slotting in time to focus on writing that isn’t part of my scholarly work. Graduate school is going well thus-far and my biggest obstacle is making quiet time for me to truly focus on my work and put all that I know I am capable into it. I am four weeks in to a twelve week quarter though and so far, so good.

The children are growing up faster than I would like to admit. LM is nearly three and has hit the chaos that goes with that age frame. We have frequent episodes of dramatics, yelling, screaming, overwhelming (for us both) times and she is still being stubborn on potty use but is still working on it. On the flip side to the CRAZY threes (seriously twos have nothing on threes) she is making huge developmental strides. LM’s newest fascination is dressing herself, she loves to change a million times a day all by herself. It isn’t always right side in, or on just right but the concept is growing every day and I am very proud of that fact. She also is attending a play-school taught by a friend of mine twice a week. She is able to play with her friends and do some learning and activities, it has been fantastic for her and she absolutely LOVES it. Her conversational skills are also quite amusing – she is totally 2 1/2 going on 15.

MM is almost 8 months old, which is hard to believe. He has two bottom teeth and is working hard to get the top two to pop in as well. He crawls like a madman and regularly gets mad that he can’t walk like LM can. He wants to get around so badly and do everything. He is still quite the chunk and has a huge amount of personality. He also is still his daddy’s little clone.

I fill my days with child rearing, school work, and spending time with my best friend who is staying with me at the moment. My days are often overwhelming and I find myself needing to take more time to rest and reevaluate than I have in years past. I feel myself reflecting on things differently than I have at previous stages of my life.

As the Autumn air fills my lungs I remember the big things and the little things I must accomplish. I acknowledge the feelings I have for everything going on in my life right now and I center myself in the acceptance of my abilities and the focus of my mood. This journey we are embarking on will not be easy, but it is more than possible.

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What’s in a Name?

When one chooses a name for their child, often there is a great deal of thought placed into the choice. The name may hold a meaning or a  significance beyond just being pretty or likeable.

When I first found out I was pregnant with MM SCM, and I talked about names for both boys and girls and surprisingly we very quickly came  to an agreement on a set of names. Our girls name was a mix of something classy and my great grandmother’s original middle name as she was someone very important and special to me. Our boys name was whimsical and straight out of The Chronicles of Narnia. Beyond that though it was a tribute, a tribute to a really great man who unexpectedly passed away last year.

A year ago today I posted about the passing of my uncle which took us all by surprise. Contracting Encephalitis when he was very young left him with Epilepsy, something he fought through his whole life which more grace and compassion than many ever see. Ultimately though it was what took his life last year.

We chose MM’s name far before we ever knew he was a boy, before I had ever had a doctors appointment, before I ever knew when I was due. Well my official due date, was actually also today. How crazy is that?

So today I remember the happy and the sad. The happy times with my uncle Edward and the mourning of his passing so early in life and so quickly. The happy of the arrival of his great nephew Edmund, who I know he would have absolutely adored. Today I remember family even more than normal and cherish each and every moment with them.

May you hug your loved ones a little more, call that family member that is on your mind, and leave no regrets. Remember the person beyond the name and what they mean to you.

Rest in Peace Uncle Eddy we miss you and love you beyond words. ❤

Go In Peace Good & Faithful Servant Edward

Edmund Cornelius ❤

Kipper’s Day 11

elf11

Today Kipper decided to have a rather useful activity and force LM and I to do something with the blackening bananas in the house. LM was able to make banana bread this morning, something that she took a great amount of delight in.

Adding the sugar

Adding the sugar

Using the mixer, which she was very happy about. The dog was even trying to sneak in and she forcefully told him no.

Using the mixer, which she was very happy about. The dog was even trying to sneak in, and she forcefully told him no.

 

We added a little too much butter, and not quite enough baking powder. We tossed in some chocolate chips for good measure too, but all in all we still ended with some rather yummy banana chocolate bread.

elf11.4

If the banana bread wasn’t enough there was also  a yummy spatula for LM to lick when we were done. I think that was her favorite part.

elf11.3

Being able to bake with LM this morning wasn’t easy, it was far from perfect, but it was some of the best fun I have had this week. Her enthusiasm for assisting, as well as making mischief, and even attempting to put Kipper IN the flour container made it all so much more fun. I love that she loves to help me and I know that encouraging that will help her blossom those skills which hopefully will lead to some great helping after belly baby comes.

Do you bake with your little ones? What is your favorite thing to make?

The Unconventional Family

My family isn’t ordinary, in fact the dynamics of my family I find to be rather extraordinary. My blended family isn’t the typical one many think of, to be sure, it is far from it. While the family that most people see on a regular basis from me is SCM and LM and now the ever growing baby bump, that is far from what my family really is. Beyond the surface is the rest of our family, the first of our family, my birth daughter.

Angel Baby as I have referred to her here a few times is nearly four years old and we see her and her family (her mom, dad, brother, and doggy) a couple times a year and thanks to modern technology stay in touch daily. With the open adoption that we have AB is able to grow up not only knowing where she came from originally and know how much her first family still loves her,  but how grateful *I* am that she has such an amazing family to grow up with. She is also able to see and play with one of her favorite people in the world her “baby shishter” LM which is truly a precious thing to behold. Having the gift to continue to be in AB’s life is truly a blessing, as is the connection that both SCM and I have with her and her family.

This previous weekend (I am so slow at keeping up with this blog it is horrible) AB and her Momma came out to our neck of the woods for a 4 day visit and boy was it a blast. With swim time, sleepovers, play dates, and a big extended family gathering I couldn’t have ask for a better, albeit busy, weekend with my family and I am beyond blessed with what my family is made up of.

I have been ask a few times how I could “give up” my daughter, a term by the way that I loathe, because the truth is I didn’t give her up, I chose a family for her that could, at that point in my life, give her all the things I ever wanted for her. I didn’t lose her I gained a whole other family to add to my own, and that isn’t a sorrowful thing by any means.

And now without further a-do some snapshots of my family on our fantastic gathering!

My girls AB & LM

Me with the girls ❤

The girls and their momma’s.

 

SCM & the girls.

 

AB with her Mom and FIrst Mom. <3<3<3

 

 

Adjustment for 3 please

I knew SCM coming back was going to be an adjustment for all of us but boy did I underestimate just how much of a wrench it would through into my schedule.

LM is doing better and has been playing and interacting with Dada no problem. Though him being home has caused bedtime to be a chore which is new, but I think some of that is age as well.

SCM is still feeling a bit of a fish out of water. His routine is all jacked up and he went from being around tons of people to having a shit ton of down time and it only being three of us. Errand outings are stressful and kind of overwhelming but he’s slowly coming around for it all. He will be starting school and work soon so that will help him get into a better routine.

Me. I seem to be one of the bigger challenges in the adjustment process. I am so used to it just being me and LM. I get up in the mornings, we eat breakfast and hang out, I watch crap TV while I bust out work, things are an odd sort of fast and slow pace all mixed into one. Now though, it’s a slow process that is one task at a time, all my moves and shows and things I want to do have commentary added to them. Multi-tasking doesn’t happen. My systems are in a complete funk and it is driving me batty. The bright side is SCM and I are able to discuss easily how it is making us both feel. I knew it was going to be a challenge as I am a bit of a control freak but I don’t think I could have prepared for the real mental shift it is taking.

I am leaving this weekend for a 2 day work vendor show and SCM and LM will be on there own and so will I. I find myself looking forward to this time, as me time. My pace. My work. They way I want it. I feel like that is a tid selfish but I think it might just be the air I need to refocus for another week of adjustments.

So – here is to another day with my whole family.

How long did it take your family to adjust? Were there things that helped or hindered the process?

I Suck Because I

“can’t” is normally what follows that sentence, but not here, here it’s “I suck because I DON’T”

  • I Don’t keep up a daily routine.
  • I Don’t workout.
  • I Don’t have a strict schedule for my Toddler.
  • I Don’t plan my meals.
  • I Don’t have motivation.
  • I Don’t do a lot of things I should.

It’s not that I “Can’t” do these things; it’s that my motivation is in the toilet, why? I am going to say it, it might not be the popular view but for me it’s the truth, Motherhood made me lazy. Yup, that is right; being a mom has totally made me lazy.

Before babies, I busted out full time school and work, I was on the go 24/7, I was motivated and high speed. I constantly was accomplishing something and I felt good about it. I had time to relax if I wanted to and do my own thing. It worked for me. I like pressure. I work well under deadlines and pressure, quite the opposite from my wonderful husband.

Compared to my life pre-baby, my life post-baby is slow. And I am not used to slow.  Slow makes me bored and lazy, slow isn’t motivating. I don’t really know what to do with slow. Slow overwhelms me.  Now I know some people will say, “Oh just wait until you have more kids” but frankly I don’t have more kids, I have one, I grew up in a herd of children I get how it works, but it isn’t about waiting it’s about now. Or then there is the “Oh I would kill to feel like that” people which I find equally as ridiculous as the first one because when you have a brain that functions on overdrive and a life that doesn’t it is like being OCD and having everything off kilter. It is defeating.

I am hoping that once SCM returns home the pace will pick up again and I will be able to turn up the pace a little but when you are the only care giver to a toddler their limits are your limits which means running around all day for errands, activities, work, etc, isn’t an option. Their bed time is your home-bound time, even if that is 5:00pm while the sun is still shining. And sitting around having nothing pressing to do (or that I can do with LM being down) causes me to put everything off because it isn’t a “have to” It’s an “it would be nice if.” Or an “oh I should” and because of that I continue to sit.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I love being a mother and I understand it means sacrifices and a lifestyle change. I wouldn’t change staying home to raise LM, but after a year of being the one that holds down the fort at a pace that is not my ideal is certainly frustrating. It has really caused me to “let myself go.” I don’t read anymore, I don’t finish tasks like I should, or projects like I would like to, I don’t make the difference in certain areas of my life that I had hoped. I feel like all of my education has just fallen right out of my brain. And it bothers the hell out of me, and yet I just can’t get into a system to change it because everything is just sooooo slow. I have learned to adapt in many ways and learned to accept in many ways but finding a middle ground, finding a pressure for me, a deadline, activities, is something I need to sort out. I find myself leaving things to the last minute simply so I can rush to get them done and feel that pressure – how lame is that. (lol) The reality is, I am lazy now and while some of it is situational, most of it is me, and I need to find a way to alter how I function to adapt to how my life is now which is harder than it sounds. And sometimes getting it all out of my head is a good motivation for me to get off my arse.

So there is my jumbled mess of a blog post for the day. The Goal: To keep up and blog, at least a little bit every day, even if I don’t have much to say. I know there is more potential wrapped up in me and over the last 3 years it really has gotten lost. Spring/Summer is here though, and the sun is shining, SCM will be home soon (YAY) and while things will be nerve racking stability wise when he returns, we are going to make it work and I am going to get out of my own head.  Here’s to DOING instead of accepting and figuring out how to function in this new slow environment, the right way.

Sunny Day Me

16 Month old Little Miss!

R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Respect comes in many forms but respect should not change based on the age of an individual. Everyone deserves it, it shouldn’t be dictated by mood, by age, by gender, by race, by anything.

One of my biggest pet peeves, something that will send me from zero-hot in an instant is being “shushed” and being talked over. Both of those things I find to be extremely disrespectful, rude, and uncalled for. Many people, when that happens say, “Don’t treat me like a child” with that I ask, why is it that we find it appropriate to treat a child as such? If we dislike it, if we find it rude, then why on earth would we treat someone else like that, no matter their age?

The fact is, we shouldn’t.

So how do we change a behavior that is so easy to slip into? By doing what we so often ask children to do; we use our words.

Instead of “shushing” get down on a child’s level and explain to them why they need to be quiet, or change their attitude. If you use words with them, they will use words with you.Likewise, if you are speaking to an adult or young adult that is acting in a similar manner the same rules apply. Explain to them, “maybe we can talk about that in a minute,” “Now isn’t the best time for that, maybe later,” “That is a good thought, let’s discuss it more in a little bit.”

Communication is vital from the beginning, if you want it later, you need to start it now, and that holds true for all aspects of ones life. So today when you go about your day remember to show that respect comes in all forms and is deserving by all people no matter who it is or how YOUR day is going.

 

A smile for your day. LM rocking her new sunglasses.