Sunday, March 31, 2013

Easter Cuteness

Participating in four Easter egg hunts in the past two days has left our family with Easter hangover. Although Easter is over (unless you are Catholic, then this is just the first of fifty days of Easter, as my mom would so carefully point out), remnants of Easter are everywhere: empty half-shells of multi-colored plastic eggs, ribbons of blue grass, the occasional run-away candy wrapper, two sugar-crashing children sleeping deeply in the next room. The weather was so amazingly beautiful today that, although sundown is long over, sunshine still fills my eyes.

Last night, after I painstakingly hid each of the children's plastic eggs with meticulous care and thought, I made sure to charge the video camera. I was very much looking forward to Jacob's excitement as he discovered each one. I was sure that I had hid them well enough that the great hunt would last several minutes. Fast forward to 7:30 a.m. when Jacob bounced into our bedroom and proudly held his Easter basket alof. "Look mommy! Look what the Easter Bunny brought me!" In his hunt for the basket, he had already found all twelve plastic eggs filled with candy and quarters. The turkey finished his big hunt without us. Another moment had slipped by without proper documentation.

Oh well. We still had two more egg hunts to look forward to. And they did not disappoint.

But first was Easter Mass. Easter Mass is my favorite service. It's always so uplifting and joyful. And, if you are lucky enough to sit on the end of a pew, you get pelted with big heavy drops of holy water. You can't help but leave Mass feeling a little lighter than when you entered-- and not just from having an extra hour to digest half a bag full of jelly beans.

Dressed for Mass
The color coordination was totally unintentional!

Then we continued my childhood tradition of visiting my grandma for Easter ham, lamb-shaped cake, and a second (or third) Easter egg hunt. It's crazy that my family has been doing this for over 20 years. And although the egg hunt participants have changed over the years, it's pretty much all the same right down to the crowded, boisterous, fight-for-your-food atmosphere. I have happy memories of roaming my grandparent's large property in search of special baggies or baskets with our names transcribed on them. Watching my own kids do the same is like a trippy, magical time warp.

Ryan's first Easter!


The loot

The babies

The babies' loot

After Easter at my grandma's house, we drove out to my husband's parents' home. We had a second Easter feast (more ham!) which was much more quiet and laid back (my husband and I grew up in very different environments) and then the kids enjoyed their final egg hunt of the season.

Ryan spent almost the entire day showing off his arm by pitching eggs across the lawn

Taking inventory

More egg throwing

So much family. So much food. So much sunshine. So much cuteness.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Feels Like Spring

In February I was under the belief that my sister was dating Guy X. Then one random evening in early March, purely out of the blue, I got a text from her: "I'm getting married! To Guy Y!" Wait, who?! I had never even heard of this guy. The next text was even more shoking: "We're getting married in two weeks!"


Imagine my parents' shock when they got similar news--but not from my sister, from Guy Y. He called my dad at work one day and said, "Hi, I'm Guy Y. I'm going to marry your daughter." Like the rest of us, my dad had no clue who this guy was. He might have freaked out just a tad. He called me immediately afterward. It was an interesting conversation.

And, as promised, that is exactly what happened. They got married! In their home. Before some kind of minister. After we had only met Guy Y one time. With only two witnesses in attendance. And my parents found out that it happened nearly a week later. Although I had some insider knowledge, it was pretty much a secret.

And although there is a part of me that balks at all the suddeness of things, there will be absolutely no judging from me. Heck, I eloped. It was a true elopment, even. We weren't even engaged. We just flew out to Chicago, got married, and didn't tell a single soul-- not even my two lawschool roomates who accompanied us for the first part of our trip. (After we eloped, I called up my roommate and said, "Hey, we just did something crazy! It starts with the letter E!" Her reply was, "OMG. Where did you get ecstacy?!" Ha.)

Today, after waking up to the most gorgeous Pacific Northwest weather that we have had in at least seven months, I packed up the kids for a short trip to visit my sister in her new, married home. She lives next to the most amazing trails and parks. The highlight of the trip was this crazy, long slide:

Even the adults enjoyed it:


We played in the sun, chatted, and did the goofy things that sisters do. BTW- this whole thing about my sister and I getting along, is a very recent phenomenon. We are four years apart and have never really gotten along, much less held a friendship. It's amazing how things change as you get older.

Taking advantage of my sister by sneaking in some rare shots of ME with the kids.

He loved the swing....obviously, you can't tell

The advantage of big brothers
My handsome 4 year old

When we left my sister's place, there was plenty of daylight and sunshine. We continued to soak up the first spring-like day when we arrived back home. I made some dinner and then it was time for coloring Easter eggs.

Jacob had asked me all day about coloring eggs. "When do we get to color eggs?" "Do we have to cook them first?" "Can I put glitter on them?" "How many eggs do we get to color." He broached the subject at least once an hour, perhaps to make sure that I wouldn't forget. Like I would forget something THAT important!

I'm pretty sure we didn't color eggs last year. I was scheduled for my c-section the day after Easter and it was a prerty chaotic and emotional time. But the year before that I vividly remember our egg-coloring experience. Jacob was 2 and kept transferring the eggs from color to color, much to my horror. He didn't have the patience to let them sit in any one color for long enough. As a result, the eggs all ended up looking the shade of grey-ish purple. Jacob was just as colorful as his artsy eggs. I'm pretty sure we had to throw the clothes he was wearing in the trash.

This year Jacob was very methodical. He wanted to color the eggs the "right" way: one color per egg and he patiently let them sit in the dye for the proper amount of time. He didn't crack or break a single egg and when they were ready, he carefully removed them from the dye and rolled them in glitter. I was a very proud mama.

After we colored eggs, I marched Jacob off to bed and tucked him is. Right as I was about to shut the door, he spoke up, "Mom, make sure you tell Dad that you both have to go to bed early so the Easter Bunny will come!" I assured him we would go to bed promptly and then proceeded to spend the next two hours doing a load of laundry, tidying the house (can't find eggs in a messy house!), filling and hiding plastic eggs and baskets, baking my favorite recipe for apple pie for Easter dessert, and decorating Jacob's bedroom door with streamers (the Easter Bunny just may have overdone it this year).

How is it that I always manage to squeeze in a full day's worth of chores and activity after the kids go to bed? Ugh, I'm so tired!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Mommy Cry-A-Thon

My tummy is in knots. I came home, cuddled my baby in the spare kid bed, and had a mini-mommy-cry-a-thon. I can't really explain my emotions. It's more than likely a multitude of burdens and emotions all mushed together that are beginning to run me down.

So I held my baby. He bobbed his head back and forth as I sang him songs. He nestled into my shoulder beforing popping back up to play with a teddy bear. His chubby little fingers reached for and clasped around the bars of the bunk bed with intense concentration and great interest.

I thought cuddling him would make me feel happy but every little thing he did made me cry harder. Just watching him--my sweet, chubby, happy baby--reminded me in so many ways how he was soon NOT going to be my sweet, chubby, happy baby but a busy and lively toddler.

Most of the time I'm so insanely busy that I rarely have time to digest what is going on. It's rush, rush, rush all day with barely time for a potty break (this is why I don't drink liquid at work- no time to go potty!). I'm so focused on what needs to get done right away that I pocket my reactions for a more convenient time. When I finally stop and take a breather, all those reactions escape at the same time and the result in an overwhelming conglomerate of emotions that turn me into a confused puddle of tears.

The muddled mush of feelings I felt today resulted from the following:

  • A text from my sister-in-law telling me my baby was taking his first steps (and I was missing it).
  • The sinking realization that my baby is going to be ONE and no longer my little baby. This seriously makes my heart hurt. I don't remember this milestone being so painful with my first baby.
  • The fact that I blinked my eyes three times and my baby transformed into a toddler. It's hard not to blame working for the fact that Ryan's babyhood is going by way too quickly.
  • The news that my sister-in-law will no longer be watching my kids during the day. OMG. I have to find a complete stranger to take care of my babies?! (My sister-in-law is so awesome with the kids. I'm sure no one can replace her!)

OMG. I have two weeks to find a replacement part time nanny. Don't panic. Don't panic. WAAAAH!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -  - - - - - - -  - - - - - -

Unrelated pictures from this weekend:

Monday, March 25, 2013

Being Frank

So I was talking with a friend. And we talked about work. Somehow the topic crept ever so slowly to the red zone--salary. Without blinking, she very candidly blurted out how much she made.

This friend has a BA with half of her credit hours earned at a community college. She did not to go graduate school. During high school, while I was working every Saturday and Sunday to bolster my college applications and get some work experience, she was playing and partying. While I have three years of being a lawyer under my belt, she has maybe a full year of experience holding a full time job. Unlike me, she did not spend nearly a full mortgage on lawschool tuition.

And yet, here we are. Ten years later. Making nearly the same amount. GUH!

I try to avoid comparing myself to other people and I definitely try to avoid talking about money and finances and salary with anyone. But a little piece of me wanted to scream in frustration. The path that led me to the present was a rough path full of hard work, smart choices, sacrifice of time, and sacrifice of money. Where did all that "responsibility" get me? In the same exact place as those people who never really cared.

Before you say it, I will say it for you: money is not the measure of success. Yep I know that. Trust me, I know that. I say it every day a medical bill arrives in the mail. I say it every time my tuition payment is deducted from my bank account. I say it every time I have $100 to stretch for gas and food for the last week of the month. Money isn't everything. There is also balance. And family. And loving what you do. And being challenged and stimulated. And having room to grow.

While I made the decision recently to make keep more balance in my life (less billable hours for less paycheck), life has been far from rosy. Even though I took a 75% position, the honesty is that it takes 100% to do my job. That's the beast of litigation. While I still have flexibility (working from home twice a week is pretty awesome), I do have alot of the stress that I was trying to avoid. AND when I do try to reign in my stress and my time spent working, it somehow just makes me feel guilty. And yet, I would be feeling guilty about not being with the kids if it were the other way around. I guess, if I had to choose, I'd rather feel guilty about missing work than about missing the kids.

I have to say that I love my job. I absolutely love litigation. Everyday it is challenging and new and exciting and scary. But sometimes I feel like I could have coasted through life a little (or a lot) more and have ended up in the same place. That might not be entirely true. It might be entirely false. But it sure feels that way sometimes. Those are usually the times that I scoure craigslist for random job openings and romanticize about being a donut maker or personal trainer or having some mind-numbing desk job that pays the same as my lawyer job. But the grass is always greener, right?

I need to end this post now because the conservative in me is screaming "Shut up! You got exaclty what you paid for. You don't get a bailout for the choices you make. Be happy you have a job and can provide for your family. And, besides, your boss totally buys you beer!"

So, the take-away (aside from the fact that I am a whiny person) is this: I would never discourage anyone from going to law school but law students need to know what to expect. They need to know what they are buying when they fork over $100+K for tuition and books. When you make the big decision to go to lawschool, you may be sacrificing 1/3 of your income for the next 20 (or more) years to pay back your student loas.

Yeah. Big commitment. And you can't divorce your student loans.

Saturday, March 23, 2013


This week involved:

An ear infection
A bleeding diaper rash
One rush trip to the pediatrician
3 episodes of bed-wetting (not me!)
Two motions
One 12 hour work day
One 5 hour meeting
Having to wake up at 5:30 a.m. for four consecutive days
Praise at work
Scolding at work (same day as above)
Being woken up at 1 a.m. to Jacob's night terrors (twice)
16 hours of commuting to/from work

However, all of those moments were totally outshined by this one:

Someone tell him to stop growing please! My poor heart cannot stand losing another chubby-faced baby to toddler-hood.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Spotted Leopard Goes To The Doctor

This weekend I had a temporary post about some not so fun things that happened at work on Friday. Because of the sensitive nature of the post, I had to eventually take it down. But it still felt good to get everything off my chest. In short Friday was absolutely horrible. At one point, I was hiding in the office supply room silently sobbing my eyes out.

Friday was one of the most horrendous work days I have ever had as an attorney. It was second only to the day a random internet stalker copied all of my Facebook status updates and photos and pasted them in an email to all seven partners of my old law firm. The email also accused me of sleeping with cleints (FALSE!) and drinking during work hours (no comment). It's kind of hard to beat that.

Anyway, Monday I was excited to turn over a new leaf. I wanted to be productive and effecient and just obliterate my to-do list. Of course, that's the day my 4-year-old had to wake up completely covered in itchy white and red spots. I named him leopard. When he wasn't itching uncontrollably, he found the resemblance slightly amusing.

My first thought was obviously...chicken pox! But my mom assured me that kids don't usually get chicken pox anymore if they have been vaccinated. My first thought was one of disbelief. Seriously? Kids don't get chicken pox anymore? What is the world coming to? When I was growing up chicken pox was a central part of one's indoctrination into the real world. Sheesh. Kids these days!

I called to make the obligatory doctor's appointment. They couldn't get us in until 4pm. So I strapped the kids into the car, drove them to the store, unloaded them from their car seats, hauled them around the store in search of Benadryl. Then we piled back into the car and headed to my mom's house so I could attempt to get some work done. I was so focused on work that I nearly missed the doctor appointment. When I saw the time, I crazily shuffled the kids back into the car and we headed out to the clinic.

It wasn't until we landed into an exam that I caught my breath and assessed the situation. In my rush to get the kids out the door this morning, I let Jacob put on the clothing and the shoes of his choice. The result: he was wearing sweatpants nearly 2 inches too short, thick snow boots (it was not even raining), and Christmas socks. Mysterious speckles of leftover lunch covered his fleece sweatshirt. Was that speckle peanut butter? Was that one cream cheese? To top it all off, he still had remnants of St. Patrick's Day face paint all over his cheeks and forehead. AND my mom had decided to use a black marker to color a cat nose and whiskers onto his face. 

My kid looked like a ferile, green cat that had run through a basket of dirty laundry....who was also covered in itchy red welts.

I was suddenly very embarrassed. My kid was in worse condition than one of the octo-kids. But it wasn't until the doctor tugged at my son's clothing to check the extent of his spots that I realized the worst part. He wasn't wearing any underwear! Apparently he had a minor accident at my mom's and had no choice but to go commando.

The doctor did not look amused at all. I am very lucky that she let me leave that place with both of my kids in tow!

Just a sampling of the spots:

Oh, and the verdict? The spots are an after-effect of his ear infection last week. No, not an allergic reaction to his amoxocillin but actually from the ear infection itself. This is the same ear infection that caused me to spend 4 unpleasant hours in Urgent Care with two antsy-whiny kids on a sunny Saturday afternoon.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

St. Pat's Dash

The kids and I just completed our very first race together: the St. Pat's Dash in Seattle! We got up at 6am and faced high-30 temperatures for our 9 a.m. race start time.

From their comfy and cozy spot in the double jogger, the kids enjoyed the view while I tried to run through a sea of nearly 17,000 green-covered people. Some of my favorite costumes were the group of people dressed as green eggs and spam, the alien from Sesame Street (yeppp, yep, yep, yep, uh-huh, uh-huh!), leprechauns galore, a large rainbow banner, and a woman wearing nude colored skin suit withh shamrock pasties.

Although we wouldn't win any costume awards, we were also a little festive.

The jogger made running with 60+ pounds of children a total breeze! The hardest part was trying to pass people. This jogger is the hummer of strollers! I know for sure I scraped the back of one man's ankle (he jumped in front of me so it's totally his fault!). I also may have run over another girl's toes although I'm convinced she was limping BEFORE then. 

I ran with my friend who encouraged me to sign up and we chatted the whole time. Although our chatting was a clear sign that we weren't running hard enough, it was amazing to mix my three favorite things: time with the kids, girl talk, and running. The 4 mile race went by so quickly that I was shocked when I saw the finish line. And although we didn't finish the course in my goal time (8 minute miles), the run was so much fun that I didn't even give it a second thought.

Daddy was waiting at the finish line to snap the obligatory victory shots.

Then the whole gang of us celebrated by going out to brunch. Amazingly, the men who had just been spectators put away three times as much brunch as the race participants. Cheerleading must be a lot of work (or we didn't run hard enough). The boys were so well behaved (for boys) during brunch. Ryan ate pancakes and scrambled eggs and Jacob was mostly quiet and still while we enjoyed our own food.

I'm already trying to decide which race we will run next. I think I'm going to start planning one per month. I love you double jogger!!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

The Littlest One

My littlest is 11 months old. I am experiencing equal parts disbelief and excitement. What new adventure is waiting for my sweet little boy? When will he say his first word? Take his first step? Don't get me wrong, I'm not anxious for the disappearance of his babyhood and would not mind at all if he decides to keep doing his one-legged shuffle across the floor for another half year. As a second-time mom, I truly understand how precious and fleeting these baby days really are.

Also, I don't know if I'm ready to celebrate his first birthday. Logistically, I am beyond ready. I have the entire thing planned out. The games. The food. Mostly the games. I love birthday party games. I get to be ringleader for a troup of kids and then send them home when I get tired. It's pretty much my favorite thing ever. But the first birthday is basically the end of babyhood and the birth of toddlerhood. I'm not ready to give up my baby. In my mind, Ryan is still 3 months old. His smiles are still gummy. He will hold still for unlimited cuddle time. And his needs are so very simple. I've already lost one sweet baby to the terrors of childhood. I'm not ready to give up a second. 

Also, how is it that I have only known him for a year? When he was born, it was as if someone had given me an entire new limb. A limb that I hadn't thought twice about not having when I didn't have it. And now that I have it, I am certain that I could not live with out it. If I can feel this way about Ryan, how many other future babies am I not realizing that I could never live without? (Does that even make sense?!).

Ryan is the master of smiles. The champion of giggles. He is in one word: happy. Happy in the morning. Happy in the evening. Happy to sit and watch the big people. Happy to entertain himself on the kitchen floor while I cook dinner. Happy to be included in a game with his brother. He is pretty much happy all the time. Until Jacob locks him in a carboard box. Or takes away his toy. Then all bets are off. I'm already amazed at how well he sticks up for himself when he absolutely needs to.

Aside from "mama" and "dada," Ryan is not saying any real words. But he loves to talk regardless. He will have an actual conversation with us in baby talk. We don't know what he is saying but we are certain from his expression that he is saying something. Ryan and I can have an enitre conversation just by saying different variations of the word "dah."

I remember at Ryan's age that Jacob liked to point at everything. Instead of pointing, Ryan will stretch out his open-fisted hand towards the object of his interest and exclaims, "dah!" We tell him what that object is and then he's on to pointing at the next thing that catches his eye.

"That is water, Ryan. Those are waves."

Ryan can and does eat pretty much everything. For dinner, I just give him whatever we are eating. Hunks of chicken, pasta, cheese, apples, pizza crust, bananas, even crackers. I have even given him an entire half of a ham and cheese sandwich. He likes babyfood but he loves to touch and feel and explore. So I am happy to turn every meal time into learning time. It's pretty ridiculous to walk down the babyfood aisle and see the parenting consumerism in it's full glory. Special pasta for toddlers? Pre-made baby meals? It's all kind of silly. It's a marketing trap. Babies are people. If they can chew, they can eat whatever you can eat. Except for honey, I guess. For some odd reason, honey and cow milk remain off limits for babies. But other than that, PSSHT.... babyfoood is so for babies!

I try to encourage Ryan to try all kinds of new foods. This doesn't mean, however, that I was entirely happy with Grandpa when he fed Ryan Cinnamon Toast Crunch for breakfast. But according to Grandpa, that's what he "wanted" (sure, Grandpa) and he really did love it

A true Ryan smile is not complete unless his eyes are closed, his mouth is wide open, and his two front teeth are fully bared.

On Wednesday I was at my mom's house making dinner. One minute my baby was at my feet in the kitchen. The next he had disappeared. When I got to a stopping point in my cooking, I stepped away to find him. I discovered him not in the next room but on the next FLOOR! He is now the expert stair climber and has mastered going both up and down the stairs all by himself. He even knows he has to go down backward.
I love to watch him learn new things. Despite being the second baby and having to learn the rough and tumble world of living with an older brother, he's pretty cautious. He takes things slowly and uncertainly. This is one reason why he doesn't stand on his own even though I know for a fact that he can. He has done it a number of times but the second that he realizes he is not holding on to anything he immediately grabs for the nearest object and falls to his butt.
He's just like his mama in that respect. She's always falling on her butt too.

There are a lot of things that I want to remember about Ryan, his babyhood, and his personality. But my favorite is how, after you scoop him up and set him in your arms, he will wrap his arms around your body and lay his head on your shoulder for a good solid minute. We are blessed with these Ryan hugs very often as he liberally bestows them onto the people he loves. Grandpa is the most recent  recipient of these Ryan hugs, to Grandpa's delight. My dad did not take a very active role in the daily care of his children. So it amazes me to see him be so involved with his grandchildren. He is re-learning all about changing diapers and making bottles. It's a mini miracle.

I have to say, I melt a little inside every time I see Ryan wrapping Grandma and Grandpa farther around his finger. Grandpa calls him his little buddy. When Ryan is in the same room as his grandparents, it's hard not to notice a dramatic increase in giggles, admiration, and love going both ways.

Dear little Ry-Guy, you are my sweet Mr. Dimples, my Little Bear, my Turkey-Butt, my Pig-Pig, and my entire world. (If Jacob is reading this, then Jacob, you are my sunshine.)

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

A Little Sugar Codeine

This morning I had an early hearing scheduled. And because I absolutely hate going to sleep (I hate it!), I could not get my butt to bed before midnight last night. "Eh, no biggy," I thought. I could still manage 5 hours of sleep. Sadly, that is not a rare thing for me. And everthing would have been fine except for a horrible sore throat which woke me up every half hour to the sensation of a thousand gerbils clawing their way out from my insides.

And then the real pleasure began. Jacob woke up with a night terror at 1 a.m. I bounded straight out of bed and nipped his crying in the bud before Ryan woke up. Jacob, I can handle. Even at one in the morning. But when The Baby wakes up, all bets are off. Ryan's waking up is usually accompanied by thirty minutes of screaming before I ultimately give in and bring him into bed with me where he will flop like a convulsing fish. With all his weight, he will throw himself in all directions across both my bed and my body. His head will repeatedly soar through the air, his tiny body following suit like the tail of a submissive badmitten ball, before hitting its target (usually my hip bone, or face).

Contrarty to what you may think, I do NOT enjoy playing badmitten with a baby's cement-like noggin at one in the morning.

So I carefully shushed Jacob back to bed and then tossed and turned in my own bed as the imaginary gerbils continued their mission to carve out my throat. I finally dozed back to sleep after god knows how long. Unfortunately, my night time tragedy did not end there. At precisely 4 a.m., my restless slumber was disturbed by a wail. A really long and loud wail. Oh. Shit. This time it was The Baby.

I did not go back to sleep. And with that, my 5 hours of precious sleep had diminished into 2.5 hours. It was not going to be a fabulous day.

Somehow, SOMEHOW, I left my house at 6 a.m. and was the absolute LAST car to make it onto the ferry. And, in rare fashion, I arrived at the court house early for my hearing. I'm nearing the perfect stage of my early career in which going to court is no longer scary but it is still new enough of an experience that it is fun. Mostly, I just like to play dress up in my suit, heels, and my favorite pearls. I also like to watch other people present oral arguments and fall in and out of favor with the judges and their unique little quirks and pet-peeves.

I practiced my oral argument over and over in my head the entire drive to the court house. By the time I parked my car, my argument was flawless and I was ready to attack. I don't have a speech impediment by any means but when I have to make public speeches or am put on the spot, I have an incredible knack for stumbling ferociously over my words. I lose my ability to pronounce simple words and half of my vocabulary falls off a cliff in my brain never to be remembered again. So before every public speech or oral argument, I absolutely have to rehearse each sentence over and over and over until each word sounds perfect in my mind and can not be forgotten.

Somehow, despite all the practicing, when I stand before the judge, I start really strong but my argument fizzles into a little puff about halfway through. I lose my confidence and the words start to jumble around in my brain once again. At this point, I usually stop myself and allow the opposing counsel to step in. Today was no different. I started strong and persuasive and then the fabric of my argument began to unravel as my words jumbled. I became so self conscious of my shortcomings that I lost steam and trailed off quietly into awkward silence.

It is so frustrating! I really need stronger closing statement. I know that the only way to improve this is by practice. Hopefully, I can add several more court appearances under my belt before the year is up. But at least I'm no longer showing up to court year sweating through my clothes, my heart thumping loudly, and my hands shaking uncontrollably. At least I'm decently presentable now and can mostly fake an appearance of ease and control.

The day kind of went downhill after I won my motion. My sore throat got so bad that I was almost completely unable to talk for the second half of the day. My husband was thrilled when I texted him this. Drinking and eating felt like swallowing tiny toothpicks. When I got off work, I went straight to Urgent Care. And, although I felt silly for wasting everyone time only to discover I do not have strep, I was very happy to bring some home cough syrup laced with codeine. Girl's best friend.

Considering that I managed the whole crazy day on only 2.5 hours of sleep, I would like someone to award me with a medal. Any medal will do, preferably large and shiny. I shall be waiting patiently.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Saving Time & Getting Fit

After spending 3 hours in the Urgent Care on Saturday due to a sudden onset of ear infection hell (Jacob's not mine), I made the most of what was left of the day running across the county like a mad woman. After Urgent Care, a dashed to the pharmacy for anti-biotics. Then I met a lady from Craigslist and purchased a double jogging stroller. I've been wanting one ever since Ryan was born and after scouring Craiglist for weeks I decided to pull the trigger and do it. BEST PURCHASE OF THE DECADE. Man I love this thing. LOVE. It's amazing how easily I can push 60 pounds of children with this thing!

We barely even noticed the rain

Saturday was my husband's birthday and it appeared that I had given him the gift of my awful cold and two sick children for his birthday. I decided to top those gifts with something he actually wanted, a Soda Stream. So I stopped at Staples and picked one. I made a couple other stops before pulling into the driveway and hastily wrapping my husband's gift outside the front door with Christmas paper and white labels (oops, forgot to buy tape!). It was a sad looking gift but I could tell he liked it when he pulled his sickly self out of bed and immediately gave it a try.

On Sunday, I tried out my new amazing jogger. I loved being able to see my kids while I jogged. And I loved that I could run and spend quality time with them. Ryan loved chilling in his seat (5 point harness!) and looking at the scenery. Jacob and I had some funny conversations ("Mommy, do daddy dragons lay egss?" "Mommy, are flamingos dangerous?"). We did one of my favorite runs. It felt amazing to get back out and run. Next Saturday the kids and I are running in a St. Patrick's Day fun run and I can't wait to give the gogger the ultimate test. If it works out, I plan on signing up for many more 5Ks this spring and summer!

Moving forward with the theme of being healthy and fit, I finally did another thing that I had been wanting to do for so long. During my pregnany with Ryan, my abdomen muscles stretched to the max and eventually separated. It was horrible. I could feel them tearing constantly from weeks 20-40. Sure enough, after Ryan was born I discovered that I could fit two full fingers between my abs right near my belly button. My c-section and pregnany left my core demolished. I haven't been able to do sit ups or crunches since then (crunches can make the separation worse). I felt stuck. It was a Catch-22. I couldn't work out my abs because of my separation, and I continued to have a separation because I couldn't do core work.

Last week I tried physical therapy but I did not click with the therapist. He wans't interested in working out my core and getting my muscles back on track. I tried his method for a couple days but finally decided that it wasn't for me. Today I met with a personal trainer and former physical therapist with experience in abdominal separation. She was amazing! We hit it off right away. We had each other joking and laughing by the end of the session. Twelve hours later and I'm as sore as hell! I'm so excited to get some core strength back! It isn't cheap but I'm so happy to spend the money on this. I'm worth it right?!

The Freakishly Happy Baby

After putting in a full day of work today, I decided to take advantage of the extra hour of daylight (I LOVE daylight savings!) and took the kids to my favorite park and where I used to run cross country in highschool. We did a rough (very rough!) 3 miles. And despite the fact that it was rainy and cold, I gave in to Jacob's whinning and let my kids enjoy the playground and sandbox.
Ryan loved touching the sand

Frog Rock

More sand touching

It was awesome to enjoy this time with my kids outdoors. Spring has not sprung by any means but forcing myself outside with the kids brings back wonderful memories of playing outside with my siblings as a kid. I'm finally feeling as if I'm living up to the parenting yardstick my parents set by their example. I feel more present and active with my kids. Lately, they have both been very challenging but I've still been finding myself happy and content at the end of long, frustrating, hard days. I'm pretty sure that is exactly how it's supposed to be :)