Motherhood...is hard...

It's almost Mother's Day. Duh. Seems to be the topic of conversation, and as if Hallmark would let us forget it. And Target for that matter.

So I've been thinking mommy thoughts. Because I'm a mom. And a pregnant one at that. The other day I saw Jennifer Lopez on Ellen's show. Ellen asked her about being a mom of 2 yr old twins, and what she thought was the most surprising part. Jennifer answered "the guilt." I have to say, I'm totally with her on that one. The rest of it you kind of expect or hear about, but the guilt sort of blindsided me.

After I had Ella I went back to work. Granted, I was working for my dad in a family-friendly office structure and my mom was taking care of Ella. So I had it pretty good. If Ella needed something, it was pretty easy to sneak out quickly to tend to it. I often had my lunch there so I could see her. Still, when I left her for her first day of Grandmacare, I cried. I was abandoning my child. My mom would see all the firsts, and I would miss them. My mom would introduce the firsts that I wasn't ready for her to have yet. *ahem* MOM. (my favorite? Ella was around 1. "Do you know any little girls who REALLY like Hot Tamales?" Um, I don't know any little girls that I want to EAT Hot Tamales. Thank you. MOM. {hey, Mom!})

After I finally got used to leaving every day, Natalie was born. For a few months I went back to work, but it just wasn't working out (a lot of other things had changed too). So we decided I'd stay home for a bit, and try working from home. Now I was home all the time. And sometimes I wanted to leave. Alone. And you know what? I FELT GUILTY.

I think it's just part of the territory. I'm sure moms always feel like you could do a better job with your kids. I must be doing alright, in any case. They've declared me the #1 Snuggler.


I'm me again! Mostly.

How sad that I've just been sitting around trying to figure out which of the many brain flickers to write about, meanwhile, perhaps you thought I really was on my last leg. Sorry about that. All of the Allergies were followed by All of the Headache. After three solid days of vacillating from irritating headache to migraine, it's finally gone. I'm me again! Well, sort of. I'm pregnant me. That's as me as I'm gonna get right now.

Speaking of which, hey, Maternity Clothes Makers of the World - what do you think pregnant women have against pockets? Have you ever seen a mommy-on-the-go that couldn't use a pocket? If I put my keys in my purse I'll never see them again. If I put my phone in my pocket, I can leave it on vibrate and not subject the world to my ringtone whims. I'm talking to you, Liz Lange! Where are my pockets? It's not like I'm worried about the extra bulk a pocket is going to add. Particularly in a velour sweatsuit. I'm not exactly dressing to impress here.

I have an ultrasound scheduled. But we haven't really come to a decision on finding out boy/girl. Captain America is in the Wait for the Surprise Camp. I can't make a solid decision to save my life. About anything, really. Part of me thinks it'd be really handy to know (we're starting from scratch, after all). Part of me loved that moment when we found out Ella was a girl in the delivery room. But then it was also nice to know Natalie was Natalie before she was born. I felt like I knew her already. I've thought about asking the tech to just write it down and put it in an envelope, in case I change my mind, but the chances that the envelope would make it all the way home still sealed are slim to none. There are still a couple of weeks to decide.

I got my first, "Hey, you're making a baby in there" the other day. I was torn between "I shouldn't be showing that much yet" and "thank goodness it's looking obvious and less like I just couldn't get enough Easter candy." Relief won. I'm 18 weeks along with my third child, and had quite a belly with the other two. This is to be expected.

In other updates, Natalie is still off the thumb. She has taken to putting her blanket in a box at night to avoid temptation. She actually even spent a few nights completely without one of her three rotating blankets. Ella's future vocation o' the week: artist, librarian, drum player. She and her good friend Parker are going to open an art gallery (she calls it an art museum). He will mostly run the place, while she is a librarian somewhere else. And she would also like to play the drums. Today she brought one of her elephant pictures to school, to see if Parker thought they should save it for the gallery.

I'm off to pick a new ringtone. And find a snack.


So long, farewell...

I'm quite certain it's the end. Thursday night I started to sniffle. I could feel the allergy attack coming. I had no idea how intense it would be. The girls were struck at the same time, and I guess the only good thing about that is I didn't have to do much child wrangling. The three of us felt the need to lay low.

So low, that yesterday Ella and I spent an entire day (and I do mean the ENTIRE day) watching questionably appropriate tv from the History Channel. Ella and I shared a small trash can & a giant box of Puffs. We filled the can.

Today? Today I think my face is going to explode, particularly the left side. I can't breathe through my nose. I've spent the whole day with the feeling before you sneeze. But I can't seem to sneeze much. So my eyes just start to water, but nothing really happens. My throat itches. My lips are chapped from all the mouth breathing. My nose is chapped from all the blowing. My ears even hurt a little. I think my left eye might just pop right out. Why yes, I did have allergy medication. No, it doesn't seem to be doing squat.

So in the event this is the end: goodbye. I've really appreciated our time together.


The bump.

Well. It has gone from "Holy cats, I'm having a baby!" right on into "Holy cats, there it is!" I had one pair of pants. Til yesterday. A few nights ago I managed to lift myself off the couch to an audible gasp by Captain America. Which he explained with an "it's just that you have so long to go." I think next time an "oh nothing, I just remembered something I forgot to do at work" might work better. You know. A lie. I'm consoling myself that at least I'm starting to look more like the sacred vessel I am, and less like I ate all the girls' Easter candy. Which I may or may not have done.

Back in December I read a blog by Kelly over at Lovewell, about how her baby bump was bigger at night. And I thought, "That's just weird. I never had that." Guess what? The bump is bigger at night. A lot. Maybe one day I'll take a picture of it too.

I love maternity clothes. Because it's not about trying to look skinny. But I have a rotten time buying pants, because I am short. So I have had no luck, save one pair of Old Navy maternity jeans I scored on clearance. Until I hit up a Goodwill about an hour away last night (an unexpected bonus of meeting some friends for dinner). I was a winner. And all were Target donations to Goodwill, so they were actually new. You can't imagine my excitement, because the other day a little girl from our small group Bible study asked me why I was wearing a dress. "I was warm, and I just wanted to," translation: "Well, honey, it was too hot for the only pair of pants that fit me." I celebrated the victory by buying Jelly Bellies in bulk. Which I am now hiding from my family.


In other glorious news, Natalie's breaking her thumb habit. We had a great talk about it the other day. We now have a secret "stop thumb sucking" handshake. She has also learned the verse "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." And listen to this, friends, she is not sleeping with her Gie. Gee. Ghee. Oh whatever, her BLANKET. She understands that the two things go together, and she suggested maybe she shouldn't sleep with it. {Insert Hallelujah Chorus here}

Also, Ella finished reading her Bible. Which she just decided one night was something she should do. She read a lot of it out loud to Natalie, and there are not many things cuter than that. This morning she told me, "Mom? I think maybe God is proud of me for reading my Bible. Now that I read the whole thing, I can read different stories whenever I want."

So if you have a suggestion of the next Bible for her, I'd love to hear it. Hers was the Zonderkidz Beginner's Bible.


I am 32 flavors and then some

Or I'm just 32. But it's a lot more fun to give it a theme song. I'm not sure if you prefer Ani Difranco or Alana Davis' cover. I like them both. It's making turning 32 seem a lot cooler.

Let's see if I can come up with 32 things about me. Because I am a shameless, "look at me! it's my birthday!" kind of person. It was actually hard when I stopped for a donut this morning and the woman behind the counter asked how I was to not say, "Great! It's my birthday!"

32 Flavors of Me!

  1. The #1 Billboard song on the day of my birth was "Night Fever" by the Bee Gees.
  2. My favorite cake is marble with chocolate frosting. But I'm hardly one to turn down dessert of any kind.
  3. I don't like ice cream with cake. It makes the cake soggy.
  4. My favorite donut is a custard bismarck with chocolate frosting.
  5. My favorite ice cream is Ben & Jerry's Half Baked.
  6. My ideal birthday would include zero day to day responsibility. Just some leisurely shopping and maybe a pedicure. Lots of eating. So today I may look for maternity clothes on ebay and see if I can't fix up my chipping toenail polish.
  7. I'd be happy to wear a birthday crown.
  8. I have crazy skinny fingers. My wedding ring is a 4 3/4. And it's a tiny bit loose. For now. Til I get more pregnant.
  9. I would like to learn to play guitar. But it hurts my tiny fingers.
  10. I don't drink coffee. It hurts my tummy. I am a delicate flower. But I love a good chai latte or other kinds of tea.
  11. I have a degree in Communications. Not Mass Comm. Communications. "Let's talk about talking..." Sometimes I wish I'd gone for graphic design since that's actually what I do now. It'd be helpful. But for fun I would have done History. I think I was a History major for a few weeks. After I was an English major for a year.
  12. I finished my 4 year degree in 3 years. Yay for summer school! Honestly, if you're going to live in Duluth, MN for the winter, you have earned the summer. It's beautiful.
  13. If I weren't watching my caffeine intake, I'd drink sweet tea by the gallon.
  14. One of my favorite birthday parties growing up was loading up a mini-van full of friends and going to my favorite places. Electric Fetus. Ragstock. Can you feel the pseudo-angst?
  15. One of my other favorites was when I turned 17. My parents bought a tea party at a local historic house on a silent auction, and that was my birthday party. I invited some friends. We dressed up and had tea & scones with devonshire cream. And little tea sandwiches! I love little tea sandwiches. One day I'm getting a hutch to put my teacup collection in, and I'm going to have tea parties with little sandwiches.
  16. Every year of my life I have expected a surprise party. Every year. For as long as I can remember. When I turned 21, Captain America and our friend Amy threw one for me. They did a stellar job. I had no clue. Amy called and invited us to her place for our weekly 90210 viewing. People had parked blocks away, and they'd hidden the shoe pile. I was so surprised that I must have gone into some kind of ugly shock. Where I looked unhappy about it. Which I wasn't. Not even in the least. It was a fantastic thing. But I must have looked it, because he has vowed never to throw one again.
  17. I think I crave the spotlight, but often when I actually get it it makes me uncomfortable and I'm not sure what to do or say.
  18. I think Spring is a time for road trips.
  19. If I were to do a "career switch," I'd like to be a personal shopper.
  20. Even though I knew Captain America had a ring, and I'd been expecting the Big Question for months in every slightly romantic moment, I had no clue when he actually started to propose. I remember when he started to talk I thought, "Aww. That's really sweet. I'm lucky." But I didn't realize where he was going with it. Apparently he has a knack for surprising me.
  21. I'm a hobby abandoner. It was all I could do this weekend to keep from buying a sewing machine. "I could make myself new curtains! And little sundresses for the girls!" I would never actually do it. I'd just buy all the stuff. And then it would sit in a box. And I'd have to buy new curtains anyway.
  22. I've been perusing maternity clothes on ebay. I'm looking for some sort of balance between the Britney clothes and the Michelle Duggar clothes. It doesn't seem to exist. At least, not on ebay. Or in a price range I'm willing to consider for clothes I'll wear for less than 5 months.
  23. Heights make me nauseous. My stomach will flip if I see another person near an edge.
  24. I'm a hyper-paranoid mother. When Ella was a baby and starting solids, I broke her Cheerios in half.
  25. My favorite pregnancy thing is feeling the baby move. I'm just starting to get little movements now.
  26. I got a few comments on my tattoos after my last post. I have 3. One on either side of my stomach, and one on the small of my back. A blue rose, a butterfly and some floral vine-age. My next one will be a large, big girl tattoo, the width of my lower back. Or an ichthys on my right foot. Remember how I said I have an addictive personality?
  27. When I was 17, a boy I dated said he had a friend that would do the tattoo for me. When I walked into the guy's house, there were a bunch of people playing cards & smoking around the kitchen table. Apparently I was to get tattooed on that table. Where he was squirting ink into soda bottle caps. VETO. Instead my mom took me to a real tattoo place, and debated theology with the artist whilst he had a needle to my abdomen.
  28. In high school, I had a love for vintage. Especially 50s dresses. And Jim Morrison, James Dean and Natalie Wood.
  29. I actually like maternity clothes when the time comes. No more sucking in the gut.
  30. I don't like getting manicures. I don't like having my cuticles cut and I don't like when the polish doesn't go all the way across the nail.
  31. I am apparently very particular. In my "old" age. Or I always have been, but I'm just noticing. That's probably more likely.
  32. I panicked about turning 30 starting when I turned 25. What a waste of 5 years. This year I get a theme song!
Whew - how bored are YOU? Well, I really appreciate you reading my enormous list, and don't blame you if you didn't. Sadly, I could have done more. I'll save it for next year.


Honest Scrap

I was lucky enough to get this award from the very lovely Gretchen over at Second Blooming. She's delightful. And honest. No wonder she had the Honest Scrap award bestowed upon her. I think one of the things I like most about her is that her LA actress lifestyle is so different from my decidedly Midwestern one. And yet, mommyhood is the same the world over, isn't it? Thanks, Gretchen! Go show her some love!

The award came with rules as follows:

  1. Thank the person giving you this award.
  2. Copy the award to your blog.
  3. Place a link to their blog.
  4. Name 7 tidbits people don’t know about you from reading your blog.
  5. Nominate other Bloggers.
  6. Place a link to those Bloggers.
  7. Leave a comment letting those Bloggers know about the award.
I have accomplished 1-3 (yay me!).

7 Tidbits (since many of you know me in real life, you probably know these, but let's play along, ok?):
  1. I have 3 tattoos. I don't regret them. I'd like more.
  2. For some reason I get more sucked into reading in the summer than winter. Which makes zero sense given my location. I should be holed up all winter reading. But when the weather gets nice, it makes me want to head to bed and read.
  3. My favorite ice cream topping is hot cocoa mix. Dry. Sprinkled on top.
  4. My go-to meals are pizza and cereal. I've never really had a time where I thought I'd had too much of one of them. Not sure what I should eat? Pizza or cereal is always a safe bet.
  5. My favorite places to visit are places where you can just feel the history. Especially along the Eastern coast, and places like Wyoming.
  6. I am easily addicted. Just ask my husband after I got going on Skee Ball at Chuck E. Cheese last week. "Just one more game..." Or, watch me eat chips & dip. I steer clear of casinos.
  7. I have never seen "It's a Wonderful Life." Go ahead. Chastize me now.

Ok, now I get to nominate 7 fabulous bloggers.
  1. My sister over at At Least We Know.
  2. Alece at Grit & Glory
  3. Soliloquy at She Just Had to Say it
  4. Bits & Pieces
  5. Jersey's Musings (hey, a guy! Way to represent!)
  6. Kelly at Love Well
  7. Libbyland
Whee! Thanks again, Gretchen!