Monday, January 30, 2012

Theory Vs. Reality: Parenting

I talked a little bit the other day about the reality of something being so much bigger than you can ever theorize when I was discussing our modern family.  (BTW, I have more updates on that!!!!)  And a few days ago, it hit me again. 

All the time, as a game, we hear "What would you do if..."  Sometimes we vehemently declare one thing or another.  "Oh, I would NEVER do that."  "Well, I will make sure I don't do such-and-such."  "I am definitely going to..."  Definitive statements can come back to bite you in the ass, my friends.  Never has this been more clear to me than in the last 10 months of parenthood.

When P was 2 weeks old, I wrote this post partially about the things I swore I wouldn't do and within 48 hours was doing.  But this is not about just that kind of thing.  It's about parenting in general. 

Hubby and I never really discussed ANYTHING in advance.  We just kind of let it roll over us and make decisions as they come.  We haven't fought about any of them.  Then again, we haven't hit any of the truly tough decisions yet.  But one came up the other night, one that I hadn't really even considered.

Children's movies!  We have been renting movies from Netflix and burning them.  Many of them Disney flicks.  Now, it's not like I'm not aware of the prevalence of scary step-mothers, violent evil people, and dead mothers.  It's not limited to Disney, but the older films certainly have more of that in them.  Old school fairytales are harsh.  REALLY harsh.  Now, I know that I saw them all when I was little.  And for the most part (ahem, Bambi) I don't remember being traumatized.  Perhaps I wasn't able to make the jump.  Perhaps my mother explained well...I don't know.  What I do know is that I never considered how bad some of them are.

We watched Dumbo the other night.  For those of you unfamiliar with this very early Disney movie, it is HEART WRENCHING.  And rascist.  There are some great teaching moments, yes, but the only happy time is at the end.  And again, maybe children, little children, don't view it with the same eyes.  But WOW.  I was sobbing.  I almost had to stop watching.  The emotion is so raw.  For those who are unaware of this tale, Dumbo is a baby elephant with freakishly large ears.  Everyone makes fun of him.  They are CRUEL.  In once scene, the mama elephant gets angry at the people teasing her son and goes apeshit on them, so they lock her up and he can't see her.  I LOST it.  Classic bawl-your-eyes-out scene:

Anywho, what this brought up for me is: What is appropriate for my child to see?  How do I let him see this when I can't even handle it?  At what age is he old enough to watch and understand it when I educate him about bullies and such?  And I'm not talking just this film.  Think about it.  So many of the "classics" are like this.  Scary, or violent, or upsetting.  Fairytales?  Yeah....  I know they have so many opportunities for "teaching moments", and I love those moments.  But at the same time, where do you draw the line? 

One of the best things about being a child is the innocence, the gusto for life, the open eyes and lack of fear or prejudice or cynicism. Children should have the ability to be children.  To NOT worry about these things too often.  To play, get dirty, remain positive, and love unconditionally. 

So at what point do you let them see things, watch things, that have these upsetting scenarios in them.  I plan to teach him to be a good person.  And I know that at some point he will experience the shit the world can dump on you.  I just don't know when that will be okay.  After watching Dumbo, I want to never let him see it!  But I know that is unreasonable.  And there are children's movies that I think are okay to watch. 

I never thought about ANY of this.  And now I'm overwhelmed with thoughts of what will be right for us.  What type of guidelines do you use?  How did you know the time was right to introduce the heavier topics?

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Donna Reed I Am Not

I jokingly call Sister Donna Reed.  Or Martha Stewart.  If you were to tour our houses, or take notes on our parenting styles, you would quickly realize that while she may be a domestic goddess, I am far, far from it.

For your amusement, I have compiled The Top Ten Reasons I Am Not Donna Reed.

10.  I allow my son to feed the dog from his high chair, including having his fingers licked by the dog, and continue to eat.  I figure that the dog licks him on the face/mouth all the time so what's the difference.

9 . I never vacuum.  But we have 4 very furry furbabies.  Solution: Put P in fleece clothing and allow him to roll around.  This tends to get the worst of the hairballs out of the way.  While allowing him to do this, I have to make sure he doesn't eat too many of said hairballs.  It's protein, right?

8.  My son has fallen off places he probably shouldn't have been.  Because I neglect to realize how mobile he is.  When I was his age I fell out a 1st floor window onto concrete.  I never let him near windows.  But the couch?  Absolutely.

7.  I understand the concept of dusting.  My version involves looking at the shelves, thinking "ewww" and then sitting back down.  Because honestly, I'd rather blog or tweet.

6.  Dirty laundry is in one pile.  Clean laundry is typically in the hampers awaiting some miraculous afternoon that allows me to put it all away.  Which isn't going to happen.  Sometimes clean laundry is in a pile, too.  A separate pile.  This is what happens when you have to use a laundromat and so save up weeks worth of clothing.  I think I was a man in another life.

5.  I am fairly certain that Donna Reed does not have a pile of coats in the corner of her living room.  Blocking the access to the DVD shelf...that has never been dusted.

4.  I can't remember the real words to "Old MacDonald Had A Farm" because Seamus Kennedy did a version called "Old MacDonald's Deformed Farm" and it is forever the version that I know.  Which means that in all liklehood, it is the version P will learn.  It is totally acceptable to teach him a song about a drug dealing duck, right?

3.  Speaking of appropriate, P has a teething toy that looks like a really fun vibrator.  I entertained thoughts of figuring out how to make it one.  But then I thought that it wouldn't be fair to him to have to share his teether with Mama.

2.  There is a very good chance that P's first word will be "fuck".  Or "butthead".

And the #1 reason I am NOT Donna Reed is...

1.  We have one set of winter flannel sheets.  We have no washer or dryer.  We cosleep.  This leads to leaks.  In the bed.  I am utterly guilty of spraying said leak spot with febreeze, tossing a towel on top of it, and going back to bed.  Repeatedly.  Until it's laundry day.  Talk about Real Housewives of *insert county name here*.

I will definitely not be getting any Good Housekeeping awards.  But I'm fairly certain my kid will not be afraid to get dirty, make a mess, or generally be a kid.

Friday, January 27, 2012

FNL: Winner Winner Chicken Dinner

It's Friday, thank goodness. Well, my Saturday. The lovely Danifred has come home from the hospital with her brand new baby Blue, so make sure you go wish her luck.

- Today was a banner day for the Binsau-Richardson household. A much needed day.

- We found a house. That we are going to put an offer on. A perfect first home. Meaning it doesn't have every little thing we wanted, but we loved it so much that it doesn't matter. So much potential. And so many fun projects to make it our own. Our hopefully soon-to-be home.

- My car passed inspection. Thank you car gods!

- Hubby had an interview today. And a job offer. It is only part time. But the hours are such that we will not need child care. I do have to look into social activities for P, though, as he will miss that not being in daycare.

- I am so excited you guys. So many things are going to start happening. I can only hope that this sudden upturn continues. Relocation is definitely on the back burner after today. Thank you all so much for all of your support. I love you all.

BWS tips button

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Modern Family

I have talked about the fact that a sperm-brother's mom contacted me a couple of months ago and we are now in contact on FB.  Well, she has also found a couple others and so as of last night, we are in contact with 3!!! of P's half-brothers!

All are older, and as far as we know, there are at least 5 other children.  I think it's funny that at this point we only know of boys.  Pretty strong male sperm going on there! (Note: of our 3 viable embies, 2 are female, 1 male).

Anyway, I thought I would introduce you to them!  No last names, but some photos of the boys.  So, without further ado...

Meet Kel - he is 11 years old.  As far as I can tell, he shares the ears, crazy eyebrows, and cheeks.  P looks sooooo much like him.  The fact that he has the same dark hair helps.  (The dark hair is from the moms.)  I just met him this week!  I got the friend request about a week ago.  His mom messaged me from his account on FB last night!  Actually, I had to check this morning to make sure I hadn't dreamt that as I was half asleep when I read it, LOL.

Meet Jack!  He is 10 years and 1 week older than P.  And when I showed my mom one of the baby pics, she asked when I took it....Again, we have the ears, and crazy eyebrows.  They also share that cowlick on the right side of the head.

Meet Turner!  He is 7 years old.  He is the first boy we found.  Once again - eyebrows, ears, cowlick.  Apparently those genetics are STRONG on the donor's side!  And in Turner's case, they share the cheeks as well.  What is interesting, is that P looks SO much like me, but when I see his brothers, I see all these other features that are absolutely not mine.

It is incredibly strange for us to see parts of P on these other boys' faces.  When you choose to use donor gametes, you know very well that there are other children out there sharing DNA...but much like being pregnant and giving birth, the reality sometimes doesn't hit you until there is physical proof in front of you.  Until the theoretical becomes reality. 

We are a modern family who used modern science to make a modern child.  I think my ancestors are rolling in their graves.  LOL.  I love my life sometimes.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

PYHO: Ready To Run

Panic mode has set in.  I want to run and leave this state, the crap behind.  Logically, I know it doesn't work this way, but a fresh start always makes me feel better.  But things are different now.  It's not just me.  It's not even just me and Hubby.  We have a child (sometimes still a shock)!

3 years ago, when we hit rock bottom, it wasn't nearly as scary.  We left CA, drove cross country, moved in with my dad (NEVER AGAIN), I got a job, and we set up shop.  Seriously, it was an adventure.  It was difficult to leave his family, but it was a FRESH START.  There was so much potential.  We made the decision and left within 3 weeks.  Wham!  Bam!  Thank you, ma'am.

Everything in my body, my whole being wants to just RUN.  Go.  Move on from here.  Leave behind the bad and take the good with us.  CO looks nice...always wanted to live there.  Maybe we could actually find Hubs a job. 

But any move like that will cost us money we don't have, money that would be our down payment.  It would separate us from both sides of the family.  It would probably destroy my mother, who has enough on her plate right now.  Hubby mentioned OH as well since we have friends there.  Moving for him is considerably more traumatic.  I know people EVERYWHERE.  He doesn't.  And he's socially awkward.  It's a difficult adjustment when we move. 

The roamer, the bum, the adventurer in me says we have overstayed our welcome in this corner of the world and it is TIME TO MOVE ON.  The woman who has become a wife, and more importantly, a mother, knows that a gut reaction isn't the best move.  It needs to be carefully considered, planned out.  Would I love to raise P in CO?  OMG, you have NO idea how much I would like that.  Are there houses within our measly budget there?  Yup.  Job for me?  Yup...should be able to transfer to the call center there.  But it doesn't have our current support system.  It doesn't have Grandparents.  For a roamer, a traveller, I am an awful homebody. 

Parenthood grounds me.  But that inner essential part of me?  She is so ready to run. Ready to start anew and make all the bad and struggle go away and be in another city, another place.  Ready to wipe the slate clean. 

Because I am so scared right now.  Dire straits indeed, my friends. 

I am pouring out my heart with Shell over at Things I Can't Say.  Join in.  Let it out. 

*Note: The stinking computer wouldn't let me add the PYHO button.  Grrr.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Crib Training FAIL

Remember all the success we were having with "sleep training"?  Well, the little stinker smarty pants has figured out that he can roll over to me.  So, basically, most of the night he refuses the crib. 

Example: Last night I cuddled him to sleep and he was OUT COLD.  As in waited 15 minutes before moving him.  Got him on his side.  Immediate fussing and he rolled/scooched over to me, and promptly passed out cold for 4 hours.  When I get out of bed in the morning, he gradually rolls toward Hubby so that he is close to him.  He craves other people's body warmth and comfort. 

What this leads to is...well, not a lot of sleep.  Saw this:

recently, pulled from here and boy, did it ring true.  I bet it does for some of you as well.  So the crib is still side-carred - which allows me to put him on the outside edge of the bed safely.  But boy, it's a lonely crib.  I am thinking of finding something like this:

This thing costs $200-300!  Bet I could make one for considerably less.

Of course, there is always this cosleeper that puts the baby in the bed with you, but in a Queen bed, it is fairly bulky.  And I don't know if he will do well in that. 

It sounds like I'm giving up, doesn't it?  When Hubby came to bed last night and I pointed out that he just WON'T stay in his crib (and I can't forgo sleep, I just can't, to get him to), he said "He will do it when he is ready."  That to me sounds like acceptance of cosleeping. 

I think we need a bigger bed.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

The Tree Of Our Life

Sometimes I doubt my marriage.  I know I am not alone in this.  We are so different.  And more like old friends than passionate lovers.  I knew when we started dating that I was signing on for life, and I made that decision for a number of reasons. 

Some days, I want to kill him.  I'm sure he feels the same about me.  We don't fight, not really.  There are no knock-down drag-out fights.  Also, no make-up sex, LOL.  But I knew he would be an amazing father.  And he puts his whole heart into his caring for us.  He will defend and protect us to the end of his days.  And that is WHY.  Why I married him.

But still, sometimes, there is doubt. 

But then there are the times he just does or says something that erases those doubts away, at least for a while.  As though he can read my thoughts.  And it reminds me of the why.

I have a dream.  It's not a big thing.  In fact, as far as my dreams go, it's pretty tame and fairly attainable.  I don't tell many people about it, and I've never mentioned it to Hubby, for whatever reason.  I want to plant a tree.  In a yard.  Of a house that is MINE.  Silly, really, for a nomad.  But, even if the other dreams come true and I get to travel and see the world, I need to have a home.  Somewhere I hang my hat.  Because I am divided like that.  And at that home, I want to plant a tree, and watch it grow through the years, with my child/ren, a symbol of the life I lead.  The house we looked at Friday would have been perfect for this.  But, alas, not meant to be. 

And perhaps it is a little naive to think on our meager budget we can find a place that will be that home.   Neither here nor there.

Friday, after we got back from seeing that house, Hubby was just as disappointed as me.  And he said something...something that blew me away. 

"I really wanted that to be the house.  Because I want to plant a tree.  And watch it grow."

I let it sink in, and then a while later, asked him "why?"  He said that it would be a symbol, our Tree Of Life.  It was one of those moments when the doubts are erased, washed away by a flood of "Yes, this is why, and this is right." 

Sometimes, he just gets it. 

And someday, we will plant our tree.  Our child/ren will watch it grow, and grow with it.  And years later remember a day when they were the same size as that tree.  And how it changed as they grew.  And how we all changed as we grew.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Holy Houses, Batman!

Today we went to look at our dream a very low price.  We hoped it was because the bank just really wanted to get rid of it...It says lots of nooks and crannies.  It's not lying.  We loved how quirky it was. (There was this crazy ... attic type room that would be perfect to put the cats in as their play/eat/poop room.  Seriously.  No other use for it, LOL.)  And that we would need to bring our tool belts.  Much was totally fixer-upper type stuff we would enjoy.

But the water heater had been removed.  And the wood stove.  And the basement, well, let's just say it was a science experiment.  And with an FHA loan, that would have to be resolved, on our dime, before closing could occur.  *Insert sad face here*.  It was not meant to be.  Grumble grumble grumble.

We looked at this gem last week.  And it had some things we REALLY liked.  Not gonna lie.  On street parking on the main road through town that is also a snow emergency route?  FAIL.  Sigh.  Not off the map entirely, but it's fading fast.  I know, I know...over parking?  Yes, over parking.  You want to carry a heavy child and bags of groceries from a few blocks away?  No.  Didn't think so.

So...currently on the radar are the following:

Scary back yard place - looks not bad...and we could fence the back yard.  But the yard is literally a 30 foot drop.  Hmmm...with a soon-to-be toddler...again, I say...hmmmmm.

Awesome back yard place - okay, no pics available...pooey on them.  And there was no "for sale" sign.  But according to the sites, it is still on the market.  And has some awesome features.  And being the end house in a row...well, better than smack dab in the middle.  And the yard is HUGE, and already fenced.  BONUS POINTS!  Dog + toddler = NEED. A. YARD.

Small but on its own land place - No inside photos.  All outside.  And when we drove by today, no "for sale" sign, either.  And someone there doing work.  Hmmm.  Anywho, .63 acres.  Plenty of room to fence off dog/child areas.  Only 2 bedrooms...Will be a, umm, cozy fit.  I wonder where on earth all of the office/gameroom stuff would go?  BUT - detached dwelling, outside of town, on's tempting....

The back yard is the only redeeming feature place - Outdated outdated outdated.  You can call it charm if you want...But it has the yard.  Hey, it made the list for having a yard.  Seriously doubt we will seriously consider this one.  Or, for that matter, this one 2 doors down.  Again, only because of the deck and yard.  But we haven't seen the inside...and it's as-is...scary.

Other houses with not enough information to really consider seriously:

  • Intriguing... Says a yard, fenced.  Says a lot of new updates.  NO PHOTOS.  Things that make you go hmmmmm.
  • Hey Look! No inside photos! - seriously, WTF, people?
  • There are a number of houses like this.  No photos.  Need work.  Apparently showing the inside would scare off potential buyers right away.  Eek!
I have to call the LL and write out a letter stating that we are giving our 60 days notice.  We didn't pay January rent...and will only be able to send a little bit for February.  Even with paying so much less for a house...we are going to be strapped.  So, the Hubby job hunt continues.  And, well, we begin packing.  And hope it goes straight to a house that is ours, and not into storage for the time being.  

This house hunting shit is STRESSFUL.  Man, it better be worth it!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

What a Year Brings

One year ago today, after beginning to feel better from a cold, I headed out to the mall for some new maternity shirts with a friend.  And went into labor. 

At just shy of 27 weeks. 

Within hours of that, a dear bloggy friend found out that her daughter Lola had had a heart attack and not survived...but she was not told for 6 days. 

A year later, we both have seen a lot of changes.  I am eternally grateful to the doctors, and especially the nurses, who helped keep my baby boy cooking for 8 more weeks, and shocked to find myself 1 day shy of him being 10 months old.  It feels like the blink of an eye.

And my dear friend?  Just 3 days shy of her sister's birthday, Lady Season arrived safe and sound and beautiful.  What a difference a year makes.  Please go wish her congratulations.  She has been a pillar of strength, and an inspiration to so many of us. 

Cannot believe how far we have come.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Near And Dear - Support Needed

A month ago, my mother, who is an aide in the program for Autistic children in her school district, was suspended following an incident along with 2 other aides. Last week, following a school board meeting that was basically for show, all 3 of them were officially fired.

An article appeared in the local paper that unfortunately was rather skewed and highlighted just how ignorant of the situation and the program the district's own administrators are.

If you get a chance, read through the comments; they give a better picture of what actually happened, what issues they face, and how out of left field this dismissal is. I will spare you the details here, but I needed to get this out there.

Not only are the families of those dismissed affected, so are the students. In addition, my mother and step-dad rely on her benefits to cover his significant health issues. Losing those benefits is a huge hit to them. All three of the aides involved have a lawyer fighting on their behalf, but it coudl take up to a year to reinstate their jobs.

For those of you in the educational system familiar with these types of programs, any input is greatly appreciated. If you feel comfortable doing it, please comment on the article. Anonymously is fine (that's what I did).

In the meantime, please keep these women, and their students, in your thoughts as they fight to right a very serious wrong.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

I'm A Big Kid Now

Well, ladies and germs...Friday the 13th turned into an historic day in our lives.

We apprehensively took ourselves to our bank to see about a mortgage.  It was terrifying.  I nearly cried repeatedly.  We are, as you know, not in the best place financially.  Several hours later...

...drumroll please...

We have (well, I have) a pre-approval on $80,000.  Yup.  We are officially house hunting.  By the time P is walking, he will have a yard to run around in.  Maybe we will even have a washer and dryer!  How amazeballs would that be?  No manufactured homes allowed (which means the one we REALLY liked is out), and with a limited search area for personal reasons, the available home list is short.  But our realtor will be doing some digging for us.

I now know what a short sale is, and to ask about annual property taxes.  And how to calculate the number of gallons of paint we will need (some of these homes have HIDEOUS paint!).  And we took our first house tour as official house hunters.

Meet our first house tour: a 3 bedroom, 1.5 bath twin with a LOT of charm.  Has room to grow (plus), and comes with an ancient washer and dryer.  The yard would need to be fenced, but it's there.  Unfortunately, oil heat.  Ugh.  Seriously, we will figure out a way to avoid that shit.  Also, no parking.  On the main road.  Double ugh.  But it was our first look, and it's in good shape all things considered.  It's a short sale (which means, essentially, don't bargain with us dude.  That's the price, take it or leave it). So...we begin.

I have to call the LL and let him know we will not be renewing the lease.  But don't yet know when we are leaving.  We need to start cleaning the shit out of this house.  We have to sort out our down payment.  So much to do!

It looks like I will get a master reset option after all!


Thursday, January 12, 2012

Signing My Life Away

*I should apologize now for what are sure to be a large number of house-buying-related posts as we explore this option. Hopefully we all learn something! If it is totally boring, feel free to click away. (Swim away! Swim away!)

People always joke that buying a house entails signing away your life and your first born and your left arm.

I am beginning to believe them.

I have started researching mortgages. FHA loans look like the way to go. They even have ones that include the ability to add in your home repairs (which, considering the houses we are looking at is going to be important).

Seriously, they ask for EVERYTHING! Look at all of this! Ack!

And then the closing cost information. Greek. Absolute greek.

Holy. Crap. I remember thinking buying a car was nerve-wracking. My excitement at a possible solution for us has turned into a near-permanent state of hyper-anxiety. The good news is that it looks like for FHA loans they do take into account the issues you have had in the past couple of years. You know, like my bedrest and maternity leave and crazy medical bills and Hubby being unemployed...that kind of thing. So, that comforts me.

People who have bought on earth did you get through this???

I know we want 3 bedrooms. Yes, 2 would suffice, but we want wiggle room - office, guest room, another get the idea. And a yard. Pretty much at the top of my NEEDS list. The house we are drooling over? Honestly, it's not realistic. Not with our current financial state. We don't need that much space...but we WANT to need that much space.

Gotta start small, right? Baby steps. (Ha. Baby steps. Who came up with that? Sorry, tangent.) But seriously, with our luck...We have an understanding landlord (to whom we now owe money), and have 3 months of electric bills at home. So, really? We want to get a MORTGAGE? If bad luck continues, we are going to be in even worse shape!

At the same time...taking risks is part of life, being ALIVE. Without risk, well, we wouldn't have P. And I questioned our decision to do IVF every step of the way, and look how that turned out :-)


Many of the houses we have the money for are still using OIL HEAT. Very romantic. Also very impractical and super-expensive to convert.

Old drafty windows. I imagine those are easier to replace and would help immensely with energy costs. too bad it is probably impossible to get into the walls to put in better insulation without a total rebuild.

I feel like I need to go to Lowe's and start taking those classes like in the commercials... Gah!!! O V E R W H E L M E D.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

PYHO: Master Reset

Many of you have "smartphones", right?  You do all sorts of things on them.  Have you ever had major problems and had to call tech support?  And had to do a master reset?  You HATED it, right?  Having to set it all up again, just the way you want? 

I don't mind it.  Given that hindsight is 20/20, if I have to reset my phone and set it back up or get a replacement and do the same, I kind of like it.  Because I get a chance at a do-over.  To put everything where I really like it. 

I want to master reset my house.  I want to blink my eyes, like Jeannie, and make everything go poof!  Then, I would vaccum, steam clean the nasty dog puke spots, wipe down the baseboards, and mentally reorganize.  After that, I would blink things back into existence one-by-one, placing them just where they will work best.  Items that are never used and simply collect dust will magically NOT reappear.  Everything will have a home, and then I won't feel like we live in clutter ALL. THE. TIME. 

Where does it all come from?  All this STUFF we deem important.  DVDs galore, my modest book collection, all the ... chatchkies (no idea how to spell this, no other word I can think of) that sit on dusty shelves for no discernable reason.  Clothes I never wear but for some reason cannot give up.  Paperwork, bills, junk mail...more STUFF.

I know part of the issue is that we have people living with us, and so some of the things that should have a home are currently homeless.  But really, when did we acquire all of this?  Why did these things become important?  Why do we attach importance to seemingly unimportant objects?  This is what is lovingly known on Twitter as a "#firstworldproblem".  I hate that term.  But, it's true.  I have woes that are most definitely more, well, woe-y.  Have junk?  Not really something to whine about. 

Nevertheless...I am whining.  Make it go away!  Bring me order!  Make me an organized person!

Monday, January 9, 2012

More Dreams, Schemes, And Circus Scenes

Dreams: We are drooling over 1 particular house that is more than I think we can qualify for. But I am OBSESSED with it. Seriously. Tell me this isn't amazing. we would need roomers for a while. Especially if Hubby doesn't find a job. Because even though our current costs would go down, we would still be struggling. This is assuming we can even get approved for the mortgage.

But oh, my...we want this house. It's ridiculously big. And gorgeous. And has a FENCED IN YARD. Which means P has a place to play. And the dog can finally have a place to run crazy. I can plant a tree. A dream of mine. Plant a tree in my own yard and watch it grow over the years. We had not intended on staying in this area, but at the same time, we are tired of moving around and feeling like transients. We want to be settled. We want to be able to paint and personalize and not worry about security deposits.

Schemes: This house has me scheming all sorts of things. Such as the roomers to make it feasible. Not exactly a plus, but we could actually do a lease for roomies n stuff. Because it would be OUR HOUSE.

It has enough rooms for us to look into foster care/adoption. Grow our family. Be able to have people over and have enough space for it. Feel like adults. I see children running around the back yard. My imagination is on over drive.

Which pretty much means I am setting myself up for epic disappointment. But I need a goal to focus on. So, I scheme. I figure out how to make this work. I wonder what we can do to improve our chances. I let my dreams run rampant during this hard time so that I can think of things that would make me happier. Make our situation better.

Circus Scenes: P LOVES bath time. You know when you go to an aquarium, or to Sea World, and the big mammals are trained to splash the shit out of the first few rows? They make a point of saying "You are in the SPLASH ZONE"? Yeah, that's P in the bath. I could put 2" of water in there and he will soak me.

We put in water up to about his belly button. And then, forgive me for my bad mommy moment, we STAND BACK. We don't leave him alone, but he splashes so much that the floor gets soaked. It's a small bathroom. Water EVERYwhere. He gets what we call "the face" - all scruched up, lips pursed - as he splashes. So concentrated, so defiant. And he has so much fun. His eyes get bloodshoot from all the water that gets in them. He fights the actual cleaning process. And getting him out requires tactical precision. He would happily stay in there until he is a total prune and his lips turn blue.

The whole thing is hysterical. Every time. It doesn't get old. Just wet. Very, very wet.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

The Sleep Plan...Update

It's been, ummmmm, 3 weeks now? Since we side-car'd the crib. I thought I would update you on how the sleep thing is going.

First - keep in mind that there were holidays, overnight trips, etc during that time period. That NEVER helps.

However, there has been amazing progress. At one point we had him off formula entirely at night until about 4 am. Some nights that doesn't work as he will refuse the water or it won't satiate him.

Before, he was up AT LEAST every 2 hours. And since he is now VERY roly poly, I got kicked, moved to the edge of the bed, etc. This kiddo can MOVE.

Now...he will very often go 5-6 hours before awakening. and then back to sleep for another 5-6 hours. One night he went 7, another 8. OMG, I feel like a new woman! Not getting him up at 4:45 has also been a huge help. That severely affects him.

We also set up a "cuddle corner" in his room. Dog bed with a blankie, stuffed animals. And we have had some luck with actually getting him to nap on his own.

The one thing that is still a struggle is that he really will only go down with a bottle. Naps and bedtime. When he is out he lets it go, so I'm not worried terribly about it pooling. Usually when it sucks air, that seems to be his signal that it's time to sleep. I haven't figured out how to break this, even with the book. But hey, the progress we have made makes me SOOOO happy.

He rolls all over the crib. There are nights where he ends up with me again. There are nights where I wake up and he is lying across the crib into the bed. Or has completely flipped around. So active!

I hope that now that the holidays are over and we can easily go 2 weeks without an overnight trip that throws him off that we continue to see improvement and can make the 8 hour thing more of a normal occurence.

Go us!

Friday, January 6, 2012

FNL: Dreams and Schemes and Circus

welcome to Friday Night Leftovers, hosted but the wonderful Danifred. I have been absent for several weeks, but I am back!

BWS tips button

- Hubby is still unemployed. on NYE I had a fit of desperation and begged a new acquaintance to give him a chance. He did. So now he can pick up some occasional work. Better than. Nothing.

- I have realized that I cannot lose weight due to the Zoloft. Now I need to find motivation to use my new Zumba for Wii to at least try to tone.

- In desperation, I had a crazy thought yesterday and applied for a low mortgage. I have a bankruptcy that was discharged nearly 7 years guy said in April I can try again. It is for a low amount, to buy a bank-owned house. It would actually save us money. I now have a one-track with regard to this. I feel crazy for considering it...but it actually is a completely sane and logical move. Wish us luck!

- The numb spot in my back? Due to severe muscle spasms. I had to stop my tread milling because of it. But am on good drugs, thus, going to try the Zumba.

- Someone posted a picture of an Infertility Superhero once...anyone remember who it was?

- P is in some kind of crazy developmental phase...he refused solid foods except for fruit for 3 days this week. He is pushing up enough to start pushing backwards a little, and has been ├╝ber cranky. I think teething might be starting in earnest. He has started reaching for people. He also makes it very clear when he is bored or pissed you took something away, and he rolls all over the place. And we have made huge progress in sleep. I will post more about that later.

- My anxiety is in overdrive. We should have given our LL our notice 3 weeks ago...totally forgot. Plus, we have little idea what is next. My mother has assured us that we can stay here if need pets. Please pray, or whatever you do, that we sort things out and can keep our fur babies and find a home.

- I had a lot more to write...just cannot remember any of it right now.

Have a good weekend everyone!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

PYHO: Letting Go

I woke up the other morning with a difficult realization. I am ANGRY. I am an angry person. I am angry at a lot of things. Which means that I am angry with myself. Because some of the situations, etc, have been caused by decisions I have made. Not all of them, but some.

I am ANGRY that we are the black sheep, the "failures" of the family.

I am ANGRY that I have lost passion in my marriage.

I am ANGRY that we can't just make another baby like "normal" people.

I am ANGRY that Hubby got hurt when he was young and finding work is becoming more and more difficult.

I am ANGRY that I cannot figure out a way to make him feel okay about this, to reassure him.

I am ANGRY that it may mean we struggle our whole lives.

I am ANGRY that I am in a dead-end job for which I am woefully over qualified in terms of education, but seeminly unable to move forward.

I am ANGRY that the job Hubby did have left us in major tax debt, and that this year will most likely just worsen the situation.

I am ANGRY that the medications that allow me to function without being a total basketcase also have all but killed my sex drive and make losing weight nearly impossible.

I am ANGRY that me being overwhelmed with so much leads to me not being motivated at home to do things, clean up, etc.

I am ANGRY that this feeling of being overwhelmed also leads to me wanting to shut out Hubby and P even more.

I am ANGRY that I have to decide to not pay bills, or not pay rent, or sometimes both. This is NOT how I want to live my life.

I am not trying to whine. Far from it. I need to get it off my chest. Because maybe it will help me let go of the anger, and move forward. Make a plan. Stop sticking my head in the sand like an Ostrich.

Like Smash Mouth says, "I could use a little fuel myself, and we could all use a little change."

How do I elicit change? How do I let go of anger enough to do this? How do I forgive myself, my husband, my body?