Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Eight hours.

Eight hours, I've decided, is all I need to be a better mom and wife each week. At first glance, it doesn't seem like much. But, really, it's an extra work day.

In eight hours, I can clean my house from top to bottom. Almost.

In eight hours, I can run errands, do laundry, and make dinner. And probably dessert, too.

In eight hours, I can build a fort. Play with play-doh. Cut sandwiches into silly shapes. Read a story or five.

In eight hours, I can snuggle. Rock. Sing. Nurse. Tickle. Kiss.

In eight hours, I can take a shower, shave, dry my hair, and (hopefully) find something other than pajama pants to wear before my husband comes home from work.

And come 2012, I will have those extra eight hours a week to devote to my family. Because this working mama is cutting back.

I need to. For me. For them.

Eight hours isn't much, but it's enough. An extra work day — devoted to the very best work of all.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


If there's a kid out there who loves snow more than this one, I've yet to meet him.

Little does he know we've asked Santa to bring him a sled...

Friday, November 11, 2011


There's a fabulous episode of Friends, one of my favorites, where Rachel's sister Amy visits. At one point, they discuss their sister Jill's recent weight gain. Rachel asks "Hips and thighs?" and Amy shakes her head and smugly says "a** and face." Rachel responds with a horrified "ohhh!"

Poor Jill. Been there, girl. The first place I gain weight, without question, is my face. There are three McLaughlin family curses: Chubby cheeks, frizzy hair, and wide feet. I got all three. My siblings got none of the above. (Further supporting my claim that the oldest child has it the hardest.) I have always hated how quickly my face shows a fluctuation in my weight — why can't I be one of those girls who gains weight everywhere BUT her face? You can always crop your body out of a picture, but there sure isn't much you can do about your face.

Unfortunately, it looks like my daughter is well on her way to learning that lesson the hard way.

I mean, SERIOUSLY. Look at those cheeks! Although she looks strikingly similar to to her brother as a baby and he grew out of them with time. Here's hoping that happens for her as well, otherwise Nate and I might be shelling out the big bucks for cheek reduction surgery down the road. (Maybe they do mother/daughter discounts?)

Also, based on her measurements she weighs 5lbs. At 33 weeks. This is not a good sign of things to come, my friends. Not a good sign at all. I think we might be having another gigantor baby, and possibly earlier than anticipated given the fact that today's non stress test confirmed I'm already contracting (like real ones, not Braxton Hicks) on a regular basis. Oh, and I've now had two different doctors suggest a c-section. Which, I gotta tell you, I'm beginning to consider a reasonable suggestion given baby girl's estimated weight.

And now for the comparison:

Calvin at 34 weeks, Calvin at birth, Baby Girl at 33 weeks. I can't believe how similar they look in the cheeks/nose/mouth.

Can't wait to meet my sweet cheeked girl in just a few weeks!

In case you're wondering, yes — I'm handling all of this far better than I did last time. It helps knowing that ugly, obese ultrasound picture does not necessarily equal ugly, obese baby. And that my body is capable of delivering babies up to 9lbs 11oz in size. Though still praying she's smaller than her brother was...

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Rumble and ramble.

1. Yesterday I wore maternity pants and a tank top with an open, flowy non-maternity cardigan. As I stood in line for my decaf pumpkin spice latte at Starbucks, I wondered whether anyone could even tell I was pregnant because of the flowiness of my sweater (these are the self-absorbed thoughts running through my mind at 8am). About an hour later I caught sight of my profile as I walked by a wall of windows at work and nearly passed out. Yes, I do believe they can tell. Pretty sure a five person tent couldn't conceal what I'm carrying around right now. Turns out my view from the top is somewhat different than everyone else's view. Which I've recently learned is also the case with my boobs. What I believe to be a modest neckline often turns into a pornographic one at work, because when I sit down my belly hoists my boobs up and right out the top of my shirt. This is, of course, something I never notice until I go to the bathroom. And then I have to make the difficult decision whether to cover my chest or my stomach. Because, let's face it. If a five person tent can't cover both, neither can a Liz Lange tank top.

2. It was supposed to snow today. I still don't own boots. I feel like this is something I should probably address in the near future before it actually does snow. What I want are cute, expensive boots. What I need are utilitarian, moderately-priced boots that will hold up to a Minnesota winter. Recommendations?

3. I love the show New Girl. A lot of people find Zooey Deschanel annoying. A lot of people find that show downright unfunny. But Nate and I find it charming and hilarious. I choose to believe this says something about everyone else and not us.

4. Nine days until Breaking Dawn. In case you don't have an internal clock set for that sort of thing. Or haven't been listening to "It Will Rain" on repeat.

5. Speaking of Twilight, the first movie was on FX recently, so I watched it while Nate futzed around on the computer. At one point he asked me what was going on, and so I started rambling "well, see, he's a vampire but his family doesn't eat people they just eat animals but he still wants to eat people so that other vampire who does eat people just bit Bella and now he has to suck out the venom but it's so hard because once he tastes her blood he has a hard time stopping but he loves her and he doesn't want to change her into a vampire but if he doesn't stop she'll die." And then I realized how enormously stupid that sounded and shut up. Some things are best enjoyed without discussion.

6. We looked at TVs for our bedroom last night. Nate wants a 37" plasma, and I think my 20" Toshiba from 1998 still works just fine. So I agreed to meet in the middle and suggested a 15" plasma retailing for $109. Surprisingly, he did not jump at this opportunity. My question is this: How much clarity and size do you really need to watch a 30-minute rerun of Friends before bed?

7. I decorated for fall last weekend. Two months late, with only two weeks to spare. Whew. Close one. Super glad I spent time on that, especially when no one else will see it and we haven't done anything to prepare for the impending arrival of our child next month. Never mind the fact that Nate is only off three (THREE!) weekends between now and Christmas. And will be out of town for one of them. Or that I'm under the constant threat of bed rest due to my blood pressure. So not worried. I'm sure I'll find more than enough time to get everything painted, decorated, purchased, cleaned, washed, folded, and organized between those three weekends, two major holidays, a toddler, and a full-time job.

And now you know why I have blood pressure issues.

8. Would it be cheating to listen to one Christmas song today? Just one? Or maybe two? I downloaded the She & Him Christmas album and I'm getting antsy.

9. This came in the mail the other day. When presented to Nate along with the two (exact same) shirts I got for Calvin, he said "This is what it's going to be like now, isn't it? She gets a cute pink hat and Calvin gets two plain white shirts?" Hey, at least I got him something. And we all know no child of mine will ever hurt for clothing.

10. Just realized I referenced Twilight and Zooey Deschanel twice each in this post. Yep, I'm a twelve year old fan girl. Gotta go find some Bubble Yum and get cracking on my diorama before Saved By The Bell comes on.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Family of three.

There's an age-old question mothers ask themselves (and everyone else) when preparing to welcome a second child:

How could I ever possibly love another baby as much as I love my first?

I'm smart enough to know there's nothing to worry about. Plenty of people have told me so and I've seen it with my own eyes. My love will not be divided, but multiplied. There will be plenty of love to go around. I will love them both equally, if differently.

But knowing and understanding are two different things. My head knows these words are truth, but my heart...oh, my heart. It doesn't quite believe this is possible. And it's a little scared of what's to come, of losing something in the transition from mother of one to mother of two.

Nate and I spent all day Saturday with Calvin. We planned an entire day together, just us three, doing things we thought he would love. Chocolate chip pancakes with whipped cream for breakfast, a morning at Sea Life and Nickelodeon Universe, an evening of movies and popcorn and pizza camped out in a living room tent. A day filled with special treats, one after the other, so Calvin would know just how much we love him, how proud we are of the wonderful big brother he is certain to be, and how much we treasure our time with him.

I know Calvin won't remember this day. And he won't remember life without his sister. But Nate and I will. Our day together was as much about us as it was him, about capturing this brief moment in time when we existed as a family of three.

As with every aspect of motherhood, you can't really know anything until you've been through it. So I anxiously await the day when I will cradle my baby girl in one arm, hug my little boy with the other, and go from knowing to understanding just how much love my heart can hold.

If what I feel for my firstborn is any indication, there will be more than enough for everyone.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Yo ho ho and a bottle of...Pepsi.

Calvin discovered Kit Kats last night.

I was none too pleased, as I am a Halloween hoarder of Kit Kats and Twix and planned to keep any he collected for myself. He got four Kit Kats and he ate three. The fourth one miraculously disappeared after he went to bed.

Sorry, baby. It's for your (my) own good.

Last year, Halloween was fun. This year, it was FUN. Holidays just have a whole new level of meaning and enjoyment for me as a mom. There's really nothing cuter than watching your baby race down the sidewalk, pirate hook in one hand, Tootsie Roll pop in the other, shouting "that's so spooky, Mom and Dad!"

My little pirate. Easiest costume on earth — foam hat, hook, and bandana were $5 total at JoAnn Fabrics, eye patch was $1 at Party City, shirt was $5 at Target, sweatpants were $3 at Walmart, striped socks were $1 at Old Navy. I zig zagged the edge of the sweatpants, cut a strip of red fabric for the sash, and we were in business. Total cost: $15. And he looked adorable.

When do family photos start to turn out better? I mean, seriously. This was the best of the bunch. Also, do you like our still-blooming geraniums?

I really thought we were going to have issues getting him to wear the eye patch. Nope. He wore it around the house for three days prior to Halloween. Loved it. Wiped out a few times due to vision impairment, but didn't seem to mind.

Calvin made quite the haul in his two blocks. Including a can of Pepsi. Which was given to him after the woman said " what would be best for you? Oh, here you go!" Well, of course. Pepsi is always the logical choice for a two year old. Not only is it nutritious, it's also really lightweight and easy for a toddler to carry!

See? He only ate the Kit Kats. It's as if he knew...

Happy Halloween, mateys!
Powered by Blogger.
Designed By Boutique-Website-Design